Jelly Belly!

We managed to get sick for the first time. No, I don’t mean the nasty head cold that I caught at the start of the monsoon (the monsoon is the cold and flu season here), but the throwing up, running to the toilet kind of sick.

It started yesterday morning at the lodge in Bandipur (which I’ll write about tomorrow). Already on the morning jeep safari I felt a little sick, but not enough to interfere with my enjoyment of the outing. At breakfast, Daniela asked me “do you also feel sick”? I answered in the affirmative. We were scheduled to go take a forest service elephant ride, which is what we had promised to Sammy for his birthday. We wondered if it would be better to pass on the elephant ride and do it again sometime at Bhannergatta National Park near Bangalore. After all, Bhannerghatta is a day trip excursion from Bangalore. We decided in the end to go ahead and do it anyway, mostly because sick or not, doing it during the off season at Bandipur would be more pleasant than doing it along with the crush of humanity that would be guaranteed at Bhannerghatta.

While we were waiting for our ride, Daniela wandered away a bit. She was on the verge of vomiting. At first, she thought that she would just watch us from the ground, but eventually decided to go with us. The first rule about riding elephants is that is that it is a low-G variant of a roller coaster ride. Elephants don’t move smoothly. They wiggle their butts from side to side and up and down. They also get annoyed when told that they can’t stop and browse on a tree. Annoyed elephants make a lot of noise and wiggle even more. Suddenly, she passed Sammy from her lap to me as she was on the verge of throwing up… from the back of an elephant. She managed not to. I told her that would have been a story worth telling and retelling for many years.

When we got back to the lodge to check out, we both vomited. I also had the runs and paid three visits to the toilet within a span of five minutes. Then we set off on the six hour drive from Bandipur to Bangalore with queasy stomachs and holding back the runs. I managed to hold back the runs for six hours; a very uncomfortable six hours. For a good portion of the trip, I was on the lookout for a suitable roadside place where I could go behind the bushes. Such a place never turned up. It seems that wherever you go, there is always someone around. Between Mysore and Bangalore, we had to pull over to the side of the road so that Daniela could throw up into the bushes. That was a pleasant ride! Luckily, the kids caught a milder form.

Today, we feel better, though not 100%. Dani is working from home. Sammy stayed homw today and Charlotte went to school, but with a not excusing her from gym class.


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