- for Mr K: whichever way you choose to go, good luck be with you.
No, he's not doing very well at the moment, but we're keeping an eye on him and hopefully he will-
79 - 64 - 52 -
Ma'am, Sir, would you please wait outside.
(sh*t. Code Blue!)
(rumble of crash cart, schick of a curtain and we have our own little sweltering kingdom surrounded by damp curtains. you old man is our queen bee - languishing in your unconcerned stillness at the centre of frenzied activity while we, your worker bees, slave for the hatching of the next breath and the sustained pulse of artificially oxygenated blood flowing through your brain)
71 years old, full-house risk factors, previous stroke, no sir, he's ambulant - yes - independent
perfectly lucid he was talking to me earlier -
(crack of ribs, bouncing of the bed, face smothered by the consuming kiss of the silicone face mask of the respirator - at this age having such a wild time with a girl in bed is probably not too healthy for you)
one miligram adrenaline - resume cpr - come on, heart, you have to beat faster and harder than that - second dose adrenaline -
stop, he's coming back! BP? 130/70.
- where's the blade; someone lube the ET tube - check the balloon - suck the secretion - we'll paralyse him first he's too stiff - how's the potassium? prepare the sux, half vial, dilute with normal saline. nice and slow, that's it.
ok, let's wheel him out.
Ends and beginnings. Last day in my final posting as a trainee. That was yesterday. I'd been going to this hospital for the past four months, walking from home every morning and getting my breakfast from the coffeeshop across the road. Always the same thing - no matter how I try to deny it I suppose I'm a creature of habit after all. The man at the drinks stall knew me so well he would prepare the drink I always ordered the moment he saw me cross the road. Teh, ban sao. Tea (with milk and sugar), luke warm. Otherwise he would fill the whole cup with boiling water and I'd spend precious time trying to drink it without scalding my tongue.
So that day I walked out of the apartment wondering if I should tell the man behind the counter that I'm changing jobs - one sometimes wonders how familiar one should be with people one sees in the context of everyday life, yet who are neither an acquaintance nor a colleague. Sure enough I could stand and talk with the next person on a queue about the weather, but telling them that say, I could feel a storm approaching even when I'm indoors without access to a window, now that just feels a tad too personal. Anyway. I walked out and saw that the shop was closed. And it was still closed today. I wonder if they are undergoing renovation or maybe they have moved elsewhere.
Last day at work. The last day I could hide behind a 'P' in my registration number. P for Provisional. P for Protected. P for 'Prentice. And I always say that no matter how people try to make this line of work sounds scientific and all, it is mostly art, or rather craft, and I was an apprentice turned journeyman now.