Tag Archives: foreigner

My Trip in a Cuban Ambulance

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I freely admit that sometimes I am a complete klutz and I can have two left feet.  When I was in Santiago de Cuba, I really looked forward to hearing some live music.  So I got prepped to go to the Casa de las Tradiciones.  Put on my tight jeans, a nice cleavage bearing tank top and some 4 inch heels…..WRONG!!

Lesson 1 – Never wear 4 inch heels (trying to look cute) on uneven terrain, cobbled streets, at night when you can’t see straight, in Cuba.  That’s just asking for trouble.

And of course, not 10 minutes after starting my journey, I took a dive into a hole on the side of a curb and twisted my ankle all the way round…at least that’s what it felt like, and I could have sworn I heard something crack.

Lesson 2 – When you severely twist your ankle, reconsider your footwear, go home and put your foot up.

Did I do that?  Of course not!  After yelping and tearing up a little, I proceeded to the Casa to hear that music (not dance) and then limped home.  And the next day I got up and walked/limped around all day.  Remember this is my dream destination and I wasn’t going to let a little pain keep me down.

So by the time I finally arrived in Trinidad, my foot had swollen to twice its normal size..totally gross and I figured I’d go see the doctor….who first said, “take your blood pressure medication”, then “you are going to the hospital”, in an ambulance, no less.  One thing about Cuban health care, they are darn efficient.  Between that doctor’s visit, the round-trip ambulance ride, x-rays, orthopedic consult, and final doctor’s exam, I was in and out in under 60 minutes.   And the total cost, including anti-inflammatory meds was $57.

Lesson 3 – Follow doctor’s orders as closely as possible.

They wanted to put a cast on my foot and have me off my feet for 15…yes 15 days.   Did I do that?  Of course not….duh, dream vacation!   I sat for an hour and a half, then I had to be up and about again.  You know what they say….you can’t keep a good woman down!  Oh yah!

Now that I’m back home, the swelling has finally gone away and while my foot still hurts, I’m walking with a small limp, and heels are an impossibility – I can say that it was totally worth it.

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