COVID odyssey

I hail from a land where we are prone to kiss and hug. “La bise” in France is as natural and spontaneous as butt-sniffing in the canine world. It is why last Saturday in Sonoma, I freely exchanged kisses and hugs with dozens of friends and acquaintances. The once greatly feared COVID threat seemed to have vanished, and among extroverted people, it was an orgy of kisses and cuddles. Who does not appreciate this genuine sign of esteem and sympathy?

So, in the morning I went about mon petit bonhomme de chemin … and tried my best to help my team. But unfortunately, we lost almost every encounter. My squad had the misfortune of losing every coin toss in the tournament, and our opponents deliberately took us to rugged areas to have their way with us.

For pétanque boules, these gravel-strewn areas are the Promise Land. In these no-mans lands, boules suddenly feel free to do whatever they please; and I think that I distinctly heard them say “Free at last, free at last, thank God Almighty we are free at last” while gleefully, deliberately, wandering away from their designed targets.

To sum it up, it was a very inauspicious day for our formation. Our team captain Bernard Passemar played extraordinarily well but was unable to turn the tide.

Around 3:30 p.m. that day, I felt a tightening in my throat, but didn’t pay too much attention to it. I attributed it to fatigue and stress.

The next day, I woke up with a severe sore throat, coughing, runny nose, headache, and a general sense of uneasiness and fatigue. I first thought that I had caught a common cold and that it would disappear the next day, but I was wrong. A COVID home test quickly confirmed that the malfeasant bug had breached  my body defenses and was occupying the premises.

I was a little surprised by this outcome because for the last 2 years I had dutifully subjected my body to all the preventive shots available, and I thought that I had acquired some kind of immunity to the bug. But such was not the case. The evil virus is still marauding and will seize any occasion to do harm.

I found out during this time, that my best remedy was an uninterrupted flow of hot drinks and plenty of rest. My wife also proved to be a real Florence Nightingale and greatly helped to stem the tide.
Спасибо большое Томашка!

I am still mending and won’t be around for a while, but don’t bury me yet. We old bastards are tough and not easily disposed of. As Gen. MacArthur once said “I shall return”, and so will I.

In the meantime, hold off on kisses and hugs and settle instead for a safer closed-fist greeting.

Soldiering on…

Private Alain

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