A hand taps on the staff room door and I sit up. I am disoriented for precisely one minute before I pull my mask to cover my mouth and nostrils and walk out.

Standing on the other side of the door are three people.

The patient is wrapped in a leso, he is standing with his feet apart, with a steady trickle of blood forming a pool between his legs. I look at my phone again, it is three minutes past three in the morning.

There is a man standing holding a helmet, he is wearing black gum boots with at least five heavy coats and a reflector whose tail is stained red with blood. The other man must be a relative of sorts to the patient, he is the oldest of the trio, holding a solar lamp that is still on, dressed too lightly for the cold. I shiver involuntarily after looking at him.

Older man: sister wapi daktari?

Me: (so many ways to answer this one, but it is three in the morning, my eyes are threatening to close on their own and my brain is curled up on a chaise lounge: asleep) ni mimi, daktari ni mimi.

Motorbike guy: ooh

I walk towards the computer, restart it and look up. The old man looks at the youngest, the motor bike man shifts his weight from the left foot to the right, then clears his throat and walks away, apparently to park his motorbike well. Now it is just the three of us.

After what feels like an eternity, the old man opens his mouth and words stumble out of him. It is like he is willing to get them out as fast as possible before he swallows them back.

The examination part is awkward as you can already imagine, the patient climbs up on the examination couch and takes his time, opens up his legs as slowly as is possible and then, in the meeting point of his thighs, I can see the injury.

The right testes look okay. The left one is hanging outside the scrotum looking blue. It is too late to save it. But I send them for a confirmatory ultrasound and wait.

It is not viable. As I prepare them to theatre, the young man walks out in the name of going to the toilet. An hour later, I finally accept that he is gone. The motor bike person too.

At seventeen, he is ready to lose all his life but not one dead testes.

I wonder why cows go for what is between the legs!