The Real Xterra Phuket
As you all may have heard I pulled a rather lovely performance out of my something or rather last weekend to take away my debut professional win on round two of the Asia Pacific Xterra Series. But here is a quick pre and post race report to show you life as an athlete is not all sunshine and rainbows.
Pre race: While travelling we all like to come up with various different methods to try stretch our already meniscal budgets just that little bit further. Local markets are an excellent way to get cheap but filling food, whatever it may be, for just a a few dollars per person. I say whatever it may be in a literal sense with most of our journey being covered already and I am yet to see cattle, sheep or pigs. However, there are a variety of other stray animals that could be of substitute. After several nights at the markets night three (7days prior to race day) happens to be a “burger off” between a dozen of the local 5 star resorts. For burgers at $2 a piece it was a fantastic option to fill up after a week on rice and veges. 2am rolls around and Morgan and I simultaneously awake. Trying to paint the least graphic picture possible, there were two humans with two emergency evacuation points each, one toilet and one shower. The rest I’m sure could be put together. Race weight….. Check.
Post Race: Bleeding, nauseous and barely able to stand minutes after crossing the finish line I partake in an hour or two of post race interviews. This was followed by being taken back out on course to run over a few sections again as fox sports missed my finishing footage due to an early arrival. I like to think of this as some sort of warm down, before finally being able to see medical staff. As infection is a slightly higher risk in a third world country and the need for stitches they suggested I am treated at a local hospital. I have heard great things about medical facilities in South East Asia but as it unfolded I will let you be the judge.
I am taken through to the ER of a public hospital which is a rather large open room filled with approximately 20 beds. Due to it being nearly at capacity I am lucky enough to be placed in the center of the room with front row seats (about 3metres away) to where doctors are performing an open cavity chest surgery on a young gentleman whom is screaming at the top of his lungs. His vitals begin to drop with his body heading into shock and they finally decide it is a good idea to maybe turn my bed around. And it did not end here..
After stitching my tiny cut (in comparison) back up minus the option for local anesthetic, outside the heavens begin to open and it pours down. With doors open as the only means of ventilation a small population of stray dogs begin to enter the ER room. To my entertainment regardless of hygiene, it was rather amusing watching a series of nurses running through the hospital attempting to remove these animals. I think it was time to check out.
Onwards and upwards for the next leg of our trip.