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Suffering under the strain

October 29, 2008

Asia has to be one of the worst places out there to contract the flu: crowded, dirty, polluted. When you get sick on this continent, you get hit bad. 

Ironically though, Asia is also one of the best places to get sick.  Here’s why.

A couple of weeks back I picked up a dose of the stomach flu. It knocked me out for the entire weekend. No ladies I didn’t lose weight.

At the same time, my laptop felt sorry for me and wanted also to contract a virus. I think it didn’t want to be the healthier one in our relationship. So with a little help from Mr Microsoft (Vista ahhhh yes) – it got sick.

While my laptop was laying low, feeling sorry for itself, I recovered from my stomach flu. At the start of this week my laptop was still sick, so – in sympathy – my flu return.  But this time with determination and vengence. My mother would say it’s the evil in me.

Apart from looking like I needed an IV drip (famous words from one of my Korean friends), I have been plied with herbal fusions, teas, drinks and oils, all for a speedy recovery. Yes in Korea everything has to be done fast!!

These alternative medicines and remedies are what I really love about being in Asia. Traditions, beliefs, concoctions – everything.  And even more, it’s part of every day life. You can go to an Oriental Medical Doctor or clinic for serious problems, but for the smaller problem, you can easily pick up your remedy from specialist shops.

 Alternative medicines have been used in families for generations and look likely to continue long into the future. When I do feel tired or sick my friends are fast at prescribing ginseng.  I am grateful for using ginseng this week!

Korea can proudly boast to having some of the finest ginseng out there. It’s used widely in energy drinks, infused in teas and as medicine for ailments. There is even ginseng candy.

I’m for the tea. No matter how it comes.

A winter favourite. It reminds me of runny jam. Add two or three dessert spoonfuls into a cup with boiling water. Delicious!!

Slowly my health is coming back- ever so slowly my laptop’s medication is coming via the States.

Here’s to good health: body, mind, soul; and technology.

Caffeinated Traveller


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