Friday, 7 August 2009

Esplorazione For Beginners Pt6

As they say in french 'It' s toujours les grands grimpeurs qui meurent en absaling'

(Its always the great climbers who die abseiling - or it's a silly little mistake that causes disaster)

What was to be our last full day had started do well, we were taking so much exercise that we could feast on delicious fatty breakfasts and still be noticeably thinner by lunchtime. We'd done all of the lugging and carrying so we thought we'd do a little scouting in the morning, pop into the nearest town for supplies and a big lunch, a bit more scouting in the afternoon ending up at the bottom of the valley in time to fish the evening rise. Sounded so good didn't it?

We were on the hillside above the house when I heard the sounds which were to change our direction completely.
There was a series of dull thumps, like a big bag of spuds rolling down a stone staircase, and then the shouted

'BUSHWACKER I've broken my arm!!'

It wasn't the whiney 'oh oh aw aw i've broken my arm' of every day exaggeration, but the voice of stone cold certainty. When I got over to CHJ I could see that although not a medical man his diagnosis was spot on. His arm had an S bend in it and was dripping blood.

As we say in English 'BOLLOX!!'

I left him sitting on the path and went back to the house, gathered up everything I thought we'd need and we set off painfully slowly down the hillside. It must have only taken 10 minutes to get down to the car, seemed like ages.

As we drove cautiously up the track to the road CHJ's face was covered in the clammy sweat of a man burdened by pain. The road is made of potholes, we lurched in and out of them as slowly as we could. To make matter worse CMJ had to put up with my constant wisecracking and attempts to distract him.

Italian hospitals are really quite something; painted in a green that was never going to lift anyones spirits, each corridor came with it's own scowling bearded nun. The place was spotless, I kid you not i've eaten my dinner off things that weren't as clean as the floors in that place. One thing that I thought would lift CHJ's spirits was they had the prettiest nurses, but their shift had been meticulously timed to end as we arrived, so he had to rely on his natural stoicism.

It soon became clear that Italian hospitals were as cash-strapped as english hospitals, they just spend the money differently. His arm was re-set without anesthetic. Ouch.
I wasn't in the room but from the drinks machine at the other end of the corridor it sounded very painful. Double Ouch!

A very brave trooper, about to find out the horrific price of our flights home. Good job he's sitting down.

I certainly learned a few lessons in on the trip, but they'll have to wait for another post.
I'm in france for a few days grueling relaxation, back soon.
Your pal

PS Grueling Relaxation? WTF?
Kids, Parents and Ex Mrs SBW = grueling relaxation



LSP said...

Great post - good luck in France...


Holly Heyser said...

Ouch. This story makes me want to barf - can't stand hearing about pain.

Says the woman who shoots animals. I know. Bizarre.

The Suburban Bushwacker said...

It's not the pain - you inadvertently visualized the green the hospital was painted in, it has that effect.

Cheers - news from me and horsemouth on my return. We have a plan, a very silly plan.

LSP said...

Nice one SBW - looking forward to the plan. Sillier the better. Give best to HM.

Norcal - I shoot animals too and find descriptions of broken bones strangely awful - so you have company in that!


Albert A Rasch said...

Holy Sweet Jesus.

I haven't seen a compound fracture of that magnitude in twenty + years!

The key for those of you that aren't up on your first aid is to immobilize the arm to the patient. You see those sharp point ends? Yeah, they'll saw right through any intervening flesh and arteries given the chance.

But as we all have noted, once again the eloquent and most excellent SBW has saved western civilization and the day. Not only that, but he didn't end up with a bled out Englishman in his car to explain to the Italian Carabiniere.

After that adventure, the Lovely ex-Mrs SBW should be easy... just don't end up exsanguinated... by accident... When you're not looking.

Best regards,
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
Why Kill a Florida Panther?

Ken and Joanne said...

Italian hospitals sound OK, if not wonderful. On the island of Guam he'd have had to go through the morgue to get any treatment at all. 'Struth.

Meanwhile, that is a genuinely grade A nasty looking x-ray. Good luck to both of you, him because of his arm, you because you're in France.


Anonymous said...

Just out of curiousity,as we don't yet have national healthcare here in the US.,what was the hospital bill??

Anonymous said...

Ouch indeed!

Unrelated -

I've been wondering - is your quest for elk - for teh North American Elk (wapati) or European "Elk" that we in North America call "moose"?

The Suburban Bushwacker said...

And she was.

France is, well france.

Nada, not a penny, just showed his EU health card and it was free.

Honor and ethics demand that the Elk will be native to where I'm living. we cant bring meat into the EU from the USA (and visa versa).

Thanks for your comments