Saturday, February 11, 2012

Six Cents Vingt Sept Jours a Sceaux (627 Days in Sceaux)


This has been a wild week. That is not to say it has been a good week, just a wild one…

Monday started the week as Monday's often do, with its fair share of being Monday. The biggest thing for me was the final preparations for a global webcast I was to give my team the next day. Getting all the data correct, building up the PowerPoint presentation so that it flows well, making sure the message is concise and clear and accurate, and at the same time meeting the fires that erupted throughout the day. I arrived at the office early on Tuesday, having decided to make a few tweaks to the presentation I'd labored over the day before (as everyone else does). And I delivered the first webcast to Europe, Africa, and Asia that morning. The rest of the day went normally until 4 PM, when it was time to do the webcast for the Americas. Again, everything went well, message delivered, the troops exhorted, and it was time to go home.

As you may know, and if you did not realize, I am here without a car. I'm close enough to the office to either walk or take a bus, which I have been doing since I moved into the apartment in May of 2010. It has been a cold winter here, especially the last couple of weeks, and for the foreseeable couple of weeks. They tell me it has been the coldest winter since 1985. Temperatures range from the mid teens Fahrenheit to the upper 20s Fahrenheit. For those of you more familiar with the Celsius scale, -10 C to -2C. I felt very cold going to the bus that afternoon, and never warmed up while on the bus. The coldness persisted for the 8 min. walk back to the apartment, and I was developing a bit of post nasal drip. Things only got worse from there. I went through about a half a box of Kleenex that night, so very tired and weaker as I went to work in the morning. I did not make it until noon. I went home, feeling tired, head completely pressured up, and cold to my bones. When I got home, I put on the long underwear I put on the long T-shirt, I put on the heavy socks, and got into bed with all the covers on top. I shivered and shaked for the next 2 to 3 hours. The body could not get warm, or feel warm. After that episode, I fell asleep. When I woke up, I knew I needed to hydrate and eat something. I do pretty good job of keeping track of my hydration, and soup was the only thing that I could think about eating. Now please keep in mind, I am all but a feral male, so when I say the word "soup", we are talking about a packet of stuff in boiling water. I know, not really the high nutrition of the real stuff, but it is what I had. I was able to go back to sleep until the fever came. Ironically, the body still felt very cold.

I will not bore you with further details, except to say that the next day I was getting better. I forced myself to stay awake through the afternoon until my normal bedtime, but then I found it impossible to fall asleep for the whole night, leaving me completely exhausted for Friday. I needed another day of rest and recuperation. It has been years since I've missed more than two days of work in a row due to illness. And I really hate being caged up by being sick. I'm not into medicines, I've seen the adverse toll they have taken on family members. I believe we are fearfully and wonderfully made by an omniscient creator God. I believe he has given our bodies the tools that it needs to survive these common maladies. If anything, we simply need to facilitate the body to let it do what it was designed to do. Rest is an underrated ally in our fight against illnesses.

Today is Saturday, the rest is paying off. The head is still a bit stuffy, but it is on the mend. Tomorrow, I will try to run. The very cold weather and my upcoming travel will cut into my training time substantially, and I do not think I will be ready for the Paris half marathon in early March. I'm disappointed, but I have greater training goals in mind, and will run it next year, the Lord willing.

Thanks for coming along, I will share more later…

Mark