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Tony Grist

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Hospital-going [Sep. 15th, 2008|10:33 am]
Tony Grist
I have my hospital-going head on this morning. Very cool, businesslike, unemotional.

Stoical

We just drove my father-in-law to Accident and Emergency. He stood the pain from last Thursday's fall for as long as he could and has finally decided to have himself looked at. He wouldn't call an ambulance. People- neighbours- would see it on the street- and what on earth would they think?

He's stoical too. And he hates being an old man.

Who can blame him?

I have previous with hospitals. As a young man I did a couple of stints as a nursing auxiliary- in Sheffield and at South London's pioneering St Christopher's Hospice. At this distance in time I'm not sure why- because I hated it.

Stoical I suppose.

And when I was a vicar the part of the job I hated most- apart from the ever so jolly social events- was the hospital visiting.

The A&E staff sit behind glass- bulletproof I shouldn't wonder. The clerk's voice reaches us over a speaker system. My father-in-law gives out his details crisply, smartly- like a wonded soldier. He wasn't a soldier, he was in the RAF police. Same thing, I suppose.

And after that he was a railwayman.

Waiting times this morning are calculated at about an hour.  I'll guess there are some thirty people in the room. They're sitting on two banks of seats, facing each other- with nothing in the middle.

I get my in-laws seated and leave them. They'll ring when they need us.

We're back home- waiting. Ailz has just popped next door. We've been hearing high pitched noises and we think Sameena must have had her baby.
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Comments:
From: (Anonymous)
2008-09-15 02:06 pm (UTC)
Wow! One Hour waiting time? Last year I was taken by ambulance to the Emergency Room and after initial screening waited for six hours before seeing a doctor, then four more waiting for a bed in the hospital. All this for an overnight "observation" stay, which was over six hours after I got into my room.
I knew I liked your system better than ours!
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-09-15 02:35 pm (UTC)
It said one hour. In the event it was more like three before he was seen.


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[User Picture]From: daisytells
2008-09-15 02:09 pm (UTC)
I hope your father in law is all right...
Wow! One Hour waiting time? Last year I was taken by ambulance to the Emergency Room and after initial screening waited for six hours before seeing a doctor, then four more waiting for a bed in the hospital. All this for an overnight "observation" stay, in which I was sent home six hours after I got into my room.
I knew I liked your system better than ours!
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-09-15 02:37 pm (UTC)
They prescribed him some heavy-duty painkillers and sent him home. It's likely he's cracked his ribs.
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[User Picture]From: jackiejj
2008-09-15 03:48 pm (UTC)
Cracked ribs can't really be helped much--just waiting for them to heal, I think.
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[User Picture]From: jackiejj
2008-09-15 03:46 pm (UTC)
May all be well with you and them.

I was leaving church yesterday, sneaking out the back door early after the anthem, and I saw an old woman on a stretcher; she was being quietly carried to a waiting ambulance.

Who knows what the day will bring?

Not only did I notice this morning the startling sign on the lane that passes by my new house: "Dead End," but there was a single crow in the road, and it flew up when my car went by.

"One crow for sorrow,
Two for joy,
Three for a girl,
Four for a boy."

So there is a new baby next door! How fun!
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-09-15 04:33 pm (UTC)
Thank you.

When I see a crow I always look around until I spot a second- and then I can relax.

The new baby is a boy. They're calling him Hassam.
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[User Picture]From: jackiejj
2008-09-15 04:40 pm (UTC)
Ah, four crows, then.

(Tony, I am watching, for the first time, the BBC program "How Clean is Your House?" It is so funny I am laughing out loud! And horrifying, too!

The voiceover man is perfect: "This pestulant pad..." "This horrifying hovel..."

Honestly, the tearfully grateful, ashamed and filthy householders! How humbly they cast down their eyes before the two fierce housecleaners, one of whom wears rubber gloves with sewn on feathers! They love water, bicarbonate of soda, and drops of lavender.

"On your knees, love," they say to their pitiful subjects, who scrub and weep. I just think this is a wonderful program!)
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[User Picture]From: oakmouse
2008-09-15 04:34 pm (UTC)
Lordy. I'm glad it's only cracked ribs. I hope he manages to get some common sense out of this and starts using a cane or some other form of support.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-09-15 06:32 pm (UTC)
He uses a cane, but it's not enough. We've suggested he use a walker, but he won't hear of it.
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[User Picture]From: oakmouse
2008-09-16 02:43 am (UTC)
Oh dear. Do you think perhaps you could talk him into one of those four-footed canes? They're at least steadier than a regular cane.
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[User Picture]From: besideserato
2008-09-15 08:13 pm (UTC)
I hope he makes a speedy recovery.

There is such a cycle of life in this entry. Your father-in-law as an old man, your own reflections of your younger days, then next door, perhaps a baby.

On my RSS reader, your blog rises from the ruins of a crumbling market, to which I have been glued all day. I didn't realize how out of touch we can get when news overtakes us. You're kind of a centering force.

I'm so glad to count yours among my must-reads.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-09-16 09:50 am (UTC)
Thanks.

When things get hairy I comfort myself by trying to see the bigger picture.
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From: nostoi
2008-09-16 07:01 am (UTC)
I hope things went well yesterday and that he is, or will be soon, okay.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-09-16 09:52 am (UTC)
Thanks. They gave him painkillers at the hospital and sent him home. He was a lot cheerier last night.
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