The internet connections at this university really aren't up to par (on spoiled Amercian standards). I've been so absolutely busy (and sick) these past couple of days. I really should be doing work, but I owe you guys an update.
I still have to update the rest of Beijing and Xi'an (ARGH) but I'll get to that when I'm in Shanghai (not for another 9-ish days...).
So, we arrive at Zhengzhou University (in the city of Zhengzhou) on Wednesday at 2 in the morning after a six hour train ride. Hohum. Thursday is first day of classes and we meet our Chinese buddies. My friend Linda and her friend Susan are really cool
They show us around campus and in the evening they have to go to class. My roommate Christa has to go to this banquet thing, and I completely forgot where the cafeteria was, so, thinking I was being safe, I go to the campus market buy a cup o noodle (ramen) thing.
I didn't taste all that well, I like the 'simpler' version of ramen back in the states.
And the beginning of my hellish rollercoaster begins.
I wake up in the middle of the night with the runs
It was bound to happen. I'm surprised I lasted this long with no ailments. They say 73 percent of those that study abroad get sick. I'm finally part of the majority. yay.
anynoodle, I go back to bed and wake up the next morning with achy joints, a little dizzy, and generally lethargic. I'm thinking i'm just dehydrated. The program director, Dr. Guo takes me to the campus' clinic to hook an IV up to me. Before they do that, they take my temperature which is 102 degrees, I think (39 Celsius) and they need to test my blood (for swine flu, heh...) but the blood machine is broken, I can't get the IV (which I think would have helped TREMENDOUSLY). So, they give me a shot to reduce my fever, tea that helps beat cold/flu, and pills to reduce fever.
I skip my first class to rest and go to my second one like the trooper I am.
As the day goes my, I notice that when I eat, maybe a few minutes later (10 minutes at most) I get hungry again. And I mean if feels like I haven't eaten for half a day. I tell Dr. Guo and he concludes I have a stomach infection.
Christa, my roommate, just happened to bring antibiotics for just such an occasion (thank the gods) and I take one. The next morning (Saturday) was a big field strip to Yuntai National Park and I'd been looking forward to that for so long! I had to skip out because I thought all I had to do that day was recover.
I was miserable.
Christa wasn't feeling that well either, and she also wanted to stay to keep an eye on me (a very sweet gesture indeed) but she's an assistant and they made her go
About five of us altogether didn't go because we had some sort of stomach issue.
I was SO hungry. I mean, I was raised to roll with the punches, suck it up and not complain, but I was in so much hunger pain from the infection that I was physically weak. I had to gather up enough strength to walk 3 blocks to the market to buy some bananas (the only thing I felt I could stomach) and some bread because I needed something solid in my stomach to take with the antibiotics. I was SHORT OF BREATH. that's how out of it I was. I truly was miserable that day. All I consumed was water and bananas. I could only eat a little at a time because my stomach needed a chance to process it.
I swear, 10-15 minutes after I ate something, I felt the type of hunger you got when you ate absolutely NOTHING for half a day. I mean, hunger pain to the point of almost nausea.
That night, I woke up 3 times from the hunger pains, and I had to force bits of food into my stomach and hope that I'd fall asleep by the time I was hungry again.
The next day I felt MUCH MUCH better. My fever was gone, but I was still getting rather frequent hunger pains. I had to work back on getting real food into my stomach.
The day after that (monday) I was able to eat real food in my usual amounts, and I wouldn't get hungry again for about an hour or so. Dr. Zhan, one of the other profs told me I needed to pace myself, and Christa explained I ate so little in the past few days that I needed to give my system a chance to process things.
Tuesday I'm feeling exponentially better, and the hunger is getting pushed off a little bit more each time. I can now go over an hour without feeling hungry. I've been craving fruit, but i'm SO SICK OF BANANAS. haha.
Tonight, I only got up to pee, haha, and I drank a little water to 'fill' my tummy up a little. The past few days , because of my sickness i think, i've been getting up around 5 in the morn, usually starving to death. I got up at the same time this morning but my hunger seemed to quell itself. I didn't want to change my eating habits so that my body was expecting food and odd hours of the day.
The past day or two I've been craving yogurt, and I told Christa that when you crave something, it means there's something in that food your body needs at the moment. She agreed, saying the antibiotics probably killed alot of the helpful bacteria in my stomach and that was probably delaying my progress. I'd never thought of that :/ But now I'm loading up on yogurt (I do love their yogurt :D ).
I'm feeling much much much better now :D
The other people who got sick ate this chicken sandwhich they had at the bakery. No offence, but I don't trust mayonnaise in any country except the states, and even then.....
It's actually a little scary over here, because so many of us got sick in such a small time frame; from fevers to stomach ailments to coughing. There's a power plant ON campus, and many parts of China are polluted as is. Some people are getting sinus problems.
I'm not trying to scare anyone out of going to China (you'd get sick in any country you go to, really....).
Ugh, but that Saturday really was one of the worst days of my life. I think I'm beginning to fear hunger pains. I've felt them SO FREAKING MUCH in the past few days.
I mean, Smaug almighty, I never want to relive that day again.
ah....I feel better now. I hope things are on the up and up from now on. I can't wait til we go to Shanghai.
Yes, I'm a girl, and I want to go shopping. China is the epicenter of lace :D