Desflurane's Romaniacs Blog

Chronicle of My Participation in the World's Toughest Enduro Rally – Again…

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Just for “flavor”

Posted by desflurane on July 10, 2013

I didn’t stay very long at the finish party on Saturday nite. I popped in with Mike for a few minutes, then headed back to the hotel room for the rest of the evening.

For one thing, our flight left Sibiu at 7:15am the next morning and I didn’t want to start off my journey around the world feeling knackered.

For another, cigarette smoke was billowing out the front door of the Casa Di Culturi like the place was on fire, and not being a smoker, the fun factor was drastically reduced.

And finally, the nail on my left big toe was starting to really hurt. I smashed that toe a year or two ago (I don’t even remember how) and lost the nail shortly thereafter. The nail that grew back probably would have answered to a name like “Quasimodo” or “Igor” because it was notably misshapen. I knew a long time ago that I was destined to lose this freakish toenail again at some point, it was just a question of when.

Turns out that in addition to destroying the rest of my body, Romaniacs took this toenail as well. I bashed it at some point on day one or two and it was swollen and a little sore for the rest of the event. I could feel the base of the nail scraping around where it had been snapped off under the skin. Quite enjoyable.

By Saturday nite the toe itself was beginning to turn a red and clearly there was some fluid collecting under the injured nail. Looked like a setup for a nasty bit of infection if the nail didn’t come off. (Trust me, I’m a doctor…)

So back in the hotel bathroom I set to work with the only surgical instruments I had available – the ones contained in the toolkit I carried in my Camelbak. (No, I don’t carry surgical instruments with me on the trail, I mean my regular old tools…) I washed the flat-head screwdriver as well as I could, and used it to pry the nail up from its bed. It didn’t really hurt much, as the nail had sheared itself almost completely free already. I did as much work with the screwdriver as I could, but the nail was still fairly well attached. I needed something sharp…

Thinking resourcefully, I spied the little shaving kit supplied by the hotel. Perfect! It was short work to smash the head of the disposable razor open with my pliers and carefully pull out its blades. Viola! I had two scalpels to help out with the job!

Moments later the nail dropped into the trash and I bound up the digit with some of my athletic tape (I’m soooo glad I took that stuff!) and a cotton pad pinched from the facial care kit I found next to the shaving kit. Not too shabby!

I cleaned the drops of blood off the tile floor and threw away all the tissue I had used. All spiffed up before Mike returned from the party just before midnight. We crashed out right away, only to be awakened an hour or two later when they began the burnout contest at the party next door.

When I landed in New York I purchased some antibiotic oinment and slathered it into the open hole where my nail used to dwell, then covered the whole mess with a few Band-Aids. I’m sure the travelers headed for Orlando that morning appreciated the show, as I was forced to do this in the seats at the gate from which my next flight would eventually depart. Hopefully the smell wasn’t too offensive.

A few days later now, and the toe feels fine. I’m not sure if a nail will ever grow back. Oh well, small price to pay.


2 Responses to “Just for “flavor””

  1. kitt stringer said

    Missed seeing you out there! I kept my eyes peeled. I lost my nail last year, took 10 moths to grow back!

    • desflurane said

      CONGRATS!! Strong work on third place!!
      I saw you around a few times, but there was always something preventing me from coming over and saying hello.

      Toenails come and go, glorious adventures last forever! 😉


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