Saturday, January 27, 2007

Being Sick

A week ago I knew that I was getting sick. You know, you get that little scratchy scratch in the back of your throat that simply can’t be itched. It starts out as a subtle annoyance, but as the day goes on, it gets more painful, and before you know it you have a sore throat, and there isn’t much you can do to help it. I thought that maybe I could be sneaky and overload on the vitamin C and drink the herbal supplement Airborne, and that maybe that would kill the ailment sure and fast, but alas, a week as gone by and I am still suffering from the same sickness though now my throat is not so sore. I’d like to believe that I am on the tail end of this thing, as I don’t believe that I will be able to tolerate much more sick time than is left in the duration of this weekend.

I’ve had a lot of time this week. Not so much by choice, but that I didn’t want to contaminate all of my co-workers with this forsaken virus. So I managed to “score” a week off. Though, on Monday and Tuesday I worked from home so that wasn’t exactly off, and Wednesday through Friday I was still taking telephone calls and answering my email. I don’t say this to make you believe that I am important or anything, it was just one of those weeks where not being at work really was more of a hassle than it would have been on a normal week. I learned that though working at home does give you some of the quiet that is desperately missing in the cube farm, that there is nothing like face to face communication when trying to get something explained. Instant Messaging, Email, and telephone calls can only go so far. I’m glad that I got the most essential of my work done, and that I had the time to be able to take off.

As I said, I had time to think. I didn’t come to any earth altering/shattering conclusions. I found that I bore quite easily, and that I like to have something going on, but that when dealing with cold medicines that something shouldn’t be too mind challenging, as it can lead to very discomforting dreams. On Monday night, I took my NyQuil, and started reading while waiting for the drugs to knock me out for the night. I was reading about adding testing harnesses to legacy code systems. Needless to say, the drugs worked, and shortly I was asleep, however my brain kept wandering on methodologies to work with legacy code. I think I got stuck in an infinite loop of code. Now it’s not always a bad thing to dream in code, however, I don’t find that my sleep is as restful when I’ve been thinking about something all night long. Lest I bore you with more about code and unit testing, I learned my lesson. No serious stuff before going to bed, especially when taking cold medicine.

Deciding that I couldn’t read tech books while working my way into dreamland, I decided that I needed to have deal with something lighter. I decided also, that forcing my eyes to move across the printed words on a screen or page was simply too much work, so I went to iTunes and purchased The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, as a book on tape. I hadn’t seen the movie, and wanted to read the book first, I happen to have had a lot of time on my hands, so now was as good a time as any. Books on tape are a great way to pass time when one is sick. Unlike television, movies or printed media, they don’t require that you keep your eyes open, and yet, there is still a constant stream of words to keep your mind busy on things other than how much your coughing is hurting your already sore throat. Anyhow, I found the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy as a book to be interesting, not nearly as funny as people made it out to be. I never found a moment where I laughed out loud, but I am glad that I am now concurrent with that side of pop culture. After listening to the book, I also purchased the movie, and was rather disappointed with their poor adaptation of the novel. In case you’re wondering, my current book on tape is now Eragon, a book that I’ve read. I just thought it would be fun to hear it read to me, and so far I haven’t been disappointed. I haven’t need that move, nor will I, as I’ve heard that it wasn’t true to the book at all.

So, as I said, it’s been a week of sick. I managed to keep up with school, I did the bare minimum for work, I’ve enjoyed some books and movies, and now I am ready to get back to regular life. I’m pretty sure that my voice won’t be back to normal for quite some time, as I am still coughing quite a bit, but at least my throat doesn’t hurt anymore. Maybe next year, I’ll be sure to get a flu shot, and beginning on Monday, I am going to be much more religious about my use of the hand sanitizer that sits in a bottle on my desk at work. This sick thing is no fun at all. With any luck (and a good dose of sheer will), I’ll be back to my normal schedule on Monday, though I am quite sure I won’t be feeling 100%.

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