Leaving Peru with a bang
Fate was against me as I boarded my bus out of Puno (to Copacabana) this morning. I'd just gotten on the bus and sat down, when I remembered that my passport was in my big backpack, which was stowed in the luggage compartment underneath. Since we were going to be crossing the border into Bolivia on this bus ride, I needed my passport. So I got off the bus, and ducked down to the luggage compartment to extract my passport from my bag. And that's how I left Peru with a bang.
I managed to find my backpack, to open the pocket with my passport inside, and to pull out my passport. Then, I shoved my bag back into the compartment. And suddenly, the metal door of the compartment slammed down on my head. Ouch!
The driver saw what had happened, and he asked if I was OK. I said that my head hurt a bit, but that otherwise I was fine. Then I put one hand up, to pat my head and give it some consolation. And when I lowered my hand back down, I saw that it was covered in blood. Aaaaahhhhh! Bleeding head! F%%%%%%%###$$$!
A few of the staff standing around heard me exclaim, and saw the blood; and they quickly rushed me back inside the bus terminal. Meanwhile, I was feeling pretty OK, but I was pretty damn worried that there was blood pouring out of my head. We went to the Medical Centre in the bus terminal — but it was shut for another ½ an hour. Luckily, there was a lady in the terminal selling bits and pieces, and she was able to offer me a packet of cotton wool, and a small bottle of antiseptic alcohol, for s/1.
I made it back on the bus (which was, thankfully, waiting for me), I sat down, I poured some of the alcohol on my bleeding head, and I applied pressure with the cotton wool. And I held it there for most of the rest of the trip. The bleeding head would have been bad enough; but the fact that I was tired from about 3 hours of sleep last night, and hung over from a night on the town in Puno (which, by the way, is not a town worth spending the night out in — pretty ordinary and somewhat sleazy bar and disco scene, especially compared to Cusco), really didn't help either.
Anyway, turned out that it wasn't too bad. The bleeding stopped after about 15 minutes; and for the next day or two, I was just left with a bit of a sore lump on my head. Nothing too serious. But boy, did it scare the hell out of me when it happened. And it was really not what I needed, a mere two hours before jumping the hoops involved in crossing the Peru-Bolivia border.