Thursday, September 29, 2011

Heavy eyelids part 1

"Are you coming mate...?"

I'm suddenly Awake. Confused. Disoriented. My colleague is standing in the doorway of the bedroom waving the radio at me. Oh What!? It is 5:30 am or thereabouts and I had slept through the pager going off for the first time in my career. I mumbled an apology and sat up to pull my boots on. I looked around the floor in the gloom and couldn't see my footwear.... ah there on my feet already, I hadn't even taken them off, just too tired I guess. We had been run off our feet all night and had finally made it back to branch for our half hour meal break. I was so tired, I just had to close my eyes for a few minutes. I was glad it wasn't my turn to drive.

I walked out to the garage where my partner already had the truck running and had been clearly waiting for me to haul my butt out of bed. "You ok"? he asked. "Yeah, sorry, just bloody shagged, didn't hear the pager". I squinted at the data terminal (MDT) on the dash, we were going to a 72 year old female in respiratory distress. My partner informed me he had not yet spoken to the dispatcher who was busy trying to dispatch a number of other jobs to other tired sounding crews. Finally it was our turn and the voice who sounded annoyingly awake and efficient said; "thanks for your patience, at the request of the crew on scene, could you head over to Footscray for a patient with breathing problems. They'll come up with a SitRep shortly."

A few minutes later, the crew gave some brief details about the patient's current state. The voice on the radio sounded elevated and stressed. Hmm this one might be sick. We were only a few minutes away by this stage and told them to stay put and not try and load the patient until we got there. I forced my eyes open and blew out an exaggerated breath in an attempt to clear my head. Going to need to be awake for this one...

Monday, September 12, 2011

Roid rage

You're an adult male. You seem reasonably "normal". You got up during the night to go to the toilet. As you shuffled down the hallway, I know you were a little hazy, believe me I know. It was sometime in the hours before dawn. You squinted when you turned on the bathroom light. It's annoying when you have to wake up isn't it? A few minutes later as you sat there, staring down at the red dot on the toilet paper in your right hand (or was it your left?), there was a decision point. This was your moment. Your chance to step up....

But you picked up the phone and called for an ambulance.

When we arrived, you explained you had suffered from hemorrhoids on and off for years, you showed us your range of ointments and your little cushion, you explained 'they' had bled before. Your level of detail was as excruciating for me as your "delicate problem" apparently is for you.

Thank-you for saving the fold of toilet paper as "proof" that you weren't kidding. I believe you, really I do. I believe they are annoying. I believe they are painful. What I also believe is; you don't under any conceivable circumstance, need an ambulance for an irritated hemorrhoid.