Trip to Hospital for an Infected Knee in a Yogyakarta Police SUV

medication for a knee infection gone wrong

Greetings and salutations, or something like that.

So today I had a most absurdly infected right knee. It reminded me of when I broke my knee it was “that sensitive”. I could not put any pressure on it after it had been relaxed for a bit ~5 minutes or more. You need to slowly put pressure and do a bit of grinning and then you can “walk again” after a few moments. This brief update explains a trip to the local hospital in Yogyakarta, Indonesia for an infected knee courtesy of the local police. Click here to see the knee from the last update

So I ask the guy at the desk “How do I get to the Hospital?” and he gives me a vague idea. I set out on foot and am about half way there when I ask again, someone says you going wrong way. Try and flag one of those guys driving the bikes with a seat in the front and he’s the only one I have ever seen who didn’t stop or even ask if I wanted a ride. At this point I see the police station and figure “whatever, they’ll know”.

I see a cop hanging out in front of the station, approach him and ask for directions. He says “come with me” and brings me into the station. I see the jail… You do NOT want to go to that jail. There must of been ~15 people in a 10x10ft room. I’m talking very cramped accommodations and no fan, nothing.

I digress.

So the guy asks if I was in a car accident, I reply “no”. He then asks what is wrong, I show him my knees. He then says go with this guy, he will bring you there… So I hop into a police SUV and hit the streets. When you’re riding shotgun in a Police SUV in Indonesia, you get a LOT of really inquisitive looks by local people. It was kinda cool but unnerving as everyone has heard a whole “mixed bag” of stories.

hospital in yogyakarta

Get to the hospital and it was quite clean and professional. A few nurses come over and a Doctor. I tell them what happened and they start lancing my knee to try and drain it, no dice. At this point I’m like “Are these things sterilized?” I’d rather lose a leg then lose my life to say… I dunno… HIV!? He assures me they are sterilized and whatnot. I’m still not thrilled but “c’est la vie” as the French would say. The infection started in the smallest opening / bug bite but moved into the joint or at least well below the surface so draining it is not possible.

They can’t drain it and they give me some antibiotics… They give me THE SAME STUFF I already had! Some amoxil (already had it), an antibiotic cream to apply after I shower (already had it) and some anti-inflammatory medicine. Everything including the visit came to $19US. (What a deal granted the needles were sterilized). The same Police officer waited through the entire process and then drove me back to the station, what a gentleman! We exchanged pleasantries and I was on my way.

So here I am, laying on a bed in an air conditioned room that costs ~$10US a night. I was told to “stay off it” and that is just what I will do. Am I “choked” that I can’t visit some local scenery? Not really, dare I say, I’m relieved. The more I travel the more I realize I just don’t care about the “sights”. I never have and probably never will. If you want to see them, just search “google images” they’ve all been photographed to death. I’m actually quite content just chilling here, playing on wifi for ~$20US a day. That’s only $600 a month. I could do this forever. If you are looking for sights, culture, history etc… I recommend you visit this blog.

Tips hat,


  1. FeAngel Alcos

    January 2, 2010 at 5:52 am

    You got such character…finding humour and comfort while in pain and recuperating. We wish you the best, and TAKE CARE!

  2. Rob

    January 2, 2010 at 7:34 am

    Thank you! You can’t decide your circumstance but you can decide to be happy. Tips fictitious hat.

  3. naphi

    January 2, 2010 at 9:08 am

    that an expensive internet access for local. i’m paying for about $15.00 a month. Using modem, can access it for most part of the city.

    welcome to my town. 🙂

  4. Nomadic Chick

    January 2, 2010 at 9:20 am

    You weren’t kidding about bad day on the road, huh? Ah well, good thing you aren’t too interested in the touristy aspects at the moment, recuperation and lounging will be that much easier. Get better soon!

  5. Aubs

    January 2, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    Happy new year Rob!! All the best! Keep the updates coming…ever think of being a reporter out there?! lol

  6. lindsay

    January 2, 2010 at 3:28 pm

    As a nurse, sure am glad to hear you got back in to the hospital for that infection. Hope you take
    really good care of yourself as they can take awhile to heal. I’m sure you’ll get better as you’re
    young and healthy– but hopefully the doctor told you if it should get worse or you feel really
    crummy and spike a fever to get back in to the hospital. Sending prayers your way.

  7. lindsay

    January 2, 2010 at 5:36 pm

    Oh and I forgot– to help your body fight off the infection–stay off sugar til the infection is all gone, get lots of protein and clean water, and take vit. D (most people take 2000 mg daily to keep immune system strong) “nurse lindsay” ::))

  8. Rob

    January 2, 2010 at 8:44 pm

    Naphi – Do you have a link to where I could buy this? Is it to your home or just a card you can connect to say city wide wifi? I’m spending lots on internet (in comparison to other expenses) 🙂

    Nomadic – As the French would say “c’est la vie”.

    Aubs – Perhaps, I have no clue where this “crazy trip” will take me but … “I’m in”.

    Lindsay – THANK YOU!! I did not know that. I’ve been hanging out drinking egregious quantities of coke, sprite and highly sugared coffee. No more, no more. 😀

    Leg starting to heal, hooray.

  9. naphi

    January 2, 2010 at 11:24 pm

    how long do you wish to stay in jogja? i got my modem after hunting for months. HSDPA modem with a gsm chip on it. It cost me about 700 .000 rupiah (for the 2nd hand modem and the chip).
    here an alternative, you could try to buy one of the SMART modem (EVDO 3.1 Mbps), it cost 988.000 rupiahs, and monthly pay for 70.000 or 125.000 according to packet that you prefer to choose.
    you could use this Smart modem in bali, jakarta, jogja, semarang and several big city in Indonesia.

    check my plurk., or tweet me at @ahmadhanafi for further info/help.

  10. naphi

    January 2, 2010 at 11:27 pm

    ow i forgot, here is the link (no, i’m not working there)

  11. Rob

    January 3, 2010 at 7:26 am

    Been looking into it, that is awesome. YOU SIR have changed my trip. Getting one in Bangkok.

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