Monday, March 28, 2011

The perils of optimisim

I took my trusty mountain bike out of the storeroom a week ago, when all the snow had melted and the birds were singing and the children were running. Then the rains came, then the rain turned to snow, and oh how that unridden bike seems so wildly optimistic now. The last 24 hours have not been kind to your humble blog person (me). I think this week will almost certainly require some form of beer. I did finally make an appointment with a physical therapy office to get some exercises for my wounded knee today. My therapist Solvieg seemed quite happy with how much progress I have made in the 4 weeks since the surgery. The visit to a place like that makes it clear how different Norway can be in some ways to the U.S. First there was no receptionist in the office (that I could find) so I just waited silently on a chair with my shoes off, like everyone else. There was something odd about the other people there, I can't quite figure out what was going on, but they kept coming out of the therapy area in the back, then trading seats with another person who would then go back into the office. But they never said anything. Maybe those were magic seats or they just liked warm chairs, I have no idea. Eventually Solvieg came to find me and took me back to her office. Like all semi-literate foreigners, I of course had the wrong paperwork from the surgery clinic. No problem, she picked up the phone and called the hospital and 2 minutes later the proper papers were in the mail. No charge for my therapy sessions, I guess it was included in the $50 I paid for the surgery in the first place. Happily I wore clean underwear, as I was soon parading around in them showing off my awesome scar. After we did some basic exercises, it was time for the big room with all the cool therapy toys. It had some normal stuff that I could recognize from the gym, but also some rather odd equipment as well. There seemed to be a lot of aging pensioners dangling from the ceiling from some kind of straps and weird rope things. Some of them were sort of wiggling like fish that were hooked but hadn't quite died yet. At least one or two of them had given up even the wiggling and were just talking. Or at least one guy was talking, maybe the other one had passed on I'm not sure. I am sure it took them a while to pull his body out of the rope thingy later. I got to do the leg press machine and some balancing on a chunk of blue foam, which is much harder than it sounds. I felt a bit out of place as the only one there under the age of 85. All I know for sure is that when you get to the point where they start strapping you into the ceiling ropes, it's not far to the end of the road friends..........just keep wiggling as long as you can.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The ugly truth

Knee surgery hurts, that's the truth!
Actually it's the 2 weeks after that hurts. All that blue and yellow crud in the picture slowly ended up moving to my ankle and foot over the last 10 days. Det gjøre vondt! I managed to walk around quite well already though, so I think it is healing quickly, but it's never fast enough for me. My super nice landlord Vibeke has been giving me rides to work in the mornings, and then I am walking home after work. It takes me about 20 minutes to walk home instead of the usual 10 but I make it eventually. I pulled out all the stitches myself a few days ago, so my leg is starting to look almost normal now. As long as I keep moving it around and don't sit still for too long it is OK.
On Friday night we had our annual meeting for the sports and activity club at work. The Novel committee organizes all of our pay-day events (løningspils) and the summer party, the Christmas dinner and other activities. There are usually 4 people on the committee, so I was "volunteered" by my good friend Joel to join the committee for the next 2 years. This will be a good chance to get to know more things about Trondheim and the area restaurants and activities. I might even learn a bit more norsk if I try hard. We had our meeting at Tulla Fischer, which is a very nice cafe and bar in the Trondheim sentrum. They served us tapas until we were all about to explode, then we had dessert :). I recommend it for a nice evening out in Trondheim if you ever get the chance. The prices are typical for Trondheim, in other words $$$. Figure on around $75 (400-500Nok) a person for tapas and a few beers there. beware though that google maps has the wrong location for it if you are looking to find it on a map. The correct address is Kongens gate 8, across from the
Vår Frue Kirke.
The picture on the bottom is the entrance road to the psychiatric prison hospital in Strindheim across the road from my house. Still winter here!

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Wednesday, March 2, 2011


I decided to post this picture of some flowers that a friend gave me because it looks 100 times better than my knee does right now. I am so glad to get that ACL surgery finished though. Hard to believe it took 7 months to get an operation that takes 45 minutes, but that's the way it goes. I had a friend drop me off at the Aleris clinic on monday morning and they did the operation there around 9:30, then I alternated between nausea and la-la land for about the next 6 hours until they kicked me out. I have to say that is amazing how much work they can do in a few minutes though through some very small incisions now. My leg looks a bit gruesome but it doesn't hurt that much and I think it will heal up quite rapidly. I am taking a few days off of work now and I hope to go back to my office on Friday. We are interviewing people for some testing positions so I sort of have to be there in person.
The Trondheim ice is back with a vengeance this spring, so I will have to be incredibly careful trying to get around outside on crutches. They make special crutches with spikes on the bottom I guess, but I look at it more like a warning from mother nature - you're already injured so if you can't walk on the ice, stay inside idiot!
The doctor told me maybe I can't run marathons anymore after this surgery, but I think that he and I both agreed that only people with some level of brain damage run marathons anyway so I am ok with not doing any.
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