Bright, Victoria is a beautiful little mountain town, something that’s pretty rare in Australia because, well, mountains are pretty rare in Australia.
Unfortunately, I don’t think we’ll get to see much of it because I was sick last night. Really sick. So sick that I ended up in the local hospital overnight. But before you begin to worry, I came home this morning and I’m back to about 80% now.
I went to bed at about 10 p.m. last night and got up at 1:00 to go to the bathroom. Jamie heard a crash and came in to find me comatose on the tile floor, drenched in sweat, and completely unresponsive. She said my eyes were dilated and I was shaking, completely rigid, ghost white, and my tongue was hanging out. She thought I was having a seizure — maybe because I never loosened my grip on my open iPad even after I fell down and passed out.
You won’t believe what the woman did next. She had the temerity to think there was something wrong with me and called 9-1-1. Shocking behavior from a supposedly loving wife, wouldn’t you say.
I came to just in time to hear her on the phone with 9-1-1. I couldn’t believe she was calling them, so I weakly called out, “I don’t need an ambulance. I’ll be fine.”
Then I realized that I was lying on the bathroom floor drenched in sweat and too weak to sit up. Hmmmmm, I thought, this is highly unusual. Maybe I do need an ambulance.
The EMTs worked me over for thirty minutes or so, then decided that I needed to go to the emergency room. Jamie was freaking out, thinking that I was about to die, but as they rolled the gurney out to the ambulance I was facing upward and noticed the sky.
”Jamie,” I gasped, “look up at the sky. The stars are beautiful.”
The woman thought I was hallucinating and ignored me. (But trust me, the sky up here in the mountains is crystal clear and the stars were big as beachballs. Either that or I was hallucinating.)
When we got to the ER, my blood pressure measured only 70 over 50 which the nurses said was “dangerously low” and probably due to dehydration. They hooked me up to an electrolyte drip, and put me in a room for the night.
After I had been stabilized and was resting, Jamie realized that she didn’t have a ride back to our house, so she asked about a cab and found out Bright is so small that it doesn’t have a cab company. So the EMTs drove her home in the ambulance. Only in Australia.
This morning my vitals had all returned to near normal. The doctor, who is only on-call at night, came in to see me at about 8:30 a.m. Whatever was wrong with me, he said, wasn’t the flu, wasn’t any kind of gastrointestinal issue, and wasn’t food poisoning. In other words, they know what it’s not, but not what it is.
Don’t worry about me.
Of course, that’s the same thing I said last night when Jamie found me comatose on the tile floor, drenched in sweat, completely unresponsive, shaking, completely rigid, ghost white, with my tongue was hanging out of my mouth.
UPDATE: Another trip to the hospital. Yeah, that last paragraph proved to be prophetic. Looks like they released me from the hospital a bit too soon, because after a very rough 24 hours, Jamie checked me back in yesterday morning.
They pumped me full of medication, kept me overnight, and threatened to keep me for some unspecified number of days that would have wreaked havoc with our travel plans. But I had a very good night and talked them into releasing me this morning even though the test results won’t come back for another day or two.
The biggest difference? All those drugs. They didn’t give me any during my first visit, but they loaded me up last night.
I’m feeling great now. So great that Jamie and I went out for a drive to a couple neighboring towns after I was released from the hospital this morning.
But we didn’t go anywhere until after I had a long hot shower and got that hospital hair under control.