The big surprise


I haven’t posted much recently. That’s the result of a confluence of things that aren’t important. I’m hoping to get back into it, and I suspect that over the next weeks I will be posting more writing and fewer pictures…

Late Saturday night I slipped on stairs and gave myself a “Jones fracture,” breaking the 5th metatarsal in my foot. I’ll skip the saga of getting to the hospital, other than to say that it demonstrated the excellence (on so many levels) of local first responders. Luckily it was a quiet Saturday night at the hospital, and I was treated relatively quickly as emergency room visits go. I was charted, x-rayed, and plastered into a cast. The nurse established that I was alone and that there no one locally who could assist me (the hospital is not in the rural area in which I live) and found me a hostel with a special rate and an aid service to get me there.

And then I said, “Can I get some crutches?” and she said, “We don’t have crutches.”


(This represents me boggling.)

“Can I buy crutches from you?”

“It’s not that we can’t give them to you, it’s that we don’t have them.”

“Well, where would I get them?”

“You can buy them from a pharmacy.”

“Okay, are there any all-night pharmacies in this city?”

“No, they close at midnight.

She did find me a walker, and that solved the problem, sort of, until I was able to acquire crutches. But…

Think about it. This is a well-appointed city hospital, releasing a patient at 3 am, with a leg cast and orders not to put weight on that foot. And no companion to lean on. And no physical support mechanism available.

Is this a recent cost-cutting measure? Does it apply to every hospital? Certainly I was given crutches in 1996 when I broke my leg (sold crutches? can’t remember, but either way I got them) , so it never occurred to me that they might not be available. And I can’t be the only person released under these kinds of conditions.

This makes no sense to me. Not giving away crutches, fine, but not having them available…



4 thoughts on “The big surprise

  1. So sorry to hear that you fell. No crutches, wow that is unbelievable! If I remember correctly if you join the Ambulance Society here, you get free ambulance transfer & crutches. I know that won’t help you now, but just in case of another time. PB & I keep meaning to join as well.

    1. Thanks, GG. We did join the Ambulance Society—after the fact—and got crutches through them, so now I’m all set. There are lots of benefits to membership—if we’d already been members, the cost of the ambulance ride would have been paid for as well—don’t delay!

  2. I am so thankful it was only your foot that was broken, not something more important to life. Yes, your life is different for a while, but you are mobile,….somewhat. May you heal quickly, and may you have time to relax and refresh yourself during your “down” time. Let other things go, now is YOU time.

    1. You’re very right—it could have been so much worse. As long as it stays a nuisance I’ll be happy. Thanks so much for your good wishes, Forcy!

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