Saturday, January 07, 2006

The Mean Egg

On our last day with Kate and Devin, we all ate hard-boiled eggs for breakfast. Not so bad yet, right? Kate and I ended up eating ones that had been kept next to raw eggs in the fridge and...a few hours later we were hit in the gut with samonilla. So, it was an interesting 6 hour bus ride back to Madrid. Poor Scott was smashed in a corner because I INSISTED that I must splay myself across both seats. For the next week or so, I was completely out of it. I don't know if any of you out there have ever had this affliction... I won't get into details, but you can imagine. I didn't leave the apartment for many days, and the whole time I had a troupe of either knome miners, or an acrobatics team frolicking in me. They even kept me up at night- I had to drown out the racket by watching movie after movie (some advice- if you are ever feeling sorry for yourself because you are sick, watch a depressing war movie and you will be happy that you have both arms, etc.) Poor Paul and Jes, I was a bump on a log for so long, and eventually Scott dragged me to the emergency room. This was a very interesting experience. After laying on the waiting room floor for 10 min, I finally got my own stretcher in the hallway. This was my home for the next 4 hours. I remember just watching everyone go by, and eavesdropping on why they were there. A kid got the wrong leg X-rayed, a girl busted her ankle falling off her fancy Spanish heels (ha ha!), a grandma thought she had chest pains and then proceeded to tick off all her would have been more amusing though, if I didn't feel like something you scrape off your shoe, or if Scott hadn't been banned from the hallway. Finally, I was admitted and got to practice my Spanish by recounting what happened and how I felt. I naively assumed that once they heard that I hadn't eaten in a few days and hadn't had many fluids that they would RUSH to get me care, but as it was, they just nodded. Apparently, that isn't life-threatening. They did some tests and gave me an IV as I waited for my results. During this time, the shift changed, so I was once again in the hallway, right next to the freezing cold breeze of the cigarette-break alley, I had dropped my water bottle, my IV was done, I had a needle in my arm, and everyone was ignoring me. In short, I was ready to go home. Finally I reached out and grabbed a passer-by- hopefully they were staff but I loved them no matter what because they took the needle out. The lab stuff came back in a folder and I shuffled through it, looking for a bill. I asked the nice lady 3 times if there was anything else I needed to do, but she told me to go home. I shuffled as fast as I could without passing out to get Scott and scurry out of there, in case they realized that we hadn't paid or given insurance info. As is was, emergency treatment is free for all in Spain- good to know. I spent the next couple of days still trying to recuperate and not be a blob when Paul and Jes' friends visited from Ireland.

We were to head to San Sebastian after Madrid, and planned to take a night train up there. Here was another interesting transportation experience. We were all ready, with our tickets and after 2 hours of waiting, went down to board the train. Scott had called and asked three separate times to make sure that it was fine that we brought our bikes on the train. He was assured it was, each time so we were confident that we could cruise on this one. Not so. Some crabby man with a big belly grabbed our tickets and shook his head. NO! We told him that the people selling the tickets said it was OK, prompting him simply to say, "well, they're wrong". Scott ran up to the ticket counter again, to ask. They again assured him it was OK. The train man again said no. So, Scott ran up again and traded our tickets so we each had our own compartment- they said it was one bike per compartment. run run run. Not so! said the train guy. run run run. What do we do? run run run. The train left, without us on it. Thankfully we were able to stay at Paul and Jes' for that "night" (ended up being three hours) before we took a bike-friendly train up to San Sebastian...


Blogger chris said...

oooh, sarah! i'm so sorry about your food poisoning. i'm glad you were able to recover. thanks for the updates and glad you had a safe trip back to the US. when are you coming to DC??

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