Last Saturday at 2pm I left for a meeting in Phoenix, today I arrived home at 5pm (Sunday)... What follows is the short version of what happened in between....
Sunday - Wednesday Meeting Highlights:
Talks, Posters, networking meals, and social meals out. The meeting was my first in this field, my work was positively received and I was invited to submit ideas for a review paper (if I didn't just jinx it by mentioning it here). I bought Sara a shirt from here...yes, it says 'Phoenix, AZ' on it, that is why it was such a good gift. They have a really good happy hour. Really. Its good.
It rains in PHOENIX!!! I know I complained earlier, but one positive of having to be a meeting for 5 days was a chance to see the lunar eclipse in the Land of Sun. And it rained where I was (and I heard it was clear in Seattle). And my feeling so completely robbed is justification for mentioning it again.
Upon getting back to the hotel I notice pain in my calf and behind my knee. My Dad has had 3 incidences of Economy Class Syndrome so I call him to run this leg thing by him... just in case. My Dad is an emergency room doc and up until last week 100% of our conversations about anything medical have ended one of two ways: A) "You'll be fine" or B) "Huh, if it does X, Y or Z, you might want to get it checked out, but it stays the same, you'll be fine".
However, this time he was actually worried. He wanted me to go to an ER on Friday, once I got to Corvallis, to get it checked out.
I wake up with a funny cough. Hm. I call my Dad to let him know I didn't die in my sleep and head for the airport. I end up sitting next to Sofia, a 70 yr old woman from Argentina and I listen for 2 hrs and 10 minutes to stories about her two husbands and her hope for number three. Our 'conversation' is interrupted only once. She bought a 'Cafe Snack Box' from the flight attendant and upon seeing it only had cookies, she said (in one breath):
"Oh, cookies, I don't like cookies. Here. Would you like these? Here. (pushing them towards me) Oh, Godiva (upon seeing the chocolate bar I just opened for my in flight indulgence), Maybe you will share that with me." She was fun, I was happy to share my chocolate with her.
Sara arrived a short while after I landed and we headed south to PDX. Dinner plans with Mom, Grandma (my family) and Mom and Dad (Sara's family)...my cough is persisting and I am beat, beat, beat.
During dinner it is becoming clear to me, I am sick with some sort of respiratory illness. By the time we get home I have a fever of 100 degrees (I didn't tell my mom or Grandma), and I make everyone leave right after dessert so I can go to bed. And, because Sara and I are sleeping in the living room, I also make everyone else go to bed too...at 8:30pm (I would like to say in my defense, that is 9:30pm Phoenix time).
We leave early-ish to head south. Sara has pruned the fruit trees for an 80 year old friend (Mom B) for the past 4 years. Its one of those cases where Mom B only needs this one job done each year, its a relatively small job (7 apples and 1 pear) and before Sara, Mom B was never able to find someone who wouldn't overcharge, demand money up-front then leave the job uncompleted or that she wouldn't have to call and call to have finish the work. We knew that planning it back to back with my trip to Phoenix was not the best idea but there weren't a lot of other options...usually Sara does this job on the Presidents Day holiday weekend but I was gone at the meeting and its too big a job for one person in one weekend, so we tacked it on to the end of the trip.
During the drive my Dad calls to verify that I am indeed going to the ER to get my leg checked which still hurt. I kept hoping something would happen to make it clear we were worrying about nothing and I would have to go get it looked at but that didn't happen. I am still feverish and coughing when I drop off Sara to start work while I head to the ER.
Up until Friday, 90% of the time I have spend in ANY ER was waiting for my Dad to get off work, doing my homework either at the nurses desk so I could see what was coming in (it was the '80's thing were a little more lax then), or in the staff lounge. I don't care for being on the other end. Long story short, one blood test and an ultrasound later, there is no clot to worry about and all I have to show for my time is the ridiculously huge bruising where the blood draw was taken. My Dad calls three times while I am in the ER. I am relieved he didn't try to call the attending physician.
I return to the job site and help Sara. We get 3.5 trees done the first day. I am too ill to do anything so Sara goes out with all of our Corvallis girlfriends while I sit comatose on the couch (belonging to a friend who is out of town).
Saturday: (here I cut to the chase)
I alternate between pruning and sleeping in the car. Sara prunes and prunes. We get 6 trees done and go out to Squirrels for a burger. As tired as we were, it was our first quiet meal together in a week and turned out to be my favorite part of the weekend.
After dinner, I head 'home' to do laundry, feed our boy kitty and rest while Sara went to an OSU womens BBall game with more of our girlfriends. The ending sounded fantastic and Sara had Dippin' dots for the first time.
Fever broke, trees finished (a friend showed up to help for the very last tree...and we always leave the easiest for last...but any help is welcomed), we get in the car to go home and Sara starts coughing. She sleeps in the car and has a fever of over 101 degrees when we arrive in Seattle.
Her comment upon crawling into bed at 5:30 was "I must have something much worse than what you had, because look how sick I feel. I sound much more sick than you did"
I took a few photos this morning, it was beautiful, but we missed photos of the sun yesterday. Maybe next year.