"Someday's gonna be a busy day..."

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Comfort for a sniffling soul

That's what my Nana wrote above her recipe for chicken soup in one of her recipe "scribblers;" I often think of it when I'm suffering from a wretched cold like I am right now. Ugh. What a way to ring in the new year. (By the way, HAPPY NEW YEAR my bloggy friends!)

I haven't figured out how to get rid of a cold quickly, but I have come up with a roster of remedies that trick me into feeling better. Half the battle with a cold is to do everything in your power to stop yourself from feeling completely miserable. Because I find that when I'm sick and miserable, I make everyone around me miserable. I am a terrible, terrible patient.

First, get as much rest as possible. I know, I know - that's what everyone says. But hardly anyone does it! No, most of us slug ourselves off to work or school anyway, where we moan and snuffle and infect 3/4 of the people we come into contact with. Stay home, for pete's sake, get into bed and stay there for a few hours. Enlist the help of friends or family or whoever you can cajole into looking after your kids/pets/plants so you can catch at least one or two hours of rest. I think colds are our bodies ways of telling us, "Dude, slow the freak down." So listen to your body, get under a blanket and get prone, pronto. Better yet, go to bed a few hours early. I dare ya.

I've already expounded on the joys of taking a bath in an earlier blog, so I won't blather on about it again here. It does wonders for your sinuses though, and loosens up all the guck in your chest too. Add a drop or two of eucalyptus oil and suddenly you'll remember what it's like to breathe through your nose again.

My Dad's remedy for neutralizing all things germy that come within 10 feet of him is pretty good too: slice a raw clove of garlic very thinly. Place it on a cracker with a piece of cheese or better yet, a chunk of venison salami. Eat. Watch all your loved ones flee to the next room. But seriously, garlic and onion do seem to help me feel better when I have a cold. And it doesn't have to be as drastic as dear old Dad's pungent remedy; think fresh salsa with raw onion and garlic (I like Garden Fresh from the deli), or hummus or baba ganouj. You won't be able to smell yourself anyway.

The best thing about having a cold is that it gives me an excuse to drink hard liquor, which I rarely ever do. My version of a hot toddy is the ultimate sickie sleep aid. As a bonus, it also numbs the throat and soothes any of that nasty coughing business. Take a cup of boiling hot water and add a generous glop of honey. Then add the juice of half a lemon. Then add two slices of fresh ginger. Crown this glorious concoction with an ounce of cognac or sherry. (Yes, I know it's supposed to be whiskey or scotch but I'm trying to cure, not kill myself.)

Finally, buy some Vicks Vapo Rub. Find someone you really like, and get them to slather it all over your chest and back. It's surprisingly soothing and stimulating at the same time. (0:

Stay well everyone.

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