Many of you have sent emails asking why Blog entries stopped so abruptly, and what is going on in Vietnam? It’s a good question, and I’m going to fill you in.
Joette and I are in Ho Chi Minh City this Wednesday morning preparing to leave for Taipei later this afternoon. After three plus hours, we’ll arrive mid-evening and connect to our ten plus hour SFO bound flight just before midnight. We arrive in the US Wednesday evening, will overnight there, and have a four hour plus early morning flight to Atlanta. After a couple hours layover, it’s onto Columbia, SC on a one hour flight. We should walk into our door early Thursday evening.
The return journey home has not been easy.
I developed a head cold quickly followed by chest congestion around March 22-23. It steadily grew worse and on the weekend the team had a break, I was basically in my room, and feeling worse by the hour. On Monday, when the team went to work at Hoa Hai Clinic, I couldn’t go. And this was the last day I made a blog entry.
My conditioned worsened on Tuesday. Dr. Bill said I definitely had Bronchitis, and he was concerned about it being even more serious than that. Wednesday morning I scared even myself when I had some difficulty breathing, and since the previous two nights had been very stressful, he thought I should get a second opinion, maybe a chest x-ray. I agreed, and so I did.
I called Family Medical Practice in Da Nang, an Australian private medical practice, that I/VWAM has had a relationship with for about ten years. It’s where I take sick team members when in Da Nang, but this time I was taking myself in. Good thing I went because they discovered I had pneumonia!
The doctor thought about putting me in the hospital, but knew I had a medical team in town. If they could administered IV’s and watch over me, I could go back to the hotel instead of being admitted locally, she said. That sounded good to me. I learned a week later she had second thoughts about that decision because I was very sick.
So, I lived in my room another three days before venturing out for short periods of time. I had IV antibiotic for six days, oral antibiotic each day that continues now and for the next week, two types of inhalers, etc, and so on. I reported to the clinic daily for evaluation and whatever else they thought I needed like nebulizer treatments.
It was a difficult ten days with little sleep and no appetite for most of it. In twenty years of coming to Vietnam, I’ve never been this ill before. I actually thought one night that “This might be it,” and got a little scared one morning when I had trouble breathing.
Later the physician in charge of me said if I was a smoker, or not in such good health prior to, things could have very well been even much more serious with a medical evacuation most likely ordered.
I could go into more details and stories, but I think you get the picture. It’s been strongly suggested, once I get home, that I take another week-off before returning to the office. Now that may kill me, but I can tell you this. I never want to get pneumonia again.
That’s my outstanding care team above. If you are ever in Da Nang and have a need for medical/health care, obviously I recommend Family Medical Practice!
Chuck & Joette in Ho Chi Minh City/Saigon
And this is why you never saw another Blog entry until now.