Day 11 to 13 The Swollen Knee

by - May 03, 2017

Day 11 to 13 The Swollen Knee

After 5 days of my right knee being in pain, it's time to stop and rest. I will take a van two days walking distance to Limogne en-Quercy and check in to the Gite. I will wait there for Clive and Maya and reassess my knee in two days. It's only day 11 of 89 days in Europe, best to be patient.

My driver is Jeremie. He's in his 20s and drives from March to November then off-season he trains to be a guide for spelunking in France and dog sledding in Norway. Who would have guessed? How many dog sledding spelunkers do you meet?

I get the last bed in Limogne en-Quercy. It's Monday and the town is closed for business except a bar and a small grocery store.

I limp around town and buy some groceries and some magic ointment called Osteophytum from the pharmecia. It has a herbal remedy call Arnica in the cream. I fill my backpack food for less than $20. I return to the Gite.

Just a note, pharmacies in Europe are almost like a clinic, where you can get some pretty powerful drugs over the counter that would require a prescription in the USA. The only challenge is the language barrier, as mentioned earlier, I took 8 times the dosage for magnesium since there were no directions in any language on the packet. Highly recommend a translation app like Google translate and download French for offline usage.

While we are on the subject of apps, another app that is essential is Pocket Maps which replaces hiking GPS devices. You download a hiking GPX file (GPX or Google Earth format will work) of the Podiensis route and import it to Pocket Maps. Google maps does not work without cellular or wifi, while Pocket Maps will work. This will taking a wrong tu

The first night, my roommate is Marie who I met in Conques at the dinner at the Abbey. She’s French and she speaks good English. She's a primary school teacher focused on 3 to 4 year olds. She's on a sabbatical for 6 months walking to Finisterre or Muxia. She has a good heart and has had some bad luck with her credit card which hasn't worked for a couple of days. She's hoping it can be fixed today at the post office which is also her bank. Isee her later in the day everything is worked out well. She's gotten some money from from the bank and shedecides to stay another night.

I lighten my load and mail 2 pounds of stuff home. I leave about 2 pounds in the Gite as a donation for other walkers to use. I reduce my pack weight a total 4 pounds. My pack should weight about 16 pounds, but I buy some foot cream.

As much as possible I keep my legs elevated usually sitting up against a wall with both feet high on the wall. While ice and elevation is a good idea It is very hard to find ice in Europe. Europeans don't use ice in drinks.

The Gite only as 11 beds. Most are taken by a theater group which is preparing to do a production in the town. There's a director, female and male lead role all staying here. On the wall in the dining room are a collage of theatre posters from the different events last year or two in the town. Impressive how a small town with so few people can get such incredible culture and art. Turns out funds for these opportunities are funded through the national government.

The second night, Clive and Maya arrive wet. They walked in the rain all day. They decide to stay two nights in Limogne. I will end up staying 3 nights here. My knee is still sore, so this is a good thing. I hope it improves tomorrow. We spend the rest of the evening planning where we are going to go next.

For dinner, we had our first warm meal in a while. We prepare a pasta with sausage, tomato sauce and cheese in the Gite’s kitchen . Even drink a wine from Cahor.

After dinner Clive and I talk to two 50+ year old French ladies walking a week or two in their multi year quest to finish the Podiensis. They are very interested in my knee and ask a bunch of questions. It turns out that one of them has also had an ACL knee reconstruction. Medical terms are difficult to translate so we use Google translate on our phones to communicate, which is kind of funny.

The third and final day in Limogne is spent exploring the town shops, checking our email, arranging for transportation to Cahor and accommodations for two nights.

The knee is better but still has some pins and needle type pain in the interior of the joint. It’s most likely some cartilage damage from the past that got aggravated. Only time will reset that injury and more rest days should be the ticket. The knee feels a better. Cross my fingers that I am walking soon…

We finish the final night in Limogne cooking pasta and playing darts at the local bar.

Tomorrow We head for Cahor and free internet.

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