About five minutes in, I realize I've gone the wrong way and make a sharp turn on my right heel. And then I feel -- and hear -- a sharp POP in my right heel. For a brief crazy moment I consider "running it off." And then the pain starts.
I limp back.
Fast foward a few days of clinc, ER and podiatrist visits and I learn that I have a heel spur -- a little "hook" of bone which can form at the bottom of the heel, where it connects to the plantar fascia, a tough tendon which helps maintain the arch of the foot.
The spur tore through the plantar fascia, which most likely was the "pop" I heard. Fortunatetly, the foot was not very discolored or swollen when I first saw a doctor later that evening, so it he concluded that the rupture was not disabling. But it was painful.
(Interestingly, the deep-tissue tear caused a pool of blood (hematoma) to well close to the ball of my foot a few days later, even though the injury itself is on the heel.)
Since the doctor I saw on Saturday evening at the Brooklyn DOCS clinic could not take an X-Ray, he advised me to return on Monday.
But, as I learned Monday morning, it turned out that the only DOCS radiologist who took my insurance was on vacation for the week. So that left the Brooklyn Hospital Emergency Room.
Six hours and a minor melt-down later, an X-ray revealed the offending spur.
The treating physician gave me crutches and stronger pain meds and set me up to see a podiatrist in their clinic the following morning (Tuesday)
I arrived a few minutes early to the clinic (a major achievement for me, especially in my state of limp-dom) to find an extremely long, slow registration line and an absent attendant.
Fortunately, I looked pathetic enough to get the attention of one of the medical staff. I showed her my discharge papers and gave her my insurance card. She led me to an administrator's office where he called my insurance company and, after a ridiculously long succession of voice mail prompts, learned the clinic didn't take my insurance anyway.
I had to go to a network podiatrist, but the one my primary care physician referred didn't even answer the phone.
I called another doctor friend who referred me to a pod in midtown -- who, thankfully gave me an appointment on Thursday.
And this doctor gave me good news and bad news.
The good news: Pain notwithstanding, he injury is not serious and should heal with rest -- AND I don't need crutches.
Ah well. Life could definitely be worse.