Jun 06, 2018

The tour continues and an accident

These are parked everywhere in Rome.

Next stop was the Trevi Fountain.

If you throw a coin in with your left hand over your right shoulder you will return to Rome, so says the legend. Apparently every night the coins are vacuumed out of the fountain.  Three thousand euros are scooped up each time and the money goes to charity.  Note Colin’s snazzy new shoes.

So wonderful to be here in person after seeing this in so many movies.

Close up of the Trevi Fountain sculpture.

Talk about a Smart car.  Always able to find a parking spot.

From the Trevi Fountain we took a bus up to the Piazza del Campidoglio.  But first we had to climb the stairs to the top of Capitoline Hill.  These stairs were designed by Michelangelo.  No matter where we go or what we do stairs are involved.

Even in restaurants stairs are involved as toilets are mostly down 22 stairs in the basement.  Just wanted to say at some point so why not here, that in Naples the menus were only in Italian and pizza and pasta were offered 95% of the time.  Few waiters spoke English.  Once we got to Rome we saw English as well as Italian on the menus and hamburgers and even fish burgers offered and almost everyone spoke English.

Just around the corner from the Piazza was the most remarkable view of the Roman Forum. We feasted our eyes for awhile before descending the hill.

Just next door some sort of military parade was taking place.  Many officials, much pomp and circumstance but we had no idea what it was all about.  We did later see two wreaths with two flames burning nearby and just a few soldiers guarding the area.  Everyone else had left.

This was not my proudest moment despite the fact that I had researched where we were to catch the bus back to the apartment.  We walked and walked and came back to where we had started and went the other direction which is why we saw the event in the photo above.  For some reason even my iPhone was of little help ( I am not totally sure how to use it for navigating ) and we asked people and kept walking.  We finally found a bus stop but it was going the wrong way and with one way streets we could not find the correct stop to go back.  By now I was exhausted and Colin was tired.  He wanted to take a cab back but I insisted that we keep trying as it should be close by.

Finally we stopped for a Spritz and to rest.  It would turn out that the happy hour snacks they gave us would end up being our dinner.

As we sat and recouped our energy we came to the conclusion that we did not need to take the exact bus back to our place but that we could take any bus to any Metro station and get back to the apartment from there.  We each had a Rome transit pass that is good for a full week @ 24 euros each.  It had been a full day and I was not thinking clearly, it was hot outside ( from cold to hot in a day ) and my mind was not functioning properly as I was still not well.  We had really pushed ourselves to see as much as we could as we only had one more full day left in Rome.

Of course we had to stand all the way, change Metro lines and do several more stairs. Not all Metro stations have escalators.

Colin’s new organic shoes made in Spain.  We have noticed how many vegan places there in Italy as well as what they call BIO grocery stores where everything is organic including the wine and we even saw a store selling vegan shoes.  Even here in Nice there are BIO stores.

I can’t remember what time we got back to the apartment but it was still light out, perhaps close to 8PM.  We had a glass of wine, rested our feet and were checking emails, downloading photos, etc.  Our plan was to go to a restaurant just down the street for dinner as our food that day had only consisted of limoncello, that divine chocolate treat that we shared and the snacks that came with the sprtiz.  I was tidying up and went to place something in the bedroom.  I pivoted and turned to go back to the living room and that is when it happened.

Somehow I ended up flat on my face.  Colin heard the loud thud from where he was sitting.  He came running.  I lay stunned.  It took a while for me to sit up.  Blood was running down my face.  Miraculously I had not broken my eyeglasses.  I had twisted my left knee over right shoe and would have the nastiest bruise I have ever had on the inside of my left knee.  What happened?  I don’t know but we suspect that I tripped over the edge of the bedspread that brushed the floor by a few inches.

I had a cut over my right eye that would not stop bleeding.  Finally Colin got a look at it and we both knew that I would need stitches.  So our host was called.  He first offered to have a doctor come to the apartment but I was not sure that our insurance would cover that and thought that we should go to the hospital.

He left his dinner and came to pick us up.  I believe we got to the hospital around 9:15PM where I was triaged.  I was seen by a doctor, my passport was photocopied as my medical insurance card and I was placed in a wheelchair.  We said goodbye to our host as I was wheeled away.

I was pushed into a hallway where there were other beds with patients in them.  I believe that because I was a tourist I was brought to this area, otherwise I would be outside in the waiting room.  There was no place for Colin to sit, eventually he sat on the floor.

Fortunately Colin had brought water, paper towels that I used to stanch the blood and my cell and the computer.  I called our insurance company who said she was going to fax a paper to the hospital for me to sign.  I told her that I would never see it and I didn’t.  No one spoke English.  No one stopped for over three hours to check on me.  Finally I started begging to find out when I would be seen, I kept pointing to my watch.  Because I was considered non urgent anyone who came in was seen first.  It appears that there was only one MD.  There was one room that you went into to be seen, meanwhile you waited outside in the hall.  It was not clean.

Finally my turn came.  They refused to let Colin come in with me.  No one spoke English.  Eventually an intern who spoke some English came in and started to ask what happened and pushed and prodded me.  By now my throat was sore and I was coughing again as my cold was returning due to my low vitality.  At no time were my vitals signs taken.  They wanted to send me for a head scan which I refused and to do an xray on my left knee which I also refused.  All I wanted was to get my head stitched and to get out of there.  Eventually they sent me up to surgery to see a doctor about stitches.  I had to strongly insist on Colin coming with me.

So once there we waited and waited as we listened to arguing coming from a room nearby.  Turns out that the MD was in there as well as the male nurse just chatting away as I waited over twenty minutes.  Finally I was on the table.  I made sure that Colin watched that the doctor washed his hands.  He did speak a bit of English and froze me, put three stitches in and walked out of the room.  What was I supposed to do next?  No instructions, no medication, etc.  So I followed him into his room to ask questions as he was my lifeline to the English language.  I was told to sit and they would come get me.

A porter did come and wheeled me back to the hallway.  My head was throbbing.  More time passed and then I saw the English speaking intern who wanted me to sign a release paper from the hospital.  I refused until I got some instructions on my head wound.  I also asked them to call me a taxi as it was 2:30AM and I knew we would not find a taxi.  I was wheeled to the entrance of the hospital and eventually the taxi did show up.  By the way I was not charged anything by the hospital for my ER treatment.  Italy has a complicated health care system that is free but not really free.  From what I have read online most are charged a small fee for an ER visit.  Maybe I will have a bill waiting for me when I get home.

Back to the condo where I slept off and on all night.  Now you know why I have been unable to post, etc.  Between the cold which left me last week and the cough which only got better about June 1st and my bruised knee and face I have only had enough energy to do what I needed to do.  I am fine and have carried on with the trip but I will in honesty say that I was very tempted to just go back home to Canada.

A very special thank you to my nursing classmate Libby who stayed up in her time zone to be my medical lifeline.  It was great to have you as back up to my muddled mind.  Your knowledge and support meant everything.

A special panorama stitch by Colin of the Trevi Fountain.




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7 responses so far

7 Responses to “The tour continues and an accident”

  1. George Yates says:

    What a very busy day you had. sorry about your accident, hope all will be well again soon.

  2. Maxx Trails says:

    What a crappy thing to happen on a holiday. Going to the hospital is never fun but especially in a new country. I sure hope you are feeling better soon!

  3. Dee Tillotson says:

    God Bless you, Contessa; you are just having a stroke of bad luck! I know you are in Nice now, and maybe your landlord would recommend his personal physician or pharmacist to help you with things you might need, such as pain medication and something to reduce swelling so you can sleep at night. However, as you know, you can’t drink alcohol while you are taking the pain meds.. At the pharmacy, I picked up an aluminum cane adjustable and configured in such a way that my elbow fit in a slot at the top of the cane which allowed me to amble around at a satisfactory rate with an ace bandage on. Seeking help from trusted people will get you through this.

  4. AZGAL says:





  5. SandyM says:

    Oh dear, we are so very sorry. The last photo of Trevi by Colin is just lovely.
    Hope you are feeling better.

  6. Linda & Russell says:

    What a great trip you’re having!
    You both seem to be able to roll with the punches and still have a good time.I hope the rest of your trip is uneventful.
    Happy belated BIRTHDAY. ?

  7. Dolores says:

    Oh, u poor thing!!! So much happening to you! But glad u r doing ok and forging ahead, live yr pictures m narrative!!

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