Thursday, 29 January 2015

Getting pets to vet - oh my!

Talking of Button in August I think it was he came home limping and after a week or so he had not improved.  Although I thought it was a sprain I decided to take him to Animal Care in Egypt (ACE).  Well the first time I tried to take him he managed to escape the basket and shoot off as I got to the bottom of the stairs into the garden.  The next time was a bit more serious and detailed below.

So on to the tribulations of Thursday 18 September.  Emad (our landlord’s eldest son) had offered to take me (at 10.00 am) and so I was waiting for him.  A friend of mine her soft cat case as I couldn't find mine.  I got Button in but he managed to escape by the time I got to the gate.  I re-captured him put him back in but as I tried to close the case he escaped again. 

I caught him yet again but couldn't close the bag.  So I called Emad to help me by closing the cat carrier and that is when the trouble started.  Apparently Button hates and I mean really hates Egyptian men.  (I always thought he didn't like my cleaner because of the noise he made but it was more serious than that.).  As Button escaped the bag again I caught him by the scruff of his neck and he then proceeded to bite be as he was frightened.  I wasn't sure what to do next as it was really, really painful.  My brain then kicked in and I let go of Button and then he let go of me and that was when the blood started to flow.  Emad was quick witted and got the towel out of the cat carrier and wrapped it round my hand and then drove me to the local hospital.  That was when the comedy of errors ensued.

A nurse saw me and called another nurse.  For some reason a foreigner in the hospital was an event!  The wound was cleaned and I was told that they could not do anything else, not even dress it as the bite wound had to be allowed to the air!  But it was still bleeding!  So they called a doctor who said that it was their policy not to dress bite wounds.  They then injected me with the rabies vaccine and a pain killer.  I was then x-rayed to check that the bite didn't enter the wound and it was clear.  They wanted over 200le and Emad negotiated the fee and I ended up only paying 20le in baksheesh.  The tourist police that followed me round wouldn't take anything.

I was surprised whilst in the x-ray department as the guy that took us there started to smoke under a no smoking sign.  Then the tech light up a cigarette when he went into the developing room.  The first guy then took us back to the Dr and on the way dropped his ciggy, without extinguishing it, on the stairs.  Then the doctor was smoking in his office.  Plus the place was filthy.

I called Jos who happened to answer her phone on the way back from the hospital and she was there when I got home.  At this time it was mid-day and, guess what! the wound was still bleeding, or rather slowly oozing.  So between us we decided that I would go to the St Joseph Clinic (I had asked Emad to take me there and he’d said that it would mean a payment to them … well yes!).

So off we went to the Clinic and they were FAB.  I told them I had been to a local hospital but they were fine with that.  They said that although they would not stitch the wound (as they didn't stitch bites) they clean the wound and dress it and check my bloods to see if I had a coagulation problem.  The wound was sorted and then the phlebotomist came in and she couldn't find a vein, so she went in the back of my hand and had to jiggle the needle round and still didn't get enough blood (result a rather large bruise).  I said I had one on the inside of my arm but she wouldn't believe me and so tried the outside of my arm – again no joy.  Then just as she was about to attack an ankle another chap came in and got enough blood from the outside of my left wrist, so I got some lovely bruises. 

I was told to clean the wound twice a day and was diligent in my efforts.  The first bandage change was the worst as the dressing was saturated and I shared the progress on my Facebook page.  But will share some here too ...

the first bandage change the morning of 19 September 2014
(i did this twice a day for two weeks)

Day 4 - 22 September 2014

Day 6 - 26 September 2014

Well I can tell you that I have the faintest of wounds and all thanks the Clinic on St Joseph Street.

5 October 2014

Monday, 26 January 2015

On a more personal note

The other week I explained what had been happening in Egypt at large over the period of my absence from the blog so today I will detail part of what has happened to me personally during this interval.

Strangely quite a bit has been happening. 

Those of you that know me know that I am a Bookaholic and I found out that certain people namely professional bloggers, teachers (that’s me) and librarians can get access to free galley proofs of books that have recently been published or are yet to be published and in return the reader needs to give an honest review.  I am in book/kindle heaven.  What is good about this is that it allows me to read books that I wouldn't normally for good or ill.  However, sometimes the review process takes longer than the reading of the book :).  My reviews have been posted on Goodreads and Amazon.  But in 2015 I will be posting them here so there should be loads of added activity.

So from a good thing to a sad thing. 

In March my upstairs neighbour suddenly died.  I got a shock call from his wife at 5.30 am.  He had been experiencing chest pains for a week or so and had been to the local hospital/clinic and they said that it was something to do with is oesophagus but they gave him GTN spray and that seemed to ease the pain.  On the Monday, he had booked a ticket to go to the UK the following Monday to go to hospital to have more investigations.  Yet he woke up on Tuesday and said he didn't feel well and then died. 

I was her right hand person that day accompanying her to the local police station and then to the court to see the prosecutor and let him know that there was no foul play.  I liaised with friends of the couple to get them over to attend the funeral which occurred within 7 hours of the death.  It was a really good turnout and it was interesting to attend although very sad to see a dear friend laid to rest.

This couple were more than friends they were as close to family as one could get.  They had adopted me on my arrival in Egypt but gave me enough space, and often made me do things on my own so that I got to know the lay of the land.

Unfortunately, the widow decided to leave Egypt as this was more her husband’s dream than her’s and I said that I would adopt her animals. Unfortunately two weeks before her departure her dog, the lovely Kayla had to be put to rest.  She had not been handling the loss of her master.  Another as day.

Another good thing though was that Hubbly Bubbly was here at the time and we gave the widow a good send off.

I miss the deceased and his dog every day and think about his widow loads as well.  But she is far happier in her new home in the UK and she needed to do what was best for her.

This is how I will remember him …

My Hubbly Bubbly stayed for a few weeks in May and I went back with him and had two weeks in England (only my second visit back to blighty in four years).

Due to the vacation of the upstairs flat, we decided to move up a floor so on my return the place was in chaos.  The plan was that this would have all been finished for my return back to Egypt but this is Egypt and things never go as one expects.

Months later I am eventually in and the place looks lovely.  The colour I had chosen for the wall looked blue at the time but in reality is more a very very pale green and quite soothing. 

In addition to the four cats and one dog that I already had, I inherited three more cats and a tortoise.  Although they all know each other there are two that really dislike each other and there are constant fights.  Marky is the main culprit and has taken to taking his frustrations out on my girls, and Ambrose too – well everyone really especially when he gets told off.  Yet once he gets to trust you (and yes this has taken months and had involved a number of scratches and bites) he can be really loving liking his snuggles and tummy rubs; I even throw him over my shoulder like my best boy Button.