Week of Misery | Traveling From Bogotá to Medellín Colombia
The week of misery started after the hike up Monserate known as the hill in Bogotá. I never thought hiking up nearly 2k feet would turn into a week that left me in the emergency room wondering if I was going to live to tell this story.
What’s worse is that two days after that hike, Erin and I were to board a plane for Medellín, Colombia. This so happens to be the next leg of the Colombia experience.
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Flying to Medellín from Bogotá
The morning came too soon. As morning’s light hit my eyes, all I could feel was a thud in my skull as if the little minions in there were trying to jackhammer their way out.
I had to get moving so we didn’t miss our flight.
Feeling delusional was just the beginning. I was just about to find out that our Claro phone plan was expired. You only get two weeks of service at a time for the pay-as-you-go plan purchaser.
Almost unable to schedule an Uber, we have a backup plan for situations like this… We keep a few days available on the Skyroam WiFi device so even if we run out of data, we can still do things online (like order an Uber).
Arriving to the airport 20 minutes later, our flight was going to be quick.
We usually carry-on our bags, but because this was a non-stop flight and offered one free checked bag per ticket holder, we checked our awesome Osprey Sojourn rolly wheeled carry-on bags.
The airport advised arriving 2 hours early for domestic flights, so we arrived 2.5 hrs early to be extra sure we’d make it.
Within 15 minutes of entering the airport, we were already through security without a problem. Usually one of us will get dinged for having too many electronics, cameras, hard drives, power cords… You name it!
This time both of us sailed through.
I’m happy for this because I had a fully-charged steam locomotive ready to charge right out of my skull. You could probably see steam exiting my ear holes under high pressure.
Ibuprofen should do the trick…
Before leaving the Bogotá airport, we found a place that offered a recharge on our Claro plan for a couple bucks.
Recharging our plan helped a ton because our pre-arranged driver had our Colombian cell number and was texting us his location upon arrival.
We landed safely just an hour later in Medellín, Colombia.
While we rode in the car, Alvaro (our awesome driver) told us about Colombia, the land, the fruits & vegetables and how he’s gone through life.
About 45 minutes later, we arrived to our condo with a killer view.
To go along with the jackhammers in my head, there are also two soon-to-be high-rises under construction standing at only a couple floors high each.
The constant sound of heavy machinery driving around, backing up, going forward and blowing their airhorns contributed to the pounding in my head.
Erin went out and found some Advil for me to take… Ahhh… Relief
Laid out in the Emergency Room…
I couldn’t sleep and was tossing like a fresh fish out of water trying to get back in (and sweating just as much too!)
Days passed… I couldn’t concentrate. I had to work on QuickBooks to finish the books for our accountant to file annual taxes. After mindlessly pounding the keys and working with Erin on them, we had finished them.
Sunday morning arrived as bright and beautiful as ever. There was no construction noise yet it still felt like there was an entire construction crew pounding on the inside of my skull.
I had to let them out.
Giving in, I decided that it would be a good idea to go to the Emergency Room after gentle coaxing from Erin. She reminded me that it had been 7 days since this happened.
The definition of INSANITY is doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result.
I believe in the body’s ability to naturally heal itself.
But for some reason, this wasn’t getting any better, so I had to switch tactics by bringing in the big guns.
After a short wait in the Clinica El Rosario Urgent Care waiting room, we had our own corner room with a blue curtain.
Before arriving, I had pre-typed questions into Google Translate from English to Spanish about what happened, what I’ve done thus far and that I needed help.
Previously being a firefighter for 9 years, I know what the standard triage questions are and what order they ask them. So I had it all queued up to just read off without a hitch.
Boy am I glad I did that because it saved a ton of time.
Within a few minutes, I was having my blood drawn to be tested and had three bags of drugs being pushed into me via the IV they stuck in my left hand.
No more than 15 minutes passed after the first bag was stuck and everything was as clear as a summer day with the bushes & trees filled with tropical birds chirping.
My headache was gone.
The jackhammering was silenced.
Sensitive, tingling skin on the top of my head had gone away.
The nurse ended up letting us know that it was altitude sickness and ibuprofen was not going to make it better. Reason being is the pressure differential and physical stress that caused swelling around my brain. Only an IV can relieve that pressure and bring my systems back into alignment.
Later that night Erin & I laid out under the stars watching the clouds go by and the lunar eclipse take place. All without a headache.
I appreciate Erin for taking such great care of me when I was not feeling my best. All my love and gratitude to her selfless act! I’d do the same for you!
Total Lunar Eclipse, January 20-21, 2019. Medellín, Colombia
Do something different or nothing is going to change…
No matter how stubborn I am when it comes to going to the doctor, I do have to admit that when I cannot fix something and I keep trying the same thing over and over again, doing something different can help.
It’s not that I didn’t want to admit defeat. I feel like this particular situation is one where if I get a headache, I’m not going to the doctor. But a week later and it still being persistently terrible in my skull… THEN I’ll go to the doctor.
If every single time I hurt myself a bit, I went to the doctor, I’d have to just live there. I’m a clumsy dude! I smash my head on things all the time. Or even get banged around. I don’t have time to live my life at the doctor’s office!
However… In other situations in life, you’ve gotta think about what you’re doing.
If you’re wanting to BE where you want, when you want and you look up one day and realize that you’ve been doing the same thing for 5 or even 10 years in a row and THAT hasn’t gotten you to where you want to BE… HELLLOOOOO…. Something’s gotta change, right?
It’s like going to the gym. You’re not going to get fit by buying a gym membership and not going.
Every time you go is either one of two choices. You’re either going to go to the gym, or you’re not.
When it comes to building out your life the way you want it, you’ve got two choices… You’re either going to continue doing the same thing you’ve been doing -OR- you’re going to start doing something different that you know could actually get you to where you’d rather BE.
That’s what Erin and I both decided even before we met.
It started with the DESIRE to be able to travel the globe. The ability for that desire to manifest itself into reality was due to the DECISION to start our businesses online. Later when we met, we merged ideas and created BE Adventure Partners. You can read our Creation Story here…
We challenge you to stop lying to yourself & procrastinating. Building a business online does take time & effort. What’s cool is that we have the Road Map that will walk you through getting a simple business set up around your ideas so that you can spread your message to those waiting to hear.
It’s your decision and yours alone to start now. There’s no better time than now.
This weeks’ worth of misery came with some important lessons learned. The first is that I didn’t have to call out of “work” because I was sick (because I’m an online business owner). And second is that if you are working towards something and not getting the result you’re wanting, pivot. Make a change. Third is that you’ve gotta take care of your Adventure Partner because if something happens to you, they’ve got your back!
Brian Garcia + Erin Nicole Bick has been traveling full-time since April of 2017. They like to consider themselves location independent. Their goal is to empower others to live life on their terms and create their own definition of independence/freedom. Through their content, eCourses, and consulting they share their simple method for building an online business, and living a happier life.
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