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What To View With The Flu

cartoon of woman with thermometer in mouth

It all started with a tickle in my throat but, I thought, “Not me.” I had been a very responsible person and gotten that flu shot my husband had been bugging me about.  Nope. Not me.

But the coughing didn’t stop and in classic denial, said to myself “It’s only a bit of dust or an allergy and I’m safe because I’d gotten a flu shot.”

I kept on coughing.

Flashback:  Just a day earlier,  my husband and I had been staying in a lovely hotel in Washington DC, wrapping up a joyous week long family celebration and sightseeing. I was sure that I had taken all the necessary precautions; the flu was not part of my plans. Sandra at the Hotel

Before our flight to Washington DC, I had arrived at LAX, loaded up with Purell and sanitary wipes and attacked every surface near me.

When I got on the plane, I wiped down the tray table, turned off the air vent above me and even wore a face mask. Definitely not chic, but no flu for me, thank you.

I had heard that those of us over 65 were the most susceptible to the virus. But I said to myself, “I’m not 65, I’m 77.” and returned to my book, comforted. Was it the flu? Nah, not a chance.

Once we were settled in DC, I bundled up and traipsed around in the freezing cold.  The  Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool was frozen, as were large sections of the Potomac River.  People were actually walking on the ice and trying to skate.

Sandra in front of the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool

We sauntered around the city for five days, enjoying some of the more familiar and less familiar highlights of our capital which I’ll write about in another blog.

Sandra in front of the Lincoln Memorial and the Vietnam Memorial

Just prior to boarding the plane back to LA, I was coughing a little and I noticed my head felt stuffed. I bought some Afrin for the plane ride home.

We landed at LAX. My ears were stuffed and I couldn’t hear. I started shivering and I realized that I had a fever. We got home and I took my temperature. Yes, it was way above 100.

Emogi wigh themometer and ice pack

I was woozy and couldn’t unpack.
I took two Tylenol and passed out on the bed.

In bed with the flu cartoon

The next morning, my throat was so swollen I could barely talk, ears so stuffed I could barely hear, head so achy I couldn’t think and I still had a fever. But I couldn’t have the flu. I had gotten a flu shot!

My husband took me to the doctor, who took culture swabs and told me to start taking Tamiflu.

At home, I drank large glasses of hot water with lemon and honey.

I tried tea but it didn’t have a sharp enough taste. Chicken soup? Too sweet. I
needed some spice. I wanted pasta bolognese. Crazy, right? (was I pregnant?)

I couldn’t read. I couldn’t concentrate. In fact, my coughing was so bad I broke a blood vessel in one eye.

This is what the flu looks like.

It all got to me and I needed some distraction so I started watching Netflix and Amazon Prime. And you know what? They helped. The shows became the chicken soup for my soul. So, I hope you don’t get the flu, but if you do, here is my current list of shows to help you heal.

Dries It’s all about Dries Van Noton a brilliant Belgium clothing designer with a garden that will take your breath away. It is so exciting to see how he puts his patterns and clothes together. Look at his garden and drool. 

Somebody Feed Phil. You gotta love this guy. He’s is best known as the creator, writer, and executive producer for the sitcom, Everybody Loves Raymond. There’s such a sweetness about him. He loves food and people. You watch him travel to Bangkok, Thailand and Tel Aviv, New Orleans and Lisbon with humour and a passion for food. 

 HARROW – A Very British School  Loved learning about how children in one of  Britain’s finest public (private) hard to get into schools spent there priviledged time there.

The Durrells in Corfu. I delightful tale of the famous Durrell’s sojourn in Corfu. Each member of the family is eccentric in their own way. Writer, naturalist, exhibitionist, and ?????

The Great British Baking show. I’ve watched these shows over and over. I find them so relaxing I fall asleep and then watch them over again so I don’t miss anything. You don’t even have to be interested in baking to enjoy the show. 

• • •

doctor talking to patient

Five days later, the doctor called and the lab confirmed that I did indeed have the flu as well as a secondary sinus infection. I won the daily double with a bet I never placed.

• • •

Have you had the flu yet this season? How bad was it?

What are you doing to avoid the flu?

Have you watched any of these programs? You don’t have to be sick to watch them. In fact, you’ll probably enjoy them even more.

PS. Another show I must recommend. I watched it before I had the flu. I adore Peaky Blinders. You must use subtitles or you’ll never understand that 1919 Birmingham English accent. It’s a violent show with heart.  Get past the first two and then you’re into it.






All images appearing on What To View With The Flu are the expressed property of Sandra Sallin. All rights reserved. In other words, don’t steal it!

Facebook Comments
  • Susan Nernberg - Oh no, Sandy. The flu is an almost epidemic here. Hope you feel better fast.
    Love, SusanReplyCancel

    • sandra - Thanks, Susan. Look at you posting so easily! You’re just one strong woman not getting this flu. Good luck on not getting the flu!!!!ReplyCancel

  • Sharon Twigg-Smith - Oh Sandy……Every empathetic bone in my body goes out to you! I had everyone up to Sun Valley for Christmas and they all departed on the 29th. On the 30th I woke up so
    sick…..having ignored that “scratchy throat” the day before! 2 and 1/2 weeks! And I
    ALWAYS get my flu shot! I had the same “brand” you did, with a sinus infection. And the cough lasted for weeks. Ah me……rest, sleep, and make yourself a hot toddy!
    Hugs and love,

    • sandra - Just to keep my company, Bob has it now also. Yesterday his doctor gave him an antibiotic for HIS sinus infection. We’re a nasty petri dish in this house. How do you know when you’re over it or you’re not contagious?

      Sorry, you had to go through this alone.ReplyCancel

  • Shawnee Gallagher - So sorry you’ve been ill Sandra. I’ve followed your blog for a long time. ( enjoy it so much) Recently retired and have more time for play and catching up with blogs.
    I caught the flu/cold the same way as you,,,, now it has gone into an ear infection ( both ears). Soooo painful and lost hearing !! Did everything the smart way too!! Naturopathic Dr hooked me up!! Drank lemon, honey and ginger water. Used sinex spray when out in public,,,,,, boom still caught it!!
    Adore the Durrell’s in Corfu !!! Peaky Blinders is good too. Now I’ll check the others you mentioned. Watching precode Hollywood movies today,,,,, the Baroness and the Butler 1938. ( you tube has full movies) So glamourous ‼️

    Hoping you bounce back stronger than ever !!! This too shall pass ,,,,right ?!

    Hugs and smiles,

    • sandra - Dear Shawnee,

      First of all thank you for being such a loyal reader. I really appreciate it. Ears??? So increibly painful. I can’t even believe it. Really terrible pain. So glad you’ve enjoyed Peaky Blinders and the Durrells. Yes, there a lot of gems on Youtube. I can get lost there. Go into a deep hole. Start one place and never know where you wind up.
      Hope your ears improve. You’e right. This too shall pass. Must remember that. I do feel I’m on the mend. So thank you.ReplyCancel

  • Tammy - Got the flu shot in October. Got the flu the third week of December. Missed ALL the holiday fun, no Xmas, no Hanukkah, no eggnog toasts. It stayed with me for five weeks solid, but I’m still easily tired. The broken rib I got from coughing too much didn’t help. It was simply horrid. Three doc visits and one emergency room visit when I couldn’t breathe. Good grief, I knew from the onset it was a formidable foe. I respected it, stayed in my jammies for a month. The worst part, like you, I couldn’t read a thing. I had the thought retention of a radish. Truly enjoyed The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Z the Beginning of Everything and a Monk marathon. Happy you are among the healthy, and thrilled to have joined you there! Be careful out there…it’s brutal.ReplyCancel

    • sandra - OK, you win. You had the worst. I thought bursting a blood vessel in my eye was bad but breaking a rib???? I’m so glad you mentioned that you had “the retention of a radish.” I simply can’t think. I just lost my brain and was very worried. I’m being very careful about not overdoing it. I do not want to wind up sick again. I’ll check out Mrs. Maisel and Monk. Sorry you missed the whole holiday season. Thanks for your comment. I appreciate your taking the time.ReplyCancel

  • Rosemarie - No flu shot for me – I’m 69. Some articles I read said they are not always effective. Just had a cold in November for a few days,
    Read a few health articles re flu/cold season that one should also be gargling and spraying sinuses. This may help get rid of germs and avoid getting ill/infections. Who knows for sure.

    Good that you had enjoyable programs to get you over this rough time.ReplyCancel

    • sandra - Another healthy woman! Great immune system and you’re smart to gargle and spray. I was spraying until I went to Washington. I wonder if it was the exposure to tons of little kids and being in crowds in Washington DC that did me in. If there is something out there to catch I will! But as you said I did discover some fun things to watch. Couldn’t read but could watch.ReplyCancel

  • Mary - I’m 67 and I never get the flu, never get the flu shots either. I did get sick last week, but it only lasted about 6 hours. Went to bed feeling a little queasy, was up a couple of times, went back to sleep and woke up feeling fine.ReplyCancel

    • sandra - Well Mary, you obviously have a great immune system. I’m so happy that you have been ok.Good for you!ReplyCancel

  • Peg - I’m so glad you’re feeling better, Sandra! Have you watched The Crown? I loved it and can’t wait for the next season to start.ReplyCancel

    • sandra - Yes, Peg. I love The Crown. I’m a royalty groupie. Love all things royal!!!!ReplyCancel

  • Rosemarie - Forgot to add:

    When friends/family are ill I always say if possible air out your pillow and open a window when you’re not in the bedroom to get those pesky germs out of the room. Pretty hard of course when you can barely lift your head off the pillow.

    Yes – the more people around you the more that someone probably has cold/flu germs and they may pass on to you.ReplyCancel

    • sandra - That is a lovely idea. We have beautiful weather today. So as soon as I finish this reply, I’m going to open the window and air out the bedroom. Thank you.ReplyCancel

  • KSL - So sorry you got the flu – flying is the worst, endless germs because of the recirculated air. I haven’t had real influenza but a horrible, endless virus. Finally getting better, I think. Glad you’re better but sorry your husband is sick.
    I second A Place to Call Home and also she’s in another Australian series, called Janet King. Both excellent.ReplyCancel

    • sandra - Boy, it seems like everyone has something. Glad you’re on the mend. I will check on Janet King. Since I fractured my foot, I’ve got even more time to watch television. I’ve become a jock and watching a lot of the Olympics and reading.ReplyCancel

  • Judi donin - By Email

    Hi Sandra,

    This is the first time I received your blog on my email,
    & I have to admit, it’s good & bad
    I adore your honesty, wit, humor, photos, travels, recipes, ideas, paintings, love for Bob,
    but becoming addicted is pretty heavy….
    although, if I trade the evening news on MSNBC for your latest posts,
    I might become a more tolerant, kind person, albeit uninformed.
    Sounds good to me !!!

    Thank you a million for your fresh wonderful outlook,
    & we’re the same age!
    much love,

    • sandra - Dear Judi,

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment on my blog. I don’t want you to become ill-informed but one does need to take some time for fun. I don’t publish so often that it will take away from watching MSNBC, Sometimes you need a break. At least I do. Anyway. Thanks for reading and commenting. I appreciate it.ReplyCancel

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