(I've changed the name from "Rants" given that I can't really rant about many things that frustrate me here, at least not without getting into some sort of trouble. As such, you'll have to wait for the book.)

Friday, October 21, 2016

A Little Accident

I’ve been in Nairobi a bit over a month now. It’s been a packed four weeks of orientations, training, courtesy visits, etc. I haven’t actually been able to spend too much time in my office. But it’s been good to learn the new context and meet a lot of the key people involved.
My family is still in Burundi. I’ve been here without them, relying on skype calls to stay in touch. It’s not fun but it was a decision we made that makes sense given the situation. The girls will be able to stay in school and transfer during a break. I can focus on the complex new job. The apartment that we found will not be ready for another week and delaying the family’s arrival will mean that they can move directly into our new home without needing to move from temporary accommodations and then to the new place. So yes, it makes sense but it’s been less than fun to be without my girls. And my poor wife has been shouldering the parenting and the final move preparations for the most part by herself.
In any case, the full transition to Nairobi will come soon enough. I take things as they come.
On Wednesday evening I had a bit of a scare. It’s a long story but shortly before going to bed I accidentally broke a window and cut my wrist pretty badly. Blood was flowing out of the wound and it looked like something you’d see in a horror film. I held my hand high in the air in an effort to get the bleeding to stop, or at least slow down. I tried creating a tourniquet out of a small towel but it didn’t work well. In the meantime I was getting blood all over the sink, the walls, the floor and myself. It actually looked pretty horrifying and I started to get nervous that I might be in serious trouble. I had no first aid kit and no bandages or disinfectant in the house. I decided to use a hair band with some tissues to keep a large flap of skin in place and eventually was able to get the bleeding to stop. At that point I sat in bed to rest a minute, looking around at the bloody mess I’d created.

Exhausted from a busy day, a workout and then this incident, I propped up my arm so that it remained elevated and sat down on the bed. Around that time Priya called and I recounted my little mishap. She reminded me that there was a 24-hr. pharmacy not far away and I could walk over and get some proper bandages and so forth. I had heard two gun shots not far away a few minutes before and decided that, given the bleeding had subsided, I would wait and go in the morning. As I was falling asleep, I hoped that I wouldn’t wake to bloody sheets.
Fortunately my ghetto wrap worked and the next morning I was off to get proper care for my wound. It was a Kenyan holiday so I was fortunate that I didn’t need to go to into the office. I still intended on working but given that the wound was on my left wrist, I was unable to write or type. In the end it didn’t matter because, on top of the injury, I began to feel sick. For the rest of the day (yesterday) I was spending my time in bed with the chills and making periodic trips to the loo. Throbbing pain in my wrist. At one point in the afternoon I found another shard of glass in my hand. Basically nothing was good about the day.
an ad as I opened a magazine last night
This morning I redressed my wound. It’s still quite gross to look at (I took a photo soon after the incident but have decided that it’s a bit too disgusting to post) but the pain was less and my hand was working normally with no swelling or discoloration. My stomach flu, or whatever it was, had subsided as well so I was starting to feel functional again. I knew the cleaning lady was coming so I wanted to make sure there wasn’t any broken glass around that she might accidentally step on. As I looked at the hole that I’d made in the window I noticed that some of my arm hair was wedged into the remaining cracks in the glass. Kinda gross. But I realize that I am very fortunate. It could have been much, much worse.
I’m in the office now. I can type and sign my name (important in my job). I was able to watch part of Boise State beating BYU (barely). Things are looking up.

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