So I’ve mentioned before my abject fear of getting my toes squashed while crossing the streets of Cairo. Luckily, I have managed to avoid any such injuries, however on my first day in Wales, while walking in soft slippers (cute little blue fuzzy ones, I might add), heading out the back door to say hi to my cousin Jeremy, I managed to bash my toe against the door jam in the conservatory. It really hurt! Cartoon-stars kinda hurt. But I went through the day with a minor limp and a few whimpers and didn’t notice until I came home that night, took my shoes and socks off and saw that my second toe was completely purpley-blue, heading into the black. So either I managed to severely bruise it, or even inflicted a slight fracture.
For several days after, Ron kept nagging me to go see a doctor in Wales, reminding me, “Whatever you do, DON’T go to the hospital in Cairo!” We have a medical unit at the embassy for basic needs (got shots #13 and #14 there just a few weeks ago – yeah – now I think I’m impervious to the Black Plague, Botulism and possibly even Cannibalism). There is a fairly new hospital down near Maadi called As'Salam. The story goes that one of its first patients was a French diplomat who came in for a routine appendectomy. The surgery went without incident and as they were wheeling him out, down the hall to the elevators, they casually wheeled him into the elevator only later realizing the doors had opened despite the elevator car not being there, so the French diplomat fell to his death. In response, the Egyptians now call the hospital Maasalama with a little sparkle in their eye (“maasalama” means good-bye).
Due to a slightly embarrassing incident in sixth grade involving a volleyball and a very large classmate, I do know that the only thing done for an injured toe (even a “hairline-fractured great toe”) is to tape it to the next little piggy and let it heal. So for the entire vacation I dutifully taped my toes together, and vowed to never be so cavalier about toe care in the future.