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A Tale of Gastrointestinal Turbulence

toilet paper
If you have read my previous post 'The Peace Amidst Chaos", you can get a faint idea about my breakfast menu in Banaras. Apart from searching my inner self on the banks of the Ganges, I tried to satiate my otherwise gluttonous soul with pipping hot Kacchori, spicy Alu ki Sabzi, Tamatar Chaat, Samosas, hot Jalebis, and some soothing cold Lassi topped with Rabri at the famous Pahalwan's Lassi shop. Not to mention, my sweet tooth (with a cavity) craved for hot, crispy Jalebis. My soul was satisfied after the week long trip. My stomach was NOT. 

Sitting at the airport, I heard the first rumbling sounds in my stomach. It was past midnight. I was dozing off in my chair when a faint explosive sound inside jolted me back to the present. Brushing it off as my stomach's call for food, I tried to sleep again. Little did I know that it was a warning call by my stomach, similar to the ones given by a volcano before it erupts. The call of Nature, they say. 

As soon as I settled down between a sleepy middle aged woman in the aisle seat and a chirpy young girl on the window, the first signs of Traveler's Diarrhea started bothering me. A gluttonous soul, sometimes, brings illness to the body. Cramps and nausea overwhelmed me, not the air turbulence. In my mind, I was trying to remember my Geography teacher; how she used to explain that air bubbles build up the pressure inside a volcano and how magma explodes to the surface when this pressure gets released. I was resisting the urge to pass obnoxious fumes in order to save my fellow passengers. At least, I was trying my best. 

Usually, I feel claustrophobic inside an aircraft lavatory and try to hold my bladder tight while flying. Not this time. For the next nine hours, I was running between the toilet seat and the middle seat. The toilet seat seemed more comfortable than my assigned seat on the aircraft. Whenever I came out of the loo, I met a queue with at least four pairs of accusing eyes looking directly at me. I lost count of the number of times I requested the woman on the aisle seat to move her legs to let me continue my run. At the end, she gave up and gallantly offered her seat. 

Medicines could not help me to restrict my onward journey to the loo. My cautious brain refused the food offered by the airlines. I can't explain the pain of munching on salted crackers while inhaling the aroma of lunch being served around. A food loving soul never dies. Even in the face of acute diarrhea! 

After this instance, I have started wondering about the working mechanism of the airborne waste control technology. Does it already take into account the number of passengers onboard suffering from diarrhea? Or does an aircraft really throw away "blue ice" if the amount of waste is more due to a shitting passenger like me? 




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