30. Oops, I Did It Again

Last time I left you there were explosives going off left right and centre and we were all a little bit lacking in mental faculties due to wine and beer related reasons. New Years Eve sounds weirder when you describe it like that. Anyway, needless to say, my beginning to 2017 involves lots of Happy New Yearing and hugs and a stunning amount of confetti streamers;


Confused? Me too. Let’s not go into it.

The rest of the night descended into something, but time has rendered that memory hazy. (Editors note: Sure, ‘time’ is the reason you can’t remember anything Alex.) New Years Day was also a stereotypical washout – I honestly couldn’t tell you what we did but I’m pretty sure we all had a great time. That’s the one thing you’re guaranteed with this blog – detailed descriptions of events.

On the 2nd of January, we took the ferry over to Watsons Bay – a favourite spot of ours while we were living in Sydney. After Captain Cook’s extreme disorganisation (the ferry company that is, not the 18th century explorer) we also got our trip there free, which was an added bonus. It was cloudy when we arrived, meaning Katie and I spent most of the time assuring everyone how nice it really was in the sun. We headed up to the lighthouse at Sydney Harbour’s South Head to have a look at the view and wait for the clouds to clear, before heading down to the beach to relax for a little while.

This is where it gets interesting. Those of you who haven’t already may wish to read this blog post from April before continuing.

Now, hopefully, everyone is aware that back in March we proved that my joints are very supple – so supple in fact that they have a tendency to slip off to places they shouldn’t be just like my kneecap did in that story.

So, we’re on Watsons Bay beach and there’s this massive shark in the water right? And there’s a baby floating in the water directly behind it, and this sharks basically saying ‘it’s dinnertime suckers’. So I saw this and legged it into the water, fear having been wiped from my mind by the thoughts of the headlines this would get saving this kids life. So me and sharky boy start wrestling, and as you can imagine, him being a beast of the ocean and me being an out of shape weakling, he managed to pull my shoulder out of place and dislocate it!

Alright, so this might be a slight exaggeration of the exact incidents leading up to the fact that yes, I dislocated another limb, this time my shoulder.

What actually happened is so excruciatingly boring and unimpressive that I’ve had to come up with at least 7 different stories. If you’d like to know how I actually did it, I’ll summarise it very briefly below. For those of you who prefer your dislocations a bit more fruity and exciting, skip the next paragraph.

I was lying on my towel face down on the beach, pushed myself up, twisted round to look at something on my leg and it came out. I told you it was rubbish.

Welcome back the rest of you! So there I am on a beach with a dislocated shoulder, but due to the innocuous way I did it no one actually believed anything was wrong. Eventually, when it became apparent that my arm wasn’t where it should be, we had to call another flippin’ ambulance (at $800 a go – always buy travel insurance kids) and I ended up getting knocked out in a hospital to have it put back in.

Here’s me being awfully brave

The ambulance ride was fairly uneventful, due to the fact I’d learnt my lesson with regards to morphine and only asked for a little bit this time. It was still enough to make me quite chatty, though this time I stopped short of telling the paramedics that ‘My Grandma had morphine once and she thought they were trying to kill her’.

We arrived at the hospital and I felt remarkably okay, all considered. It turned out the doctor treating me had spent 2 years at Wythenshawe Hospital, about 10 minutes from my house, and had family in Hale, where I went to school. So we had a nice chat about that – again, my morphine induced words were probably offensive but we’ll never know.

They then knocked me out to put my shoulder back in. Now, what happened next I’m not sure whether I should be proud or ashamed. Please bear in mind I had zero recollection of this. When I came round after being knocked out, the very first words out of my mouth were; ‘Can I still drink alcohol tomorrow?’.

It may make this seem a more reasonable request if I explain we had long planned to do a day trip to the Hunter Valley wine region on the 3rd of January, but still, everyone from the doctors, nurses and my dad laughed at me for it. Ah well.

In any case we left the hospital with my shoulder joint in the correct place, which I’ve decided I much prefer. Unfortunately there’s less gore involved in a shoulder dislocation, so you’ll all have to head back to the knee blog for your fix of that.

Luckily, the answer to my earlier question about drinking turned out to be yes. Well – I can’t remember the answer but I’ll just guess that it was and hope for the best, I had wine to drink.

We were off to the Hunter Valley in a minibus rented by Stu, for a day full of drinking and, well, drinking probably. There’s only so many ways to describe wine tasting and as I’ve done it twice on this blog already, I’ll keep this one brief.

Wine, lots of it.

There you are. I could go into detail, but frankly I’m not sure it would seem as exciting as it actually was and I couldn’t do it justice, so instead here’s a picture of me in a sling. That’s what you all really want to see isn’t it?

Lovely day, lovely people, strange little finger thing

We now speed over to the next day, the 4th of January, when my Dad and sister did the BridgeClimb and my Mum, Katie and I did the Opera House Tour. Both were very interesting and full of facts and stories and good views. Naturally, afterwards, we ended up in the Opera Bar again. It’s hard to leave. We then had a smashing meal at Cyren, the restaurant of choice of Katie and I whenever anyone visited us as it was a) very nice and b) a 3 minute walk from our apartment. We departed Sydney city for the last time that night on the ferry to spectacular views of the bridge and opera house.img_7486


Our final day dawned and involved a fair bit of packing, emotion, tidying our airbnb, all finished off with a lovely meal in the evening at the waters edge. So it was time to say goodbye to Sydney, goodbye to our Sydney family and goodbye to my actual family. They were all brilliant and the combination of the 3 gave us some of our best memories of the trip. Thank you to all of you. I promise to keep my various limbs in the right place until I see you next.

Alex Odlin would really appreciate some free physiotherapy. He is happy to pay in hilarious stories from his travels. Or chocolate, up to you. Just not money, sorry.

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