Saturday, September 16, 2006

I have a cold

I've had a cold for the last few days. Nothing serious, but having a runny nose and a hoarse-sounding voice can be annoying. When I lived in Korea from 2002 to 2004, I had serious colds twice - once in November and once in February - and fortunately what I have hasn't approached what I had back then.

Back when I was sick before, it was a lingering cough that was bothering me the most (a lingering cough that had seldom been a problem in the States... can I blame Seoul air pollution here?) I would go to one of the ubiquitous pharmacies in this city, ask for 기침 약 (cough medicine), and I would get some tablets that promised to help for a cough but didn't do anything. Placebos. But my Korean tutor grated some radish and boiled it, creating a revolting drink that looked like saliva but did a better job than commercial medicine.

My chief cold prevention technique is to eat a lot of those wonderful little oranges that are ubiquitous in fall and winter. They're the kind of oranges you can eat with your hands without creating a mess - the peel comes off easily, and the sections are easily separable, like finger food. There are also canned Vitamin C drinks you can get from vending machines.

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