Erin Call

Erin Call

You Can't Spell Engineering Without Erin

Prague Day 2: DrugQuest

Upon waking on my second day in Prague, I resolved to just stick things out and try to enjoy the city without my medicine. I headed down the hill and found the tram, but no ticket machine. Some days later I would realize I should have been looking for the subway, not the tram, and if I'd found the subway I would've found a ticket machine. At the time, all I knew was I couldn't get a ticket.

I figured I'd just follow the tracks into the Old Town. Looking at google maps now, I can see this probably would've worked, but it would've been a 5-mile hike each way. In reality I made it maybe a kilometer before the lethargy and weakness from my withdrawal pulled me up short. Casting about, I found a pharmacy and tried to convince them to retrieve my prescription from my pharmacy in the US. They either didn't understand what I was saying, or you can't transfer prescriptions internationally like that. Either way, they turfed me to a hospital I'd passed earlier.

It was at the top of a hill, of course.

The foreign-patients office at the hospital didn't think their doctors would be able to help with my prescription, so they referred me to a psychiatric hospital a few miles away. The hospital, at least, had a working ticket machine. It took about an hour by tram and bus to get to the right stop, and then I was stymied again. The directions I got at the hospital said simply "go through the park and you'll see it." I think this was a poor translation: the hospital is part of a large complex of buildings surrounded by trees, but I went haring off through a small municipal park.

After pausing for some lunch I got the waiter to give me some directions, which also proved wrong. Eventually I found a map that got me onto the facility grounds, where I met a porter who spoke no English. He pointed off into the trees, where I found nothing that looked useful and nobody who could speak to me.

It's important to understand my state of mind at this point. If I'd been in full control of my brain, I would've been able to handle the situation gracefully. Operating at full capacity, I simply see obstacles and setbacks as problems to be solved. I'm quick to see the humor in the situation and to think of the bright side. Without my medicine, though, I lacked these capacities. Problems seemed insurmountable, the situation seemed hopeless, and humor was entirely out of reach. Additionally, having packed my hat and sunscreen in my missing bag, I was sunburned and flirting with heatstroke from walking in the sun all day.

So, I sat on a bench and wept.

Eventually I cried myself out and resolved to just go home. It was already getting late, so I figured I'd head back to my hotel for the night and fly out in the morning. I dropped by the desk and asked about my bag, but they hadn't seen it, so I trudged up to my room to try and get some sleep.

As you can imagine, I didn't particularly feel up to photography, so I don't have any pictures from today.

Tomorrow: For Crying Out Loud!

Posted on 2014-06-02T19:15:00Z
Posted in prague.
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