Monday, January 2: Cape Town, South Afria
Happy New Year. Our cruise has ended but our adventure continues. Let me backup to Dec. 24 , Christmas Eve and the Schotia Safari–We had just had a lovely BBQ lunch put on by the owners, the Bean Family. I slipped off the step stool to get into the tall land rover. I managed to hit my knee cap, shin, and sprain my ankle on top of road rash, a deep cut and bruising.
Nurse Ida (a.k.a. Larry) scrubbed the road rash clean with soap and water and applied antibiotic ointment. By Dec. 30, my leg was not improved so I visited the ship doc. My leg was x-rayed–knee, shin, and ankle.
The ship doc was not happy with me. She is trained in Emergency Medicine and is from Columbia. “Why did you wait so long before coming to see me? What concerns me is you have cellulitis,” (a severe skin infection) she said. She wanted to start me on IV pennicillian and lost it again when she read I’m alergic to all antibitiocs except of three. But wait, there is good news, my doc in Seattle sent me with my three antibiotics.The doctor chose one of the antibiotics, told me how to take it and to add two ibuprofen, more water pills, and a higher dosage of aspirin.
I returned on January 1 for a follow up, Unfortunately the cellulitis had spread. The doc said to see her the next morning as the ship disembarked for orders to go to a hospital ER. She would not okay me to fly for fifteen hours to Atlanta Tuesday night concerned over DVTs.
January 2, 2023 Christiaan Barnard Hospital, Cape Town
We check out and report to the ship hospital. From there one of her staff escorted us to baggage pick up. The Port Authority stored our luggage in her office. The Port Authority then found us an escort to the hosptal and he was available to us the entire day to serve as our driver.
We spent most of the day at the Christiaan Barnard Memorial Hospital in the ER. Do you remember who Christiaan Barnard was and what he did? (The first human-to-human heart transplant.) The hospital was excellent–it probably surpasses Swedish in Seattle.
The ER doc had my leg inspected with Doppler and it came back clear so I’m ok to fly. But the cellulitis looked worse yet. The doc prescribed IV antibiotic. They dissolved my strongest antibiotic in water and then gave it to me via IV.
Marriott in Cape Town
We were dismissed to our hotel. Our driver took us back to the ship terminal, got our luggage, and drove us to the Marriott. There we were given a penthouse room (not a suite) with fabulous decor and views. Mr. Marriott (whom I met in the 1990s) would be proud.
January 3, 2023, Cape Town
Our flight home doesn’t leave until 11 p.m. It’s a fifteen-hour flight to Atlanta. Larry upgrade our seats to Comfort Plus Economy so our chairs will be recliners and I can elevate my leg. After breakfast this morning we visited an open air market selling African made items. Two shawls are finding their way into my suitcase.
All in all, I had a great Christmas and New Years in Africa–thanks Dad for saving it for last on your bucket list. I really do hope to return to Africa in the future.
Debora Ragland Buerk
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