Switzerland 2021

Friday September 10, 2021

Saturday September 11, 2021
Davos Platz

Sunday September 12, 2021

Yesterday on the way up Flüelapass I noticed lots of eye floaties in my left eye..
This morning my left eye was worse if anything, I could also see very small gray or black spots, and it was starting to really impact my vision...
Then I checked the internets...
That is supposed to be considered a medical emergency, go to ophthalmologist or ER, or risk loosing your eyesight.
Dehydration and nearsightedness can cause this fun, I dehydrate myself regularly i guess, and I am certainly nearsighted.

I briefly allowed myself a bit of denial -
- denial that "extreme" cycling had triggered this.  Of course it had, but it took me weeks to admit it.  Kathy told me later she considered my activities "extreme", while I certainly never had.  I initially argued with the label "extreme" but conceeded almost immediately.  "Extreme" is like driving too fast, you don't do it, everyone else does it... I drive the right speed, and my adventures are all rational and well planned :)
- denial that I really needed treatment.  I didn't even believe this denial, but I used this to allow myself to get breakfast before getting treatment..


One of the reassurances of vacationing in Switzerland - if you have a medical issue, you should receive world class health care, assuming you can pay for it.

I started to use the Kaisar iphone app before realizing they were just gonna tell me to go the the ER, and right now i didn't give a damn what they thought, i was going to ER...

I allowed myself to continue my denial long enough to eat breakfast, and get seconds.

At around 10am I could no longer postpone the inevitable.
My vision was messed up and getting worse.
I went to reception and asked where the ER is.
They offered to drive me for free, but I just asked where it was...
They showed me on google maps that it was about about 600m down the street at Promenade 4.

I walked myself to Spital Davos and quickly checked myself in to the ER.
I seemed to be their only patient this lovely Saturday morning, they were pleased to have something to do.

I believe my doctor was an intern, he was certainly young.
He informed me that they require a 500 chf payment up front, credit cards are fine.
Once they later determine the actual charges, they will refund the difference, assuming the actual charge is lower, or charge me the difference if it is higher.
My doctor told me he recently had to use the ER and it took months to get the actual invoice.

They assured me that they have an arrangement with an opthalmologist, which was exactly what I needed to here.

His sole job appeared to be to determine that I wasn't having a stroke, and I was having a real problem with my eye that required an opthalmologist.
He got someone on the phone and spent perhaps 10-15 minutes convincing them that I needed to be seen today.
When he got off the phone, he brought me a business card for KammannEye and told me I had a 1pm appointment today.
They were located right off the main square at Bahnhofstrasse 3 Davos Platz, I knew the building already, it only 100m from my hotel...

It was now around 1130am, I had 90 minutes to kill before my appointment.

I still had the bike, I wasn't going to use it anymore.
I walked back to the hotel, rode the bike down to Bike Academy.
He couldn't believe that I had ridden the bike downhill from Flüelapass on pavement, he assumed I'd ridden trails downhill.
Davos apparently has some awesome mountain biking, but I didn't see it (or care, much of the Alps has awesome mountain biking).

I walked back to my hotel room to lie down and "relax" for 30 minutes before my eye appointment.
I had resigned myself to needing treatment, treatment that probably wouldn't be terribly pleasant.

Dr. med. Susanne Vontobel met me at the office just after 1pm.
At first she seemed a little concerned that the hospital hadn't dilated my eyes, now this would take longer.
After multiple dilations (25m waiting total, my eyes dilate slowly) she examines my eyes.
She then told me I had two tears in my retina, and she walked into the other room and warmed up their laser.
She drew a picture on a piece of paper to show me what she was seeing.
She described a medium sized retina tear at 2 oclock and smaller tear at 12 o'clock
She tells me that she'll fire the laser dozens times around both tears to stabilize my retina.
This procedure takes a week or two to form scar tissue to hold the retina in place, so I'm not allowed to do much of anything..
including reading or using an iPhone...for a week or two...
Good news is the retina was not detached, which would mean surgery and I can't fly for at least week or two...

At this point she asks how much money I have on me, she writes up an estimate of 374 chf.
I ask if they take credit cards, she says yes but she doesn't know how to use their credit card machine, so I'll need to pay cash.
She tells me the nearest ATM is right around the corner.
5 minutes later I'm back with 400 chf from the ATM and we're ready to go...

And she shot me with that laser probably 150 times..
Not pleasant but not awful..
One burst doesn't really fell like much of anything.
Repeated bursts of 3-4 in a row make me mentally beg for mercy and start to feel like I'm having a not very fun day and I'd much rather be doing anything else.

The procedure took so long she charged me 392.70 chf...
She had not planned on spending her afternoon lasering my eye.
I am very grateful to Dr. med. Susanne Vontobel

I wandered back to my hotel room and called Kathy to let her know about my tour of Davos' medical facilities.

After i got back to room i realized i saw alot of floaties 3 days ago Wednesday on Alp Anarosa..
It was alot, but not extreme, it wasn't like yesterday...

As I sat in my hotel room pondering my eye
I then realized how lucky I was that I injured my eye at the end of this trip instead of the beginning.
I got to see everything I wanted to see, I got to climb all 14 climbs...
Woulda really sucked to have this ruin the entire trip at the beginning...

I took out trip insurance, I assume that should cover 100% of what I'm out but don't care about the money, I'd like to be able to see clearly out of my left eye again..
opthamologist said i had a small amount of blood in my eye, but I should regain my vision fully once this all heals..

Planning easy day tomorrow, i will probably skip sightseeing in Zurich when I get there..
I had planned a blitz of course, starting with some early Sunday churches ...

17:21 Europe time 08:21 California time
Kent: Oh man!  Good/great call on ER
Kent: That shit in Switzerland should be top notch
Kent: (Would have cost several g here, and person doing it....)

17:22 Europe time 08:22 California time
Kent: I've lived my whole life dehydrated
Kent:  Damn

17:24 Europe time 08:24 California time
Ray: whoa!! Good thing you're taking care of yourself
Ray: So you get an extra week in Switzerland, but no biking?

17:26 Europe time 08:26 California time
Dusty: I can still come home Monday
Dusty:  I have torn, not detached retina
Dusty: Detached rentina is surgery then 1-2 weeks of no flying

17:43 Europe time 08:43 California time
Dusty: I managed to stay out of the ER at the beginning of the trip (benadryl), but not the end of the trip...

17:44 Europe time 08:44 California time
Ray: I mean, it is like something exciting finally happened
Ray: Besides the stampede, of course.

17:49 Europe time 08:49 California time
Kent: You did a huge amount on your trip Dusty
Kent:  Impressive
Kent:  Take it easy.

17:59 Europe time 08:59 California time
Ray: Wish I had been there! I'm on my way to Goodwill this morning with Amy to drop off some used clothes
Ray: A very exciting morning! 

18:02 Europe time 09:02 California time
Ray: Mike tore his retina
Ray: It didn't sound fun
Ray: I have lots of floaters always - the opthamalogist said my retina may go at some point
Ray: I hope it's not in a remote area!

18:14 Europe time 09:14 California time
Paul: Dusty - you have a chill day in Zurich? A stroll through the old downtown out to the grassy park on the lake is always nice

18:24 Europe time 09:24 California time
Dusty:  I'll be happy to get home with no further damage
Dusty:  Slow and easy.

This is camping in Davos - pay 20chf / night to park in the hotel's parking lot (see sign above)
You do get access to the lobby bar!

Engadine (St Moritz and Davos area) was absolutely full of small RVs and vans with bikes hanging off the back...
All up and down the mountains....

17:21 Switzerland time 09:21 California time

Bahnhofstrasse 3 with KammannEye on the second floor

18:32 Switzerland time 10:32 California time

The central sqaure and Coop in Davos Platz

Davos Platz.
Cioccolino is on the left, I ate there again tonight.

17:47 Switzerland time 09:47 California time

I got the the farmer salad again, this time with Cordon Bleu
The Cordon Bleu had WAY too much cheese, I didn't eat too much of it.

My waiter both nights was my new best friend in Davos, he loved that I was from California.
He was sad that I couldn't finish all the cheese in the Cordon Bleu.

While I was eating tonight I saw lots of high school age kids wearing local school colors - scarves and such, looked just like Harry Potter.
They were headed to the Saturday night game, I assumed soccer.

I was happy to be marginally functional after today.
I was ready to go home and heal now...

Friday September 10, 2021

Saturday September 11, 2021
Davos Platz

Sunday September 12, 2021