The day my hand came back

Yippee, the day before yesterday I got the cast from my lower arm removed in the St. José hospital in Lisboa, after an X-ray picture indicating that things are healing well. Which cast? Six weeks ago in Germany I broke two metacarpal bones of my right hand [X-ray picture] when I fell with a bike cycling down a hill near a lake close to Schwerin. Yes, again and yes, I will be more careful with bikes in the future. :) But why did this kind of stuff not happen before? I was never even in hospital until this March. Are my reflexes becoming slower as I am going towards 30? Am I starting to overestimate my own capabilities? Do I take more risks than I used to do? Just co-incidences? I am not quite sure.

Over the last six weeks I learned to do basic left-handed writing and to brush my teeth with the left hand, and how to use my teeth when opening stupid plastic wrapping and when closing bags. I also found out that it is possible to put up a tent (with some patience) and to cycle a bike with one hand. Hm, the latter one actually contradicts with my promise above. But hey, lets look at it from the the perspective of a rider falling off a horse? Real challenges though are slicing hard bread and cheese. ;)

Now the skin of my hand is cleaned again and the nails are cut, but all the joints still need to wakey wakey again after their long sleep, which causes slight pain in some situations. Typing is fine, but using a bike break or opening a car door does not work yet. To avoid surprises I still give people my left hand.

Thanks to Rita and the Slovenian girl (sorry, forgot the name) for giving me a lift from Colos village to Lisbon. Thanks to Sylvia and Johann for hosting me and thanks for picking me up, people on the road back to Colos yesterday and today. I went to the 1st option recommended by Hitchwiki for going south from Lisbon, was sent back a bit by some cops, was sent back further back by a friendly road patrol worker and got a lift after an hour with a fast car by a calm guy with prison-style tattooed forearms. He dropped me at the next petrol station across the big bridge where I started asking people if they were going south (2nd option on the Hitchwiki page, my first choice next time, hehe). A guy with tattoo studio-style tattooed forearms recommended to “pick up a bus”. A few minutes later a young well-dressed lady in a rental car approached me again after telling me she won’t be going my direction, inquiring where in the south I want to go. :) In the car we had a warm chat and after finding out the right exit at another petrol station she dropped me near the dual carriageway south. Thanks for passing on your positive energy and for being so helpful! I only had a small and light cloth bag with me, so hiked long stretches along the roads and small towns — feeling like a real tramp. I liked Alcácer do Sal so I stayed there for a few hours. The two construction workers that gave me a lift to town waved down from a small balcony while I was having my lunch on a park bench under some old trees, with a welcome cool breeze coming from the river. I was about 100 km from my destination when the sun set. A confusing business man owning a few companies producing house electronic systems stopped despite the dark (“I am not afraid of people.”) and brought me to Ourique, another pretty town, about 30 km from Colos. I tried getting lifts for one more hour, but then there were just no more cars anymore. So I rested on a bench in a small peaceful church garden on the hill, with some cardboard protecting me the night’s cold. The hill was mine for a night. :) This morning I got a lift with a smiling Ukrainian truck driver to Colos. I really have to work on my Russian!

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