I sat in the window seat this morning, next to a middle-aged woman who appeared very ill. Her nose was red and she even carried a box of Kleenex. I was already a little concerned at this point that I will catch whatever she has since I haven't been feeling 100% this week already. The ride ended up being a long and dangerous ride....she was coughing nonstop, not the light cough but the thick, deep, painful coughs where you can hear the phlegm shifting inside her throat and lung. She was also sniffling, sucking in her nasal fluids and sneezing. She blew her nose constantly and compiled the used germ-filled tissues on her lap.
I was extremely intense during the ride. I tried to "protect" myself with my BusinessWeek copy covering my face. But I realized that it was inevitable that I was breathing in her germs since I could feel the air from her cough and blowing.
With a busy day and weekend ahead, I am determined to not get sick. I took out my bottle of Purell and wiped it all over my hands. But then I realized.....wait, her germs are all over my body...from my face to arms. I can't be wiping Purell on my neck and face too. I decided at that point there is nothing I can really do but to take lots of Vitamin-C supplements to fight off the cold bug.
Sometimes I hope that people who are that ill should really take it easy and not force themselves to come to work, or opt to work from home. However, I know that is easier said than done. Needless to say, today's ride was high-risk. I hope I do not get sick!