March 2023 is almost over

I am writing this monthly recap from March from my bed. I have been bedridden for the past four days but today is the first one that I can somewhat finally use my brain. I caught something that is called viral angina or tonsilitis and I don’t remember being this sick in my adult life. It all started with the sore throat and losing my voice and continued pretty much with me being knocked out with a high fever for 4 days straight. My throat was in such pain that I did not eat anything for 4 days and I think at some point I also started hallucinating. Since it is not a matter of life and death, I could not go to the emergency and we don’t have a family doctor in the Netherlands. I had no idea what was happening to me but after 4 days, I was done with it. In the brief moment of being someone capable to get out of bed, I called a practice that is 50 meters away from where we live. They said they were fully booked and I am not a patient so tough luck but I literally cried on the phone (I wish this was a joke but it is not) until they took me in later in the afternoon. The doctor said that I have a type of angina that can’t be cured with antibiotics because it is a virus and it should go away in 10 days. I can’t be stuck in bed for 10 days! Just imagine this: you wake up with a fever 39.5C and you take Advils and you fall asleep and somewhat feel better because it drops to 38.0C. But then, in about 5 hours once the Advil wears out, it repeats itself again. And again. Day and night. You can’t also eat anything or sleep for longer than 2 hours because your throat hurts so much that you wake up from the pain that is caused by breathing. I don’t wish this thing on anyone! It might be my immune system that does not deal well with it but yeah, not a fun ride. And a cherry on top – you are supposed to be drinking cold drinks, not warm ones with this thing! I have been making it worse all way long. At least the doctor prescribed me ice cream for all meals of the day to release the pain.

Oh yeah, I have also lost my taste. I can’t swallow many things so I am mostly consuming protein drinks. But whatever I can consume falls into several categories: sour, acid, sweet, or weird gunk. For instance, tomato sauce tastes like acid, any type of yogurt despite the flavor being sour and bananas are just tasting like gunk. The only nice things so far are chilled cucumber because it helps with throat pain and blueberries because they just taste like sweet drops.

Anyhow, that was the end of the month, but let’s go to the beginning. It started with a few days off that I took to spend with my parents and grandparents who were visiting us in the Netherlands. On the first day, we went to Burgers’ Zoo. It is about a 1-hour ride from where we live and I liked it because it was easy to get to by car and most importantly, to park it, I considered going to Antwerpen Zoo which was closer but I have no desire to drive through Antwerpen city center and deal with traffic and all of that – considering that we also had to take 2 cars! The reason why I chose a zoo is that Sofia was not so interested in the museums yet so I was trying to find something fun for different age ranges – from my grandparents in their 70s to my daughter who is not even 2. It turned out to be a good choice – lots of animals to see and they had really nice overview spots. They also had plenty of cool seating areas where you can see animals and enjoy a lunch that you brought with you. We spent about 3 hours there but had to head back to let Sofia take her nap in the car as she was getting fussy. Her favorite part was the aquarium! We mostly managed to explore the majority of the zoo but could have definitely spent more time there!

When my family was here, one thing that we picked up is playing Jenga every evening. It is an easy game that does not need a lot of explanation, especially when people don’t speak the same language. Here is my mom contemplating on which piece to pull and my uncle trying to help her:

Other than that, the month went by quietly. We took a liking to walking in the Dutch fields – they are beautiful in the spring and when there is no wind, it is a perfect place for the dog and Sofia. There is plenty of space to run for Sherlock and Sofia just loves watching all the animals – ducks, rabbits, sheep.

I accidentally discovered these pathways in the fields when I was doing my runs. This month I completed 15k and 16k runs – that made me pretty proud of myself because it took a lot of motivation to go out and do it. After the first 15k, I was so tired that I had to take a nap after but at least my back was not hurting as much anymore. Perhaps, it is helping that I keep on going to the pool. I discovered the best time so far which is Friday morning because there is literally no one except 6 grandmas swimming – this is much of different from Thursday evenings when it is crowded with 20+ people.

We are still looking for a house for us. We visited a few houses this month but put an offer on only one. We did not get it and it got sold $75,000 over the asking price. That made me less upset about the situation because there is no way to guess this overbidding and anyway, it was outside of our budget. I wish they would have advertised it for more money so it would have not been caught by our filter. Anyhow, I am sure we will find something that is meant for us.

Just a few lines ago, I wrote that the month went quietly but that’s not entirely true. I started my developer apprenticeship! The weeks have been busy at work and full of learning new things but I love the work itself. I get so much joy from doing and I feel a great sense of accomplishment at the end of the day. I hope this feeling continues for months and years to come.

Anyhow, this rambling is getting too long so that’s the end for me. See you in April!

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