The list of people who helped me following my injury and continuing through to rehabilitation is a long one.
Louise Stevenson, who arrived in Canada about a week after I broke my leg, looked after me with all the practical no-nonsense skills that a veterinary surgeon brings to the problem of a patient with a broken bone. Her advice to stop whinging was blunt although I didn’t know I was whinging. She helped me negotiate the stairs in the Sutton Place hotel in Revelstoke and the queues at Kelowna airport, getting me and my wheelchair on a flight to Park City in Utah. She was also great company.
The family of Richard and Lynda Ayish deserve special mention. While I waited for two weeks for my daughter’s wedding they provided homecare and kindness in their house in Park City beyond anything that could reasonably be expected from people who had not known me for that long. The reputation of Americans as hospitable people is legendary and it’s built on the back of people such as the Ayish family.
My brother Damien also deserves special mention. He came down from his home in the country and gave up two weeks of work to nurse me in the period after I came home from surgery. I couldn’t have done it without him. Perhaps he wasn’t that pretty a nurse but he acceded without complaint to my every request whether it was going to pick up groceries, driving around Sydney to pick up wheelchairs or emptying the pee bottle. Most importantly he kept my spirits up in that period of time straight after surgery when I most needed help.
Jon Attwater was my go-to man when I needed a lift to hospital. He drove me there on the first day and on numerous other trips to the doctor or back to the hospital. He waited patiently for me and never complained. I’m deeply in his debt.
Dr Ian Meakin, legendary Sydney orthopaedic surgeon and skier, provided sound counselling when I was in the United States debating whether to come home for surgery. His common sense practicality and caring attitude, was a breath of fresh air after my experience with Canadian doctors.
Dave Sheppard, the Harry Potter wizard physiotherapist from MHS Physiotherapy in Manly you are a champ. The absolute go-to man for rehab from sporting injuries. To the staff at CMH Helisking including, Kevin Boekholt, thanks for all you did for me. Your reputation for professionalism is well deserved.
A long list of people called in to the Mater hospital in Sydney after I underwent surgery or subsequently visited my house while I was recovering to offer best wishes, cook meals, share a movie, debate philosophy and provide advice on recovery. Thank you to Michael Kirkman, Tim Anderson, Doug Sturrock, Ron and Mary Wilson, Barry Feyder, John Mather, Janine Fekete, Ian Mackay, Peter Joseph, Denise Elder, Margaret Carney, Rosslyn Skinner, Jan Davies, Tony and Meredith Aveling, Jackie Bourne and Tony Smuts, Tony Arena, Bob Johnson, Al Bolton, Prue Kelly, Michael Kelly, Catherine Kelly, Amelia and Bergin Kennedy, Phillip Hartog, Rob and Kim Boylan, Rod Puskar. The human voice is the greatest healing therapy there is. All of you provided it.
To my ever dependable staff Sarah Gonzales and Lea Doldan who kept our business going for months when I couldn’t attend full time thank you on behalf of myself and all our clients for your dedication, diligence and professionalism.
And to the legendary Allan Bolton, thanks for helping me build this blog. You may be a very ordinary swimmer but you are a whiz with computer language.