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Present Perfect

Ending the year

Filed under: Belgium,Life — Thomas @ 22:51


Well, things aren't turning out quite the way we planned this week.

For one, I was planning to spend some time in the new little holiday house my parents bought at the seaside. My mother was making sure there was going to be internet for me to be able to work from there, and she somehow... forgot. And even as a high-paid consultant for one of Flanders' two biggest providers, her waiting time for getting net installed is 7 weeks.

That also means I get to see a lot less of Kristien than planned. She's busy all day in a theme park that used to be called 'de Meli', by sheer coincidence a mere kilometer from my parents' holiday house, entertaining the young children of Flanders dropping by for Ketnet Freeze.

Meanwhile, this week I finally had my neurologist appointment. I have a strange oversensitivity in the left part of my body that isn't quite painful but not pleasant either. I've been having it for over half a year now, thinking it was related to my tooth infection. Clearly it isn't since the tooth infection was removed three months ago - along with the tooth. The oversensitivity has made it hard for me sometimes to stay seated at work, which might explain to people reading this my various creative moments in seating during meetings.

While the doctor was hammering various parts of my body, he noticed a lump in my pants pocket. 'What's that ?' 'My wallet.' 'That big ?' 'Uh, yeah ?' 'Is it always there ? All day long ? Even while working ? Do you work sitting down ?' 'Yes, yes, yes, and yes.' Yes, I always put my wallet in my pants pocket, mostly not to lose it, but also because the wallet contains a keycard which is the only way to get back into the office after I went to the toilet. 'I wouldn't recommend always having your wallet there. The nerves to the areas you are complaining about are right below where your wallet now is.'

So, first, initial diagnose - walletitis. Obviously it might be completely unrelated, so further analysis is necessary. So I got House's favourite exam - the famous MRI ! I had it on second Christmas day, at 20:00. Amazing that there's still so many people in a hospital on second Christmas day and a Friday evening.

The MRI was mildly disappointing, though the checklist I had to complete to make sure I had no metally things in my body was a bit daunting. In the end you start doubting if you really did not get any kind of surgery that might be problematic for this exam. I had to get undressed, lie on a board, and was told not to move at all. She gave me some headphones for the noise, and told me it would take 20 minutes. Then she slid me in, and I started counting. I almost fell asleep a couple of times, because there is really nothing you can do in there and I didn't want to think about anything important because I wanted to keep counting. I got slid back out as I reached 961. Possibly my idea of a second is wildly off.

The next scan is in a month, I've been threatened with injections of tracer fluid for that one, I hope it won't be necessary.

Meanwhile, I was also fighting off a cold. Pretty annoying, because it meant that I basically wasn't able to get anything done of all the things I was planning to get done in this 'long weekend'. It's just too hard to think with a head full of snot and a buzz in your head.

Yesterday was the hardest day though - I woke up at 6 with a splitting headache. Got some Dafalgan, went back to sleep, woke up again two hours later, still with a headache. Took Dafalgan all through the day, went to sleep early, woke up, still with a headache. Today was a bit better, only took three, and hopefully tomorrow I will be all rested again. Just in time for work...

Here's to making the last day of the year a lot better than these past few ones! We will have some friends coming over, and I've been putting together a 6 course menu that I will prepare for them - pretty much on my own, since Kristien has few days off and wants to do nothing at all on the last day of the year, and I very much intend to make her wish come true. And besides, we paid enough for this great new open kitchen, I want to put it to good use...


  1. I’ve never understood why people put a wallet in a back pocket rather than a front pocket. Uncomfortable to sit on, easier to have pickpocketed, harder to access…

    Comment by Anonymous — 2008-12-30 @ 01:13

  2. Hey there,

    Get a purse! (just kidding) (:

    Earlier today I saw a commercial for one of those class action law suits having to do with the tracer fluid used in MRI tests. I don’t remember the name of the fluids, but there was more than one mentioned. You could keep your eye out for it on television, and I’ll pop back in here and let you know if I see the commercial again and get more information.

    The reason your post interested me is that my son wears his wallet in his front pants pocket, and since he tends to keep receipts in it and not clean it out often, it grows to an alarming size every couple of months. I figured I’d read your post to him in an effort to prevent him from suffering walletitis as well!

    Comment by Little Girl — 2009-01-01 @ 03:46

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