Monday, April 20, 2009
Next Monday I’m leaving for the ‘We’ll-Be-Democratic-When-We-Feel-Like-It’ Republic of Congo. So what better time to get a pneumonia, or a severe cold? However, it could also be a life-threatening case of allergy. I really can’t tell: I’ve got a dry throat, runny eyes and a runny nose, which all indicates to an allergy. But this morning I got up with the cough of coughs. With a cough like this, I should become a chain-smoker. It would be a shame to have lungs like these without ever having smoked.
Between opening my eyes and making my lunch, I sounded like a Russian Trans-Siberian diesel train that missed out on its yearly maintenance and overhaul for the last 40 years. Then it got somewhat better, in that I could breathe for three minutes at a time in between these retching spasms. People on the bus looked at me.
So when I arrived in Brussels’ Central station, I dove into the nearest pharmacy and bought me a nice big bottle of coughing syrup. At work, I carefully read the prescription, to find out what the absolute maximum dose was before actually falling into a coma and dying. It said: ‘an adult person should take no more than 3 to 4 doses per day of 15 ml.’
After the first dose of 22ml I felt pretty Ok. Lo’ and behold: it worked. Not that the coughing stopped outright, but I was able to work.
An hour later my coworker started to throw angry looks at me, so I took another dose.
Yet another hour later, I felt it was time for a third dose. I started to note a happy, rosy mood coming over me. Work was suddenly less unpleasant (I had been checking accountancy records all morning).
After the fourth dose, I started to feel groovy, man. You know, when you’re going for stuff and shit and then you go like ‘whaaoow dude’ and everyone’s like totally hip man?
My productivity started to suffer after the fifth sip of syrup. Luckily, it was dinner time and my lunch absorbed some of the drugs. But then the cold turkey hit me. I needed another shot.
By the end of the afternoon, my cough wasn’t improving anymore, but I got a hell of a headache on top. I thought about taking an aspirin, but one addiction a day is quite enough.