Hello, Nerdlings! It is I, Christopher, returned from a month in the hottest, whitest, and second largest state in the United States! And I'll tell you, it was wonderful. Splendid. It had its dull moments. And its excruciating moments. But all in all, it was peachy.
Because I only have a few moments to remain within your attention span, I won't bore you with names, stories, or even Texas jokes. Instead, I'll give you a brief summary of my sabbatical to the Southwest.
- I learned how to drive a stick-shift (more or less).
- I met a suicidal dog.
- Encountered a bat named Diego.
- Danced with a dog named Beethoven whose best friend is a hog named Miranda the Wonder Pig.
- Found Jesus...on a refrigerater magnet.
- Met a blind bell ringer.
- Got a pair of cheapo sunglasses straight from The Matrix.
One more thing I can't help but go into detail about: yesterday I had a case of back spasms that kept me on the floor for most of the day. On an ordinary day this is remarkably frustrating, but when you're trying to drive back to Atlanta before dark, this is a huge issue.
I woke up in the morning feeling fine, just like in the Herman's Hermits song. I took a shower, read for about ten minutes on the hotel bed, and decided to go check on my parents and sister in the hotel room next door. So I did. I grabbed my key, opened the door, took four steps to the left, and knocked on their door. That was when my back started to feel a little sore.
When the door opened I stumbled into their room like a teenager coming home drunk for the first time. I couldn't even haul myself on one of the queen sized beds near me. I lowered myself to the floor with the agility of an obese Ex-Sumo Wrestler.
I stayed there for about two minutes, with my back on the floor and my knees up, before I tried to get up again. And this is how much pain I was in: my back was jolted with pain before I even tried to get up. I just had the thought of standing up, took a deep breath, and there was the pain. As though my body was trying to say, No. Uh uh. Bad idea.
After ten minutes and two more tries, I was both in a fluster and terrible pain. I didn't even have to move for my back to hurt. Bolts of pain shot through my lower back when I even shifted a centimeter to the right.
My family went down to breakfast leaving me with several apologies and the TV turned to CNN. I was in such pain, (both from my back and from the robotic voices of the newscasters), that I spoke outloud to myself for comfort. I said a prayer. Shouted one, more like, possibly in the hope that God was staying in the room next to mine and could hear me if I yelled loud enough.
My mom returned first with a breakfast plate. Of course I couldn't eat on my back. I did manage to roll onto my side. Believe it or not, even that caused me huge pain. She put the plate right above my head and I had to reach up and bring the food down to my mouth. I looked so pathetic. I was eating like a crippled rat. No joke.
When the rest of my family arrived, they switched on Royal Pains and watched two episodes of that--don't ask me why. They made me a homemade heating pad that consisted of a microwaved towel in a garbage bag from the lobby, and we sat there for another thirty minutes before we decided that we really needed to go. How we were supposed to get down to the car was the issue, considering I couldn't even stand up to go to the bathroom.
Three things motivated me to walk downstairs. 1) My sister's idea that they roll me down in a luggage cart. 2) My family's enthusiasm for the idea. 3) About ten different dosages of painkillers and muscle relaxers.
So, with an arm around my mom and dad, we managed to walk out of the hotel and roll me into the car, which was like rolling a stranded whale back into the ocean. After that, it wasn't so bad. And today, my back is better. I'm at the stage where the pain isn't unbearable, and I still have an excuse not to do any work. It's ideal.
Thanks for reading, everyone! I hope you'll keep up with this blog and I hope you've been keeping up with yours!