I am happy to report that my epic cold is now history. I'd like to say that its disappearance was due to my use of the whiskey medicinal:
but, sadly, it's not true. I actually got sicker after the whiskey/cupcake/devastating book combination. Like any good stoic, I attempted to carry on, but the illness somehow seeped into my brain and made me a little crazy for a few days. I did things I've never done before; for example, I got all the way to work before realizing that I'd left the toaster oven--in which I attempted to make some comfort food before heading to work--burning at a monsterously dangerous 400 degrees. This forced me to run back home in the pouring rain, where luckily, although the food materials were burned into chunky, smouldering bits of charcoal, I hadn't incinerated my entire apartment. Later that day, however, I left my beloved, purchased-in-Potsdam, Germany kugelschreiber:
behind in a public area at work. Although I like to think I am not a materialistic type, I was surprisingly dismayed. I loved my Kuli--such a perfect fine blue ink, so satisfying in the hand, so beautifully engineered...and gone. I did all the normal things one does in such situations: retraced my steps, asked others who had been in the vicinity, sent a few random emails inquiring about it. Nuttin'.
Dejectedly, I returned home, chest heaving, nose dripping, head pounding...and suddenly remembered that I had purchased a real medicinal on sale in a drugstore in Berlin.
Although purchased in the warmth of a temperate German summer, I somehow had the feeling Herr Kneipp might come in handy someday. After reading the difficult and alarming instructions auf Deutsch--something about not sitting in the Erkältungsbad for more then 10 minutes or running the risk of corroding one's skin--I slid into an extremely hot bath, literally wallowing in self-pity.
So what happened? The next morning I awoke. Lo and behold, I could breathe through one nostril! Then both nostrils! I was cured!
Even better? A kindly co-worker read my email, looked in his satchel, and realized the fine pen he'd found on the floor was mine. I took my reclaimed Kuli for a celebratory hot chocolate at the City Bakery today, where we toasted our reunion with a ginger hot chocolate...but only after I requested that the befuddled chocolatier place a "mushroom" in my drink. Mushroom/marshmellow...do you think a severe Erkältung can cause brain damage?