After an afternoon of a great lunch and friendly chat with a Turkish carpet salesman, I loaded myself and an area rug on the local bus, ready to cover up a space on our newly wooden floor because it's what you do after you realize the new wood floor makes the entire room appear monotonously wooden.
I will admit to being more than a bit overconfident in not changing the rolled up carpet from my right foot to my left foot when the door opened, and to guessing the distance from the bus to the sidewalk. When you don't see out of the lower parts of your visual spectrum you rely on memory rather than creep like a disabled person to the edge and peer nervously down contemplating how stupid you look to other passengers. Rather than appear that stupid, I trumped my own expectations entirely and spilled out onto the sidewalk looking less intelligent than I presumed I had the capacity to; I recovered nicely while explaining to the entertained-on-too-many-levels bogan couple behind me that:
A. 'I'm fine, no worries' and
B. 'no, unlike you I'm quite pleased your camera wasn't at the ready'
and while I was saying those things a completely embarrassed person utters to disperse the crowd?
C. my body shot a quick message to my brain.. 'arm broken, arm broken, call 911'
John, who was with me at the time but had walked to the front door (where all people who missed the opportunity to be my hero had also walked), saw my quick recovery and met me near a railing where I was smiling dimly and assuring people that it looked worse than it was and that indeed it was also spectactularly humorous; He got a confused look on my face when I whispered those three words every spouse never wants to hear:
"Call the police.","My arm's broken","Where were you?" Any of these would easily apply.
I was treated to exemplary service by the local ambulance; When they couldn't find a vein for the much requested painkillers, they did what they considered to be the next best thing, and let me tell you that from now on I won't believe anyone when they tell me nasal ingestion of liquid from a syringe is anywhere near the next best thing. It's clumsy; Although it did momentarily take away my embarrassment of falling in front of people, it only replaced it with a newfound embarrassment of having painkillers spray out of my nose when I exhaled. Of course I was reassured no one would speak of it, and I'd get a more traditional method and dose of painkillers upon arriving 'to hospital'; Drop the 'the', you're not in America, and only American's say they're 'going to THE hospital'. I was about to be excused from yet another American institution, one that would be a constant reminder to never injure myself on foreign soil again.
I'm going to type this as quickly as the doctor who sent me to xray would later exclaim as if it were a good thing; I was sent to xray with multiple fractures with no pill, shot, or even an acupuncturist needle inserted what so ever. I was told to man up, that five year old's had broken bones with less whining, and that my behavior was due to being previously 'spoiled by an overly-dependent-on-opiate medical system'. I can laugh about it now, because I have a tremendous ability to block out horrible events from my memory: Ask me about my preteen years, I don't recall anything traumatic at all while I'm balled in the fetal position.
I will say it's partly my fault. It's my fault I don't revere doctors as the stereotype expects. What they say is not gospel, I do make suggestions, I'm exceptionally verbal, and I will inform anyone who deems fit that 'you, my friend, have severe likability issues'. I know I pushed all the right buttons, the nurses smiled and nodded in agreement, when the doctor left they both silently handed me what I presume to be painkillers behind his back and walked away. They worked; By the time the doctor came back with painkillers (yay! triple dose!), I was affable, apologetic and explained in my best Ferris Bueller that 'understanding is what makes it possible for people like me to tolerate someone like yourself'. He said I was incoherently babbling, but I'm quite sure I heard a concealed burst of laughter from the nurse who was signing my release papers. I was miserable for the next three days. I'm lucky, for I'm sure his misery went on long before mine began and has no foreseeable end in sight. I shall never speak of this again, that damn fetal position isn't comfortable at all anymore.