It was really a bad experience I forever will hate to recall. It was first day of Ramadan fasting. I was for night duty at Surgical 2 of Tamale Teaching Hospital – a ward where freshly operated patients are nursed. A ward for badly wounded accident victims. A ward death shows contempt to humankind every blessed day.
Until now, a ward of big and well-nourished rats that feasted on the feet and fingers of dead bodies who failed to die in time to meet the morgue man closing time.
I had packaged my fasting food nicely in a black polythene bag. When I got to work, I went straight to the nurses’ restroom and put it on a table. It was jollof rice with two red meats.
I returned to the main ward to attend to patients till 3:30 am – a time I could eat and begin the fasting.
I reached out for my food at the restroom. It was intact to the best of my knowledge. I untied it and began eating slowly until I got to the bottom. My two red meats was nowhere to be found.
My goodness! This is mysterious! I raised the polythene bag and my guess was right – the rats have nicodemusly burrowed into my food and bolted with my meat. The hole looked ratty!
My good God! My problem was not the stolen meat but the filthy dirt I have consumed. These rats have been running round the urinals and washrooms playing with all kind of faeces and whatchamacallit of all sickly origins. And may be these rats on the run with my meat might have entertained the several dead bodies that were recorded on that fateful night!
In no time, my mind was inundated with imageries of all the possible unsavoury rats’ activities in the ward. I knew I had consumed all the dirt in the whole wide world.
My mouth begins to well with ginormous saliva, my intestines took a reverse peristaltic movement, and my mind began directing me in some funny and uncanny way. Before I could get to the sink – it was like pooochaa! I vomited the tinniest particulate of the food in my clean-forsaken tummy! I vomited like seriously!
The vomitus had come in stages from semi-solid to gelatinous liquid. It seemed like I had purged my bowls with tetraoxosulphate (VI) acid enema.
If I was to vomit for the eleventh time, I am sure it would have been my intestines or something rather horrifying. Momentarily, I felt deep pain in throwing out but the nausea reflexes were violent to suppress. I could possibly pop out my eyes in an attempt to restrain it.
Nonetheless, I mustered courage to continue with the fasting. But before noon, I found myself in the “Ant Bully” or “Epic” world of Lilliputian and Giantism imageries. Every tiny insect that crossed my eyes appeared bigger than my eyeballs. I could see goats as elephants, elephants as whales and whales as mountains. The first day of fasting was like the last day of fasting to me.
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