Sunday, September 26, 2010

'please don't let me have a blood clot' and other topics

I went to see Student Health services this morning, just to see if they could tell me what is going on with my leg. It hasn't stopped hurting for very long at all since it started Thursday* morning.The pain hasn't gotten worse either, which I guess is probably good.I don't really know what I expected from a doctor's office in Egypt, but I wasn't really surprised at what went on. I was sent back by the front desk to consult with a nurse about which doctor to see. When I talked to the nurse, she told me that her daughter gets cramps too, because she doesn't walk around enough. On a campus as big as this, with no means of transportation around the dorms either, somehow, I don't think that's it. If it were, I think I would probably be happier.
She seemed like she was about to tell me to leave when another nurse came in and asked if she'd taken my blood pressure. The first nurse said no, not yet, but then when the second nurse left, just asked me if I was having headaches or 'blood pressure complaints' and since I wasn't, didn't bother taking it. That was comforting.
Then I sat in a chair that the second nurse pointed me to to wait to see a doctor. It didn't take very long, and he was a pretty nice guy. I told him what had been going on, and then he poked my calf for a while, asking if it hurt (which it did), and then told me it was probably just a cramp.
Hello? I know it's a cramp! I told you it was a cramp! It's just a cramp that has lasted for FOUR WHOLE DAYS. What are you going to do about it?
Basically, nothing. I mean, I don't know if there's really anything to do at all, I was just expecting a little more than what I got. He did give me a prescription for pain, which I guess is nice, but I don't really know if I need it. I'd rather have it hurt and know that something is still wrong than not feel it at all. Does that make any sense?
He also gave me a recommendation to go to the hospital where AUC international students have insurance to get an ultrasound, to make sure I don't have a blood clot. From what he told me of the symptoms of a blood clot (swelling, warmth, discoloration, and pain), I don't have one, just pain. But, since the insurance does cover it, I'll make an appointment and go, just in case. There goes my fun Tuesday.
Anyway, classes went well, even if I was falling asleep a lot of the time. In Egyptian Literature, we read the story of the shipwrecked sailor, which I highly recommend. It involves a sailor, a shipwreck, a snake, and a shooting star. It's not as alliterative as my description makes it sound.
Arabic was funny today, because we played Memory, trying to match Arabic words with their English definitions. I didn't do very well, but that's okay because I still learned the vocab. I also learned a bit of Japanese vocab too, because one of my classmates (who went to a British high school in Cairo) asked my friend Satomi (who is studying at AUC from Japan) for a 'rubber', which really surprised me until I realized she meant an eraser. I'm not sure if Satomi knew either, but it all worked out in the end. It got me thinking though, and so I asked Satomi later what the word for a whiteboard eraser was in Japanese, because it couldn't be the same as a normal eraser, since part of that word means rubber. It turns out it's 'kokuban-keshi', while a normal eraser is 'keshi-gomu'. So, I learned a new Japanese word today, and also really surprised the other girl when I started speaking nihongo to Satomi. It was fun.
Most of my day post-classes has been spent studying for a map quiz that I may or may not have tomorrow in Art and Architecture. If it is tomorrow, it'll serve me right for not studying earlier, but I really hope it's not until Thursday! I will get a much better grade then, and not worry about it so much.
Here's the map I've been working on filling in:
there are 102 places to be put on this map, and i'm still missing about 15
zoom in on lower egypt!
Also, post doctor's visit and classes, I was having a fairly crappy day today. When I got off the bus in Zamalek, I was totally prepared to go up to my room and crash, but instead I decided to walk around the block, do my grocery shopping, and get some dinner from the really good taamiyya (falafel) place that Emily showed me a while back. By the time I got back to the dorms, my day was looking so much better, that I might just have to walk around every day from now on. Even though I got hissed at (that'll teach me to wear a semi-low cut but completely modest shirt!), it seriously improved my mood.
Even better, my friend Jen and I spent about an hour watching Amanda Palmer videos and hanging out, which was really fun, and I'm sad that she's going home in just a few days, even though I know it's the right thing.
So, classes tomorrow, and keep your fingers crossed that I don't have to take this map quiz! I don't want to fail the first test I take in Egypt...


  1. Is Jen going home, going home? Or is this for the "family" wedding and she will be coming back? Which shirt got you hissed at? I am glad it didn't upset you too much. xo, Mom

  2. yes, going home, going home. maggie was the one who was going home for the wedding.
    it was a tanktop that i was wearing with my coral cardigan that got the hisses...