Kyuushoku Will Be The Death Of Me (Literally)

So yesterday I sat down for kyuushoku 給食 (school lunch) at one of my shougakko 小学校 (elementary schools), only to be once again I was presented with the regular run of the mill horrors that they deem appropriate to feed to children.

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Milk, bread, fruit and a mystery dish. Luckily I was able to give away everything but the mystery soup to the students around me but admitted defeat and began to eat the stew.
As I was chewing I thought to myself, ‘huh this chicken sure has a strange taste and flavour’ several seconds later as my esophagus began to contract it dawned on me that maybe this wasn’t chicken…… I was in anaphylactic shock!

Stumbling to the teacher I pulled out my dictionary clumsily typing in the word for what I though I was eating, hotate 帆立 (scallops) which I am frightfully allergic to!

Not realizing my impending doom, ignorance sensei smiled and nodded as I asked if this was what I was eating.
Suddenly it dawned on me, if I didn’t get some adrenalin in me in the next 10 minutes I was probably going to die!!

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Running from the classroom I headed to the nurses office in what I remember as a blur and tried to find the words to ask her to call an ambulance.

Next thing I know paramedics have me on a stretcher and a mask rushing me to a nearby hospital! Luckily my kocho-sensei 校長先生 (school principal) came alongside me, but as she speaks no English it was really only for moral support.

Rushing through tragic 5 minutes later they had me in an emergency room, no one was communicating with me, the world was spinning around in a haze, I was in panic, lost in my own mind.
Suddenly there was a catheter in my arm pumping me full of god knows what, I remember the doctor injecting 5 or 6 additional solutions into it.
Then they pulled down my pants and shoved a needle in my thigh!

Adrenalin pumped through my veins, seconds passed, i came back from planet crazy, the world made sense again, I couldn’t think before as I wasn’t breathing! I managed to find the words to ask what had happened, the doctor told me I could have died and to lie down and relax.

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I closed my eyes and woke up some time later, I reached for my phone, there were dozens of messages from my worried family and friends! Whatever they had pumped me full of was making me hella drowsy, but the adrenalin was making it seem like my heart was running 100miles and hour, I was shaking, I couldn’t make sense of what had happened.

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I’m really lucky to have some really amazing friends here in Kobe as before I knew it 3 of my closest Kobpanions (I’m a master of puns) were there at my bedside, all having left work immediately and jumped in cabs when they heard I was in trouble!

So it seems my valentines present was the gift of life, living to see tomorrow sure beats the giri choco I got 😄

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Here was a lil thank you card I drew them in gratitude for their support ❤
Barbie, Richy, Sandy lurvessssss yew!

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5 thoughts on “Kyuushoku Will Be The Death Of Me (Literally)

  1. Glad you survived 0.o You can get printable bilingual allergy alert cards here
    http://www.justhungry.com/japan-dining-out-cards
    Given that teachers rarely know exactly what is in kyushoku though, with something as ubiquitous as shell fish you’d really be safer bringing a packed lunch. Seriously, I was once given candy made from shell fish!
    I don’t know what your BoE is like, but I have no problems bringing my own lunch (I’m vegetarian). You can even get thermos style lunch boxes that keep your food hot so you don’t have to suffer through cold pasta salad all through winter 😉

    • Naw thankyou 🙂
      I took a firm stand yesturday and was like I am never eating kyuushoku again, surprisingly my OTE was like ‘oh yes I understand, it is ok I don’t like it either’ despite the near death experience everything went better than expected 😛

  2. Hi! I’m super sorry to trouble you, but I did a google search and this was the first thing that popped up; I’m sure you’re a very busy man [I’ve actually read some of your posts before] so it’s super totally cool if you don’t have time for a complete stranger but… I actually just [1 week prior] went through basically the exact same situation you described in this blog entry. [Went into anaphylactic shock because of walnuts though, not scallops] and I was wondering if you could shed any light on the logistics of what happens in terms of our insurance coverage… [I’m also on the JET programme] Sorry!

    • Mornin mate, is no trouble, good to hear you made it through the ordeal.

      This all happened like a year ago so it’s a little fuzzy but I will try.
      So I was taken to the hospital by ambulance, which in Japan fortunately are free. They kept me at the hospital for something like 6 hours. I didn’t have my insurance card with me at the time so try charged me upfront for the treatment. Still in Japan this kind of thing is very cheap (but I guess it depends upon where your from for this comparison). Anyhow my treatment was something like 5000¥ then when I returned with my insurance card they refunded me 1500¥, I’m not 100% on what is covered and what is not (hopefully your BOE has supplied you with a booklet detailing all the ins and outs) but we pay quite a lot for insurance on JET so there will always be a chunk of it covered. If you need more advice I would recomend asking your CIR, they are in the know regarding such things. Sorry I couldn’t be more help.

      Stay safe,
      Dan

      • Oh wow! Your name is Dan also haha. Thank you so much for your super fast response! Hmm.. my CIR told me to look it up in our guidebooks haha.. So I guess I’ll have to be doing that (: I didn’t know that ambulances were free! And I actually also didn’t know the emergency response number… so actually I took a cab to the hospital… I actually had to stay overnight… and my total came to well over ¥90,000 of which 70% was covered upfront by my insurance card… I was told I can get some of the remaining 30% back but I’m unclear as to how… anyways, thank you so much for your response and thank you so much for having shared your experience! Cheers, and please keep livin’ it up and writing of your awesome adventures!

        Cheers,
        danYo

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