Monday, February 19, 2007

better than tylenol sinus

I think I’m finally kicking this cold. It began a few weeks ago, tentatively clinging to my sinuses, but as of the last few days has descended confidently into my throat and chest. Colds are the illness no one ever wants to hear you whine about. They’re as mundane as what you had for breakfast—only your significant other cares. (A little.) And so, I send my complaints out into the anonymous network of compassion: A blog post, like a faded fluttering prayer flag, beating its tired fibres against gusts of Himalayan air. Yes, that’s me.

Fighting a cold takes many forms: Tea with lemon, yoga, knitting, lots of sleep, skipping classes. But there are also some unconventional tonics: hockey games and beer, chilly walks around town tramping through snowdrifts, spicy ceasars, swordfish with homemade citrus pesto (thanks to a belated Valentines Day feast prepared by my resident chef).

Today the doctor prescribed snowshoeing at Green Lakes: pure rejuvenation to a cooped-up soul who has seen too much of her walls and the insides of mugs. The snow that fell over the past week has settled into each crease of tree and rock. It is a blue-white wash out, pocked with the colour of proud evergreens. Our snowshoes keep us near the surface, but on some of the really soft expanses, the snow pulls us in like a feather bed. We cut new trails; it doesn’t look like many have been here since the snowfall. Boughs and branches lean over our path, heavy with their burden of frozen water. My heart-rate quickens as particles of fallen seas resist my stride. I let them fall easily off the contraptions strapped to my feet. I breathe in air clean as menthol—it passes through me, fighting my puny cold with nature’s Cold. The sun had become a stranger, but today it returns to bless the passing of winter. It mingles with fresh shards of outdoor air, forming an elixir that just might scare this sickness right out of me.

Contrary to the old wives’ tales, I would highly recommend going outside when you have a cold.

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