I COULD NOT MAKE THIS UP IF I TRIED.
Friday night I went out to dinner with my good friend, PMcQ. We went to a new Indian restaurant and the food was fantastic. I had some sort of spicy vegetable curry and this incredible minted whole wheat naan. In the middle of the night, somewhere around 1:30 am, I awoke with the chills and that horrible, firey churning in my stomach that could only mean one thing...
I hate throwing up. I would rather be stricken with fifty bouts of diarrhea in one hour than to throw up just once. And as if puking isn't bad enough in and of itself, try puking up spicy Indian curry. I was grateful for not having ordered the vindaloo.
I figured it was because I hadn't eaten Indian food since last winter (I'm a little weird like that - it just seems like a cold-weather food) or perhaps something that I'd eaten was rancid. I cursed the Indians while blowing chunks of stinging vegetables out my nose. I felt like Tony Soprano in the episode where he got food-poisoning from "the goddamn clarified buttah."
After a good four or five bouts of puking, I cleaned up and climbed into bed. And that's when the chills started. I put on three layers of clothes and climbed under a mountain of blankets, and still I could not stop shivering. At 2:30, I sent HIM a text message:
"I'm so sick."
Awakened by the beep, HE quickly replied, "What is it? Are you OK? What's going on?"
I called HIM to tell HIM that I felt like shit and just needed someone to whine to. I layed there shivering until finally dozed off around 4:30.
I felt a little better Saturday, as if I were just running a low-grade fever. We had plans to drive down to HIS parents' for dinner and I figured sitting a car wasn't very taxing. While we were sitting around the table, I made mention of the few itchy, little bumps I had on my stomach and neck. Mr. Sensitivity apologized to HIS parents for bringing a leper to dinner. It was great seeing them. HIS Mom loaded me up with Tylenol, tea and lots of hugs.
When we got in to bed, we started talking about chicken pox. I told HIM I'd never had them as a child, even though my Mom tried exposing me to my infected friends. HE Googled the symptoms and wondered out loud if perhaps I'd come down with them.
After a 10-hour, Advil PM-induced night's sleep, I awoke to find many more little bumps. We took a ride to the Urgent Care center where they treated me as if I had bird flu - immediately rushing me into an exam room so I wouldn't breathe my plague on the innocent.
The doctor, a small Indian woman, came in and asked how it had started.
"Well, initially I thought I'd had food poisoning. I was throwing up Friday night and running a fever."
"What had you eaten?" she asked.
"Umm... Indian food?" I barely whispered, feeling ashamed. She kind of blushed and smiled.
"Yes well, it can be tough to digest sometimes if you're not used to it."
She looked at my spots and confirmed that they did indeed look like chicken pox. I told her I'd never had them as a kid and that I am a teacher. I also mentioned that five of my students came down with chicken pox back in December - even though they'd been vaccinated. She told me that they probably had mild cases and that they were probably passing it around to other vaccinated kids who, in turn, gave it to me.
Part of me still wonders if I caught it from the Indian food and she's just trying to save her culture's image.
Fortunately, HE'd had it when HE was 10. We went back home and watched a few episodes of "Six Feet Under," and then I went out to the store. I figured I may as well stock up on stuff before I become too hideous to leave the house. And now I'm home and I am watching new little bumps erupt. The bulk of them are on my stomach and back, but they're migrating to my shoulders and just noticed two on my left bicep.
I guess "teaching" got the last laugh after all.