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April 15, 2015

Serious Injury #27

Frankie is a one-hundred and five pound potential disaster when ever he sets himself in motion....or refuses to get into motion.  Frankie targets are walls, buckets, ceramic pots, door steps, cricket containers, boxes, and regretfully, more personal objects like my fingers, toes, shins, back, muscles, tendons, etc., or in general, ME.

I sport numerous Frankie related injuries.  I once dropped Frankie on my middle left finger crushing it so bad that neighbors now know the extent of my cussing vocabulary.  I ripped four inches of shin falling over a Frankie barrier one winter.  One summer, Frankie dug those hard front leg spurs into my bare skin when attempting to reach a carrot leaving me with a vampire like scar on my leg.

Believing myself a clever person, I continually attempt to find better ways to transport and move him without the risk of injury.  I've bought four different and varying sizes of carts as he grew but they are completely useless as it requires that Frankie be placed on top which I cannot do without a second person to help me lift Frankie.

I have considered marrying a second weight-lifting husband but multiple husbands is still against the law in Alabama.  Drat.

Recently I started using straps especially when walking Frankie in case I need to "redirect" Frankie in the right direction.  Frankie has a very bad habit of deciding his own direction regardless of potential risk, like walking in the middle of a road.

The strap goes under his front shell just behind his two front feet.  The strap works pretty good as I can lift Frankie to rotate him left or right with just a little bit of effort.
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Good turtle friends, Michal and Greta, stopped by here a few weeks ago.  Like to say they wanted to visit me but let's be honest:  Frankie is the big personality here at this house.  They wanted to see Frankie and headed to the back yard within five minutes of arriving.

On the agenda was taking Frankie on a Big Walk.  Frankie has not been on a Big Walk in a long time.  It's just too hard for me to navigate the ever growing Frankie by myself even with the strap.  Three people taking Frankie on a walk sounded oh-so-easy:  three navigators, three to watch for cars, three to pick up Frankie in a pinch.

Frankie did not oblige our guests.  First thing Frankie did once down the drive way was to stop and eat grass in the front yard and he wasn't going to stop eating grass because he hadn't seen that much grass since Fall.  Frankie wasn't going anywhere.  No Big Walk.  Frankie didn't care.  Frankie stuffed himself at the front yard salad bar.

Oh, getting him to return to the back yard was near impossible once he discovered where all the grass was.   Even three of us couldn't get him turned back toward the back yard.  Not while there was grass to be grazed.

Out came the strap.  I slipped it under Frankie's front shell, behind his front feet and rotated him toward the backyard.

Frankie wasn't going anywhere.

He dug those front feet into the asphalt drive and said, "Good luck getting me to the back yard.  You are going to have to drag me."

And I tried.  I pulled on that strap dragging Frankie about twelve inches, when something in my left elbow went 'pop' saying, "Should have listened to Frankie."

Poor Michal and Greta.  They came to spend time with Frankie.  They did not expect a wrestling match between a 105 pound shelled monster and a 135 pound already Frankie-damaged woman.  I did win.  Frankie did end up in the back yard.  But there will be no Big Walks for a while.

I ripped the tendon in my elbow.  It was fun explaining how I did that to the doctor.  He thought it was so funny that I got two shots in my buttocks.

Always wear nice underwear.  You never know when you may have to drop your drawers for a doctor and bare your butt.

It's been weeks since the incident.  Still Frankie.....and so is the elbow.

Lesson:  Sulcata owners should always wear nice underwear.