“Uhuru na Umoja”

When I was 16, I was lucky enough to take part in a World Team Challenge trip to Tanzania. This was how I met my good friends Sandra Bullock and Jennifer Aniston (Jennifer, you haven’t been introduced to yet, but I feel it’s only a matter of time). During this trip we worked in an Aids orphanage, went on Safari, climbed Mount Meru and spent some time relaxing in Zanzibar. Through out our 5 weeks in Tanzania, the one piece of advice we were given over and over and over again was not, “Don’t get eaten by an animal” or “Don’t wonder off on your own” or even, “Don’t take a malaria tablet before you got to your bed with no water as it will burn your oesophagus and you will have to go to the hospital where a fat man will lean on your neck” (advice I could have been doing with). No. It was in fact “Under no circumstances get the shits”. Now until this point in my life the shits had not really been my main concern but after all this fear mongering, I went out my way too make sure I never caught the terrible condition that inspired this song:


“It comes out your bum like an automatic gun – diarrhoea, diarrhoea

I was walking to the chippy and I fell on something slippy – diarrhoea, diarrhoea

When you think your friends are joking but your pants are brown and soaking –diarrhoea, diarrhoea”

It wasn’t until January 2011 that finally got over this fear.


My older sister Posh Spice is getting married to the Soap Awards sexist male in summer 2012. Now most brides to be tend to be slightly scary – and by that I mean bloody psychotic. Posh Spice however, is the complete opposite. She is so relaxed about her pending nuptials and the organising of her wedding I am starting to think she may know something we all don’t. In all honesty, this works better for me as I am the maid of honour and if she started freaking out and becoming a bitch about it all I would have to slap her across the face extremely hard. It’s not just brides that are crazy when it comes to weddings it’s also people in the wedding business. We went dress shopping once – and only once as it is an experience I would like to never repeat again in my life. So much so, if I ever get married I am considering walking down the aisle in my jeans, Bruce Springsteen T-shirt and a pair of Converse. One shop we went into every single person who worked there shouted at us in what I can only describe as a Glaswegian neddy high pitched whine, “When’s the weddin’?”

I actually thought I was under attack and so jumped to the ground and took up the foetal position. Another shop we entered made Posh Spice try on dresses that made her look like a 56 year old drug-using prostitute, who to escape life on the streets decided to marry one of her “customers”. Now this is in no way a reflection of my sister. Posh Spice is by no means a drug-using prostitute and certainly does not look 56.  In fact she is actually very good looking and I am not just saying this because she looks like me. What this is a reflection of is how crazy people in the wedding business are. So when the mother of the bride (who is one of those psychotic wedding people) decided we all had to go to The Bothwell Wedding Show, to say I wasn’t looking forward to it was an understatement.


At this point I had been back to work for two weeks and although M.E was kicking my ass slightly (as you may have seen for my other blog) I had taken it easy, had the whole weekend off and thought I would be well enough to walk around the wedding show and ignore all the crazy people. Life, however, had other plans. On the Friday after coming home from work and taking to my bed, I was really warm. Normally I am always freezing, even if the central heating is on full I am still walking about with about 16 layers on and a blanket, so this was strange to me. On this night I was so warm I thought that I had final managed to bend the space time continuum and transport myself to theCaribbean. When I opened my eyes though, I was still in my bed room in Moodiesburn and extremely disappointed. On the Saturday when I woke up, I was wasn’t feeling great but I thought to myself, ‘It’s fine it’s just because I it had been back at work and just need to rest’. So that is exactly what I did until 4am in Sunday morning.


At 4 am on Sunday morning I awoke suddenly with terrible abdominal cramps and had the thought, “I really have to get to the toilet.” An hour and a half later I returned from the bathroom, after losing half of my bodily fluids, and went back to bed. An hour later the same thing happened and this then continued through out the rest of the morning.  By the time Posh Spice came I looked like a heroin addict who was attempting to come off an opium high that I had been on for the last 10 years. Due to being gaunt and ill a lot I tend to always look like a bit of a junkie (which I prefer to call heroin chic) but this was taking it to a whole new level. There is way no I was managing to leave the house never mind walk around a wedding show full of the mentally insane. So while Posh Spice and Demi headed off I sat in my room hoping to God this was not another symptom of my M.E and seriously gutted about missing the wedding show (not).

Luckily I had booked a doctors appointment with House the previous week to discuss something else. The next day I headed off to see him, dreading that he would say, “Oh this is just your M.E. You are going to have to put up with this from time to time”. I really didn’t think my intestine could have handled that. When I got to the doctors, still looking like a detoxing drug addict, House greeted me in his usual friendly and concerned manner. After checking me over he came to the conclusion that I had caught a stomach bug that would pass in a couple of days. I was handed a prescription for antibiotics and sent on my way. When I left the doctors I was ecstatic. I, Samantha McInnes, who has this really crappy illness that no one knows jack about, was sick like normal everyday people. I had the shits and I had never been so happy because I knew that after a couple of days I would be fine. I actually wanted to scream at the top of my lungs, “I have the shits. YAS!” but I thought I may get locked up in some institution where there were likely to be a lot of ex-wedding planners, so I held it in and screamed in my head.  After I left the doctors I had to phone my work to tell them I was sick again. When I phoned at first I think they thought I may have won the lottery. I was so happy to be phoning and telling them I had the shits I would get over it in a couple of days!


And that, Ladies and Gents, is how I got over my fear of the shits!


*Please note all the names of people in my blog have been changed to their celebrity or fictional character counter part to protect their identity. Under no circumstances should this be a reflection of the named celebrity or fictional character.
Title taken from The Tanzania Motto meaning Freedom and Unity
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