Ice, Ice, Baby

By Mary Anna Violi |@MaryAnnaVioli

  It will be 4 weeks ago this Tuesday, February 19, that I slipped on an ice slick in front of a local CVS Pharmacy. While I thought I could pick myself up, I found that all I could do was spin in circles; the ice was so widespread across the front of the pharmacy. Fortunately, an elementary school teacher and her adolescent daughter came to my rescue. The three of us shuffled carefully across the sidewalk to enter the store.

   There were several positives in the aftermath: I didn’t hit my head on the concrete, nor did I break any bones. My doctor did tell me, after a thorough examination of my injuries, that I would have large contusions. She was right; I did. Major black and blues appeared with 24 hours or so, as did the swelling in my right hand in the fleshy part, and in my right thumb. Basically, from my right shoulder on down past my knee I resemble a yellow and bright purple tie-dye.

   I must give credit to Kate Spade: as I was flying up in the air, thanks to the ice slick, I landed on my sturdy leather Kate Spade bag. My layered clothing and black faux fur lined leather jacket helped out too, as did my Heat gloves. Since my new pale green jeans suffered no tears in the fall, I felt slightly less hostile about the event. However, I was indignant that CVS hadn’t salted its entire front entrance. “We can’t keep up with the salting,” I was informed. “You had damn well better keep up with it,” I fumed. Later that night I learned that Car accidents abounded too. The ER’s at both of the big hospitals were filled with people who had been injured on that Tuesday’s ice. 

   The next morning, my entire right side ached. Aleve helped, but I’m right handed. I couldn’t write, type, or lift anything! To say this was a humbling experience is an understatement. Fastening my jeans pained my right hand to the limit, boohoo, poor me.

Whenever I pick up medicine, I use the CVS drive through. The day of the freezing rain, CVS had placed a large sign on the drive through stating that the drive through was closed, and that patrons must enter the pharmacy. Had I not needed to take the medication that very evening, I would have postponed picking it up.

   In the immortal words of Annie Hall, “La-dee-da, la-dee-da”! I’m on the mend and more mindful of ice, baby.

   Ciao for now.


Even though I was unable to eat and drink these treats for a few days, a gingerbread cookie and a cup of cocoa made me feel better.

By Mary Anna Violi | @Mary Anna Violi

Well, it has been quite a week thus far, and this is only Thursday.

Monday evening we did errands after I finished work.  A tooth felt a bit sensitive over the weekend, but I had a dental cleaning appointment scheduled for Tuesday at 2:00 p.m. so I wasn’t worried.  However, as we shopped Monday evening, my jaw and ear began aching and the right side of my face felt unusually warm.  When we got home and I looked in the mirror, I about passed out:  the lower right side of my face was swollen and raging red, and  painful.  I took two Alieve, went to bed, and attempted to sleep to no avail. Finally, around 5:00 a.m., I placed a bag of frozen pearl onions in a ziplock back and fell asleep with them between my swollen face and pillow.  I dreamt of boeuf bourguignon.

On Tuesday morning I called my dentist, but she was booked, so I had to wait until 2:00 p.m. for my appointment.  I went to work, but I was a mess.  Anjelica came to the campus and drove me to the dentist, for she was scared about the grotesque swelling [at this point, I resembled a gargoyle]. An x-ray showed that the tooth under a crown had fractured and become abscessed.  At least this explained the mind-boggling pain. Immediately, the dentist put me on an antibiotic for the swelling and infection, and a prescription painkiller to lessen the throbbing.

Leaving my dentist, who is in a nearby town, we went to CVS in our hometown to pick up my prescriptions.  The medications would not be ready for another 10 minutes, we were told.  At this point I was ready to pass out from pain. Upon returning to the pharmacy, I was informed that the painkiller could not be filled because my dentist has phoned in the prescription.  A new law, at least in this wayward state, had recently gone into effect that demanded a handwritten prescription be submitted.  Back to the dentist, who apologized profusely for having forgotten this recently implemented law. Upon our return to the pharmacy, where I produced the handwritten prescription from my dentist, I was told that the pharmacy was out of that particular narcotic until Friday.  The woman sharing this information apologized as I glared at her.  Nearing the end of my tether, my dentist urged me to try another CVS pharmacy. We drove to a nearby affluent town where I felt certain that pharmacy would have the medication.  It did. I slept better that night, but again Julia Child’s classic boeuf bourguignon permeated my nocturnal castles in the air.

While some swelling still remains, it should be calmed enough so that I do not look distorted in next week’s family Christmas photos.  While I must return to the dentist after Christmas, where I am sure more tooth and crown fun and games await me, at least I am no longer delirious from searing pain. One crowned tooth and so much agony is beyond me, yet soon will be behind me as I continue to brush and floss regularly, albeit carefully around the afflicated area.

Ciao for now.