Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Sigh, Vacation's over....

Back to work tomorrow morning. It wasn't an official vacation, just a string of days off in a row, but what else is a vacation?

It's been an eventful week, I got sick, got better, received our tax refund, bought a new laptop, and new tires for my Escape, celebrated Valentines Day and President's Day, and finally renewed my car registration for another year...

When so much is happening, it's hard to know when and where to start. I'll start with my new toy.

This is my new laptop, it's a Toshiba 17" Dual Core with DVD RW drive, and 3 GB of RAM. It replaces the Dell I inherited from Tonjia when she got her new computer last year. So far it's been great, but I'm still getting used to Vista.

Tonjia and I celebrated Valentines Day in "old married couple" fashion. That is we got each other a card, some candy , and fell asleep in front of the TV before 10 pm... Oh well, we have all year for romance.

Next Week, I'm scheduled to appear for Jury Duty, on Tuesday, work on Wednesday, and take a National Registry Exam on Thursday. Sounds like I'm in for a busy time, and I'll be ready for that trip to Las Vegas by early next month.

I'll end this post with an epic Car Wash Fail

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Sick Day

Yesterday, during the day I felt fine, but in the evening, I suddenly began having chills, nausea, and diarrhea. Yep, I came down with the Norwalk Virus. I spent a fitful night between runs to the bathroom, and strange dreams about having to pay for blocks of time for being sick...

This morning, I'm feeling a little better, but I'm taking the day as a sick day. This is one of the many times it's to one's advantage to marry a nurse. Tonjia was great helping take care of me last night, and I appreciate her efforts.

I was already scheduled off from work at Silt, but I had to miss my bus driving runs today. I intend to spend the day sipping Gatorade and watching TV. Not much else I can do, and I feel weak and washed out. With any luck, this virus will run it's course within a day or so, and I can get back to the bus runs tomorrow.


Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Whistle While You Work.

Well, here I am at work. I'm waiting for my dispatcher to get some information on an upcoming transport. I work for an EMS company, that does both 911 emergency calls, and inter facility transports from our local Band-aid Center of a hospital to larger hospitals in the area.

The closest larger hospital is about 30 miles away. The larger, more equipped hospital is 65 miles away. A round trip from the closer hospital takes about 90 min, with moving the patient from one stretcher to another, and moving up the the rooms, etc. The roundtrip for the larger hospital takes about 3 hours total. Sometimes I make that trip three times a day, which as you can imagine gets rather old very quickly. Once in a while, we transport to Denver, a 8 hour round trip.

Inter facility transports are really the 'bread and butter' of any private, or non-municipally funded ambulance service, and without them the company couldn't provide the emergency services needed. Nevertheless, no one in EMS really likes transports.

I was asked once why EMTs don't like transports. Although they are important, and part of the job, they aren't really what gets people into EMS. No one would watch a show about Johnny and Roy transporting an elderly patient back to the nursing home after she's been sent in to the ER for the thirtieth time that week, for some kind of pneumonia. There's little glamour in taking vitals every 15 min on a stable cardiac patient, who is going for a heart operation. No one looks forward to transporting some potentially violent psych patient across the state to a mental health facility.

But these transports all involve human beings: someone's son, daughter, mother, father, grandmother, uncle, aunt, etc. They all involve providing care for a living breathing person and can't be taken lightly. As long and dull as these trips may be, they are all the heart of providing care. Whenever I'm taking a transport, I try to treat the patient as is they were my own family member. I try to make sure that the person is comfortable, that they are cared for, and that they receive the best care.

The job of a paramedic is not always exciting, or dangerous. Often it involves sitting and holding the hand of a person who needs a little TLC. I can't say that I really enjoy long distance transports, but I know that they are a vital part of my job.

Take care, all, talk to you again soon


Sunday, February 1, 2009

Superbowls, Conferences, and a Million Dogs....

Right now, I'm watching the Steelers and the Cardinals play in Superbowl 43. Unlike most men, I'm not much of a sports fan. I'll watch sporting events from time to time, but I'd rather read, or watch a movie. I've never really had a football team to root for, so the whole superbowl hype is pretty much lost on me. I'm favoring the Steelers because they are from Pennsylvania, which is where I've lived the longest. Win or lose, I'm not going to be too upset.

I can't believe it's been a whole week since my last post. I can't offer any real excuses. I've been busy, but not so busy I couldn't spend some time blogging. Yesterday, I was at an EMS conference here in Grand Junction. We studied such topics as poisons, burn care, trauma situations and practiced our skills. I did meet some guys from a local volunteer ambulance service who tried to get me to join their group. I'm still thinking it over, and I might just use it as a way to get my foot in the door in EMS in this county. Where I'm working now is in the next county over. The company the guys belong to only runs a few calls a month, so it wouldn't be too much of a strain.

This morning, I took Frankie and Max to Palisade to walk around the public park there. The path runs alongside the Colorado River, and during the walk I spotted a bald eagle soaring over the park. He was quite a majestic sight, and for an Easterner like me, it was something amazing. When I pointed him out to some of the other people there, they were much more blase about it. Apparently bald eagles are a common sight out here.
Frankie said he saw about a "Million dogs" on our outing. There were about two dozen dogs, which is more than Frankie had ever seen in his entire life!! He and Max did very well with all these other dogs. Max is such a gentle soul, that I don't think there's much that could make him agressive toward other dogs. Frankie, on the other hand thinks he's much bigger an tougher than he really is. As long as he has a fence between him and the other dog, Frankie is brave and bold. When it comes to face to face, though, Frankie's not so manly.

Back to work on Tuesday. I just finished our taxes, and we are expecting a refund! Whoo hoo!