Saturday, February 25, 2006

Po' Chile No Po Chai

SICK SICK SICK SICK SICK. Sick. I was out of my Po Chai medicine for a while before I left. I ordered a case from the company and needed them badly when they came in on monday, a holiday, the day I left. I took a couple on the plane (tiny purple pellets of Chinese herbs for my ulcer). It started out bad, my fault. I went off on an empty stomach, I'd left behind my nice bowl of beans in the rush. I always forget to eat if I'm stressed or working. Not good. I made a point of buying & bringing my yerba mate & agave as the coffee & tea of traveling has trashed my stomach. When I got to the airport for my 5pm flight there was nothing to eat but airplane food in the food kiosks. Not good. Turkey & wheat & cheese. Not good. I'd been feeling so good I'd gotten lax about what I can & shouldn't eat. Then the plane didn't have any hot water for my tea. (!!?) I was feeling queasy when we landed, and I forgot my little bag of tea & agave nectar and PO CHAI PILLS!! I landed in Chicago where a driver took me to Notre Dame/ St. Mary's and when I finally arrived at the hotel at 12:30 exhausted from shlepping all my stuff (add extra weight of laptop & bag, digital video camera & iPod -- all of which I was too sick to ever turn on) [a measure of my degree of illness: too sick to turn on the computer until now since monday] -- and discovered I'd left it on the plane. From that point on I couldn't eat or hold any liguids. I didn't sleep for throwing up every five minutes. I spent the nights in the bath. Seemed to help control the vomiting to the point I could catnap in the tub. Thanks to Maria for finding yerba mate & agave nectar for me!

I felt okay for the performances by the students of my and others poems from the exhibit; it energized me. I was moved by the range and depth of interpretation -- bodily interpretation. It comes from the knowledge of the body so I guess it makes sense that there is a cycle by which it returns as embodied: as voice, as movement; e-motion in the etymological sense of the word, the old French: after motion, as a rational act of the body to a particular stimulus. An other body.

And when dwelling among irrationality? Like the sale of our country, our Ports, our major entryways and arteries to the ones who funded and launched the attacks with not even a port doc on dock to inspect? Oh, Wretched of the Earth! Oh, Wretched Wretch! O, wretchéd wretching. Yes, sick as a dog. The whole time. I think I got through the reading, miraculously, on sheer adrenaline. I missed lunch with Francisco on wednesday, and really missed catching up with Sonia Gonzalez who was there in the the hotel from Purdue. And I missed touring Notre Dame's collection of arte Chicano/Latino, probably the largest anywhere.

Came back, dragging, handing cash to porters and begging them to let me sit on the cart. I could barely get up the stairs. I got in close to 11 pm wednesday. And the first thing I did was grab a couple boxes of Po Chai, microwave some quick tea, and head up to bed where I stayed until this morning. Missing my class on thursday and a day of meetings with students yesterday.

This is why I hate to to travel anymore. Especially alone. I get really sick. I started vomiting blood when I got to DIA. This is why I had to decline so many reading offers and cancel out-of-state performances the past handful of years. It scares me.

But the Po Chai pills really help. I was planning to go in that night or first thing in the morning. But I slept through most of the night (a bit delirious, waking up intermittently with the words: SASHA COHEN SASHA COHEN SASHA COHEN on the lips and this constant Olympics announcer in my head, maybe the skater - I think I lose brain cells in all this - who suffered groin cancer but made a comeback.) (I love figure skaters!)

But no solids until yesterday. A little yogurt (which made me wretch, more from dehydration). And finally, last night, the old stand-by: miso soup. And tea. Thinking about sushi. And, I always think of Cesar; like fasting, but not.

Now I'm better. Good old Po Chai pills. Ancient Chinese medicine. More effective quicker than anything.(Except maybe CHAYA!) And, believe me, I, and my doctors have tried everything since this started in July of 2001. Good thing they're economical. And, now, I can get them online.

YEA! I'm saved!

Hungry as a bear for non-gluten porridge. MMMmmm, down to cook.

Hope y'all are feeling okay. Don't forget: Ocssillococcinum for flu, especially if you take it at the first threat, rasp or sniffle. And, echinacea -- nothing but the extra-strength tincture under the tongue. They make it for kids, too. Sorry for rambling & whining. I just feel glad to be alive, like after-major-earthquake talk out n the street. And, hey, I'm home.

Welcome Home!

* more on St. Mary's, the reading, and the exhibit at Notre Dame soon!


Blogger Anne said...

Goodness -- I hope you are feeling much better by now! South Bend makes me feel a little ill too, but only because I grew up there and one always feels a wee bit nauseated by one's teenage memories, I think. :) Rest and relax and recuperate!

25/2/06 16:27  
Blogger Diana Marie Delgado said...


Sorry you had to go through such a draining experience. I hope you feel better soon.

25/2/06 17:19  

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