A week in the hospital

Ok, it wasn't really a week. It was four days. It sure felt like a month though.

We'd all been having a pretty good night, timmy read his books as part of his nighttime ritual.

We had trouble that night though. He kept waking up coughing. He'd been coughing for a day or so before, but we were concerned because I thought his breathing was too rapid and too deep. We decided, after consulting via SMS with Timmy's doctor (the lovely Dr Maria Elena Quimpo, his aunt and my first cousin) to bring him to St Lukes. After a few hours of nebulizing at the Emergency Room, we had Timmy admitted to the hospital.

He had to have an IV drip installed. He was pretty good about it, yelling when it was going in, but then calming down and getting used to it pretty well.

I had to take the week off from work. Fortunately I have enough flexibility that I'm able to do that. I thought I could do some remote programming at the hospital. I was sorely mistaken though. Taking care of Timmy was a fulltime job in the daytime. Even simple things like feeding him needed four hands since someone had to hold or watch him so he didn't rip the IV out by moving his arm too fast, while someone else prepared the food or milk. Timmy was attached to a machine that monitored and ensured the correct drip rate of the IV and that made the length of free tube very short.

With rest and medication though,
Timmy got well enough so we could bring him home.

He's making us worried again tonight. We're going to be nebulizing again every 6 hours. I hope that the virus goes away and he recovers completely.
The hospital stay was pretty expensive. St Lukes in Quezon City is one of the best hospitals in the country, but you pay for what you get. To be sure, $600 for the 4 day stay, meds, equipment rental, and emergency room care was worthwhile, and very cheap compared to what it would have cost in the U.S., for instance. But it's a significant chunk of change and we're very thankful we had the wherewithal to cover the cost.
We have to process a PhilHealth refund. That'll help a bit. I was pleasantly surprised, when I went to the Quezon City Philhealth office, to be able to get all the PhilHealth documentation I needed in about an hour. Some government systems do work reasonably well (although I've also been on the receiving end of some horrendously bad service by other government agencies). I don't think I've seen anything optimal in any government agency, but that some things work at all is good to see.



A month or so ago my mother came back from the U.S.

She brought cheese (a half circle of blue cheese, which I'm consuming diligently, and which enriched a pasta dinner we had two weeks ago, to deep and lovely effect) and six huge steaks. It's impossible to get steaks like that here. Meat is sufficiently expensive that there are no huge portions because there's not much of a market for 3 or 4 lb steaks. My mother bought these steaks at costco and they're monsters.

We had some of that a few weeks ago. and we had some more yesterday (Saturday). It's certainly not the case that everything that comes out of the U.S. is evil. The steaks are pretty good. We had a great time this week. Of course there was isaw at U.P. Diliman on Friday (which was a public holiday, being the end of Ramadan). My in-laws want to do that again, so maybe we'll do it this coming weekend or the next. And then there was steak, mashed potatoes and gravy. That was lovely. We've got one more steak and we seriously considered having steak AGAIN. Fortunately, today we had lechon kawali for lunch. That was heart-attack city and great with vinegar and garlic.

Despite all this wonderful food, I'm not gaining weight. Clearly, I need to eat some MORE! :-)



There's new evidence that the Blackwater guards who killed 17 and wounded 27 people (among them women and children), these heroes of the U.S. State Department, weren't fired on at all. They lied about a vehicle being disabled and having to be towed away.

And an american military official says, "If our people had done this they would be court-martialed.".

Easy for him to say. And bullshit anyway. There would have been a court martial, sure. Purely for show. And then no one would have been convicted. Those Iraqis got off easy, they weren't even tortured before they were killed.


Oh so sorry, we didn't mean anything by it - american bastards

"You grab the man of the house. You rip him out of bed in front of his wife. You put him up against the wall. You have junior-level troops… will run into the other rooms and grab the family, and you'll group them all together. Then you go into a room and you tear the room to shreds…and you get the man of the home, and you have him at gunpoint, and you'll ask the interpreter to ask him: 'Do you have any weapons? Do you have any anti-US propaganda…?'

"Normally they'll say no, because that's normally the truth," Sergeant Bruhns said. “And if you find something, then you'll detain him. If not, you'll say, 'Sorry to disturb you. Have a nice evening.' So you've just humiliated this man in front of his entire family and terrorized his entire family and you've destroyed his home. And then you go right next door and you do the same thing in a hundred homes."

In other news, Ricardo Sanchez, former commander in Iraq says:

"There is no question that America is living a nightmare with no end in sight," Sanchez told a group of journalists covering military affairs.

Typically, there is no mention of the living nightmare that the Americans have created for the Iraqis. They're just sand niggers, if a million die and a quarter of the population is displaced, no one cares.

Go home america. Fuck up your own country, leave the world alone.

Great day

Today was a most wonderful day. I didn't think it would be. Timmy's nanny went to Cagayan de Oro to help her husband with something and she's going to be out for a week. On the other hand, today was also Eid-al-Fitr, a muslim holiday which is an official holiday in the Philippines. So taking care of timmy was made much lighter by having many hands to carry him and play with him.

And then we thought to end the day by going to U.P. Diliman and having isaw for dinner. For those with great intestinal fortitude (which would be 99.999% of filipinos, excluding the very few vegetarians), isaw is chicken or pork intestines, skewered on bamboo sticks and barbecued over charcoal.

At U.P., we went to Manang's isaw stand behind the college of Law. She had run out though and was closing down when we went. That was too bad. Manang has the best isaw in the country, and perhaps the world.

Since Manang's wasn't available though, we went over to Mang Larry's isaw stand near the Kalayaan freshman dormitory. They were doing great business there. There were so many people standing in line, we had to wait perhaps 45 minutes for our order to be delivered. Timmy had a great time watching all the people (and the streetlights, as they came on with the night). I think we must have had too much (30 sticks of goto [pork], 30 sticks of chicken, 5 sticks of regular pork barbecue and 5 sticks of pigs ear). Hahahaha.

A great time was had by all though. Unfortunately, it was dark when we were all done, so we couldn't walk around the sunken garden with timmy in his stroller (with mandatory mosquito net). I hope we can try for that on Sunday, or next weekend. Tomorrow we'll be going to Greenhills. My sister-in-law will be walking, or jogging. We, on the other hand, will be at the weekend street market buying prawns, fish and vegetables :-).


killing more women, making three new girl orphans


go home America. kill your own, leave the world alone.


bad back

I've still got a bad back. And some dizziness. I think the dizziness is just from lack of sleep, and maybe too much coke light :-). I'm going to work, but I'm taking my time getting ready, letting my back relax.

I should do some stretching though. Sol tells me that all the time, I should do it. And I will. Right Now ;-). I just need to be reminded sometimes :-)

food trip

This week has been an awesome food trip. But first, a side-trip. I've not been in the best of health (late nights, back problems from carrying a baby who is growing into the Hulk). I had bad enough back trouble that I couldn't go to work (there was a typhoon going through too, so that was convenient). I still get spasms, but I think I might be able to go to work tomorrow. Or if not tomorrow, then on Tuesday.

I went to my HMO doctor a few months ago, they prescribed a muscle relaxant that makes me nauseous. So I don't take it. It seems there isn't anything seriously wrong with my back that good posture, lumbar support while sitting, and not having to carry timmy would solve. Unfortunately, that last is not negotiable, so I carry timmy anyway, and ache the while, and have trouble getting up the next day because of spasms :-).

They're spasms higher in the back though, not lumbar problems.

Anyway, this has been an incredible week for food. Tonight sol made French onion soup. The onion soup was good (caramelized onion is wonderful by itself, and cheese, like ketchup, improves everything), the french bread looked weird after being soaked in the soup, but it was all wonderful.

On Friday sol and I went to Sugi, at greenbelt. A friend of sol's from a previous life was going to New York, so a few good friends and one tag-along (i.e., me) treated her to Sugi. That is the most wonderful japanese food I have ever had. I'm sure there are better japanese restaurants, but they're not in the Philippines. Sugi is also about 2-3 times more expensive than other japanese restaurants. But the experience is incredible. That's going to be like Neo Spa at the Fort, an experience to be savored, but only once or twice a year :-).

I'm reminded that sol offered to treat me to Neo Spa because of my back problems. Like a fool, I declined. If she offers this coming week, I'm definitely accepting :-).

We also went to Kimono Ken at the Podium. That was wonderful. It's always good to go on quiet dates with sol, but it's always better if the food is great :-). The service at the Podium was first class, and the salmon slices are (by size) almost as good as at Teriyaki Grill on U.N. avenue in Manila. Everything was wonderful though. I may have a new favorite japanese restaurant. Sugi is always good, but I can't afford to go there more than once a month, and I don't want to go there once a month since even then it hurts. Kimono Ken is sufficiently better than Sushi-ya that it's definitely my new favorite, particularly since Sushi-ya has reconfigured its menu and portions so that what seemed to be great deals a year ago are just a bit above average now.

Sushi-ya is still a great and convenient place to go, but it's no longer #1 for bang-for-the-buck.


New Timmy videos

This is Timmy's 11th month and he's been up to some new things:

He's been standing:

Standing some more and clapping:

And running:

The running is older than the standing. We've been capturing video and not saving it though, so we had a backlog of a week or two of video in the camera. There's a lot more video, but it's going to be backed up to my USB drive. Certainly, U.S. laws being all weird, we're not posting todays Timmy bathing video :-). His cousins can get that via CD/DVD maybe.