When I was younger I never much thought about going to the doctor. I assumed I was invincible and that any malady that I was experiencing was going to be temporary. It wasn't until I reached the age of thirty eight that I realized the value of seeing a doctor. You see, after finally going to a doctor for what I thought was just a respiratory ailment, I found out I had cancer.
Having learned that lesson, I have finally decided that the intense pain in my foot is not normal. It only took me twenty three years to figure that out. I first noticed it when I went to New Orleans in 1985 with Garet. After a few days of pounding the pavement sightseeing, it felt like I had been hit with a hammer in the ball of my foot.
I have ruined most of my vacations over the last twenty three years because I thought the pain would eventually go away. It didn't. I was crippled in Amsterdam, pulled up lame in Germany, had to take taxis everywhere in Paris, and missed out on many sites in Rome because of my obstinate belief that my foot could heal itself. I couldn't even conjure up a miracle cure while wandering around the Vatican. Probably because God was punishing me for writing mean stories about nuns.
This coming Wednesday I am getting my foot fixed. The doctor is going to cut my right foot open and scoop out the Neuroma that has been plaguing me all these years. Both my mom and one of my brothers have had this operation, and they assure me the results are worth it. They say it is like night and day, no more pain. That's great, I already have a number of hikes planned, and maybe even the Boston Marathon.
The doctor tells me that the actual operation takes him eight minutes from the time he starts until he sews me up. I have two problems with that. First, if that is how long it takes, why do I have to be there for five hours? The second thing is that eight minutes is fine, but I would really prefer it if he would take his time and not try to set a new Guinness record while cutting me up.