I safely arrived back in theUnited States very late Saturday night. By the time I got my luggage and rental car, I was driving to my sister’s house in Modesto,CA, at 1 a.m. Which was a good thing, because since I hadn’t driven on U.S.highways for so long, at least my first time was when there was hardly any traffic at all.
It appears, however, that driving is like riding a bike – you never really forget. Sunday we slept in, of course, after being up so late. Then we went to the Olive Garden for lunch, and for the first time in over a year, I had a Grey Goose martini. It was so good!
I know I’m not really supposed to be drinking because of the medication I’m on for my skin rash, but I’m only human, and here I am back in the States, around things I haven’t eaten or drank in quite some time, and well, what’s a girl supposed to do?
But I only had one, because we wanted to go shopping. Frankly, I had forgotten that all Target stores smell the same – basically like popcorn. I stocked up on powder, blush, lip gloss, and some underwear. One thing that I’ve never been able to find in Belize is grown up lady underwear. For some reason, it all looks like it’s for 12 year old girls. Strangest thing, so if you move to Belize, bring plenty of panties, lol!
The rest of the day was spent visiting with some of my sister’s in laws who came to see me. I was still exhausted from my travel day, so I went to bed around 10 p.m.
Monday my mission was to find an Ear, Nose and Throat doctor. As many of you know, I have been struggling with a double ear infection since January. According to a doctor who reads my blog and has been kind enough to consult with me via email, all of the medications the Belize doctors gave me should have worked, but none of them have.
So he thought perhaps there was a problem in my ear canal that should be ruled out. I managed to find one that could see me that day, which was a stroke of good fortune, I must say. So I went to the Sutter Gould Medical Center and saw Dr. Yates, a quirky character who moves at the speed of light, as many U.S.doctors do, and completely the opposite of how Belizean doctors operate.
First he “vacuumed” out my ear, which felt funny, and told me my canal looked fine, but my ears were extremely infected, and that with living in the humidity now, unless I kept my ears dry for the next six months, the infection would keep coming back.
He prescribed some Cipro ear drops for the infection and hydrocortisone cream to soothe the outer ear (as luck would have it, his pharmaceutical sales guy was by that day, so I got two free Cipro samples, which probably saved me $150 usd). He told me 3-4 times a day I need to take a blow dryer on low setting and dry out my ear. I also need to always shower with cotton balls in my ears.
In addition, I have to use a combo of alcohol and vinegar drops in my ears (after the cipro ear drops are done), which will also aid in keeping my ears dry and acidic, because bacteria likes a more alkaline environment.
He charged me $287 usd for all of this, which is about seven times more than I would ever pay for a doctor visit in Belize, but worth every penny for the advice I received, and the meds I got for free.
It appears I will need to be diligent for the next year if I hope to properly get rid of this infection and acclimate to the humid climate in Belize. Being here in the States for the next two weeks, however, is the perfect cooler environment to hopefully kick start my healing process.
Spent last night at a very good friend’s house having dinner and chatting. So far my visit here is going great, and I’m so glad to be able to hug and spend time with a lot of people I left behind.
I’m going to try and write a blog soon about all the things I’d forgotten about that come with living in the States. Stay tuned…