The Star-Herald

Braking for the unexpected

A midnight attempt to take a bath turned into a surgery; a stint in rehab; and now recovery. Broken legs can be complicated.

Stand, pivot and step are three simple events. Unfortunately, they are also when the body is putting all the stress on a small area of bone. The result is snap, crackle and pop.

Following the event is a whole lot of noise as one crashes into the door, waking the dog and everyone else. Then there is the screaming and an inevitable wait for the ambulance crew and paramedics to arrive. Presque Isle and surrounding communities are well served by the men and women of the Star City Fire Department.

Arriving at the scene, these characters are concerned — concerned about their patient and how to remove him from his predicament without further damage. They have terrific imaginations and soon get the sack of spuds loaded on the truck. All this is done with humor and professionalism.

Then it’s a dash to the emergency room where the client is deposited and decisions made. Another crew is rounded up to take the victim to Bangor for surgery and rehab. 

Adventures can be fun. One discovers all sorts of connections to old friends, old stories, and memories of those days long ago.

Arriving in Bangor to be greeted by the nephew of one of the many first responders, it’s off to the surgeon’s suite and the work on becoming a cyborg continues. Screws, plates, nuts and bolts are installed and Mr. Potato Head has competition. Then to rehab, where more County-connected people begin the arduous process of recovery. One may scream, holler and yell, but this falls on deaf ears.

Finally, the early work is done, and it’s home again. 

So much for the midnight bath for this sack of spuds, improving and soon to be back out kicking cans down the road. There is a long list of fools ahead.

Orpheus Allison is a photojournalist living in The County who graduated from UMPI and earned a master of liberal arts degree from the University of North Carolina. He began his journalism career at WAGM television later working in many different areas of the US. After 20 years of television he changed careers and taught in China and Korea.

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