08 January 2009


The air around me is moving in mysterious cold wanderings, as if there's an air conditioner on. But who sets the AC to "misty, -14 degrees Celsius," as recorded by the nearest weather station? And who has an AC in Germany?

Lying on my back, my thoughts flit from one thing to the next as I try to distract myself from that feeling that I will explode if I'm not able to bend my leg soon. My foot is so cold, but I can't exactly massage warmth into it when I can't bend my leg and trying to reach it puts stress on my knee.

My window, curtainless as always, frames a clear blue sky, decorated by the eight or nine snowflakes I have cut out of scrap paper and taped to the window. I can see that the moon is very bright, though it is not in my line of vision--it must be near full. Its light silhouettes the smoke rising from the neighboring apartment building, the only thing moving in my small perception. A single star steadily holds my gaze.

But these things can't hold my interest. My swollen leg is twitching; it wants some freedom! I go back to wondering if it's better to have pain, itching, or discomfort. I again decide on the pain. At least then you can get so tired out, you have to sleep. At least then you can take meds that will help you. But this--this is comparable to the time that you had Tinnitus and you thought you were going to go insane. Just thinking about these two hopeless situations is enough to make me feel like throwing up, and I roll to my side, leaving the bum leg where it was.

People told you that this week was intensely cold, that Leipzig broke records for being colder than in the last twenty years. -21 degrees Celsius. Somehow you didn't notice, though your apartment couldn't have been much warmer. It was probably good for the swelling.

I start to think about how I miss Neosporin. The gel I've bought here is not comforting. I try to laugh when I think about how dragging a leg has caused a three-foot trail of dust and hair to follow me around. I think about how dirty the apartment currently is and how hard it is to do anything about it. There will be a party here tomorrow--today, and it depresses you to think how few people are most likely going to show up despite the large number of invitations that went out.

Your back is quite mad at you. First you buy a dinky mattress that it's supposed to deal with for two years. Then you have problems with it and figure you'll do something about it after Christmas. Christmas has come and gone and now you torture it by sleeping on it by night (it's always hated that) and making it sit slanted as it supports a raised leg by day.

Looking again at the star, I wish to share this view and pull out my ever-ready camera. Fiddling with the shooting star setting, the first picture looks good except for the very-obvious smear of bird poop that showed up on your window while you were in der Schweiz. Wishing you had gotten rid of it earlier, you rise (with difficulty), and open the window. Using wetted toilet paper, you rub away at the smear, but you forget that in weather like this, you're not going to get anywhere--it just freezes immediately.

After closing the window, and stiffly making it back into bed, I realize that opening the window to clean it didn't change the temperature of the room, it just temporarily fogged up the window and left a bigger smear. Nevertheless, I take another open-shutter picture and realize that it's so quiet I can hear when the shutter closes.

More than an hour has passed. Should the doctor really have wrapped the leg so tight that the unwrapped swollen parts bulged? My knee, my back, my leg, my knee. Side to side. Wishing you could cry.

You wonder why you like the mix of first and second person and if you'll like this post in the morning--the real morning, the morning where you think, "That was nice, I wish I could sleep for 8 more hours." You also wonder when you'll decide to post the post, close the laptop, put away the camera, and try to sleep again.

The shutter clicks.


  1. Michelle you are a funny girl! how I love you. i still want to come visit.

  2. I so hate being cold--the other day I took handwarmers into church just to be able to feel my toes.

  3. It's interesting, 'cause about two weeks or so I wrote something like that, too. I just didn't post it on my blog...

  4. Thanks for all the comments. Fabiola: you are going to visit, I just know it. Scribbit: handwarmers--that's a good idea. I always wished there were some kind of gloves and socks that had that stuff built into them so they could warm your whole hand or foot. Francy: yeah, I was kind of wondering if I should post something like this. Are you doing okay?