We pull up at Doctor Dad’s house and my housemate and friends immediately run ahead of me, into the house and shut the door behind them, screaming at me NOT to come in! Charming. It turns out that my friend is even more useless in a crisis than my housemate and now that the adrenaline has worn off, there is no chance in hell they are going to look at my nauseating wound.
Doctor Dad comes out with, ironically, an ice cream tub of water and cleans up the gaping hole (soon to be known as “mangina”) in my shin before slapping a bandage on it. He then rings around a few doctor’s surgeries to see if they are open as it is New Year’s day so the hospital would undoubtedly be chock full of hangovers and most clinics would be shut, but not before his wife swipes my medicare card and bulk-bills me for a consultation…..opportunistic cow.
By this point, housemate and friend are now completely useless and it would seem no longer have use of their spines as their heads are flopping about on top of their necks and they are slouched over, occasionally grunting or slurring. So I drive us to the doctor’s surgery, because they have lost all basic motor functions (see what I did there?) and we are soon propped up in armchairs in the waiting room.
Whilst waiting, my friend asks me if I have any money on me because she has left her wallet at home and would I mind popping next door to the chemist to buy her some tampons? “Um, maybe later.”
The doctor comes out and asks if I would like my friends to come in with me for emotional support. I look back at them, slouched in the chair, faces no longer visible because their heads have flopped so far forward, legs extended and arms hanging lifelessly from either side of the chair. I think it is perhaps best to leave them there instead as I doubt they could cope with any further trauma by now.
I’m sitting up on the table with my leg extended in front of me. It’s relatively clean and the bleeding seems to have stopped a bit (possibly because I had no blood left, but I’m pretty sure that’s not a realistic assessment). The doctor places his thumb either side of the wound and then slides my flesh around my clearly visible shin-bone! Tsunami of nausea aside, I had been pretty strong up to this point, but the sight of that makes me recoil, so the doctor suggests I perhaps lie back and not look. This proves to be a good idea because when he injects the local anaesthetic into the wound, I hear and feel the needle snap off the syringe and remain embedded in my leg! He carries on as though nothing had happened, but I’m no fool.
So, two sets of stitches later (one internal coil of “catgut” and one external set of normal stitches) and I’m good to go. Just have to go back in a week to get external stitches out and all will be well.
I go to the waiting room, put my friends in a wheelbarrow and haul them out to the car (well, I may as well have) and realise I’m supposed to be working that afternoon and merely ringing in sick to a restaurant on New Year’s day will not go over well, so we’re going to have to go in there and show them the bloodied socks and stitches.
I take my friends in with me as I didn’t want to leave them in the car because it is a hot day and I’m not sure they still have the emotional capacity to crack open a window. I let them flop down into a chair and get them some water whilst I figure out how long I’m going to need off work.
(Aside: When under the influence of local anaesthetic, one generally feels pretty darn good and so I convinced my boss that I would be perfectly well enough to go back to work the next day. This later proved to be a silly idea.)
Eventually I drop my friends off at my housemates mum’s place and drive myself home and for a brief period of time, all seems well.
But what about the “mangina” I hear you cry?
Well, we’re about to get to that in part 3......coming soon