Old injuries;new pain
It’s now 6 years since I broke my left wrist in a stupid accident. I’d been given the responsibility of teaching a group of, lets just call them disadvantaged young men. They’d been working hard for a few weeks on various bits of their education; how to correctly write their own names, addresses etc, when it was decided by the upper echelons that the lads needed to be rewarded for their good behaviour and hard work.
It was decided to give them a choice of treat activities, to which they chose to spend an afternoon ice skating. You can see where this is going!
So, one brisk February afternoon in 2003, off I trotted to the Sheffield Ice Arena with one other colleague and 15 or so teenage chavs men.
The afternoon started off quite pleasantly, drinking coffee from an observation point watching them fall over and generally making themselves look like idiots. After a huddle at one end of the arena, the lads decided that both myself and my colleague should also join them on the ice. Not wishing to appear as killjoys we agreed, but we also knew that their sole purpose on getting us on the ice was to target us as much as possible so that we ended up on our backsides most of the time.
As you can tell, they held myself and my colleague in very high esteem.
So, we popped on a pair of blades and off we went. What I hadn’t mentioned is that I’m quite an accomplished ice skater. That isn’t to say my abilities rival that of Mr Dean or Ms Torville, however, I can keep upright, can skate without holding onto the sides of the arena and in fact I can also skate backwards, sidewards and forwards with relative ease. A fact that my teenage pursuers hadn’t bargained for. After about an hour of dodging them quite easily they began to bore of the chase and I eventually climbed off the ice and sat to continue my observations.
Being bored, they decided, as teenage hooligans lads do, to pick a fight with another small group of teenagers that had been skating quite harmlessly at the other end of the arena instead.
The ensuing melee was a breathtaking sight. 40 odd pairs of legs and arms in a tangle on the ice and me sat with my face buried in my hands in shame. So, with the help of my colleague and two other ice supervisors, we proceeded to split the groups up and haul them out of the path of 10yr old prima donna girls in frilly skirts and even frostier looks from disgusted parents.
In the frenzied scrum to separate the young men from each other and to get them off the ice, I ended up skidding face down across the ice with my arm twisted at an awkward angle resulting in what I found out later in A&E was a classic Colles fracture (distal radial fracture).
An injury, the lovely doctor pointed out, was one usually seen in old ladies who had fallen over. Thank you Doctor Patel! A cast was then applied to my rather bruised and smarting arm. A week later, my wrist was broken again, this time on purpose as it hadn’t been set correctly by the A&E department. A new cast was then applied. The following week, the same thing happened again, the doctor not being happy with the way in which my bones had positioned themselves, proceeded to twist my wrist with a distinct click as it fractured again (I was very brave! I didn’t cry!). Another new cast was applied.
This time, it stayed. 8 weeks later the cast was removed and my wrist was repaired. However, I discovered that it hadn’t aligned correctly and now I can’t move my left wrist with the same dexterity as my right. It also painfully clicks from time to time.
The bonus of this injury, now means, in true old foggie style, that I can now predict bad and cold weather. My wrist does in fact get painful before rainfall and before snow is expected. It’s a marvelous weather vein.
And the bad news; when I woke this morning, it was with a dull ache in my wrist which still hasn’t subsided.
So folks, are we in for some more bad weather?…could be!