If you have seen my feet – and many have, due to my loathing of socks – you would know that I have toes of such a length that I could easily bang out a tune on the strillers; concert pianists would give their right arm for fingers with the finesse of my toes.
Anyway; some time ago I must have banged the second toe on the left foot (something of an ongoing hazard given the size) and the end joint became a bit red; but no more troublesome than that. Having arrived in KL, the heat seems to have reactivated it and swelling set in, so I was dragged off to the ‘Bone Setting Specialist’ who works on the high street; between the Reflexologist and the cake shop.
Now I might seem to be making light of this, but it was a professional set up and I was seen straight away. There was quite a bit of discussion about the toe – none of which I was deemed privvy to as it was all in Mandarin and translation not required, apparently. Then began the manipulation of the toe; at which point I was able to introduce a few words of Anglo Saxon they had probably not covered in evening class.
This went on for about 5 minutes and I was told that it was a ligament problem, and that after manipulation the blood flow to the toe would need to be improved; this would be achieved by application of some herbs, which would need to be left on overnight but then removed 20 minutes before taking a shower in the morning.
So bandaged up in a smear of black herbs – which generated quite a bit of heat – I was released with a list of things not to eat.
For the next two weeks: Duck, Prawn, Crab and the Kambong fish (whatever that is) will be safe from my attentions, as will bean sprouts, pickled vegetables, any kind of tea, coffee, soya and acidic drinks. Beer is out, but Guinness is fine and Gin Slings are mandatory – to be taken hourly.
So here I sit the following day – with a jug of Gin Sling at the ready – the bandage has been removed and I am waiting for the prescribed 20 minutes before taking a shower. Is it better? – hard to say, still a bit swollen and black from the herbs; it looks like I have just voted in a third world election. Next appointment in 2 days.
The Bone Setting Specialist has a website – you can read all about it here…
As an aside, the Far East has a sound… Lots of places have ‘sounds’ and you hear it just as you nod off to sleep or just as you wake up. In the UK it would have to be the sound of a car passing at an unfeasibly high speed, in Spain it’s the sound of those cheap mopeds echoing up narrow streets, in Italy it would have to be raised voices (you await the gunshot, but they are just talking about the price of bread), and the Far East? – sweeping… sweeping, sweeping, sweeping… they are all at it.