Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Happy New Year! Have A Cold!

I didn't plan on spending the first seven days of the new year with a cold, but it was pretty bad. I bailed on Mom's birthday party, stared at the ceiling, chugged Emergen C and nipped at Nyquil. But this was a doozy of a cold. The sad thing is, if I had just listened to my Dad, I might have gotten over it sooner. When you come from an immigrant family, it's a constant struggle between old ways and new ways, and when repeated doses of Nyquil left my mouth more arid than the Sahara, I finally gave in. Time to pull out of big guns.

Garlic.

Lots of garlic.

Now, the way a cold works is that one doesn't get better until it passes on to someone else. As I roamed the shopping centre, the virus awakened and I searched for healthy young bodies to sneeze and cough on. People avoided me, especially after my left eye spontaneously teared up and couldn't stay open. The bags under my eyes were brutal, and I looked every bit of a virus vampire as I felt. I came to my senses, paid 63 cents for a bulb and hurried on out.


Image courtesy of Grant Cochrane / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Once home, I found my little used garlic press and crushed a fresh clove on a slice of toast. Here goes nothing! I like garlic, but usually it's cooked and accompanied by other flavours. It's an accent, not the main course. Each bite was intense and took a lot of willpower to choke down.

A few hours later, another slice of garlic toast. My sinuses felt better, but soon I smelled worse. I was already banished to the spare bedroom anyway, so it couldn't hurt to have more garlic. That night, I could literally feel my whole body fight the cold. I was flush from head to toe and needed no covers at all. The strange, warm glowy feeling lasted the next day, and topped up with one final slice of toast. Four cloves and I couldn't take any more. By the end of the second day, I was breathing through both nostrils again. Ah! Talk about fast relief! It sure beat waking up with my tongue stuck to the roof of my mouth, thanks to Nyquil.

Huh, it is true then, all this stuff about garlic being a wonder food with anti-microbial and anti-fungal properties. It even, ahem, has a laxative effect, which so many websites fail to mention (but no doubt falls under "and many more benefits"). The moment I realized that I was morphing from a virus vampire to a pungent poltergeist was when I knew I had to stop right there and have a shower instead of more toast. Now I'm back to my normal self...until the next cold!