Warning: Graphic Sickness

The day of heroic effort and eventual comfort. So, we woke up at about 8am and left the hotel almost three hours after we were supposed to be out. The proprietor pointed that out to us smugly, so satisfied by our lateness that I wanted to shake him. Far be it from me to deny him the pleasure of detesting us for whatever it is he detests us for. We had almost five hours until our driver was to pick us up for the train, so we went back to Govinda’s – the restaurant with the great waiter. I put down my computer bag. I unsnapped the straps of my backpack, and with the expansion of my belly came a horrible feeling. I put down my pack and said to James, “I have to go to the bathroom – RIGHT NOW!” He thought I had the runs. I started to throw up in the hotel lobby, about halfway to the bathroom. Swallowing chunks, I dashed past the impassive front desk clerk and around the corner to the “toilet.” They don’t call them bathrooms in India, which makes sense I guess, since you’re not meant to bathe there. And they’re mostly not the toilets I grew up with either. They’re inset in the floor rather than on a pedestal like a chair, so you put your feet on the corrugated bits and squat. I hear they’re nicer than the ones in France. Just inside the room, without even locking the door behind me, I let go. I got most of it in the toilet, but moaned at the rest before losing focus again for another wave. Time after time, my stomach cramped, shooting its contents back out of my system, while my mind wandered. I stood, crouching, thinking, should I kneel?[…]

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