"I'm going to speak my mind because I have nothing to lose."--S.I. Hayakawa

Friday, December 2, 2016

The Scream Heard 'Round the World (or, Tough Guy Personified)

Imagine what would be the worst thing that could happen to you while you're traveling in the Middle East.   Other than all that terrorism stuff, of course, or having all your money and your passport stolen.

How about tripping over your shoelaces as your exit the security checkpoint at the Dubai airport?   How about landing so hard you fracture your hip?   How about letting out a scream that was heard around the world.

Bad news, huh?

Cap writing postcards to friends around the world.   If you get a postcard, know that a lot of thought and effort went into it.

\Well, that's what happened to my friend Cap, at age 80, last week just as he was heading for his gate to fly to Hong Kong after spending several weeks in Oman and the United Arab Emirates.   From there, he had planned to go to Mongolia and Siberia.

My long-time friend Patti with Cap.

Cap had to sign a release before the UAE folks would let him board his flight.   He could not use his leg at all, and said his left leg was like a useless rope.

In Hong Kong, at a hospital, he learned the bone was fractured at the hip joint.   They wanted to operate immediately, but Cap opted to return to the US and go to the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix, Arizona.   He had a 12 hour flight to Seattle, then a short layover, and a three hour flight to Phoenix.

Cap, right, and his friend Happy in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, last year.

Cap broke his hip on Nov. 25.   Not sure, but I think that was OUR Nov 24, Thanksgiving day.   Yesterday he had a full hip replacement operation.   So, if I'm correct in the time zone count, he went seven days with a broken hip, flew from Dubai to Hong Kong, to Seattle, to Phoenix!

Patti says he's the talk of the medical staff at the Mayo Clinic and one doctor called him "one tough cookie."

Cap making friends with a nomadic herder in Mongolia.   We had stopped along the road to photograph the herd of sheep and goats when the herder rode up.    Great encounter, thanks to Cap.

The herder on his 25-year-old Mongolian horse.

By the way, once a Marine, always a Marine.

Good on ya, Cap.   You will be resuming your global travels soon.


  1. I have always thought Cap is amazing ... this tops it all. I cannot imagine one other human being I know who could get from Dubai to Hong Kong (7 hour flight), be xrayed there and told he has a fractured hip, and still then do the 12 hour flight to Seattle and the 3 hour layover to get his flight to Phoenix. Sheer grit! Your support throughout has been SO important to me Jeanne. THANK YOU!! Love, Patti

  2. Wow....he's made of better stuff than I am. Glad all is okay now.

  3. My Dear Gullible, here it is, Friday, the 16th of December 2016. You put up this wonderful Post on Friday December the 2nd, the day after my hip replacement surgery here in Phoenix Arizona at the Mayo Clinic Hospital. Two weeks have now passed. The drama of blood clots is a reality.

    So too is the reality of what happened back about 3PM in the afternoon of Friday the 25th of November in Dubai UAE. I will do a Post on one of my websites to discuss this in great detail.

    This is for you Dear Gullible. Play The Tape All The Way Through. I am one of the luckiest people in the world because of the specific circumstances of my fall. The fall was coming. The fall was 'written in the stars'. This fall was by no means my first nor my last tumble to earth.

    Play The Tape All The Way Through Gullible. YOU are in Mongolia (Russia, China, India, Australia ..) YOU are in the far North of Mongolia (how about the South Pole Gullible). YOU fall there in the remote hut with the local Mongolians. Instantly YOUR leg has become a piece of rope. What Do You Do? YOU are in pain and unable to function.

    I was in an airport, out near the boarding gates, fully packed out of my hotel room with bag and baggage all of us going to Hong Kong. All I had to do was to 'suck it up and get on the plane'.

    What DO YOU DO Gullible in remote Mongolia (the South Pole .. ). YOU risk hospitalization. A bad option. How do you get your stuff together? Visualize it. Live it. Play The Tape All The Way Through.

    In one split second, I was destined to have become a lifelong captive in the UAE. Unable to pay cash for an absolutely horrendous medical bill. All of my assets gone. YES I had insurance. NO they were not going to pay. Their terms and conditions were already up and flashing in Patti's face.

    I think I am going to stay in the continental United States.

    Play The Tape All The Way Through My Dear Gullible. Think, deeply think about what I am writing.

    With Joy and with Love from Patti and myself. Thank You So Very Much For This Post.

    1. While I understand and appreciate what you are saying, I doubt my wanderlust will allow me to stay home.

      When I asked a friend years ago if she wasn't concerned flying in third world airplanes, she replied, "At least I won't die sitting on my couch." I refuse to die sitting on my couch. International travel is a spin of the roulette wheel, to be sure. I never went to Europe when family was stationed there because I was afraid of Carlos the Jackal. I never went to the Pribilof Islands when Ken was working there because I was afraid of flying. I haven't gone into restaurants I really wanted to try because I was too shy as a single. Fear and worry are so restricting.

      But, again, I appreciate your comments. Keep your shoes tied and wear slip-on shoes in airports.

    2. There is no answer here. There is no right and there is no wrong. You pay your money and you take your chances. YOU yourself fell down coming down the slope from the road when we did the photo shoot with the Mongolian Herder. A significant bruise on your upper leg. That fall could have been on your tailbone and caused spinal trauma. Again, there is no answer here. Age does catch up with all of us however. Smiles, Cap.

    3. So here it is, Sunday, May the 21st 2017, in Pueblo, Colorado, and my hip is better but other things are still bothering me, two knees to be exact. And YES I am planning to return to the 'Other Side' of this earth and soon. June 2017? Maybe. IF women could really remember childbirth there would be far fewer children but NO, they only remember the results and get pregnant again. So I am sitting here in this very class. Ready to get pregnant and go off to Asia. KNOWING that a future fall to the ground is a distinct possibility. Smiling. Smiling because at long last I am again feeling good and raring to go. Much Joy. Cap