Day 28 & 29 Florida 2017

Every time we come to the States, in fact, every time we go away, i take a stash of drugs with me. Call me cautious, call me prepared, but i figure that its better to have something just in case than not to have it. Especially in America, where a paracetamol costs about 4 grand. I have Happy Shopper paracetamol, anti-biotics for every bacteria known to man, Nurofen, co-codamol, stuff for the squirts, stuff to make you squirt, insect repellent, insect bite cream, lip balm, and a hair net. Every time we’re here and someone develops a slight sniffle, Nikki will always remind me that 27 years ago, on our first trip here, i was taken down with tonsillitis, and had to have a penicillin shot from the doctor, that cost, in 1990, a whopping $120. So, having learnt a lesson, i travel prepared……but perhaps not prepared enough.

As previously seen, my youngest Sam had a tad too much sun on Wednesday. It was a beautiful day, but that old enemy a slightly cooling breeze took his pants down and did him dry (So to speak). Yep, a small trip out on the boat, with a lovely breeze, followed by a trip to the beach, in a breeze, then a quick wash off in the pool certainly meant Breeze 1, Sam 0. Yesterday, both Sam and Hannah woke up to redness, complaining that they had little sleep, due to, and I quote, sunburn. It didn’t seem right to see them suffer, especially as Hannah was flying back that afternoon, and Sam was flying to New York on Sunday for three months. I thought it would be prudent to pop to the local pharmacist and ask if there was anything he could suggest to help ease their discomfort. He suggested an aloe Vera lotion with antiseptic and pain relief built in, and to overdose on Advil, which is American for ibuprofen. Armed with these items, I returned home and witnessed the two injured soldiers turn green with lotion, and start speaking in tongues due to a pain killer overdose….it was like watching Shrek and the Hulk performing a Tibetan war dance.

Anyway, to sighs of semi delight, the combo seemed to be working, if only a little bit, as they both decided they were sufficiently quaffered to make their way out of the house. They didn’t really have a choice, as we had to take Georgia and Hannah to the airport. And rain? I’ve never known a downpour like it! And as Sod’s law dictates, the only spaces in the car park left were on the roof. In the rain. In record time they booked in, and were on their way. Bye girls, and have a nice flight….

To say the rest of the day was quiet and without a hitch would be wrong. A journey of 20 miles to the airport, took us nearly two hours to get back from. The reason? The rain. When it rains, people here see it as a sign from the skies that the world is going to end, and they must drive as slowly as possible in order to avoid any blight from above. However, they also increase their chances of survival by straddling and swapping lanes indiscriminately, with no indication, but braking frequently in order to prove they have rear lights. It also goes without saying that they will not be smoten from on high if they ignore green lights, and instead, do their nails and make up. (What else did you expect Glyn, from a country that lets you drive a 5.0 Mustang along a motorway, as long as you can prove you can drive a Prius in a circle around a school playground. With a gun).

What’s that banging? It’s 6am. Seems to be coming from downstairs….oh its OK….it’s only Sam in a state of delirium, smashing himself against the walls in constant pain. Yep, his sunburn, lack of sleep, and increasing redness had got the better of him. And he was in pain. Itchy relentless pain. He pleaded with me to go up the road and open the pharmacy 3 hours early, even break in the building and pretend I’d forgotten the keys. But, despite his pleas, we had to wait until 9am. Wrapped in towels soaked in cold water, making him look like a grown up Jesus, we headed to the pharmacy, again, and spent a further seven grand on anti-histamines (d’oh, forgot those) and an ultra moisturising lotion, that’s non alcoholic, so it wouldn’t burn upon application, and Nik wouldn’t drink it.

An hour passed, and nothing changed. If anything he got worse. Nik did the worst thing possible and opted to look on the net for signs and symptoms, to diagnose what he had. First he had the plague, then an Ingrowing toenail, at one point he was pregnant, but i think she settled on Devils Itch, which is a reaction that causes mental impairment due to a physical injury, such as a burn. She didn’t do such a bad job after all, as the doctor kind of agreed with her an hour later, as we wheeled Sam into the clinic strapped to a chair to stop him punching people. If you take inflation into account, and the years that have passed, it wasn’t that bad at $140 to see a doc. John Lennon was once asked, at a press conference when he’d been given an MBE, “John, do you feel better after seeing The Queen?”, and he replied, “No, you feel better after seeing the doctor”. This was the case with Sam. Several tablets, and a reassurance later, and he’s a whole lot better. This time tomorrow he’ll be with his mates in New York for three months, and hopefully, the pain he’s in will be a sunburn story to tell in the pub. He’s fast asleep at the moment…I’ve got a mirror under his nose to check his breathing….

And isn’t it typical? Georgia and Hannah have gone home after 10 days of rain, and the sun has come out, it’s 94*, and its going to get better. Doesn’t help Sam though……

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