It has been some time since I have contributed some more tidbits concerning my life in China. So I figure now is a good a time as any to add some more tidbits. Needless to say, Thanksgiving was not the usual holiday for me this year. I did have some great food and friends to share it with, but my family couldn’t make the 14-hour plane flight over here. Of course, since my family hosts Thanksgiving now, they couldn’t be the ones to leave everyone else stranded on the Day of Feasting. That wouldn’t be very nice. Although I would do my best to take good care of a 30-pound turkey lovingly transported from the States to a poor, starving expat in China.
In all seriousness, Thanksgiving was still a good one this year. Gretchen managed to procure a turkey in Qingdao (since turkeys aren’t indigenous to China, they’re a bit pricey), and the rest of the group provided the side dishes. Some cheesy mashed potatoes, a green bean dish, sugar-encrusted sweet potatoes, and bread rolls. I was surprised that my green bean dish was edible, especially after frantically trying to finish the dish before we all were supposed to arrive at our friends’ house. I did arrive on time, with maybe about 2 minutes to spare. Never been one to arrive early for anything, but arriving right on time or at a later point in time is more my style.
The feasting was plentiful. And as always, I feasted too much. I figure, though, if this is the only turkey I get to eat all year, I had better gorge while I can in a dignified manner, of course. After we had fattened ourselves, we decided to let the gastric acids work away at the food as we watched a goofy, Santa-endearing film about a human who grew up as an elf and then saved Christmas for humankind – Elf. Way to usher in the Christmas spirit, Mr. Will Ferrell. After Elf ended, we decided to force ourselves to eat some dessert. I suffered through the apple crisp and other chocolatey morsels of goodness. I’m just glad that stomachs are meant to expand, or else it would have been the last Thanksgiving to give thanks for.
On to the day after Thanksgiving. I woke up feeling thoroughly exhausted. It must be from my Thanksgiving hangover, I thought. Well, this feeling remained constant throughout the day. Then I began to feel my body begin to vacillate between cold spells and hot spells. Still living in denial at this point. Next came the throbbing forehead that felt like an oven. Yes, I came down with a cold. According to the ear thermometer, I was a whopping 102.4 F.
As most colds go, it hasn’t had any idiosyncrasies to speak of, apart from it being my first cold with a fever in China. Wow, that’s a great one to check off the list. After consuming several gallons of hot tea, taking hot/cold showers, and sleeping for copious amounts of time, I feel like I’m emerging from the murky fog of sickliness. I think I should commit myself to assiduously sanitizing my hands after every encounter with a bus in China. At least that should lessen the frequency of getting sick. So, for the week of Thanksgiving, I am most thankful for my health, because when you’re sick, you remember that health is a precious commodity. Not one I would wish to sell under any conditions.