Friday, January 18, 2008

Getting busy & getting sick

Things were nicely getting into full swing here in Fonty. There were English lessons to prepare and to give to some of the partners ; there was some translation work to do, there were massage classes to attend, there were dinner parties to organize ; and there was of course, last but no least, my French to study. So I was very happy to see that my dairy was filling up, and I was already wondering if I wasn’t getting too busy. I entered the INSEAD time-dimension, in which time flies by at the speed of light, and in which there is always too much to do in just too little time.

But then on Wednesday, as I was once again on a quest for food through the gigantic Carrefour supermarket, I started feeling a bit sweaty, weird and dizzy. Yes, that’s right : another French virus decided it liked me very much. And brought me down with a fever, a splitting headache, swollen glands, a very sore throat and a voice that now seems to be gone. Apparently I don’t do well in the country side, inhaling « healthy » forest air all the time. Can somebody please bring on some good polluted exhaust-filled city air ?
OK, I admit : I’ve walked in the ice cold rain several times without wearing my coat, I limited my sleeping hours (standard operating procedure at INSEAD), and I actually haven’t eaten quite as much healthy stuff as I should. But also, and more importantly, I’ve been spending much time on campus, where the handkerchief is like a fixed attribute of more than 50% of the students. It’s like high school or university all over again : one person sneezes in the amphi or cafeteria, and boom : the whole class gets it (partners included).

So for now it’s bed – couch – hot drinks – painkillers again. Luckily the fever’s gone, and somehow it feels good to take the time to be sick (instead of feeling guilty for not going to work, and then ending up going and feeling even worse). How ever : two times in three weeks has been more than enough. So all French viruses are warned : I’m not open for business any longer. Even if I don’t have to go to work, and even if I have the time to be sick.

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