Wednesday, January 28, 2009

What a Few Days . . .

Man, it's been crazy - or at least everything feels crazy. That's about to change, but it's amazing to me how drugs can affect one's systems - both physical and emotional. I have asthma, and I had a little problem last week. In fact, last Wednesday you'll recall that I woke up with tight lungs. Things were getting a little better on Thursday, but on Friday, I coughed up green out of my lungs. Never a good thing.

So, I cabbed over to the asthma doc, and for my sins got a Z-pack antibiotic. And prednisone. Oh, can I just tell you right now how much I hate taking prednisone? JesusMaryandJoseph it's nasty, nasty stuff. I thought I was getting what they used to call the "short course," where you do 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 pills a day for five days and you're done. No such luck. I got what I call the "Bomb." That's where you have to take 6 pills, all at once, each morning, for 5 days. My poor body got the P-Bomb and an antibiotic every day, since Friday. Thankfully, yesterday was the last day and I'm hoping to feel much more myself in pretty short order.

For all it's nastyness, prednisone works, and I have avoided a major attack, but nasty it is. It doesn't make me crave sweets, but it does make me retain fluid, and worst of all, it puts me on the edge of my very last nerve. A bitch on wheels, if you will. It's been an exercise in serious control to keep my temper and not go off on every person who annoyed me the past five days. And, of course, the ceiling nearly fell in in an apartment I have for sale (water issue and no it's not fixed yet :-S), which entailed a huge to and fro, miscommunications, and a wasted day of annual leave on Monday. Not a happy camper. Not at all.

Then, yesterday, the train that I take to work had a derailment, which gummed up the works pretty much all day for anyone who takes the train. However, I got to work only 10 minutes late, and my employer takes into account transit delays so I'm not charged any time. I usually just count it as a little more knitting time on the train ;-) Last night, however, the trains were still a little backed up and running about 8 minutes late out of the main station. In the grand scheme of things, this is not a big delay, and I just used the time to get a few more steps in my day, walking back and forth on the platform.

I got on the train, and these four women in the double seat ahead of me, spent the ENTIRE RIDE complaining about Metra. It took every ounce of strength I had not to get up and smack them. The train was very crowded, with people standing in the aisles. I was thankful to get a seat, and all they did was complain about how terrible Metra is. I wanted to read them the riot act, or scream at them, or just beg them to STFU - which is, of course in part due to the P-bomb that is still in my system (the effects of a 5-day course take awhile to dissipate).

I mean really. Don't they realize how lucky we are to HAVE a train to take to work?? Maybe it's the years I spent in LA commuting, but driving to work is its own ring of hell. Parking in the Loop is $20+ a DAY. Parking meters are going up like 400% when they privatize next month, not to mention the gasoline, wear/tear on the auto, and traffic and stupid drivers on the Dan Ryan and Kennedy expressways. But no, they found every possible thing to complain about, from how much the tickets are (come on, people, $128 bucks to be transportated for a MONTH - unlimited rides - is a fricking steal), to how they were going to write mass letters to Metra saying "Metra failed" because of the derailment this morning, because, after all, "how long could it take to fix that problem." OMG - when the train derailed (thankfully there were no passengers on it), it completely ripped a substantial section of track totally off the track bed. That takes some time to fix - and these cars are huge - they're huge - way bigger than el cars. Imagine having to move one that's off the rails.

Look - here's the truth: Chicago has one of the best public transportation systems in the country. It's got some infrastructure issues (what industry doesn't right now?), but in the grand scheme of things, the Metra train is hardly ever late. The only thing that jams it up - other than a derailment (and this is the FIRST derailment on my line in the five years I've been taking it daily), is extreme weather - like ice. It's the electric line - if the switches freeze they use smudge pots and stuff to keep them warm, but if the electric lines freeze, there's not too much they can do.

So, thank you, Metra. Thank you for getting me to and from work every day. Thank you for saving me from driving. Thank you for the friendly conductors. Thank you for the Train Gang friends I have. Thank you for the knitting/reading/chatting time I get every day. Thank you for finally getting some cars with rest rooms. Thank you very much for everything, and keep up the good work!

On the knitting front - I finished a sock yesterday. Yay! And I'm nearly finished with one of the sleeves for St. Patrick - I had an entire day on Monday when I should have been at work but was waiting around for an event that never happened, so I used it to knit. I'm on the saddle of the first sleeve, and will finish it tonight. Then tomorrow I will pick the other sleeve back up and continue and hope that I can finish by Sunday when it's time to cast on for St. Brigid :-)


Kris said...


I try to always look at the bright side of things. Yeah, there may be a few days where Metra is off schedule, but 98 percent of the time it runs just fine.

Some people can't be happy with anything and will find things to complain about.

Knittinggarden said...

So sorry to hear about your health issues and glad that you're feeling better.

You are so right about having good public transportation - we voted for light rail in Seattle about 30 years ago and the first segment of it that will be about 10 miles long will finally open in a year or so. Whoopee! People who have trains and subways to use to get around their cities shouldn't complain. Would they prefer sitting in their cars on the freeway for hours like we do? Somehow I don't think so.

candy t said...

Hope you feel better soon!