The dreaded lurgy

The bad news is I finally got COVID. The good news is it seems I didn’t pass it on to anybody else.

(No transport content in this one)

I managed to avoid it for three years, in part thanks to no school aged kids and spending much of the time living like a hermit, but now I am no longer a NOVID… no longer an immunicorn.

And I’m currently in isolation.

It was probably the concert. Let’s go with that theory. I hadn’t really gone anywhere in the days before that.

Day -3 – My downfall, my one great regret, was I wore a mask during the performance and while exiting the theatre, but at the start didn’t put it on until reaching my seat. Sigh, that was silly of me.

Day -2 – Itchy throat in the afternoon. Saw some people in the morning. Hopefully not infectious then.

Day -1 – Itchy throat and a bit of coughing in the morning. Did a RAT. Negative. Throat started to get sore in the evening. Nose started to run. A fitful night, not much sleep.

Day +0 – Woke and did another RAT. The dreaded two lines.

These days you don’t confirm with a PCR. The RAT is it.

So I report the positive RAT, and contact everyone I’ve seen in the last few days. Nobody reporting symptoms so far, thankfully.

Start isolation for at least five days.

Fatigue thanks to the night before, but managed to get some sleep during the day, though after each short nap I’d wake thinking a couple of hours had passed, but it was more like 30 minutes.

Alternating hot and cold, fever vs chills. Some weird thoughts/dreams swirling in my mind, which I can only describe as psychedelic computer flowcharts and data mining. Or something.

Ambulance decorated with COVID-19 messaging, April 2020
Ambulance with COVID-19 messages, April 2020

Day +1 – Slept okay. A lot more coughing today (but with an itchy throat rather than a sore throat), and a near-constant headache.

I checked; my last vaccine dose was about 7 months ago. Could be better, could be worse. Remembering that this virus is severe, fatal for some people, I think I’ve got off lucky. Maybe the mask helped after all.

In the afternoon I watch the recent Downton Abbey movie. It fits the bill for light drama, nothing too challenging or requiring 100% focus.

I’m in bed when dinner time comes around. I don’t want to get up. I wish I had a robot that could reheat the bolognaise. When I eventually do it, I drop a dozen strands of spaghetti. The robot wouldn’t have done that.

My sense of taste is askew, and I have problems eating even a half serve.

I watch the news. I notice a commemoration of African-American early goldminer and Eureka stockade participant John Joseph.

Day +2 – Disrupted sleep, but got in the hours. Some more surreal dreams.

In one dream I seem to be adapting existing map data for video game maps – one based on Downton Abbey, the other seems to be about the Victorian gold rush.

In another dream my sister is acrobatically climbing onto the roof of a block of flats. It’s all a bit strange.

Multiple times I wake a hot sweaty mess, so clearly the fever isn’t done with me yet.

Less coughing today, but still a few bursts. The headache seems to be fading into the background.

To be updated further in the next few days.

Day+3 – Another feverish night, but with fewer dreams.

Still coughing a lot, and it’s amazing how much energy a big burst takes out of you. Not having naps in bed per se, but lying on the couch not thinking about too much seems to help.

Day+4 – Still the night fevers. Still the uncontrollable coughing and runny nose. Are all these tissues I’ve used a bio-hazard?

Remember that story that COVID-19 cases could be tracked via Amazon negative reviews of scented candles? I have a scented candle from an office Christmas party secret Santa. Sure enough, my sense of smell is diminished at the moment.

Day+5 – I did a RAT, it’s still positive with strong lines, and given my symptoms are still present, I’ll be at home for a little longer, I think. I really don’t want to risk giving it to anybody.

Vic stats out today show just 346 RAT test results reported for the past week, compared to 3314 PCRs. You’d have to assume there is woeful underreporting of cases. Does anybody even care anymore? Not even with 23 deaths in a week?

Day+7 – A full week in isolation, but another strong positive RAT and continued coughing and runny nose means no parole for me just yet.

When the groceries ran out, my sister was able to drop supplies on the doorstep. Online ordering is possible, but the fees make it a little expensive unless buying a lot of stuff. My mum dropped off a care package.

Day+10 – The RAT is still positive, but the good news is the second line is much fainter than a few days ago. Still lots of coughing and the runny nose though, so isolation continues. I’m determined not to pass this on to anybody.

Day+12 – Still coughing and a faint second line on the RAT, which still means a positive.

Day+14 – At last, a negative RAT. I’m still coughing, so will be cautious and wear a mask to protect others in indoor spaces – I’ve managed to avoid passing it on so far, and I’m not about to start now. But thank goodness, no longer confined to my house.

TL;DR: The bad news is I finally got COVID. The good news is it seems I got a mild(ish) case.

And even better, it seems I didn’t pass it on to anybody else.

By Daniel Bowen

Transport blogger / campaigner and spokesperson for the Public Transport Users Association / professional geek.
Bunurong land, Melbourne, Australia.
Opinions on this blog are all mine.

7 replies on “The dreaded lurgy”

Bugger! I had developed a theory that casual passing contact was not much of a risk. As a daily public transport user, I hoped this was the case, although I am masked. Your symptoms don’t seem to be too bad, perhaps thanks to you being vaccinated. I hope you continue to improve. A neighbour’s younger brother has just died from Covid in Hobart. We’ve offered to drive her to the airport to catch a flight to attend the funeral but she is very independent and capable. Covid is far from being historical and we are not post Covid, as you discovered yourself.

Were you wearing the cheap surgical mask or the heavy duty type? What percentage of people at the concert were masked? Very informative blog, maybe too much disclose about your dreams!

Thanks all.

@Andrew, it’s awful that people are still dying from it, and a reminder not to become complacent.

@Peter, I wore an N95. I’d guess that less than 1% of the audience was wearing a mask. I saw very few other people wearing them.

Funny how the vaccine hasn’t proved to be as good as everyone hyped it up to be. Double, triple, quad vaxxed and still getting covid, plus all the side effects from them. Lot of vaccine regret around now. You have natural immunity Daniel, no point getting a booster as it’s the best natural defence you can have instead of the questionable shots

ah, a vaccine sceptic.

There was also hope that COVID itself would provide natural immunity forever… for those it didn’t kill. Remember the “let it rip” crowd?

Now we know immunity is pretty short, in some cases as little as a month.

Vaccines reduce severe symptoms and death, and only a small minority of people have severe reactions. My case has been mild compared to others. So I’m pretty happy with my 7-month old last booster, and you bet I’ll be having another when I can.

You can make your own choice.

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