Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Sparky's Been Bit!

Sarasota, FL      High:            Low:

Well, you know how we said Sparky was feeling better? Not so much....that was a temporary lull...Sparky started feeling feverish again yesterday afternoon, REALLY feverish. Cheapy thermometer said 99.9, but Sparky felt a lot worse than that. Off to an Urgent Care Center, affiliated with Sarasota Memorial Hospital.

Wholly Moley! 102.7 degrees! No wonder Sparky felt bad! She has not had a fever in YEARS...Seriously!  Talked to a terrific doctor, he went through all kinds of checks, but no blood work. He thinks it's either the flu, (did Sparky get a flu shot this year? Nope..."they make her sick"...) OR West Nile virus....Sparky had been bit twice a few weeks ago in the back of the head/neck area. The doctor put her on prednisone for a few days, then a provisional antibiotic IF she doesn't feel better in two days. We both felt that it wasn't necessary to test for West Nile. Sparky is gonna feel better anyway with some kind of treatment.

The doctor said just about everybody living in Florida would test positive for the West Nile virus if they checked them. The West Nile virus has very similar symptoms compared to a flu....And before Sparky could start panicking, the doctor said MOST people don't have signs or symptoms when they've been infected. Twenty percent will go on to develop an infection called the West Nile fever. The symptoms are:
* fever
* headache
* body aches
* back pain
* eye pain (occasionally)
* swollen lymph nodes
* skin rash (occasionally)

Sparky had every one of these except the skin rash.....

In 1% of cases, the West Nile gets more serious...this is the one you read about in the papers, where the infection gets into the brain...This is from the Mayo Clinic:

Serious infection signs and symptoms
In less than 1 percent of infected people, the virus causes a serious neurological infection. Such infection may include inflammation of the brain (encephalitis) or of both the brain and surrounding membranes (meningoencephalitis). Serious infection may also include infection and inflammation of the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord (meningitis), inflammation of the spinal cord (West Nile poliomyelitis) and acute flaccid paralysis — a sudden weakness in your arms, legs or breathing muscles. Signs and symptoms of these diseases include:
  • High fever
  • Severe headache
  • Stiff neck
  • Disorientation or confusion
  • Stupor or coma
  • Tremors or muscle jerking
  • Lack of coordination
  • Convulsions
  • Pain
  • Partial paralysis or sudden muscle weakness
Signs and symptoms of West Nile fever usually last a few days, but signs and symptoms of encephalitis or meningitis can linger for weeks, and certain neurological effects, such as muscle weakness, may be permanent.

And this is where people end up in the hospital....As the doctor said, you don't read about the 9,999 cases where people got over it just fine, you only read about the alarming, slim statistics that affect less than 1% of the population who get West Nile virus. At any rate, Sparky is rapidly improving and back to unpacking and moving stuff from the rig to the house. (Sparky is very stubborn. Believe me, I'm trying to get her to SLOW DOWN and TAKE IT EASY! but it's not working, says a frustrated Eldy.)
Sparky wants to get as much done as possible before we head to Red Bay....

Today, the painter started working on the bathroom. With the very very high ceilings, we hired someone. Sparky and Eldo do NOT wish to fall from a ladder trying to save some money. Besides, we don't have a ladder tall enough to reach adequately. (Hmmmm...I might see a Little Giant Ladder in my future, says E. I've been wanting one of those for a LONG time! Now that I'm a house owner once again, I think I'm gonna need one soon!) Boy, talk about a mess. There was old old old wallpaper on the walls, which peeled off and left the paper behind, even after steaming. The guy scraped and scraped. It took all day.....

He did a GREAT job priming, sanding, and repairing some damaged areas....
In between the old and new
After all that, Sparky thinks she picked the wrong color. Eldo was NOT happy to hear that! We'll live with it, then we can always change our minds. (You mean, Sparky will change HER mind! reminds E. I'm just gonna go with the flow.) Sparky can be a little impulsive when it comes to making decisions. 
(A LITTLE????? clarifies E.) We-l-l-l-l-l...guilty as charged. Sparky will just have to be patient and wait a LONG time before changing the color....The colored tile messed her up along with the lighting...
Sparky is going for strong colors this time around. She's had white walls in every single house she's ever owned. Eldy is being VERY flexible on this, thank goodness! He digs in his heels on other stuff (which hasn't done me a whole lotta good, fusses E.) But Sparky is going to let him have full rein on the "Man Cave Room", so cheer up, sweetie!  :-)  Actually, he likes the colors so far...  Whew!

P.S. Sparky will be getting a flu shot this fall....

To be continued.......


  1. So sorry to learn you have been kicked down by the flu/West Nile virus. I am like you, hard to keep down even when feeling low. I can't believe how much you two have taken on in fixing up your house already. Paint color is a big deal to me too. Vic almost fainted when I told him every ceiling color needed to be the lightest shade of what was on the wall (when we had our home). He did all the painting so my insistence impacted him personally. Ha. It makes a huge difference to mute the ceiling color, but I suspect you don't want to hear that either. Just file that info in the "someday" file. Love the color blocking. The bathroom color may be more neutral than you intended but you can kick it up with some bold towels. (I love interior design. I want to work in the field in my next phase of life.) In spite of feeling low, it's obvious you two are having fun with your new tropical home.

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  3. That is a good idea about the ceilings, but we have the old "popcorn" white ceilings. They would have had to sand it, then flat trowel it...Nobody wanted to touch that stuff unless for big bucks! With about 17 foot high ceilings, we decided we liked the white. We're really loving the colors overall..hard to pick a swatch, then blow that up about 20 times, then try to figure out the different times of day and what it will really look like and dry on the wall. But so far, it's working for us. :-)

  4. A tip a decorator once gave us ... and this is for later when you go shopping for accessories and whatnot ... using your wall colors, paint a couple of paper shopping bags to take with you when you go shopping. It's easier to match/coordinate accessories to a bigger swatch than to those sample strips you pick up at the paint store.

  5. Hope get well soon and sounds like you are having fun decorating again. This time with color.

  6. Oh my goodness - possible West Nile. Bet you didn't imagine that as a part of being a Floridian. Hope the drugs fix you up permanently and not just temporarily. I like the bath color and agree with Pam that you can do a lot with accessories.

  7. Glad to hear you are feeling better. West Nile in Florida and Valley Fever in AZ. No matter where you go there is something. I like the color in the bathroom. I love what I call desert colors.

  8. I'm so sorry you're still sick. I hope you take it a bit easy (I know it's hard with a new house to decorate) but you don't need to end up in the hospital.

    I have a very difficult picking paint colors. I usually get the wrong color. I also found that those little paint samples look nothing like what it will look like on the wall. I finally learned to buy a small sample of the paint and try it. Still screwed up some, but not as often. :)

    Feel better!

  9. Soory to hear Jeannie isn't feeling better. Hope the meds help and very quickly.

  10. I'm so sorry to hear you were so sick - I hope by now things are looking up for you.

    I LOVE the paint color in the bathroom. You know, beautiful towels and accessories can be added to achieve any look you want. The bath color will be a nice background for almost any colors you want to add. And remember, you chose a color that could be called neutral and masculine, so you can add all the frilly, girly stuff you want to balance it. :)

    My son had all his downstairs interiors walls almost that color, and gave me what was left over for my condo living/dining room. I loved it and got lots of compliments.

    Looking forward to more....

  11. I love the color too. . .I think if you had matched the color of the tile, you would have found it too pinky. . .like others have said. . .towels and accessories with both colors will tie it all together. . .glad you are feeling better!