In honor of, and in preparation for, getting the jab today, I decided a spa day was in order. Since moving to Lugo, I have been occupied with other things. A LOT of other things. And self-care has fallen a bit by the wayside. It was past time to do something about it.
I found a little day spa across from the stunning Lugo Correos (post) office. And what a wonderful experience it was. If you’re ever in Lugo with a kink in your neck, in need of a thorough exfoliation, a detox, or a pedicure I can’t recommend Mangata Day Spa highly enough. Their organic products are amazing. Today, I’ve got the skin of a new born baby. And when I tried to tip the technicians they wouldn’t take an extra nickel. After three years in Spain, and all the hard ships faced by so many during Covid, I still feel bad that tipping isn’t usually accepted. These poor folks had to be closed for many months.
As part of my day out in Lugo, I popped into a little hair salon and asked the woman who owns it to try to fix this Rod-Stewart-Wannabe hair cut I got a few weeks ago from the Hairrorist of Melide. She reluctantly agreed to ‘try something’, and after plucking at my now 6 inches shorter shag and running her hands through the roots, she was able to shape it into something that no longer resembles a mushroom cap with a wispy tail. She colored it, too, which made it appear a bit less thin and shaggy. Here’s hoping by Labor Day, or Halloween, that I won’t look so scary.
It wasn’t the day spas fault I slept little last night before awakening in the dark and leaving the house just as the sun broke over the horizon. Jeff came with me as we drove to the hospital in Lugo for my jab. It’s been a long time coming.
Unlike when Jeff got his last week, I had to wait. But, because we got there early I was one of the first people in line. It didn’t take long. The HULA hospital in Lugo has this thing down. And now I can track my jabs and get an official vaccination certificate so that travel and going maskless outdoors will be easy enough. The staff organized us all by QR code. Then ran us down stanchion lines into little cubicles. After handing my recent medical history and current list of medications to the nurse, he told me he ‘can understand ingles but I speak very little’ I told him I understand español but speak the worst Spanish he’s ever heard. So we were going to get along just fine in the 5 minutes we had together.
He reviewed everything. They were most concerned about the blood clot back in November and having had Heparin (a blood thinner). There was some discussions but they decided that since I had tolerated Heparin very well for three months that I could get the jab. I would not be getting Janssen. They gave me Pfizer. The one I wanted. And, lickety split, it was done. I thanked the nice young nurse profusely.
‘I did not do anything’ He said. ‘I just gave you the shot.’
But that’s not true, and I told him so. Without people like him, people like me would still be in their houses waiting for help to arrive. It takes each person in the chain to make this work. This nice young man was the last person in the chain for me. And I’ll go back in three weeks to get the second shot from another person in the chain.
When I left the cubicle, an attendant directed me where to wait the fifteen minutes required post-injection. It turned out to be the chapel of the hospital and it made me smile. Somehow, it seemed so appropriate. Fifteen minute to reflect. And a little prayer of thanks. After a tough 15 months of the Covid and post-Covid rollercoaster, it’s over. Not all the aftermath. That’s a work in progress. And, I am well aware that if you look at the world, I have received this vaccine so much faster than anyone in a developing country. I also know I have to wait a few weeks for all the antibodies against the variants to kick in. But sitting there, I was overwhelmed with gratitude. For those who have worked so hard to save us all, in hospitals around the world. And for those in labs who worked at lightning speed to develop the vaccines to help save humanity from a plague.
We are at home now. They say this jab should take me out for a day or so. But so far, I have more energy than I have in a long time. Maybe it’s a dose of fresh hope. But like I do when I see the first tulips or daffodils sprout from the ground after a long winter, I was inspired to come home and scrub the entire house. Jeff just took the vacuum out of my hand.
‘Sit. Don’t do what you would normally do, and overdo it. Today, just sit and write. Learn to knit. Take it easy. It will all be here tomorrow. And do what Emilie told you to do. Drink a lot of water and take a nap.’
But I’m tired of naps. I want to be that daffodil. Breaking through the cold soil, looking to feel the warmth of the sun on may face. Because, as we all know, it’s been a very, very harsh winter.