Visions of Sickness From Faraway Places

Friends, Romans, and countrymen and -women, I have fallen ill. It has been a gross several days of torturous hot-and-cold, toss-and-turn, binge-and-purge grossness, the details of which I will spare you. Well, mostly. I went to the doctor, who diagnosed me with tonsillitis. He helpfully described the pus forming on them as a “cheese.”

You will be proud of me in that I totally did not barf on his shoes at this description.

Anyway, my region of the Suzh’ is apparently swimming in Hand-Foot-Mouth disease (I am not exactly positive on the order of those three components) so I felt it best to stay home from work, lest I shed my potentially lesion-y skin all over my young charges like a wretched snowstorm. The doctor, checking my hooves as though preparing me for a pedicure, assured me that I was not diseased in that regard, although the cheesy throat and the boiling fever that was eating me from inside out was probably not good. I ached everywhere. I got no sleep, because I kept waking up from dreams where my sleep was a necessary component energy in the functioning of some mystical factory somewhere and I needed to keep moving and writhing to do my part in its service. (I have some generally whack fever dreams).

Anyway, to help you laugh at my pain, I provide three visual stimuli representing what sickness looks like for me in China.

Behold, the massive drugpile:


After a journey to the clinic, I was bestowed with a goodybag stuffed to the brim with various coagulants and calmatives and whateverthehellacils meant to force my fever and headache back down into the bowels of hell. Each came sealed in separate packages with detailed instructions on when and how to ingest each thingy. I feel drowsy already!

Behold, the entertainment:


Both exhausted and completely unable to sleep, I followed up my journey to the clinic with a visit to the DVD store to pick up some quality bootlegs. I trudged home, stripped off my sweat-slick horrible outerwear, slipped into my bigboy sick-day pyjamas, and slid in the first DVD. And then the next. And the next. The thing with bootleg Chinese DVDs is that they come with a Matryoshkaesque level of packaging, and day of binge-watching quickly turns into a massive pile of garbage. And if there’s one thing you’re unlikely to do on a sick day, it is clean up the obnoxious messes you have made.

Behold, the sick day signage:


Tuesday, the first day of my sick leave, coincided with one of my precious ayi days. Horrified at the prospect of having to waddle from my bed to interact with a human being, especially the one who would have to tend to all of the repugnant messes my wretched body would be producing, I decided to assault the problem through careful evasion. I drew up this sign, indicating my state of being via thermometer and cold compress, and stuck it to my bedroom door. And then I locked the door. And then I texted a Chinese acquaintance who could communicate to ayi that I would be asleep and could she just vacuum and wash the dishes and don’t worry about the bedroom, there is probably just a big sweaty corpse in there anyway.

Welcome to disease in China.


8 thoughts on “Visions of Sickness From Faraway Places

  1. It’s nice to see that it’s not just Mexico where they like to pile you up with a ton of drugs. I swear, you go to the doctor here, it doesn’t matter what’s wrong with you, you’re coming out of there with a 2 week course of antibiotics and an outrageously bland diet to accompany. Get better soon, days of dvd watching aren’t a bad way to recuperate:)

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