Puerto Rico

conf github travel medical comments edit

This past week I had the great pleasure to speak in Puerto Rico at their TechSummit conference.

Tech Summit 2015 is the premier new business development and technology event pushing the boundaries for government redesign and transformation.

My colleague, Ben Balter referred me to the CIO of Puerto Rico; Giancarlo Gonzales, an energetic advocate for government embrace of technology; to speak about the transformative power of Open Source on businesses and government agencies. I partnered with Rich Lander from Microsoft. Rich is on the CLR team and has been heavily involved in all the work to open source the Core CLR, etc.

Colorful Puerto Rico Buildings

The local technology sector is heavily pro Microsoft. Giancarlo had a vision that we could help convince these business leaders that the world has changed, Microsoft has changed, and it’s now perfectly fine to mix and match technologies as they make sense. It’s ok to use GitHub along with your Microsoft stack. You don’t have to be locked in to a single vendor. We tried our best.

The Forts

Most of my time in Puerto Rico was spent working on the talk and in an emergency room (more on that later). But Rich and I did manage a short trip to the forts at San Cristóbal and El Morrow.

San Cristobal

I was absolutely giddy with excitement when I set foot in these forts. As a fan of Sid Meier’s Pirates and later Assassin’s Creed Black Flag, which both take place in the West Indies, I really enjoyed seeing one of the settings in real life.

El Morrow

There are tunnels to explore, ramparts to patrol, and views of the ocean to soak in. I highly recommend a visit. The imprressiveness of the forts are a reflection of how Puerto Rico was a historically strategic outpost.

ER shenanigans

A couple weeks back, while back home in Bellevue, I hurt my elbow somehow. I’m not even sure how, but almost certainly one of my many injuries from playing soccer.

It was sore for a while, but no big deal. A couple days before I was set to fly to Puerto Rico, my elbow started to swell with fluid. Looking online, it appeared to be Elbow (Olecranon) Bursitis. This is when the bursa in the elbow get inflamed due to trama and fluid starts to gather. I went to an Urgent care and received a prescription for an anti-inflammatory and a bandage to wrap my arm for compression. At this point, because there was no external wound, the doctor didn’t think it was likely to be infected. However, we did both notice that the temperature of my elbow was very hot.

Unfortunately, it kept getting worse every day from that point on. I just assumed it was taking time for the medicine to really kick in. But it came to a head the night before my talk. I was in pain and I couldn’t sleep. At this point, I felt like my body was trying to tell me something. And if you’re a long time reader of my blog, you’ll know I’ve been in this situation before. I also noticed that my elbow had gone from a soft sack of fluid to become very hard. I was a bit nervous.

So I got out of bed at 2 AM and grabbed a taxi to the emergency room at Ashford Presbyterian hospital. The doctor took a look at it and ordered some X-rays and they gave me an IV of anti-biotics.

Antibiotics IV

It turns out that I had experienced an elbow fracture and there was a small bone chip. The doctor prescribed a more powerful anti-inflammatory and some antibiotics. He also gave me a sling to wear.

I ended up getting back to the hotel around 7:30 AM. I immediately headed out to fill the prescriptions and then Rich and I continued to work on our talks up until the point we had to go on stage and deliver the talk.

This was the first all-nighter I’ve pulled in a very long time. I only tell the story for two reasons. I mentioned the ER room visit on Twitter and some folks expressed concern. I wanted them to know it’s not as bad as it sounds. But it does suck.

But more importantly, once again it’s a reminder to listen to your body when it’s giving you pain signals. The last time I shared one of my medical stories, I heard back that people appreciated the heads up.

UPDATE So when I got back to the states, I got another X-Ray and it turns out it’s not a fracture at all. Tendons can have a bit of calcification that looks like bone chips. I noticed the X-Ray at my local hospital is much higher resolution. What I have is called Septic Bursitis (Bursitis with a side of infection). So I’m still on a bunch of antibiotics.