She who must not be mentioned says she must not be mentioned.
So I will talk about my right foot.
It is still there, despite an attempt many years ago by a taxi driver, who due to lack of sleep and lack of intelligence, decided to drive his taxi through my motorcycle. This would have been fine save for the fact that I was astride said motorcycle at the time. Fortunately for me I was actually riding at the speed limit at the time, a rare event in those days. So in the collision I was only travelling at 30mph, a fact which, the investigating Police Officer eventually told, probably saved my life.
As a Physicist I understand the conservation of momentum. So motorcycle and rider moving at 30 mph becomes instantly motorcycle stopped then much of the momentum is transferred to the rider. This means the rider moves forward at a speed greater than 30 mph. Or he would do if his right leg was not between now stationary motorcycle and taxi!
I still remember flying forward over the bonnet, flipping in the air and landing with a sickening thud on the road. Strangely enough I landed in what First Aiders call ´the recovery position´. Except for one problem.
My right foot was next to my left knee!
Yes folks, my right leg had developed an extra joint, now bent in half mid shin.
Compound fracture right tibia and fibula, said my hospital notes.
“Are you alright?” as the taxi driver as he stepped out of his cab.
“Do I feckin well look alright?” I asked in a mixture of pain and anger.
The paramedics scraped me off the floor and took me to hospital where I spent six weeks without recovery. For the next 5 months I was back and forth to hospital for check-ups and advice.
But my break was not healing.
So my consultant brought me in.
“We need to try a bone graft,” he explained. “We take some slivers of bone from your left hip and put them into the break site so they will start to generate bone growth. This is our last option.”
“What if it doesn´t work?”
“We will have to amputate.”
Not the kind of thing you want to hear at 25, or at any age really.
I still have my right foot though it doesn’t work properly. It droops when I get tired, aches in the November rain, and trips me up on pavements sometimes.
Despite that I went on to achieve Brown belt in Karate, Sailing coach, Army Cadet Officer, Climbing Instructor, writer, passed my PADI Open water scuba diving course and travelled much of the world. One long term after effect is that I can put stress into context – when you have a near death experience losing luggage on a flight becomes irrelevant.
So my right foot and no pictures of paintings.
I´m doing well.
As to my left foot..
That was a movie about Christy Brown, played by Daniel Day Lewis. Released in 1989.