So it turns out drinking all night and all day is actually bad for you, and now I've earned myself a nasty cold.
I'm trying to work out whether it's worth the time, money and effort of going to a Dr in Phuket, or whether I should just lock myself in my hotel room and sleep it off. I think I'm just run down from not getting enough sleep and hammering my immune system with grog. I've been taking multi-vitamin pills and trying to eat fairly healthily in order to prevent this kind of thing, but it's hard not to fall into some random bar in Rawai and not make it home until 6 the next morning.
Talking to the locals and even ex pats, no one can even ballpark a figure on what it costs to go to the doctor here. I'm in Karon now, and I understand there's a doc at Kata. Have motorcycle, will travel.
Poor Cranky!! I always manage to get a cold within the first 2 weeks of my travels. Personally, I suspect that this is a man-cold, and wouldn't bother with a doctor. Instead, if you don't feel you can ride it out, head for the local and reputable-looking pharmacy (ie not the local medicine man) and look for some Coldrex or similar that will help clear your head and dry you up.
My colds often turn to a bronchial type infection so both times that I got signs of that, I bought some over-the-counter antibiotics to clear it up - once in Bali, and once in Thailand.
My alternative suggestion - head for a place on the beach and hunker down for a few days. Remind yourself that there are worse places you could be with a cold! (I am currently stuck in an office with at least 4 other sniffling, snuffly, sneezing, snotty people and I am just waiting for the bugs to jump the cubicle. Sigh......)
Hope you feel better soon!
I was in Kata earlier on a quest for cornflakes (PS mission accomplished) when I spied a place for 500 a night that looked sweet. It's about a minute from the beach and has nice big, clean tiled rooms with all the usual trimmings AND a bath! I've been after a 400-500pd place with a bath since got here and finally I've found it. Will probably move in there tomorrow and hole up for a while til I fight this thing off. There'd be no detrimental effects to the healing progress of my cold if I lay on the beach for a bit, would there?
Oh, the one bad thing about that hotel was no free wi-fi.. But there's always an open connection floating around a cafe somewhere I suppose.
I just had an encounter with a local medicine man, who told me I didn't have a cold, I had a cough. He then suggested a 100baht medicine which he flatly refused to show me before I bought it. "Is not supermarket," he said. "But I can see all the other products on your shelves here," I protested. "You buy, I show you."
I told him I wasn't in the mood for games and left.
Is this a thing with medicine men or...?
Wondering if I committed some kind of faux pas or whether he was just an a$$h*le
busylizzy......"man cold".....loved that LOL back home we always called it "bottle flu".
Cranky......should have taken lizzys advice. Ah well, man thing , right. Hope you get better soon.
#5 neosho has been a member since 13/8/2008. Posts: 386
Funnilky enough, after I wrote that, I realised I didn't know whether Cranky was a man or not. I had just made that assumption somewhere along the way. Probably just because he wanted to see a doc. Most women would just suck it up and get on with it. (And I have just dug myself a much bigger hole now if I'm wrong.... :-)
Me thinketh that Cranky just wanted a bit of sympathy here... it sucks when you're travelling on your own and you feel like crap. I'm sending you some 'virtual' chicken soup - hope you're feeling better. I few days lying horizontal on a beach just HAS to be good for you.
Man cold indeed. Just cause a carrot doesn't post on the sanitary napkins in SE Asia forum thread, doesn't make her any less a woman.
As they say around here, "I'm laydeeeeeee."
Ok, not really. Yes, I'm a bloke. But the whole man-cold thing is total BS, at least where I come from (Aus) - I remember some statistic showing men were far LESS likely to go to a doctor if something was wrong than women were, and we were dying off quicker as a result. So there.
I have a cold for sure, and I really want to get rid of it ASAP as I can't be hoofing it around with a backpack in the heat when I feel like this. In Australia, if you see a doctor when you have a cold, they pretty much do nothing for you except tell you to rest and maybe prescribe some meds which usually don't speed things up much.
Whenever I mentioned I was sick to the locals, they'd ask if I had medicine or had been to a doctor, so I thought maybe I should check it out. I'm perfectly happy to suck it up and just sit pretty for a few days taking it slow... and YES I think some e-sympathy from you guys was warranted.
PS After relaying my medicine man story to a few locals, I've concluded it wasn't a Thai thing, the guy was just an Eff wit. I can say Eff wit, right?
Drown a cold, starve a fever. A little hair of the dog that bit you ain't going to make any difference. A doctor told me once I needed to drink more water. I told him I drank distilled water all the time. He said that was good and to keep it up. Soooo, I went home and told the wife the doctor told me to drink more whiskey. She didn't fall for it.
#8 neosho has been a member since 13/8/2008. Posts: 386
@Neo What can I say, but lol. I'm a big fan of the Thai Whiskeys too - especially since they start at 3 dollars a bottle. A few Thai told me to drink warm water, so I've got a bottle out on the balcony now heating up. I feel way better for the sleep and I have medicine. The only thing I'm missing is one of those little vicks sticks up the nose like you see everyone with around here. Maybe I'll buy two and plug my nostrils, lol.
pretty hard to kill a cold once its got you by the goolies, all you can do now is treat the symptoms and ride it out; see if local medicine man has chinese herbs and pick up the following formulations:
Yu Ping Feng San-will help the runny nose and itchy, sneezy feeling
Te Xiao Bi Min Gan-may help boost immune system and speed recovery
Cranky Carrot. If you really can't take this like a man, then you could always go to Bangkok International Hospital, ask to see their leading cold specialist and send the bill to WN....just bear in mind you aren't allowed to catch any more colds after you've extended your insurance because it'll be a pre-existing condition from here on in. If you do catch another cold and it gets even worse than the one you've got now (complications like double pneumonia etc) then I've a feeling you won't be covered.
I'd try the Chinese herbs first... the current best and most effective WHO recommended anti malarials are based on a herb that's been used for over 2000 years in traditional Chinese medicine to treat malaria. So there's a good chance the Chinese worked out how to cure the common cold several centuries ago too.
Cranky......I usually drink Sang Som , but sometimes out here in the village, I get hooked up with the locals and drink Lao Khao blue label. Makes you warm and fuzzy real quick. Mix a bottle of M150 with it to keep you running. It's 10 baht a bottle. Be forewarned....this stuff is pure unadulterated evil in liquid form. It will make you do things your mother will not be proud of. A lot of the little shops will sell it for 5 baht a shot.
#13 neosho has been a member since 13/8/2008. Posts: 386
Be forewarned....this stuff is pure unadulterated evil in liquid form.
At least you will forget you have a cold! There you go, Cranky - you've found your solution!
@SBE - Yeah, yeah I'll suck it up. I think I came off like a lot more of whinger on here than intended. I wouldn't go to the doctor with a cold back home (unless it was in aid of getting a few sickies off work), much less a hospital. I was just having such a good time here I didn't want to sit any of it out on the sidelines if I could avoid it. Bill it to WN and then pray I never get a cold again since it's a pre-existing condition eh? They might not pay up on this claim either if they did some checking and found I'd had colds in the past though either. Heh heh.
@Cunning - I took a picture of that immunity booster description, will look into it.
@Neo - Is Song Sam the rum or the whiskey? I still get the names confused, especially since the writing on the label of one of the major brands is in that Thai sanskrit (someone correct me please, what's Thai writing referred to as?)
@Neo again - M150 you say? I've been all over those since I got here. Huge fan of caffeinated beverages back home like V, Red Bull and... Columbian Cola (though that's pretty hard to come by in Aus) I love that every now and then you can catch one of those bike vendors with the ground 'good coffee' on sale. Wish there were as many of those as there are the pancake vendors (who are also awesome life savers). Yesterday I bought an M150, a Red Bull (which isn't carbonated here for some reason), that Shark drink, and the one with the Tiger on it. When the hotel manager poked through my bag checking out my purchases (uninvited I might add), she asked "how many you dlink today?" "All of em," I replied. The look on her face was priceless. "Aaaahhhh!!??!"
Anyhow, in my humble opinion they all taste similar, but each tastes slightly more like cough medicine than the last - and I should know, I just bought a bottle of that cough medicine Robitussin, which is roughly the same size and shape of the energy drinks.
In order, they approach the taste and consistency of cough medicine in this order; Red Bull, M150, White Shark... and then Tiger. The difference between Tiger and Robitussin is totally negligible. The thickness of the medicine just beats out the Tiges, but jeez they're close.
M150 is evil? I've had like 2 or 3 bottles every day since I've been here. I really don't get as much pep from them as I did the V's in Australia, or a few good cups of coffee.
@Bizzy - yeah I'll be right, cheers. Being sick gives me a chance to catch up on my Facebooking... except the friggin new hotel has no free wi-fi. Grrrrr!!! Uh oh, I think the Tiger's just kicked in.
It's the rice whiskey that's evil. Sang Som is the rum. But to me it doesn't taste like any rum I've drank. More like a mild whiskey to me. I get along with it fairly well. Rum in the states always gave me a nasty headache. M150 is the only energy drink I've ever tried. Just do that because the locals mix it with the Lao Khao. Sang Som is in english , the other is Thai. There's 2 labels but most people seem to drink the blue label. Small bottle is around 50 baht, large bottle 100 baht.
#16 neosho has been a member since 13/8/2008. Posts: 386
I never liked the taste of rum, but I have a real weak spot for whiskey and coke after about 8pm. Are you saying that Sang Som do rum and whiskey? If so I think the whiskey label is in Thai and the Rum is in English for some reason.
I can't believe you haven't tried anything but m150 Neo. I guess I must be more of an energy drink connosieur (damn thats a tough word to spell). I'm having coke zero mixed with red bull with breakfast this morning, since real coffee is so comparatively pricey around here. It's the only way to get close to the taste of Bull from back home. Another 2 of these and I should be awake.
Cranky, I have a feeling I'm a lot older than you. Old people don't do energy drinks, we take naps. Kind of like when you're young, you think everything is important, so you remember everything. When you hit middle age, you realize half of it is BS, so you only remember half of it. Then you get old and realize it's all BS and don't remember anything.
Back to the issue of Sang Som. I've only seen an english label. It doesn't taste like rum that I've drank in the US. Tastes more like a mild whiskey to me. There is another one called 100 Pipers, a bit more expensive but it is a whiskey, if memory serves, made by Seagrams. Blend 285 is actually made by Red Bull here in Thailand, moderate price. Don't actually know what it is as it just says blended spirits on the bottle. All readly available and moderately priced.
Lao Khao is in Thai. What it is exactly I don't know. I think it's rice whiskey. The locals do shots like Tequila. Clear, but has a different taste than Tequila. They claim you can but it in your motosai if you run out of gas. Rather good in the morning coffee. :) I can't describe on this forum what I felt like doing the first time I ever tasted it. :) Being a JD drinker though, you should get along fine with all of them. Ok, now that everyone one thinks I'm a drunken old sot, I'll stop here.
One more is some stuff called Hong Thong. I've drank it, but never did get used to the taste. Nasty to me.
#18 neosho has been a member since 13/8/2008. Posts: 386
Funny you should mention Hong Thong - I've just unpacked a bottle from my backpack picked up for a tidy 179thb at 7-11 last night.
I don't mind the taste at all, especially mixed with coke zero (gotta watch I don't get a beer belly or I'll have to learn how to balance on my bike all over again).
100 Pipers is one of the cheapy brands I used to drink in Sydney, but for some reason the girls here go ape-poo for it. I brought some Hong Thong to a party with a bunch of masseuses and they turned their noses up at it. Oh well, more Hong Thong for me!
Laid of the drinking while I endured my man-flu, but I'm back in the saddle now... save for a nasty stomach ache after eating diner dog earlier. Won't make that mistake again. And 65thb for 12 french fries my backside - the hotdog was only 60. Wtf?
I can't wait to try pouring Thai whiskey in my motorbike to see how it runs... oh wait, might lose the deposit. Better not. How old are you Neo?
59, will be 60 in January. The age I feel on any given day is usually determined by how young I felt the night before.
#20 neosho has been a member since 13/8/2008. Posts: 386
I'm half your age, but lately I feel triple it. Thought the cold was gone but it's back with a vengeance. I keep sucking down the Robittisun, which helps, but I really just need to lay off the grog and late nights. The Rawai gals will just have to play pool by themselves tonight.
Cranky, Cranky. Cranky - you should have listened to your aunt Lizzy! I think I suggested some Coldrex (if you had to) and a nice quiet spot on a beach somewhere. Whiskey, shooters late night pool in smokey bar rooms followed by Red Bull with the cornflakes in the morning was not quite what I said.......
Sigh.... some people will never listen to good advice. I'm sure I can dredge up some sympathy somewhere.....if I dig real deep. :-P
I'll have you know it was Red Bull and Eggs for breakfast, not cornflakes.
Well, technically it was that Shark drink mixed with a can of Pepsi Max. I'm experimenting to find the best combo for wake up juice. The French hotelier made me a terrific coffee too. Best in Phuket so far...
Coldrex eh? It sounds kinda expensive. The Robitissun stifles the symptoms nicely and costs about 65thb. I'll look into Coldrex though, since you're such a fan. Definitely no shooters tonight. I'm just going to drive up the mountain and hang with the Big Budda for a bit. And maybe hit the Rawai gym.
Coldrex is just a cold medicine that dries up your nose and clears your head - it's the only brand name I could think of. I don't often buy the stuff (I am woman, hear me roar...) - I just tend to ride it out and hope that I get lots of sympathy. Until it moves into my chest with a hacking cough at which point I know it's losing battle.
Also - if you are in an aircon room, a fan room will probably make you feel lots better. Personally, I blame the aircon units for the colds that I got while travelling, especially if they are the old-fashioned ducted type units. The filters have probably never been changed. I got 2 colds in my 6-week trip back in 2008, and 2 or 3 on my recent 5-month trip (followed by another 2 colds when I got home). I'm sure it's due to the aircon in hotel rooms, airplanes, etc.
Hope you shake it off soon!
Cranky while feeling a wee bit sorry for you, this is turning into a quite humorus thread. Go to the pharmacy and buy some local stuff called Tiffy for relief of your symptoms. A package of 4 pills should be around the 5 baht. It's has paracetamol and other stuff for your symptoms. A home shop/store will usually carry it also but the price will be a few baht higher. If it gets worse let us know.
Lizzy, I can agree with you on the aircon. Also, if I can't shake it off within a few days, it will always go to my chest. Like you, I realize it's a losing battle and go to the doc. Over here though, I self medicate and go to the pharmacy. I can buy here what normally requires a prescription in the US and a hell of a lot cheaper.
#26 neosho has been a member since 13/8/2008. Posts: 386
Nothing wrong with a humourous thread. Laughter is the best medicine, after all.
Lizzy, I think you're onto something. The last 5 places I stayed at all had aircon and I could feel it drying out the air. Used to make my eyes water. I'm staying in a place with fan only now, so we'll see.
5 baht for Tiffy? The price is right...
Hey, how come sometimes baht is spelt "b-a-h-t" and sometimes it's "b-a-t-h"? I have a motorbike contract with both versions on the same form. Which is it?
the baht spelling better approximates the sound, while the bath spelling is a direct transliteration of the thai letters used to spell the word. either is okay, although i prefer baht because if you say it as bath the way we would in English folks might not understand.
as for the cold thing, we had a health fair in my little town over the weekend and here is what they recommended to help get rid of a cold.
get extra sleep and drink more fluids. i think they meant fluids without alcohol actually, but in my opinion a G&T or three might still be okay.
use a humidifier. not strictly necessary in the tropics, particularly in a fan room. but no A/C for sure.
use saline nose drops. i guess you could always snort the ocean there in phuket.
take a non-prescription pain reliever. easy to get in Thailand.
take an over-the-counter cold med. just like Lizzy said!
"take an over-the-counter cold med. just like Lizzy said!"
Now I would never be one to say 'I told you so'!!
Hey Cranky, if you're still in Phuket, keep an eye out for my sister. She's just arrived over there at the moment, no doubt causing mayhem. Her name is "Lil' BusyLizzy" (although she doesn't actually know that!).
Well, I had another "nudge" last night, meaning that bottle of Hong Thong started singing my name about at about 11.30pm. I figured I'd try burning the throat infection out with a few straight swigs from the bottle, which I then went outside and shared with girls, one of whom persuaded me to get a massage. God I love this country sometimes...
The massage (and only a massage - no naughty stuff at the end whatsoever) set me up for one of the best night's sleep since I arrived here and today I'm fresh as a daisy. The cold is in the hacking phase, which might mean it's on the way out. I bought a couple of 4 packs of those Tiffy pills you suggested Lizzy. They were 10 baht/bath though, so double what you thought.
Hmmph. Well, what's that 40 cents instead of 20.. not much to complain about really. Tried to ask the pharmacist how long I'd need to take them for, but we just went around in circles with her saying "evely four hours" over and over again. I'll stick to those until it clears up for good since they're way cheaper than Robitussin and I was starting to get hooked on that stuff.
Where's lil Lizzy staying? I'm in Chalong for one more night near the longest-ass pier I've ever seen.
Apologies for using the word 'ass' to describe the pier, but I feel it's the only way to properly convey just how 'assy' it is in its longness. Don't know how uptight the mods are on these boards, so if 'ass' is bad, just presume I'm using the harmless donkey version of the word.
No happy ending on the massage. Hmmmm, you really were sick. I always called it "symphathy sex" with my first wife. :) So the cold saga may be ending. Can't wait till you eat the wrong thing and get the "hershey squirts". Try describing that to a pharmacist. I put my hand on my butt and taking real little steps, kind of scooted around the room my first time. It worked.
Forgot you were in a tourist area. Next time you need Tiffy. Send a Thai girl to get you some. Cheaper. :)
#31 neosho has been a member since 13/8/2008. Posts: 386
Cold saga coming to an end? Hardly - This could go on for another 50 posts at least.
I like the idea of having a Thai PA fetch my meds and run general errands. There's a girl who works in the lobby here who has pretty much three fifths of jack all to do all day - which I notice a lot around here - might as well employ those idle hands to go rack me up some discounts. 10 baht for Tiffy? Pfffft!! Forget that.
Hershey squirts... gross. I've become something of an expert mime myself lately, although I had a hell of a time trying to ask how to say "where's the garbage bin?" at a roadside diner this afternoon. We got it eventually - for ages they thought I was asking how to say banana. Farang charades should be a national sport here.
Sorry about the mess Lizzy. I usually write my posts in the evening, which by then I'm into the sauce and you never know what comes out. :)
Farang charades indeed. That's why the Thai's watch you and smile all the time. They know at some point you WILL screw up and give them a good laugh. They're just waiting. :)
#34 neosho has been a member since 13/8/2008. Posts: 386