Tasting the Japanese bitumen

echothree

Speeding Up
Sep 8, 2008
168
1
38
Mitaka
#1
Hey all,

As embarrassing as it is to admit, I probably have to report on my latest exploits. I was tonking down on the last section of the Odawara loop yesterday about 45kph on a Han Solo ride. I left pretty late in the day, so by the time I got to 10kms from Odawara it was getting dark. Pretty silly to be going that fast when I couldn't see, but all was going well enough.
All of a sudden I hit some speed bumps and my face is grinding along the road, and I think, "oh, I've crashed." My ears are ringing. I get to my feet and off the road and take a seat on the grass for a moment.
I'm bleeding everywhere and feel pretty second-hand, but figure I should try to get back to town. My rear tyre has blown out, the wheel is buckled, the shifters are bent at a wacky angle, plus my hand is starting to hurt and I don't think I'd be able to brake.
So I stick out my thumb... about ten cars go past, slowing a little but not stopping for the weird gaijin (it was pretty dark so they couldn't see me so well). Just as I was resigning myself to the ride back somehow a car stopped and a young couple were suitably shocked when they saw I was dripping with blood. We managed to squeeze my bike into their car and off to the hospital, where my rescuers waited (they were incredibly helpful; after the hospital they took me out to dinner, drove me to the train station, and paid for my shinkansen ticket to Tokyo despite my protests).
At the hospital they did a CT scan (hit my head pretty hard - I was wearing a helmet but I took most of the blow on my cheek). That was all clear, so I had my wounds stitched up. I look pretty scary - one eye is puffed closed like Rocky Balboa in the final rounds. I've got a broken bone in my hand, so on monday I'll go to the hospital and see if I can find someone to operate on it. (any advice on getting orthopedic surgery in japan welcome... I have travel insurance which should cover it).
A big bummer all around, but it could have been worse - I could have crashed on my good bike!

clay.
 

kpykc

Speeding Up
Jun 13, 2007
804
4
38
38
Tokyo
#2
oh, god, that's a terrible news, Clay!
Sorry, I can't give you any advice on surgery, I hope, more knowledgable people will post here soon.

Send a PM if you need any help - I'm staying in Yokohama/Tokyo on holidays and have plenty of free time.
 
Jan 14, 2007
2,514
213
83
Noda
japanichiban.com
#3
:eek:

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Can only get better right?

Take it easy...lucky you had a helmet on.
Get a 2nd or 3rd opinion on your hand too...

Surgeons like to do surgery, so their opinion is not always the best one to listen to.

Very nice of that couple to help you. Just goes to show there are nice people around when you need them...although sometimes you wonder.
 

massa

Warming-Up
Feb 22, 2008
174
0
0
Setagayaku
#4
Hi caly,

Sorry to hear.
Although most of hospitals are closed tonight but some are open for emergency. Consult with your nearest hospital, whatever its medical specialty is, and you can get some most appropriate solution on your troubled portion.
Any way, a hospital can show you the most suitable way for you. Or, call 119 for ambulance. I'm sure that surgery is merely one option among treatments.

massa
 

Pete

Speeding Up
Sep 22, 2006
144
1
38
Ichikawa Chiba
#5
Hi Clay

Sorry to hear about your accident. That's such a bad way to start the year.

Here are a couple of possibilities for treatment.

If you live in Asakusa, Saint Lukes International Hospital is fairly close by in Tsukjii. They have pretty good facilities with many English speaking doctors and a translation service.

There is also the Tokyo Medical and Surgical Clinic, which is opposite the Tokyo Tower. If you speak to the receptionist on Monday she can make an appointment with an orthopedic specialist. I'm not sure if they have the facilities to repair a bone in the hand, but the Dr will refer you to a good clinic and Dr who can.

Good Luck. I hope it all works out well.
 

marc

Speeding Up
#6
Yow, sorry to hear about your crash, I hope you're feeling better soon.

I second the recommendation for St. Luke's hospital. I've been there several times for a variety of emergency and non-emergency things and have had good experiences with them.

Hope the rest of the year is better than this!

Marc
 

Philip

Speeding Up
Feb 15, 2007
765
7
38
Setagaya
#7
Hi Clay,

Sorry to hear about your accident. I second Pete's advice and hope you recover quickly. Let me know if there is anything I can do to help.

What an amazing couple that picked you up and took care of you. I wonder if TCC can do something to thank them?

Philip
 

echothree

Speeding Up
Sep 8, 2008
168
1
38
Mitaka
#8
thanks

Thanks for the advice and support. I was planning on going to the Asakusa hospital which is 5 mins walk away (http://www.asakusa-hp.jp/) but it sounds like it would be worth the train ride to go to St Lukes.

I spoke to a doc in Australia (my travel insurance company put her on the phone when I rang to flag the claim) and she said as long as the break hasn't broken skin and I still have sensation in my fingers (check and check) it's better to wait until the swelling goes down before getting serious about operations or whatever... so there's no rush there. I looked at the x-rays and it looks nasty! Yow.... I think if I hadn't seen the break, my hand wouldn't be so sore (damn psychosomatics).

Re: those couple that picked me up. I have their email address, and they are planning on a visit to perth later in the year, so I'm going to put them up at my place and show them around.
 

AlanW

Maximum Pace
Jan 30, 2007
1,214
435
103
Tokyo
#9
Clay,
That sounds like a nasty crash, but from your report it looks like there's no permanent damage done (to you anyway). Good to hear you got to hospital and home OK. Speedy recovery.....

AW.

ps... at least your old, worn out components went out in style!
 

kiwisimon

Maximum Pace
Dec 14, 2006
2,655
474
103
Japan
#10
Re: those couple that picked me up. I have their email address, and they are planning on a visit to perth later in the year, so I'm going to put them up at my place and show them around.
That and a night at the Burswood, well maybe not their stake, but a ride out and a round of drinks. When you see them can you give them a collective three cheers from TCC.
Good luck on the hand but it doesn't sound too painful, I would recommend a sports injury clinic but only cause my mate is a specialist in doing surgeries on shoulders and knees. any chance of a new bike on the insurance
 

Deej

Maximum Pace
Oct 13, 2007
1,018
149
83
Setagaya
#11
Ouch!

Clay, I'm sorry to hear that you went down so hard the other day. That must have been frightening. Thankfully, you managed to walk away from it with all your parts -- including your sense of humor -- intact, and you were able to meet some nice folks as well. Hopefully, you'll be back on your bike (a different one, perhaps) soon.

Take care and stay positive!

Deej

p.s. I'm curious about those speed bumps you mentioned. Are they by any chance the metallic rectangular ones that run between the lanes. I nearly got taken out by some of those about a month ago near Miygase-ko. I was descending at around 60kph and took a corner too fast and suddenly found myself in a nest of those bumps. Somehow, I managed to avoid hitting one. But if I had ...
 

thomas

The Crank Engine
Nov 1, 2005
1,805
213
93
多摩区
#12
Clay, I am very sorry to hear about your crash. I can also recommend St. Luke's Hospital. Most of the doctors and many of the medical staff are English-speaking. There's always one English-speaking person at check-in counter 4. She'll help you with all procedures.


Deej said:
Are they by any chance the metallic rectangular ones that run between the lanes. I nearly got taken out by some of those about a month ago near Miygase-ko. I was descending at around 60kph and took a corner too fast and suddenly found myself in a nest of those bumps. Somehow, I managed to avoid hitting one. But if I had ...
The same thing happened to me once on a ride (Unagi II) near Enoshima, however I wasn't able to avoid "the nest", as the cyclist in front of me completely obstructed my view.
 

echothree

Speeding Up
Sep 8, 2008
168
1
38
Mitaka
#13
insurance

I'm not sure that I'll be able to claim anything bike related on insurance... the wheels are now toast and the old girl has some nice battle scars now, but the wheels were old, and scars on a commuter are cool. :) Same for my now cracked helmet and torn jersey and knicks - they were ready to be tossed at the end of this trip anyway so I'm not too bothered, but I'll try to claim my gore-tex jacket which now has a nice rip down the back.

The lumps, Deej, are a set of lozenged-shaped things in a checkered pattern across the road, quite nasty at speed. Lesson learned: blinky lights ain't much chop! :eek:

clay
 

Mike

Maximum Pace
Sep 24, 2007
1,066
9
58
Kanagawa
#15
Clay, just got back from 3 weeks at home and was surprised to read this to say the least. Hope you're feeling better soon mate. That couple was awesome:)
 

TOM

Maximum Pace
#16
Speed bumps...

So sorry to read about your ill-fated downhill...I wish you a speedy and complete recovery Clay !

Most of these speed bumps pose an outright threat and certainly no longer serve their initial purpose (which, I suppose, is to discourage hot rodding motorists from terrorizing the road)...like the ones that can be found on the downhill section from Shiraishi to Sadamine (Higashi Chichibu - see attached thumbnail)...anyone not knowing about their existence could easily crash there in the half-light of dawn or dusk. These life-threatening bumps ought to be abolished!

I'm not sure that I'll be able to claim anything bike related on insurance... the wheels are now toast and the old girl has some nice battle scars now, but the wheels were old, and scars on a commuter are cool. :) Same for my now cracked helmet and torn jersey and knicks - they were ready to be tossed at the end of this trip anyway so I'm not too bothered, but I'll try to claim my gore-tex jacket which now has a nice rip down the back.

The lumps, Deej, are a set of lozenged-shaped things in a checkered pattern across the road, quite nasty at speed. Lesson learned: blinky lights ain't much chop! :eek:

clay
 

echothree

Speeding Up
Sep 8, 2008
168
1
38
Mitaka
#17
good news

Hi all,

Good news today - I went into St Lukes... it was pretty busy but in typical Japanese fashion so organised that I got a number here, card there, xray here, saw surgeon there and was done in a bit over an hour - most impressed. The surgeon says that my hand doesnt need surgery (the bone is a little misaligned but evidently not too bad). So a few weeks rest and it will be all good to go for my snowboarding trip in feb. :)
So unfortunately no more rides for me (Im leaving for Hokkaido end of Jan, then straight back to Perth), but it could be a lot worse. Thanks all for the great rides youve shown me in my time here and I hope to be back again soon!

clay.
 

Mike

Maximum Pace
Sep 24, 2007
1,066
9
58
Kanagawa
#18
No more rides? Are you serious? I was hoping to get in a little revenge before you left:mad: Oh well, you'll have to make use of the other hand and do some drinking before you go Clay. check your e-mail:D
 
Jan 14, 2007
2,514
213
83
Noda
japanichiban.com
#20
if anyone wants to see some photos of how pretty I turned out after my crash;
http://picasaweb.google.com/echothree/Crash#
:eek:
No Humpty Dumpty jokes now, although I am tempted! :eek:

Looks painful. Were the stitches due to glasses or helmet impact?
I have similar photos of my first big crash. My sunglasses, forced down by the impact of the helmet, split the flesh under my eye. 3 stitches.
I kept the blood stained helmet as a war memorial too.