“I’m just trying to help” states Ricky in a loving, soothing tone. “Help me by taking me home” I scream back. Yesterday was not my finest day by a long shot. I was still suffering from my eye infection, I had an allergic reaction again and I was upset, crabby and ready to pack this whole travelling adventure in right then and there to go back to the comforts of home.
Overseas travel to an Island such as Bali usually invokes images of sun, palm trees, coconuts and relaxing by the beach or pool and in our two weeks we have experienced all of these but it isn’t always one glorious experience to the next. In our two short weeks in Bali we have been subjected to rain almost every day, food poisoning aka Bali Belly, food allergy reactions, and last but certainly not least, an eye infection that has caused more havoc than any other bout of conjunctivitis I have personally had or been witness to. So for all of the amazing pictures that I post with all of the enriching adventures that we have had so far there are also the not-so-great aspects of travel.
I was always nervous to be embarking on a long stint in Asia due to my severe food allergies. Some would probably call me naive to think that I could go through this adventure unscathed but I have lived with nut and seafood allergies all of my life and have made it through thus far so I do feel like I have some control and knowledge on the subject of how to keep myself alive. I have also visited Bali, Malaysia and Singapore before with no adverse reactions and therefore thought I could do this well. But while I have not had to be hospitalised for my allergies as yet (touchwood!) I have had many sleepless nights with laboured breathing and skin that has felt like it was crawling with fire ants under my belt already after only two weeks. It has been harder this time more than any other because we have visited places less frequented by tourists than the usual Kuta, Seminyak, Sanur and Ubud. Something as simple as a fresh tomato soup gave my lungs a run for their money in Candidasa and charcoal tablets were my friend for the next day or so as I tried to recover.
I had visions of trawling through seaside villages and meandering away the time in communities in the mountains. Getting to know the remote parts of some countries and experiencing what it is really like to live in some of these places. But alas I think visions need to be dashed and plans need to be altered because the prevalence of nuts and especially seafood here in Bali is too hard to avoid in the small communities and I cant live on steamed rice with a dash of soy sauce forever!
On the same night that I had my tomato soup, Ricky decided to get a little adventurous (much to the chagrin of his plant-based wife) and try a fish dish of Spicy Mahi Mahi. He enjoyed the dish and was pleased for having tried it until he woke up later that night and needed to rush to the toilet. Yes, the fated Bali Belly had finally struck one of our family members for the first time in four visits to the Island and according to Ricky it was not pleasant. He spent the next day alternating between lying in bed and stuck over the toilet bowl and results were not pretty. Thank goodness it only lasted 24 hours!
And then there was the unfortunate conjunctivitis incident which I am still suffering the effects of. We visited the hot springs near Lovina, lovely at the time but I will be avoiding hot springs like the plague from here on out, and whilst I was very careful not to put my head under the water as was Ricky and Ashton, Rory being the shortest didn’t manage to head our cautionary tales and so he successfully caught the infection that seems to be spreading around the island at the moment and of course managed to pass it along to all of us also. Rory and Ricky were ok though. They managed to have bloodshot looking eyes for a few days and not a lot of other symptoms. Unfortunately Ashton and I did not fare so well, days in bed were spent in pain with eyes glued shut, fevers abound, headaches, delirium, it was all happening and in a small remote village with no chemist or doctor to be found. It was a very confronting experience to know that there was no help on hand and it was with relief that we headed onto Ubud after only a few nights there.
Today I am not yelling at Ricky like this is all his fault and insisting that he take me home. I am not always such a tantrum prone, spoilt brat of a lady I assure you. At least I don’t think I am… anyway, we have looked at flights to Southern India as well as Europe and have found options that may suit our budget should I continue to really struggle with my food allergies. Therefore we wont be packing up and heading home just yet. Which is lucky as with the house rented out we don’t actually have a home to go back to! In the meantime you will find me in Ubud at the Yoga Barn sipping on a green juice to help my body rebuild after the constant battle I have put it through or Taco Casa where almost everything is absolutely amazing and food allergy free. Feeling happier already just thinking about my next burrito!
xx Travelling Fresh