I never expected the aftermath of my accident to be so much harder than the actual crash.
More than the pain and inconvenience, I’m crippled by embarrassment. I am a cliché, hobbling around wrapped in bandages like so many other stupid westerners. And I’m angry at myself for caring so much about others’ opinions, but it’s hard not to when locals and travelers alike stare at the massive scrape over my entire arm, and my accident has been the only topic of conversation for the past week. I’m starting to see (on a much lesser degree) what it might be like to have a deformity, and while I put on a good front, I don’t like realizing just how much vanity drives me.
Beyond the superficial, I can’t shake the feeling of helplessness that has descended on me like the gritty humidity of Saigon. The crash itself made me feel like such a burden to travel with, and still not being able to walk well is infuriating. I ride my motorbike to the hospital to get my stitches removed, and I feel myself finally breaking down when I get utterly lost for hours in the maze of Saigon’s never-ending traffic.
And despite spending six nights recovering in this city that reminds me too much of my dislike of Bangkok, my plans are still quickly leading me to a dead end, as I hurry back down to the Thai islands for a diving course I won’t be able to do with fresh wounds, a volunteer assignment that will in all probability fall through, another Full Moon Party that I’m terrified will be a disappointment compared to my first one, and another chance with the boy that I didn’t manage to leave behind after all.
Though I suppose, if anything, this trip has taught me that everything works out in the end. So here’s to the end of Vietnam, and another adventure in Thailand.