We took the bus to the Panama border the other day to do some shopping. It’s a very weird setup. You can go through passport control and check yourself into the country or you can walk right past some heavily armed guards and shop in a free zone all along the border. We had some shopping tips from Katie at Tierra Mar and as soon as we got off the bus Jack and I entered the zone and walked toward the Jerusalem Mall — not the kind of mall you’re thinking of — where we hoped to find some of the food items we miss that aren’t available here in Golfito.
Within ten minutes I missed my footing stepping down into a dark alleyway, rolled my ankle and did a face plant on the concrete. Ouch!! My ankle hurt so bad I saw stars and I sat on the step for many minutes waiting for the pain to subside. Eventually I stood up and put my weight on it and it didn’t seem too bad, so we very slowly walked through a couple of stores to see what they had. We felt like we were in wonderland with foods we haven’t seen since Puerto Rico, shelves and shelves of them, and not dusty and shopworn like so much in Golfito. We wished we had a car that we could load up but it was enough to see what’s available for next time. We did buy some dried fruit so I can make granola again, and some honey and blue cheese, among other things.
After a few minutes of walking my ankle started swelling up and it got more and more painful. I told Jack we’d have to park me somewhere and he’d have to do the rest of the shopping, but as we were making our way back to the bus station I saw a sign for Clinica Shalom Adonai and a sign in the window said they were open.
The girl at the desk got me an ice pack and said the doctor would be back in a half hour.
An hour later the doctor finally came back from lunch and though he said he had a little English he spoke to me in rapid-fire Spanish (is there any other kind?) Using mostly sign language and a notepad passed back and forth, he assured me that my ankle isn’t broken (yay!) but that I had “torn some fibers of the tendon.” I guess that means a sprain.
He made motions indicating that it will swell up quite a bit (it did) and he gave me a shot in the hip that he said was an anti-inflammatory. He also gave me a prescription for a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory but when we checked at the pharmacy the 15 pills cost $80. Huh. I’ll take Advil. The consultation and injection cost $18.50.
We got home ok on the bus and I’ve been icing my ankle and trying to stay off it, tough to do on a catamaran where any fetch involves steps. The singlehander who came through here this week is an ER nurse and he reminded me to wrap it, too, and that has helped. So maybe in a week I’ll be back to form.
I’ve got my fingers crossed.