I’ve been sick. Two weeks ago we dinghied to the next bay over and spent a lovely happy hour with Macushla in a beachfront establishment with seriously comfy chairs. We got back in the early evening, ate a quick dinner and soon after I said to Jack, “My throat’s a little sore.” Within an hour, my throat went from “a little sore” to “unable to swallow without gasping in pain.” I couldn’t believe how quickly it came on. I ruled out an allergic reaction for various reasons but it was clear almost immediately that this was not a little scratchy throat that would go away without help. The problem was that it was carnival week. Most businesses were closed, even the clinics, and given the level of celebration we’d been observing I was reluctant to venture out to seek medical help anyway.
I bore with it for a few days hoping my natural healing abilities would take over, but I eventually realized I needed a course of antibiotics. Now before you jump on me, I’m not a person who takes antibiotics regularly. In fact I’m sure it’s been at least 15 years since I’ve taken any, even refusing them when they’ve been prescribed “prophylactically.” But this time, I knew I needed them.
Most cruisers carry a veritable pharmacy aboard and we should too, but given the confused circumstances of our house sale and boat search, we never got a chance to sit down with our former family doctor to put together a list of drugs we ought to have on board. Consequently our medicine cabinet consists of aspirin, Advil, DayQuil and NyQuil, antibiotic ointment, a lot of band aids and a few steristrips. Nothing to help me with what I suspected was strep. I felt like someone had jammed a hot poker down my throat and then shoved burrs down there. Yikes! Every swallow was a nightmare.
Mark of Macushla to the rescue again. He had a course of the exact antibiotic that WebMD recommended — if my self-diagnosis was correct — and ran them right over. It was a full course of eight days and I eagerly downed the first dose and sent the boys off to the Carnival parade. It killed me to miss the colorful festivities but I was so sick all I wanted was to curl up and hibernate until I was well again.
By the fourth day of the antibiotics my throat was starting to heal and I could eat a little, and by the sixth day I was nearly back to normal. The seventh day, yesterday, was my birthday and I pronounced myself well enough to dress up and go out with Jack and Mark. We had a beautiful dinner at Whisper Cove Marina with a lovely bottle of wine, enjoying the tail end of the weekly cruiser’s jam session, and frequent table visits from the chef who had made a special vegetarian dinner for Mark and me, and wanted to show Jack a photo of his cow, which Jack was eating.
We ended the evening on Escape Velocity finishing up the last batch of homemade mango toasted almond ice cream and soursop sorbet with chocolate nibs. It was a great birthday, made even better knowing that we can generally take care of ourselves when we need to — as long as our nearby friends have the right medicines.