Tuesday, January 15, 2008

I am in stitches - literally

Ok, am having a little holiday in Malaysia. I promise I will write about Bhutan sometime soon and maybe even give you some pics.

For this purpose though I want to tell you that I had another little accident...yep and this time I got stitches to prove it. I went to Pangkor Island which is on the west coast of the Malaysian Peninsula.
I went with Kym who is a leader with GAP - the darkside that I am joining soon. Nice little island and the best thing was that there was not a thousand people on the beach trying to sell me sunglasses, pineapples, sarongs and massage. For hours we sat there and the only person who spoke to us tried to sell us a boat trip.

Anyway, we were swimming at this nice beach that no-one was at, the bottom was a bit yucky with weeds and stuff, but seemed ok. But alas there was something sharp lurking on the bottom, probably glass given the penchant for asian people to use the sea as a rubbish dump.

So here I was walking in the water and felt a very sharp pain in my left big toe. I crawled out of the water and my toe was pumping blood onto the sand. Oh great, little island, big gash. Kym inspected it and to her credit did not vomit, and declared I needed stitches. See, those 1st Aid courses are useful afterall! I had to wrap it in toilet paper (is this too much information?) and get on the motorscooter we had rented and drive myself to the pharmacy. He told me where to find the hospital and for the princely sum of $5 US, I got a consultation, (complete with 'wow' from Dr) 3 stitches, some dodgy tablets and some extra bandages. All in 45 mins! Have to love public hospitals on a small island. I am not so sure about taking out the stitches myself though.

But this story is not yet complete. They have a number system for treatment, fair call. I only had to wait 5 people. But when my number came up, they had skipped 2 people. Kym said that when I went in to the room, all hell broke loose in the waiting room as the little Malay ladies were right annoyed that I had jumped the queue. Not sure why, as I wasn't actually bleeding everywhere, it was still contained. So the man that they complained to took their numbers off them and then when one tried to get hers back, he took it again and there was quite some angst. In the meantime, I come hopping out of the consultation room, tell Kym they are going to stitch it and hop off after the man who was assigned the stitching to another room.

Apparently the unhappy ladies continued to argue even after I freed up the room! Bloody foreigners!


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