Further to my mention in my last blog of how frequently I have visited the doctor since being in Oz, in the last three weeks, I have been taking even greater advantage of the free Medicare system! This time my left foot was the focus of the medical attention. After my Xray and ultrasound showing nothing amiss in the inner workings of my painful footsie, I had a bone scan. I went into the royal adelaide hospital and was injected with a radioactive tracer into my arm... the tracer is carried in the blood all over the body and my feet were under the scanner that showed up radiation; I was instructed to stick my arm up in the air and wiggle my fingers, then watched the radioactive glow that started to show up in the image of my feet spreading downwards and getting brighter and brighter as my blood carried the radioactivity all over my body! It was pretty cool. I had to go away for two hours then come back later for another scan. Two days later, finally a result: I have a stress fracture at the base of my third metatarsal (or cuneiform) bone in my left foot!
The hairline fracture in the bone is likely to have been caused by the impact of running on a treadmill (I remembered a very sharp pain in my foot one of my first days back in the gym, which necessitated me leaving and going home, which must have been my bone cracking!). Bad times.
I have been referred BACK to the hospital to get a special supportive timmy-boot, which will hold my foot uber still, to help the healing. This will be a good thing as otherwise I have been walking a fair amount on it, especially at work and whatnot and having the boot on will slow me down and force me to rest more.
I just need the appointment asap as I'm leaving adelaide in three weeks and need to be able to walk properly with a 20kg pack on my back and not do TOO much more damage to my bone! I'm unsure as yet what the implications of the foot stuff will be for NewZealand. I expect there will be a number of things I am unable to do.. I obviously can't do hiking or walk for any too great distance. I can't bungy with it. I certainly won't be able to ski. Perhaps my plans will have to change again and where I had intended to spend the first two months traveling in NZ, maybe now I should try to find a job and work for a few months first, to rest my foot and give it chance to heal so that when I travel over the islands I am able to do everything I want to do. But then, the bone could take 6months to recover fully and it might not be advisable to do hiking or bungeeing or anything in that whole period, so perhaps I travel first as planned and anything that makes me desparately sad to miss out on, I will have to return to do at the end of my time in the country.
The best news of all is, of course, that I will not be prevented in any way from taking acrobatic plane flights, which is the one thing that matters most to me that I get to do in the land of the kiwis... good news, indeed!
The Adelaide fringe has been good although I fell into that all-too-common trap of, feeling like a resident rather than a tourist, actually getting to see very little of it. I experienced the general atmosphere, had one wander round the garden of unearthly delights and saw a few street artists and that was it! Bad, I know..
Weather here is constantly delightful as always although we had a refreshing and novel cool-spell last week, 20C with showers! Imagine!
I am rapidly approaching the end of my stay in SA, how the time has flown! I really feel as if I could stay here forever, if I had the right job and stuff, I'd love to. Adelaide is my kinda place and I'm going to be really sad to leave. The return to hostel-living will be a bit of a shock to the system, I am trying to drink up and appreciate my own space in my room more than ever before now, to top up some kind of internal personal-space-tank which needs to last me until I get a job and a flat in New Zealand. I kindof understand why the maximum travel time for most backpackers seems to be a year. Among other reasons, a year is the maximum time most people's sanity will allow them to live in hostels! I'm just going to have to put up with it for 2 or so months.
My plans when I leave SA are fairly short and straight forward. I will get buses, spend 2days in Ballarat with a friend, then one day near melbourne, at the William Rickets Sanctuary that has been reccommended me by a friend. I didn't like melbourne enough to want to stay a night there, I will arrive in the early morning, leave my bags at the bus station for the day while I go to the sanctuary then get the bus again in the evening to Canberra, where I will spend 2days before a final 4 in sydney. Then kiwis here I come!