Today is the day that my wife and I are leaving for a 28-day fasting program at Buchinger-Wilhelmi to (hopefully!) reverse my Type II diabetes. We booked this trip back in April, and since then many people have asked me to chronicle our experiences. As such, I started this blog, and I’m announcing it today!
I encourage you to go back and read the articles on this blog leading up to this one. Before just journaling about the retreat itself, I wanted to provide some context to why I’m on this journey, and I encourage you to share the blog with others who may be diagnosed with Type II diabetes or prediabetes and looking to reverse it.
To stay up to date on posts, you can either follow my Time-Restricted Facebook page (you don’t need to be “friends” with me) or sign up for the time-restricted email list (again, separate from the now decades-old Pao Family Holiday spam list so that diabetes sufferers don’t have to hear about how our kids are doing!)
A Tale of Two Rooms
All that said, I wanted to start by thanking my wife for volunteering to come and fast with me. She doesn’t suffer from diabetes and is really coming for moral support. Already, that moral support is working, as I don’t feel “anxious” or “stressed” about the month ahead. She’s going to be with me, as she’s been throughout this journey.
One of the more humorous aspects is that we’ll actually be getting two rooms — actually to get two toilets! One issue here is that when you fast, you don’t really poop on your own the way you do when you’re eating. I’ve only gotten bits and pieces so far, but it appears that this clinic has their own ways to keep you “clean.”
Here’s what the reservation agent said in her email to me.
With one room together it depends on you. Many people want to book two separated rooms because you have to sit on the toilet after the glauber salt and you will every second day an enema.
We also can offer you two Superior rooms with connecting doors or an additional Comfort room, so every person has his own toilett [sic] and bed but the rooms are connected.
The difference in cost between Superior rooms and Comfort rooms was significant, and my Chinese genetics couldn’t justify that for an adjoining door. We were going to hang out in one room anyway, and simply retreat to our respective toilets to poop. Is an adjoining door in that case a feature?
After some back and forth, the reservation agent simply replied.
I understand your point of view. We can organise that both Comfort rooms will be next to each other .
$3.56 to wash my underpants?
The other funny story about this retreat is that it’s 28 days, and the laundry is expensive! Some sample laundry (“Wäscherei”) prices:
- boxer shorts – € 3.10 euros
- socks – €3.00 euros
- T-shirts – €4.30 euros
At the exchange rate of $1.15 per euro (€), this is like $3.56 per boxer short, $3.45 per pair of socks, and $4.95 per T-shirt! Call me weird, but I just didn’t think that was at all worth it. So, I procured extra stuff at Target and Costco (as well as a larger suitcase!) and packed 28 days of the “essentials.”
My original concern about packing so much was that I wouldn’t be able to fit everything. The issue was not space but rather weight! (The limit for the “free” baggage for international travel is 50 lbs.)
That whole scenario with being constrained by weight and not cooling reminded me of life in the data center business. We often found that we were not constrained by rack space but rather power delivered to the rack, and the associated cooling!
Anyway, we ended up working around the checked luggage weight constraint by putting a bunch of stuff into our carry-on luggage. My second thanks go out to my wife (who is 5’1″) for carrying some of my stuff through airports!