I had great hopes for Delhi. Sheetal’s home has all the light and air you could wish for and had I really looked forward to basking in the grace of a winter holiday. But I find that “One must have a mind of winter...” or more accurately the constitution of winter to feel any appreciation of the weather in this capricious capricious city. I find myself alternately ferreting out the last strand of wool I possess or throwing off bed clothes in a pool of sweat. Must qualify that the latter might be less due to the temperature outside and more due the fact that my fever often decides to desert me at odd hours in the night.
Fever, did I say fever? Fever - being the whole point of this post. I am wallowing in mire of self-pity and mucous. I have caught a cold and the flu, possibly a bacterial infection too! Cannot watch too much TV; head hurts. Can’t read beyond a chapter; wrist hurts.
So only to console myself, and because a warm laptop is welcome across my knees now, I have mauled Elizabeth BiBi’s poem to express myself. Can only hope my sorry state will induce quick forgiveness from the beyond.
How do I ache now? Let me count the ways
I ache keen to the depth and breadth and height
My arms can reach, when feeling out of fight
For the end of wheezing and ideal days
I ache in clutches of bedevilled daze
Most need quiet, in sore head held vise-tight
I ache quite freely, fever soars like kite
I ache so purely, as I head but raise
I ache with every blowing of the nose
Into old kerchiefs, withering to wraith
I ache now still no better for a dose
Of anti-biotics, – I ache every breath
Knuckles, knees, cheekbones too! – and, if God chose
I have found that those ailed by colds and madness are humoured alike. You will get clucking noises of spurious sympathy and badly concealed amusement. So I bolster my pathetic wheeze with a truly empathetic voice.