…was another new Olympic experience. The Olympic patient.
Part way through breakfast I sneezed and my back immediately seized up and didn’t let go. I managed to finish breakfast but the walk back up to the room was painful and getting worse. The soft bed was no comfort so I managed to get flat on the floor. Getting up again was another matter altogether!
I spent most of the day trying to find a comfortable position. I followed Facebook suggestions like a hot shower, paracetamol/ibuprofen cocktails, and there was some comfort but clear no solutions. ‘Keep Moving’ was another common sentiment but it was just not possible!
By 4pm it was clearly not improving, so I tentatively and painfully made my way to the IOC hotel doctor. The info book directed me to the 2nd floor. As I arrived in the office there were six people, all dressed in the 80s shell suit uniform, crowded around a laptop watching the figure skating. I asked if it was possible to see a doctor at which point they all buzzed round and one of them stood to ask what the problem was. It is amazing how much confidence a white coat gives you, and how much doubt a lack of white coat produces!! It just did not seem right for this ‘volunteer off the street’ to be wielding a needle! I am sure he was a real doctor and since the syringe contained pain relief I wouldn’t have cared anyway!
The idea was that this would reduce the pain to allow me to walk to the polyclinic where they would give me some ongoing painkillers. After a couple of hours I felt up to it, as well as being hungry! We have breakfast at the hotel, but other meals we can pick up in the hospitality lounges at each venue. So for tea I needed to head to the Ice Hockey and planned to stop by the clinic on the way.
A short, painful walk through the Athlete’s Village and I made it. After filling in forms at reception I was taken up to the doctor. It was a familiar scene, with a group huddled around the laptop watching figure skating! This time, though, they were wearing lab coats!!
I saw a Doctor who pressed and prodded then prescribed me some pills! Great. Then on the way out my ‘guide’ explained the schedule. She would go and get my drugs whilst I had some Physiotherapy!!
I am not greatly experienced in this kind of stuff but it looked and felt more Chiropractic . I was hoisted up on this frame and bent in various directions. The guy was an aggressive angry Russian, who could speak a bit if French!! I don’t mean that he was at all mean or unfriendly. Just sharp and shouty at the staff, and me if I pushed a bit too hard or in the wrong direction!
After a couple of hours and some bright pink tape I was much looser and able to walk comfortably, if a little tentatively, again.
This meant that I could get to an event today after all. A short but slow walk to to the Bolshoy Ice Dome and I caught the last session of the Men’s Ice Hockey- Sweden vs Czech Republic. I am glad I did. This is Ice Hockey!! Plenty of smashes against the side and quick paced play.
Not the day I planned but since I hadn’t thought I would be going out at all, it ended better than it could have.