Saturday, 9 October 2010

Growing old disgracefully

A few weeks ago I bought a new bike after agonizing for weeks on how I could justify the expense. What did it for me was a trip to Christchurch in the aftermath of the earthquake. Although I know it intellectually, the fact that a major event beyond any one's ability to control had the ability to profoundly change people's lives and could happen at any time was reinforced by my trip.The earthquake had a profound and traumatic impact on people, even though most of them were not directly impacted by the event. It's not that I have suddenly become completely fatalistic and am going to spend, spend and spend with no thought for tomorrow. But I decided once and for all that there are things that I want to do while I am able because tomorrow I might not be able to, and riding my bike is one of these.

Enter a 2010 Husqvarna WR300. I am sure you will agree-a wonderfully sexy looking machine.

Unfortunately due to a little mishap with a slippery tree root or stump that I hit the wrong way towards the end of my first ride I haven't been riding for a few weeks and won't be back on the bike for a few weeks more. Maybe by the end of the month if all goes well.

The good news is that the bike is ok. The reflex action of sticking my knee out to save myself resulted in a severe strain or hyper extension. I am not really sure what happened but things got a big wrench and I knew I had done some damage to my already dodgy knee. While the swelling took a long time to go down it now looks as though things are settling down finally. While the physio I went to thought that I may have rooted one my cruciate ligaments my doctor thinks that it is ok. Well at least I haven't done any more damage to a knee that sooner or later will need reconditioning. Hopefully a visit to a surgeon this week will confirm that I don't need an immediate operation.

Until I saw my doctor a few days I thought I might have stuffed the knee properly and my brand new bike would be sitting in the garage for a while. To say that I was extremely frustrated was an understatement. Not only because I couldn't ride but because, especially in the first few days I couldn't do much for myself.

To make matters worse I haven't been able to sleep. I am a bit of a fidget so any time I rolled over in bed I would tweak my knee and wake up. And then wouldn't get back to sleep. For hours. To say that I have been grumpy is something of an understatement. This state of affairs was not helped by people at work making fun of me and my walking stick. For someone who considers himself to be more or less in his prime. Well ok in the autumn of his prime, being compared to a fractious stick waving old man was I thought pretty mean on their part and I wasn't happy about it.

For myself and she who must be obeyed the experience is an unhappy glimpse into a possible future where one us, well me probably is partially incapacitated and how much that that will impact on our quality of life. A quality of life that we take for granted.

I guess we'll have to deal with those cards as they are dealt and in the meantime I intend to age disgracefully.

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