The quiet sounds triggered my subconscious and brought me out of my dead sleep. Leaping up I threw myself at the other bed, but it was too late, the sheets, pillowcases, and Ciaran were covered with a thin oozing layer of vomit. Lovely. Great, so much for that great job the cleaning ladies did today. “It just came so suddenly” he protested. I quickly bustled him into the shower with orders to strip. He stood there shaking, white and seeming translucent like the clouds that float above the mountains. Aodhan was discretely seeking the comfort of my clean dry less fragrant bed. I bundled all the sheets and pillowcases and threw them in the bottom of the shower, soaked a cloth with disinfectant and cleaned the mattress, and stood it up on it’s side against the wall to dry. Poor Ciaran. He looked so tiny and thin. I mentioned to him that perhaps he should have listened to me two days ago when he was putting something unsavory in his mouth and I said “Ciaran, you’re going to make yourself sick”. He nodded his head. Wash the floor in the bedroom, wash the bathroom floor, new pajamas, new sheets on the box spring, get the kids back to their bed. I looked at the clock, and bit back a few choice words. 1:08. Couldn’t it be 5:08, or 6:08. Damn. I went in the showers stall and started to clean off the sheets, pajamas, & pillowcases. The vomit held on, afraid of the dark drain. I put the sheet in a bucket and joyfully agitated it making up new little songs to glorify having my arms up to my elbows in barfy water and a pressure-less shower that had only one lukewarm temperature. The chorus exalted my washing machine at home, and berated it for not accompanying me to Comayagua. This wasn’t working. I put all the clothes in my laundry bucket and went out to the laundry facilities outside. I scrubbed the pajamas, pillowcases and the tee-shirt. I wrung them out and hung them on the line. I turned back to the sheet. We were going to have words. I dumped out the water and started to refill the tub. I saw the light from the apartment near go on. I could just hear their muffled conversation. I’m sure it went something like … “loco mujer … puta … what the hell is she doing laundry for at 1:30 in the morning?” I wrestled the sheet into submission and scrubbed it on the built in scrub board. The chunks, becoming slowly resigned to their fait, let go one by one and floated calmly to the drain. I hung the sheet on the line, dumped out the water, rinsed the tubs, rinsed the scrub board and gave an extra twist on the tap so that it would stop dripping.

Ciaran wanted a bucket, so I emptied a garbage bin and lined it with a fresh bag. He used it almost immediately. I showered, washing the shower stall as I did, and put on dry clean clothes, filled a water bottle for Ciaran, made sure he was ok again, & then collapsed in my bed for 4 more hours of sleep before my 6:50 a.m. class.