Thursday, January 15, 2015

Misery loves grits

Looking towards the train tracks and a passing train in Altavista, June 2014. The Staunton River runs among the distant trees.

If you’re in the kitchen at 4 a.m. eating a bowl of grits, you know things aren’t normal.

That was me yesterday morning. Cooking a bowl of instant grits in the microwave while Larry and Chase Bird slept. Eating the hot grits in an attempt to feel better.
Grits are a comfort food for me. No matter what kind of illness I may have, the warm blandness mixed with a dab of butter can calm down nausea, give a little energy to fight a headache, or soothe a sore throat.

Larry got a bad cold last week, and being the generous man that he is, he shared it with me. At least we are miserable together.
Of course, we’re not really miserable in the sense being unhappy or in dire straits or seriously ill. We just feel bad enough not to feel like doing anything. Just bad enough that walking to the mailbox at the end of the driveway seems too big a task. So bad that we believe if we don’t stop coughing soon, we are going to die of misery.
I took a book with me to the doctor’s office to read while waiting. I never opened it. I didn’t feel like reading. If I don’t feel like reading, I know I’m miserable. Or feverish.
I did have a fever. When I got home, Larry was sitting in the den, wrapped in a blanket, trying to get warm. We croaked hello to each other.
Then he left the house to run some errands. He had noticed our bare pantry shelves, too, and since he had been sick longer and hence was supposedly on the road to recovery already, he was elected to go to the grocery store.
He brought home things we really don’t need. A berry pie? Frozen pizza? Ah, things you buy when you shop while miserable. Or terribly hungry.

So here we are, taking our medicine, offering each other advice on how to feel better, eating food that isn’t good for us. Poor Chase Bird just wants us to stop coughing already. And get over this misery.

What is your best treatment for the common, miserable cold?


  1. Sleep.
    Hot tea w/sugar and milk.
    Codeine for cough.
    Hot & sour soup.

  2. It's amazing how such a common, fleeting illness can make us so....miserable. That's the perfect word. Wishing you and Larry a quick return to good health, and a more productive trip to the grocery store. :)

  3. Oh no! You do sound miserable. I hope you feel better soon. If you get to the point you can't breathe at night, I like Afrin nose spray, but my doctor says not to use it for more than 5 days in a row, as it is addictive.

  4. Well, being Jewish, I will offer chicken soup, also known as "Jewish penicillin." Medicine is now recognizing this is more than a placebo, there's really something to chicken soup that really helps.

    Feel better soon!

  5. homemade chicken noodle soup!! I always keep some in the freezer!!! oh I sure do hope you feel better soon!!!!

  6. cough drops, hot tea with maybe a bit of lemon or honey if you like, and a good shot of bourbon (not with the tea, though.) :)

  7. First of all, I really hope you get better soon. I had the flu in December and know how miserable all of that is. Poor Chase Bird! I have to say, Lizzie has never been cough-averse to me. Now, Gypsy -- I'd be holding him (the most cuddly, give-me-your-lap-guy ever) and as soon as there was that big intake of breath, he'd stiffen and bolt. Lizzie just stays put! Hope Chase Bird is taking after her in that instance!

    You have inspired me to make some grits for dinner tonight. I love 'em -- especially shrimp and grits or grits with an egg. And that's tonight's dinner. Can I wait another two or three hours now that's in my head?

  8. Oh I know how you feel, I had the same thing. I ate a lot of ice cream good or bad I did and now I am better so possibly it is the cure:) Take care Tina I know there is an end to this darn suffering.Well written:) HUGS HUGS B

  9. Aw, being sick is the pits. Too bad Larry was so generous.

  10. I just crawled out of bed after being sick for 5 days. I am not very hungry but yes, I really need to go shopping. I just don't have the energy to even brush my hair right now.
    I have never had grits before.

  11. Poor dears! Feel better. Hot tea with honey, lemon and brandy will fix you right up.

  12. I hope you recover quickly. Nobody needs to be miserable. My cold remedy...just crawl into bed and sleep!

  13. I hope you and your husband feel better soon.

  14. Colds are so not fun. I do hope you are feeling better now. Grits would not be my comfort food. Perhaps a nice cup of hot tea and some cookies. I like to drink lots of juice when I'm sick and just stay in bed.


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