Written by Lillian
Friday, September 16th 2022
One of the worst things that can happen to you while Georgia Tech Lorraine is get sick. The stress of Georgia Tech classes and traveling every weekend paired with France’s colder temperatures approaching easily leads to sickness. This past weekend, I traveled to the German and Austrian Alps, and the weather was not cooperating at all. The entire weekend brought icy rain and bone chilling wind— something I was not prepared for. The single rain jacket I brought with me was definitely not enough.
An Austrian Apfelstrudel from a Hutte: small hotels and restaurants located on the top of mountains. The only way to access it is to hike to it. It was super delicious, too bad the journey got me sick…
I got back to Metz with the sniffles, which slowly turned into a sneeze and a cough, which then turned into fever over the course of the week. The first thing I did was conduct a rapid test for COVID, and thankfully I was negative. However, since my room offers no temperature control and the only air circulation is provided by a single window being opened and closed, it was very hard to heal from a simple cold. If you got caught up in the same situation that I did, here are some recommendations to avoid becoming sick and how to get better:
Pharmacies: In France, you cannot purchase drugs at the supermarket. Instead, you have to go to devoted stores called Pharmacies to purchase these items. You can always recognize them via their green crosses. There is one in CORA, and the attendees are super nice and will have a high chance of speaking English! They have everything from ibuprofen and cough medicine to specialized cushioned shoes.
Pharmacie in CORA. Pharmacies always have the distinctive green cross, found all over Europe.
GTL Nurse: GTL has a nurse that visits the campus once a week for free consultation for all students. If you are unsure of the prescription that you would need at the pharmacies, make sure to talk to the nurse beforehand!
Masks: The only good thing to come out of COVID is that wearing face masks is more normalized. Help protect your fellow students by wearing face masks whenever you leave your room to go to the pharmacy.
Setting boundaries: One way to prevent getting sick is to set boundaries when traveling. Instead of leaving after class on Thursday and getting back to campus Monday morning before all of your classes start, give yourself time to recover before and after traveling. A lot of students will push themselves to maximize the amount of time traveling, but remember that train sleep is not the best type of sleep. The bumps and interesting temperature ranges trains can have make it very hard to sleep peacefully. By extension, overnight trains are not always the best solution especially if there are shorter ones during the day. Always give yourself at least 8 hours to sleep every day that is not on a train, and it will make you feel much better.