Thirsty Thursday – Frostbiten

I’m going to use Thursdays as a bridge to anything alcohol related. I have a few decent stories involving alcohol although none as compelling as Tucker Max. This one took place when I was a junior in college and not quite 21 yet. I used to pregame with Bacardi rum and coke as my drink of choice. On this particular night I think I was probably black out drunk before I even got to the party. The party was in North Oakland which is about a 15 minute walk from South Oakland which was where I lived at the time. I don’t really have any recollection of the party but I remember getting thrown out about 30 minutes after I arrived. I thought I remembered some crazy shortcut that someone showed me my freshman year so I decided to make the trek back to my apartment myself with no other option. After walking down some random path to some train tracks, I realized that I had no idea where I was.

On normal nights this wouldn’t have been a big deal but this particular night it was about 0 degrees outside and it had snowed a few days earlier. This was your typical Pittsburgh winter. So as I’m wandering by myself in an area of Pittsburgh I’ve never been, in a black out state mind you, with no sense of direction, I found myself in a few predicaments. First off, I was wearing regular shoes and trudging through 6 inch deep snow so my feet were ice cold. My keys to my apartment and phone were no where to be found, most likely falling out of my pocket as I was falling down random hills. Understand there was no trail where I was walking. I was just moving through a wooded area with no idea what I was doing. I remember screaming for help but there was no one near by and then I thought better of it realizing that I was a likely candidate to get robbed and murdered. At one point I came to a fence that was blocking me from where I thought I needed to go. It wasn’t that tall of a fence but my shoe was too big to fit into the fence rung. I decided to take my shoe off and stick my foot in the hole to get myself over. This was a success but now I found myself without a shoe. I can’t really recall how it happened but I managed to work my way back to a street where I patiently waited for a bus. I was walking the complete wrong direction for what seemed like forever but was probably only a few hours. I got on this bus with one shoe and ice cold and was fortunate that the bus was taking me back to Oakland where I lived. I remember having my head in my hands just thanking god that I made it through this expedition. At this point the alcohol was starting to wear off and I made my way back to my apartment, without any keys. I had a hallway to the apartment where I took my jacket off and wrapped it around my frozen foot and passed out for an hour or so. When I came to I realized I had a significant problem. I couldn’t put any pressure on my foot and I decided to hop over about 6 streets to my friend Bill’s house. It was about 5 in the morning at this point and I started pounding on his door. His roommate, an engineer or something, wasn’t too pleased to see me as he had some exam early in the morning but I was lucky enough he woke up to answer the door. I passed out on his couch for a few more hours while I kept my foot next to the radiator. After waking up again, I put my foot in some luke warm water and was still having problems. I ended up going to the ER where I was diagnosed with frostbite.

They gave me some crutches and told me to stay off of it which I did. Now this is where amazing happens. They sent me to a specialist who takes care of limbs. I go into the office and there are about 20 people in the room, all age 70 and over. The first time he sees the foot it looks really pink and he didn’t really know what to tell me other than we’ll see how it heals. I had to put some type of cream on it and this was one of the scariest times of my life. I remember going to sleep one night in my bed with my entire leg feeling ice cold like I lost feeling and I remember thinking that worst case scenario was that I could lose my toes. If that doesn’t scare you I don’t know what does. Amazingly when I went back the second time the foot developed these wild pus filled blisters. The doctor cut off all of this dead skin and it was seriously a gruesome sight. I wish I had some pictures. After more time healing I remember this joyous day where he said I was pretty much fully recovered (with a few exceptions) and I sprinted home because it was the first time I was able to really enjoy being back to normal. The drawbacks of frostbite are that my foot gets numb in the cold. It doesn’t matter how many layers are on it, if it’s cold, my foot’s numb. This is really uncomfortable when you try to do things like skiing or any other winter related activities. Luckily for me though I survived with minor injuries and this began my illustrious career of stupid injuries related to alcohol.

By | 2016-11-01T23:26:42+00:00 January 18th, 2012|My Life|1 Comment

One Comment

  1. YoungCaseHo January 20, 2012 at 4:13 pm

    Haaaaaaaaaaaaa.

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