How a broken leg became the beginning of a new lifestyle

Copyright 2006 Ingela Berger

A man I know had an accident one autumn as he was working in the woods. The leaves had fallen to the ground and the rain had fallen on the leaves. Wet leaves are very slippery, and this man knew that, but on a slope he lost control, fell and broke his right leg.

He was lucky to have company, and soon he was in an ambulance on his way to the hospital. He was not so lucky to know that the leg was broken in several places and the operation that followed was somewhat complicated and left him with rather a large number of screws in his bone.

He received a small amount of money from his insurance company, but it was just enough to cover the expenses for his hospital care, his torn clothes and boots.

A year later he still had some ugly scars, the skin on the leg was partly numb, and he found it a little hard to walk. His right leg pointed slightly outward, it had an angle that was just a bit too wide and made him stumble into tables legs and door posts every now and again. He could live with it, but it was annoying.

Now the word reached his ear that there was more compensation to be sought from his insurance company for the long-term after-effects. To capture this opportunity he had to apply within ten years from the time of the accident. So he forgot about it. He still had time. And there were so many other things that filled his mind and that he had to do. Important things too. He was a busy man. Fortunately, his leg kept reminding him. But then he forgot about it again.

After eight years he still suffered from the effects of the accident. Maybe I should go ahead and claim this money after all, he reasoned with himself. Maybe I could get another couple of hundred dollars, who knows, that would be great! If I don’t do it now maybe I will regret it later. So he decided to give it a shot and see what could come out of it. His doctor helped him with a medical certificate and he sent away his claim along with some newly taken photos of the leg. He did it all in the last minute. But he did it.

A few weeks before Christmas he got a letter from the insurance company. They were granting him 5 500 euros ($7 000).

All his life this man had dreamed of owning a motorcycle. He was now 50 years old. He could drive a bike, he had a licence, and he had borrowed a bike from a friend for a few short rides now and then, but now it was finally possible for him to realize this old dream and buy his own motor-bike. Of course, it wouldn’t be a brand-new one for this money, but still…

It wasn’t before long that he found himself a beautiful red Honda CX500 1982. It had travelled just 30 000 km (19 000 miles). A real gem. And what’s more – there was some money left for buying a fine digital camera as well.

This happy man is now riding his treasure on the country roads of Scandinavia keeping his camera in the top box behind him. It’s his first summer on the roads, and he soars!

Whenever he takes a break at some café people come up to him to take a closer look and admire the bike. Many get a touch of nostalgia. His eyes sparkle with pride as he satisfies their curiosity.

What seemed to be an ending to health and happiness turned out to be a beginning of a new lifestyle, of life quality and fulfilment. A dream come true.

Break a leg!

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