Went out to one of my favourite restaurants last friday with Kristien and Nat: Can Margarit. It’s a restaurant where the menu hasn’t changed for the last 25 years, and there’s only a small menu. But the rabbit is *ek-sel-lent* there, completely different from how mom makes it – lots of garlic, rosemary, thyme, and salt.
After that, we went to a bar I had never been before which I thought was great – nice music, not too smoky, atmospheric, decent cocktails though a little expensive.
All in all, an uneventful evening, except for one little detail. Right before getting the rabbit, I got a little fishbone stuck in my throat. I got a little teary-eyed and went to the bathroom to try and get it out. That didn’t work very well, although I felt it move a little until it got lodged into the back of my throat.
We got home around 2 and I was starting to get a little worried. Stuck my fingers down my throat to get it out, I managed to throw up just fine but no fishbone came out. Tried to look at the back of my mouth in the mirror, didn’t work, too dark. Took a smaller mirror and stood opposite of a light, trying to find the correct angle at which I could illuminate the back of my throat – pretty tricky, but finally worked. There was a little blood down the back and something white sticking out of the flesh. Tried to reach it with my finger but couldn’t reach it reliably because it triggered my gag reflex. Took a pair of tweezers and tried to maneuver it but it was too hard trying to hold two things at once and look in the mirror.
Dragged Kristien in the bathroom, who freaked out, but managed to convince her that she really needed to try and get that white thing out of my throat. We tried in various positions. She gave me a knife to push down my tongue because my reflexes were curling up my tongue each time she got to the back of my mouth with the tweezers. After that, the tweezers weren’t long enough, but luckily we had longer in the first aid kit. Kristien tried again, and this time it felt like she dislodged something, though it was hard to tell. Looking at it again, there was a little more blood, and the white bit sticking out was hard to find, so we assumed it was gone. It still felt like something was stuck in my throat further down, though. At this point I was getting really desperate.
Google to the rescue ! Amazing how many dimwits like me write about their incredible adventures with the stuck fishbone. While taking medical advice from the internet might not be a good idea, it was 2.30 AM and I really wanted to try some new ideas and was hoping they’d make sense. The most common advice seemed to be to eat rice without chewing, so Kristien put on some rice. But my biggest worry was “how important is it to get this bit of fish out of my throat right now ?” I mean, would it get horribly infected if I left it where it was, or could I die in my sleep while it perforated my lung, killing me softly with each breath ?
So I tried to call my dad (who’s a doctor), but he was probably asleep. I called my sister (who’s studying to become a doctor) and she started laughing when I explained the situation. I told her about the throwing up – an “uh oh” escaped her lips. I told her about the tweezers – “are you crazy ???” was her reply. So if any of you ever have this problem, don’t try this at home.
She agreed with the rice strategy, though. She also put my mind to rest saying that the worst that could happen would already have happened by now – that would be the case where the fishbone manages to get in your windpipe and wind up in your lungs.
So, there I was, 3.00 AM, swallowing gobs of rice without chewing, trying to relax and not think about imminent death. After I had all the rice I could eat, I still felt like something was there, but it might as well just be the wound I was feeling. I decided I had done all I could do, and after some reading went back to bed. And I’m still alive today.
It was an interesting experiment, but even on this very Talk Like A Pirate Day, I don’t think I will be eating fish again soon.
In related news, Lunya was taken to the vet to be itted/spayed/deovarized. She now sulks around the house with a silly cone round her head and a stupid fish net over her body. We hope we’re getting the feisty Lunya back soon.