02 March, 2007

Life ... with a broken arm

We got back to Astana February 7th, spent the next two weeks having an immediate delegation visit, whirlwind meetings to get on top of things (follow ups from a Washington visit to the Overseas Briefing Center) and getting over jet lag.

Was ready for a three day weekend and an attempt to organize some quilting fabric on a newly delivered bookshelf, when 5 minutes before a start of an official lunch on Friday the 16 I tripped over the housekeeper AND the bathroom rug in one of the guest bathrooms and caught my fall on the counter. Ouch -- got out to London the next am with John to see what they were going to do with a spiral fracture of my upper right arm.

Traveling for what seemed like a day and a half with the time differences, landed at Princess Grace Hospital urgent care via a quite comfortable business class route, but totally unable to do anything for myself. Got painkillers, lots of sympathy, more x-rays and a follow up appointment with an ortho later in the week.

To wrap up the week of a miscommunicated appointment, broken x-ray picture printers and two $70 wash and blow dry hair appointments, we stayed through Thursday with no surgery, a neck sling, and a three month healing prognosis.

The Marriott hotel was lovely (off Oxford street)with two nearby Starbucks (a definite home away from home). We got lots of TLC from the Embassy, saw "Blood Diamond" (9.5 pounds sterling each) and a few meals out. Getting bathed and dressed or really doing anying without hubby would have been impossible, but otherwise I just had to take it easy. It was frankly sort of shocking after the third day to wake up and realize that the "pain" was here to stay for a while. Having John's help and support has meant everything!

Getting back here business class from BA wasn't that swanky, with an engineering delay before we even left London, and then some other technical glitch in Ekaterinburg with a delay of 3-4 hours. Luckily at this point all/anything of any effort just exhausted me, so I cat-napped though it all. We of course missed our connecting flight in Almaty, and with a snow buran going on in Astana, spent the night at the fabulous suite in the Hyatt. Anything of comfort has been greatly appreciated!

So... we got home Saturday evening. It was still shocking how little I could do for myself, ad sleeping comfortably took a while to figure out. It takes two different beds, depending on what time of the night it is, and lots of pillows. Computering was almost impossible, with even "body twisting" movements (sitting at the desk) painful.

Sunday evening was a full fledged buran -- snow flying horizontally with over 50 mph winds with white-out conditions. I was up most of that night (we were also expecting an official visitor so the phone was ringing a lot, and the wind/snow looked like a ground tornado. The Embassy called an unofficial "snow day" on Monday, even though we had blue skies. People had to dig out, just to start with. Kevin and Eileen lost their trip/flight to India for the week but at the last minute manged to get a trip into Istanbul (as their shower at home was being dismantled and replaced).

So... I've been "back" for a week and can do a teeny tiny bit more for myself each day. The pain is less, but in general the same, so round the clock ibuprofen is a must. It is very strange at not being able to pick things up off the floor, open bottles of water, give myself a shower and more. We are all SO used to multi-tasking everything that just reading and doing nothing else is strange. But I have lots to read, including lots of back fiber mags.

John set me up on his laptop, so I can now type this (with one hand)and internet surf ... while he backs up my computer to reinstall Windows. My laptop just seems overloaded with some memory sucking issues, so the only remedy is the re-installation. Then I can get back to downloading podcasts, too!

I did try some knitting last night continental style, thanks to Craft Sanity and her You Tube video. I almost cried in relief -- it was slightly painful but thrilling to realize I could do it! So I am much more upbeat about the time ahead of me, and a better ability to use a computer after a week. I have lots of websurfing to catch up on knitting wise, and am already printing up future projects. I get some new x-rays tomorrow, so we'll get to see how the first two weeks hsve gone.