The Same Old Story

Repeatedly over the last 10 years, when self disgust at the state of my body becomes unbearable, I have taken up physical exercise. It usually causes more damage than good.

Five years ago I tore my meniscus in my right knee during a workout class. The operation was a lot of fun but the knee has been weak ever since.

Currently my physical self loathing is very high and I have joined a gym which is close to the marina in Ginowan.

Great showers.

This has been been working very well as I go down to the marina, fiddle with the boat, get very hot and sweaty then go to the gym. Do exercise and then have a fantastic shower.

I have been, I thought, very restrained in the intensity of the exercise. I do 30 minutes on a cycling machine and the another 30 minutes of different exercise machines. I do lots of repetition with very low weight loads.

Something clearly went wrong as I woke up yesterday to find my right knee horribly swollen and very painful. It will go away I tell myself. It did not, this morning the swelling is worse and it is almost impossible to bend the knee.

Wounded knee. It does not look much but believe me it is hyper swollen.

I go to the local village clinic. A long wait, Okinawan medicine is very democratic, first come, first served. In fact, come to think of it, I do not think there is private medicine here. I am probably wrong but I have never come across it.

After weight, temperature, blood pressure I go to see the doctor.. He gets it immediately and says he will have to drain the liquid from my knee. I hobble into an adjoining room where I get an ultra sound scan of the knee.

It’s a girl!

The very smiling nurse give me a print from the scan, explaining that the black area is fluid and that there is a lot of it.


Hobble to a further adjacent room, laid on an operating table, the doctor gives me a local anaesthetic and then plunges a big syringe into my knee. Great excitement at the volume of fluid that is sucked out. It is a new Okinawan record of 110 mL! The doctor says something about the fluid being bloody indicating something but I do not understand.

Yay, 110 mL! Everyone is very impressed. Strangers shake me by the hand.

All of this treatment cost me ¥1,630 about $15! I got a 10 day prescription of pain killers and some stomach drug for ¥163. Thank you Japanese health system. Thank you Onna Clinic. As usual everything is done with huge smiles and endemic playfulness.

So, the knee is now better but I think the cause of the swelling is not fixed. I fear I have torn a ligament. The Doc says if it swells up again, he will send me for an MRI scan. I think this is inevitable.

It is still raining .

It gets much worse later with ferocious thunder and lightning.
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5 Responses to The Same Old Story

  1. Mike says:

    The Needle and the Damage Done. (I know you’re a fan).

  2. Rachel says:

    Yay for OKINAWAN docs and your RESILIENCE (you sure know how to have fun)! Yeah, getting old is not for sissies.

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