Greetings (and advice) from the Caribbean

BWIA AirwaysApologies for my seeming neglect these past couple of days but between the packing and the making ready to travel to the Caribbean and the actual hours spent in the air in getting here I have been unable to devote much time to preparing a post. But now I am here in Tortola, all bright skies and bougainvillea, looking out to sea with a view of Virgin Gorda in the violet distance, and with the sails of a couple of yachts providing visual interest in the middle ground.

It all feels a world away from the cold and drear of February in East Sussex, as indeed it is. But as is often said of travelling, you invariably bring your own little problems with you; travelling merely provides you with a change of backdrop. In my case, one of those troubles I have carried with me is the messed up shoulder from my spill a couple of weeks ago. The damage turned out to have been a bit worse than I had initially thought and it appears I may be off the bike rather longer than I had expected.

One of the things I did (belatedly) just before hopping on the flight was to pay a visit to an osteopath, something I should have done some time ago – say, the day I wiped out. I am fortunate that I do have a very good osteopath in the neighbourhood. I should make better use of him although at thirty quid a visit I am rather (naturally, but in my case foolishly) reluctant to do so.

But then again I’ve always had this unshakeable belief in my own native resiliency and an optimism that everything, no matter how debilitating, will heal up in a day or two of its own accord. It is an outlook I dare say that I  share with a lot of males and one that goes a long way towards explaining why those of us of the Y-chromosome persuasion tend to have higher insurance premiums and lower life expectancies.

At any rate, my osteopath congratulated me on the very thorough job I did of inflicting a great deal of soft tissue damage to my right shoulder and suggested that my achy ribs are the result of multiple greenstick fractures and some additional cartilage damage as well. Six to eight weeks he tells me, and possibly longer before I am fully well again although I might be able to be back in the saddle before that if I take care of myself. He had wanted to see me again fairly soon for another session but since I had left my visit to the last moment that was not possible. A pity, since the manipulations he did on my shoulder worked minor but immediate wonders. Extra sessions might not have shortened the overall healing time but I feel certain they would have reduced the amount of discomfort by quite a bit. Alas. Another of life’s bitter lessons.

So now I sit in the sunshine doing my prescribed shoulder exercises and feeling inspired to spread the word among my fellow Y-chromosome-burdened cyclists that getting treatment from a good osteopath is a very good investment when you’ve gone base-over-apex on your bike, even if it isn’t covered on the NHS. On the cycling side of things I hear there is quite a road cycling fraternity here in the British Virgin Islands and my brother has put me in contact with the president of the local club. So although I might not be riding much in paradise myself these next few weeks, I can at least get a flavour of what it must be like and hopefully some nice images to post on the site.



  4 comments for “Greetings (and advice) from the Caribbean

  1. February 23, 2013 at 5:46 pm

    Good to hear that you have arrived safe and sound Roff. Sounds like you did a proper job on your shoulder and ribs. Let us hope that the healing properties of sunshine and blue, warm seas may speed your recovery more than the zero degrees damp and cold that the UK is cloaked in.

    Shame you may be off the bike longer than you thought but I hope you will get some good ‘interviews’ with the cycling fraternity out ther and, of course, some classy pictures to back them up.

    Take care of those injuries Roff and I look forward to updates as and when you can.

  2. Ron Clark
    February 23, 2013 at 9:04 pm

    Well, on the plus side, if you have to be in pain anyway, it’s a hell of a lot better be be in pain in the Caribbean than in dreary winter England watching the sleet hit the windows. Good luck on your recovery, and no doubt there’s someplace there you can rent a bike if you get to feeling better…..

    • Roff Smith
      February 23, 2013 at 9:17 pm

      Yes, the local road cycling types have offered to get me out on the road assuming I get well enough. It would be a great place to ride if somewhat hilly and steep!

      • February 24, 2013 at 1:16 pm

        Nice work if you can get it, I’m not at all envious, not one bit.

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