This was taken the first time I dislocated my left big toe, crouching down low, waiting for the surf to hit just right. Yesterday I dislocated that toe again crouching down to take Hercules' picture.
It really hurts, and one cannot bear weight or walk, not to mention turn pedals. Five days before the trip. Not good.
The offending joint did not get better last night and I spent the wee hours reading my travel insurance (which, by the way, I blame for the mishap---when I don't buy insurance, I don't have a problem). I had to wait until 9:00 for the podiatrist's office to open, and it was looking pretty grim for an overseas cycling trip. I wasn't able to walk, except on the outer edge of my foot. I took a shower and got dressed in case I was told to come right in ("dislocation" wins an emergency spot).
I ate breakfast, and then I tried putting my foot straight down---and it didn't hurt. I tried walking normally---and it still didn't hurt. Problem solved. I can walk and run and put shoes on and do anything except crouch down low with my left foot behind me, big toe joint hyperextended.
So by the time I called it was no longer dislocated, but they told me to come in. The podiatrist, Noel O'Brien, (also an avid cyclist) thinks I had partial dislocations from hyperextension, and arthritic bone spurs may be involved (all of which was my guess, too). Went for weight-bearing x-rays to confirm. He couldn't elicit any discomfort with poking and stretching my joint every which way, so it's definitely the deep crouch maneuver setting things awry, without actually doing any serious damage. He thinks I'll be just fine, especially wearing cycling shoes. Will talk more tomorrow after he gets the x-ray results.
(P.S. No pathology other than a touch of arthritis, which is asymptomatic. The partial dislocations were most likely due to my loose ligaments, which were also responsible for a tibial plateau fracture in 1979, when my femur exploded it into a zillion pieces because my knee was hyperextended while landing on the dock jumping from a sailboat.)
Now all I have to worry about is a volcano in Iceland.