Monday, January 10, 2005

The one where I talk a lot about barfing.

Alright, here is the first installment of my Top 5 Worst Travel Experiences Ever. And actually, it's probably the worst, or close to it, and should be Number 1, but's the first one that pops into my a matter of fact, it may end up being the only post in this series, but I'll see what else I can come up with.

I went TDY (that's Temporary Duty Yonder for all you non-military types and it's like a business trip) to Omaha, Nebraska probably about a year before I got out of the military. I was gone for about a week and a half and I had a LOT of fun while I was there. I was acting as a subject matter expert on an airframe, the unit I was a part of was switching over all of one of our types of airplanes to another unit in Omaha. So anyway, I may or may not have gotten very lucky while I was there...and I think you know what I mean. It was a nice happy a summer romance only where you get to leave after a week and it's like it never happened except for the happy happy memories.

On the day I was supposed to leave I was feeling a little...weird. Honestly though, given the week's activities I just thought I was hungover and tired. But still, one of the people I was traveling with dropped by Krispy Kreme on the way to take me to the airport and I couldn't even get excited about a Krispy Kreme that point I should have known I was doomed.

I got to the airport, where I was taking a plane from Omaha to (I think) St. Louis (but it could have been O'Hare), and from there I would connect and go back to San Antonio. About a half hour into the flight I started to feel very unwell. Very, very, unwell. And, if you're an avid reader of this site, you know that I would rather chew off my own arm than vomit...and that goes double for vomiting in public. So, finally, I had that terrible feeling...the mouth watering, room spinning, oh-no-this-is-bad feeling and I knew it was time to run for the bathroom...where I spent a long time vomiting copiously. In fact, apparently altitude, which can make drunkeness so much more fun, can make being sick quite awful. I actually got so sick that I passed out in the airplane bathroom. It was actually kind of funny because the bathroom was so small that I sort of fell down straight in a vertical line, and I ended up hitting my head on the airplane sink. This added greatly to the whole experience I assure you.

Somehow I managed to get ahold of myself long enough to sit down while the plane was landing, and to not puke in my neighbor's lap. But, now I was in an airport where I had never been (that I could remember), and it was super complicated, and I had no idea where I was going. To add to that, due to my horrible phobia about vomiting, I was in tears by this point. So, I did the only thing that can make a girl feel better. I called my Mommy. Between crying and having tears and snot running down my face, and pacing in front of the airport terminal bathroom and fighting bouts of nausea, my mom suggested I get some ginger ale, some stomach medicine if I could find it, and try to sit down and see if I could get through it. So, I got the ginger ale, some Pepto-Bismol, and went to find my gate.

Only...and this was my body had already clearly explained to me that no intake of liquid would be tolerated. So, I found a bathroom, and I sat on the dirty, filthy, disgusting airport bathroom floor for about two hours puking my brains out. And, because God hated me that day, I missed my connecting flight.

So, when I finally felt like I could get to the gate, I went over and asked the gate dude if I could get on the next flight...and I think because I was traveling on military orders and I just looked so heinous, he said "sure." And then I asked if I could get the seat next to the bathroom. And he's like "Why?" And I go "Because I've been puking for like the last seven hours and I'm sure I'm dying and I just want to be close to the bathroom" and then started crying again. So, he said "OK" and stuck me in the seat next to the bathroom. The best part is that the next flight didn't leave for five hours, which I spent in, you guessed it, the bathroom...crying and barfing and calling my mom and M.

On the plane to San Antonio, as soon as the pilot took off the seatbelt sign I basically alternated between pacing the aisle (pacing always makes me feel better for some reason) and locking myself in the bathroom (having fun with dry heaves by this point). A good friend of mine was waiting in San Antonio, I had called her from St. Louis (or O'Hare or wherever it was). She had a plastic bowl because she didn't want me to puke in her car, it was so embarassing...and unnecessary as by that point I seemed to be over the horrible, gutwrenching nausea. I stayed home from work for two days.

The moral of this story is: If you are out partying, and you get real drunk, DO NOT, under any circumstances, share a vodka-y drink with a girl who JUST FINISHED TELLING YOU about how she got over the stomach flu like three days ago. Especially don't believe the boy you're with when he tells you that the alcohol will kill the germs so it's fine...he MIGHT have an ulterior motive and/or stake in your alcohol consumption.
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