Sunday, 7 February 2016

Food Poisoning during Travels & the unexpected help from Kampung – Paris

After 7 months of traveling who would have guessed I would get food poisoning in Paris of all places. I suspect the last culprit must me the McDonald that I took for dinner. McD has been my downfall many times after all with food poisoning. I wonder why I still go back to them after many times of suffering.

Woke up in Paris at 3am in the morning to puke out all the last meal I had (McD) and continue puking every half an hour till 8 am in the morning. Nice old fashion food poisoning that was till I got a chain event of the old Gastric back. Empty stomach from all the puking plus nothing to digest gave me a gastric in the morning so I was puking bile instead of food by 8am. Not to mention the diarrhea that follows after.

Whole body was weak, energy drained but I had to check out of the hostel. My flight was later that day to Manchester from the very very far airport Beuvais Paris. Check out and I went to the nearest Supermarket to get some banana, fruitcake, bottled water and tic tac mint. I had to force food down while I still had the mental will to do so. I remember when once upon a time the Gastric hurts so much I could not even stand up let alone eat. The toilet bowl was my best friend.
I was nearing that stage. So close that I mentally force the banana and fruitcake slowly down. Small portion, little water …. Rest and focus - repeat … I was hanging around the outside courtyard where the hostel was busy with people checking out and hanging around for wifi and breakfast.

In between my meditation zone to keep food in the belly I heard some malay speaking words. Was I mistaken?? I thought for I could not be hearing very well. I could not focus back to maintaining mental will of keeping food in belly. More small bites of fruitcake, banana and little water.

Suddenlly I got the chills, weather became cold and I went indoors sat down and curl up in the old school fetal position of sleeping on the table. Mentally I was really struggling. Focus, Focus … is that more malay I heard ? Can’t be, I haven’t seen a Malaysian in 7 months (not counting Aisyv of course) Force more food down and an hour later I was well enough to not dream of things or to think that I dream of things to really notice what was going on around me
There was really a family of Malaysian in the Paris hostel chit chatting around me in Malay. Another girl came in the common room and she was shock that the family was conversing in Malay for she was from Malaysia as well. Alamak!! …. They said hello and goodbye in just a few minutes as she was headed out and as soon as she left I asked …. Kamu dari Malaysia ??? (You from Malaysia?) The family got a shock as much as I did for they did not expected to see so many Malaysian in Paris let alone in a hostel.

Duduk diam diam dengar semua ya !!! (Quietly Listening on our conversation ar?*one raised eyebrow*)  one of the elderly makcik (Aunt) said to me …. It was not intentional I told her … I was sick …. And viola fellow countryman to the rescue and I got some medicine for stomach gastric.
A few minutes later after the medicine took effect I could hold a conversation and although I was rusty with Malay it was refreshing to speak it after so long. The asked me of my plans which led to the usual probe of questions and I asked them of theirs as well and the usual follow up questions …. They were travelling for about 11 days in Europe on a caravan …. They were just heading out and getting the caravan hired and would be driving everywhere in Europe.

I was going to Manchester to see family I said …. Pergi cari keluaga kat England dan tumbang beberapa hari sampai sakit gastric ni pulih, I said.  (Going to find relative in England I said and hopefully rest and recover from this food poisoning)
Hah … bila sakit baru cari keluaga ya – the makcik chided me (Only when one is sick that they think of family) … I couldn’t help but smile.

So they left and I got better … enough to drag myself though public transport to the airport. I was very early at the airport at 3pm while my flight was at 10pm
I was glad I reach early for once I was there, I somehow caught a fewer …. I went to the arrival hall terminal which had lesser people waiting, found a armless bench and slept there for 4 hours … getting up every half an hour for toilet and my good friend the toilet bowl and more water intake. By the time I boarded the plane that night my fever had broke and touchdown Manchester to see my Aunt and Uncle waiting for me just outside the gate.

Remembering the Makcik works of wisdom I smiled inside for I knew I was in safe hands J
Reach Yorkshire by midnight and straight to bed …. Fewer and Poisoning was done … now all I had to do was slowly nurse my tummy to full appetite health in the next few days … I have reach sanctuary at least for now …. Cant help but remember the sly smile of the makcik face chiding me that I go looking for family only when in trouble. 7 months alone … and when you fall sick you go looking for family …. Sounds familiar to Malaysian who knows what it’s about … you almost always find family only when there is some problem.

It was just coincidence that I happen to get food poisoning the day I was to fly out to see family ... but I guess it was ironic in a sense that it happen and I was chided by a Makcik Malaysian .... Like reading an old comic strip from Kee's worlds - It's a Durian Life :)

1 comment:

  1. Having had food poisoning before, I know how you felt. However, it must have been even worse when traveling. McDonald's in Paris must do a great deal of business and make fresh food all day long, so there is no excuse for what happened to you. I'm glad that you found new friends that helped you.