It was inevitable. After all, this is Mexico, a country known to Americans (sadly) for its illegal immigrants. A certain group of Mexican aliens made it across the proverbial border and have taken up residence in my stomach. I found a local doctor, recommended by my American insurance company, and visited him about the matter on Friday. He was punctual (impressive considering the reputation of ‘Mexican time’) and dressed in a denim shirt, Wrangler jeans, and cowboy boots. Um, which way to the ranch? He looked more like a horse vet than a human doc. And he didn’t speak English. I’ve had a total of one month of Spanish lessons, but I managed to explain my ailment to him – as if it needed explaining. All a doctor would have to do is take one look at me (blond hair, blue eyes) and laugh: “Of course, you have a stomach problem. You’re a gringa newly arrived in Mexico.” He wrote me a prescription for Flagyl, which I read on the Internet after taking it is not approved in the USA because it’s known to cause cancer.
Well, this put me in a funk for the whole weekend. The knowledge that worms were burrowing and reproducing in my intestines was bad enough, but the possibility of getting cancer as a result of, dare I make the pie pun, one bad apple put me over the emotional edge. It was enough to make me pick a fight with my husband. Which I did. With great success. Proof: it’s Monday and we’re still not talking.
My friend Kathy told me, and this was at least 20 years ago, “When you’re feeling blue, do something nice for someone else.”