Monday, May 29, 2023

Covid Isolation on the Island Princess

I didn't catch it over the last several years. I didn't catch it on the four cruises Ed and I went on last year nor on the cruise we went on earlier this year. With as sick as everyone was pretending they were not on last week's cruise it was bound to happen at some point on my solo summer adventure. And boy, has it happened. 

To all those people who have dismissed it as just a cold, or bragged about having caught it three or four times and weren't sick at all (I heard that several times last week), or think people should get over it, I'm happy for you. But please know it doesn't turn out that way for everyone. It has hit me and hit me hard. Based on the severity of my symptoms and my RA, the doctor is treating me with Paxlovid. It's a five day treatment costing me $700 out of pocket (charged to my onboard account) which I'm more than happy to pay. If I'm this sick on it, I can't imagine how sick I would be without it. 

Most of my days are spent coughing a pretty nasty cough and blowing my nose, drinking lots of fluids, and trying to eat a bit here and there. For the most part I'm not able to do anything but sleep. My energy level is next to nil, and I've lost all the strength I built up from swimming two hours a day. I've set up little stations in the cabin to force myself to get up out of bed so I don't completely turn to jelly. Here's a little tour:

On one side of the bed is where I have some of my essentials. Pulse oximeter (brought from home), thermometer (provided by the medical center), my regular daily meds and vitamins so I don't forget to take them, some lip balm, hand sanitizer, and the current bottle of water I'm working on. Notice the small post office shipping box - I picked it up at the PO in Fort Lauderdale and was planning on using it for something else, but this purpose has become a bit more important.

On the other side of my bed is where I have my meal ordering station set up. Dining staff slips a new menu under my door every day and calls me to get my breakfast, lunch, and dinner order. To be able to reach it from the bed I had to stretch the phone from the desk and sit it on top of my Covid kit (also brought from home as a just-in-case).

My mini bar area has become my Covid medication and rehydration station. One of one pill in the morning, one of another pill in the morning and night, and three of another pill in the morning and night. With my brain feeling all foggy I've found it best to pop the pills out of their packing each morning and evening and place them on the counter to I make sure I don't forget to take them. I have my instant Propel with electrolytes, shaker bottle, and plastic straws from Sonic (all brought from home, other things packed for the just-in-case) and have been using the tap water out of the bathroom. Room service keeps me well-stocked with ice.

Between my bedside and the bathroom is my hazardous waste site. All garbage has to go into the bag.

Near my door is the staging area. I'm not allowed to leave the room, but I do put a mask on when I grab my meals from outside the door. I put a desk chair inside my door because I've found it impossible to carry a room service tray from outside the door all the way to my eating area.

Like my clever use for the card that turns on the lights?
The Blue Princess bag is full of masks, bags for trash and dirty linens, gloves,
and cleaning supplies. I have yet to have enough strength to spray one surface. 
Table where they place the food 
outside my door is from my balcony

I have two different eating areas. One is on the couch as it's the nearest place to drop the room service tray.

If the weather is nice, the other is outside on the balcony. It requires some careful stepping for this disabled gal to get there. As it has gotten colder I've started covering up with towels out there in order to get the fresh air my body craves. 

Another wheelchair accessible cabin on
Princess Cruises without balcony access. Ugh.

Food has been hot and delivered on time. Unfortunately I can't taste or smell anything, but I can feel textures. The other day's Philly cheesesteak had tender beef, a crunchy roll, creamy cheese, and crispy fries. But as to the flavor? It all tasted like toilet water to me. (Or at least what I would guess toilet water would taste like.) 

The medical staff have been amazing, checking on me daily. The dining and room service staff have been outstanding. But guest services has just plained sucked. I could play the Elite card, the Suite card, the on the ship for three month card, the disabled card, or the Covid isolation card. I haven't played any of those cards, but maybe if I combined them all together I would have been able to at least get a roll of toilet paper without having to wait for five hours? I'm trying hard to keep a positive attitude but when you're sick, sometimes it's hard.

I still have several days of isolation to go, and based on how I'm feeling I'm just fine sleeping through it. Tomorrow we're in Halifax, Nova Scotia. I hope my cabin will face land so I can watch all the going ons or I'll at least have some sunshine to sit in. I'll take either one. 

Until tomorrow...

Apologies for any errors in spelling or mind is a little muddy.
Time changes so far: 4