Blogiversary 13

13th anniversary: the lacy one!  Just so you know...googling 'lace' is a bit of a risky business.  So, I stole this picture from googling 'lace doily' and I was happy to see that there still seems to be a market for doilies.  Also 'doily' is one of the weirdest words in English. 

Anyway.  Today is my 13th blogiversary.  I celebrated by putting up a bunch of posts last week. I know you all enjoyed them...right?!  I am pretty excited that the blog will be reverting back to it's original mode of 'student blog'.  Sure, I think the first year of PA school blogging will be more apologizing for not not taking the time to blog, but it could be filled with plenty of new things up to and including (hopefully) me suturing an orange.  Or more likely a grapefruit because that is a citrus that I want to eat after I've finished stabbing it. 

So, happy anniversary, blog!

Start Date

I took today to catch up on some blogging I should have done a long time ago. So...there is Greece (that should have been done in August) I do need to write some EMS stuff, but, maybe in like 4 months. I have been trying to get a list of things that need to be done and then finished before school starts.
After a couple of months fretting about how the school probably forgot about me and/or kicked me out already, I finally got news of the start date. Early June I will start my adventure/sentence. In May we have a three day orientation with two hours set aside for 'instrument purchasing'. Ooh, let the spending begin! I am hoping that my 12 year old stethoscope will pass muster as it is probably the only useful medical instrument I own at the moment.  It was a relief to hear something from school as it had been a while.  Although it did open up another little bit of panic as now I need to collect things to get started like vaccine records and get a physical, and enough nic…

Rio Grande

This December I had an opportunity to visit a part of the country I'd never seen before. My friend needed a road tripping companion to get from Ft. Hood, Texas to Tucson, Arizona via Big Bend National Park. My immediate answer was yes. With two kids and a dog? Double yes.
It wasn't long into our trip before we started seeing huge landscapes, distant hills, and oil fields. We also passed miles of pecan trees and tiny town after tiny town.  Little did I know we were heading to Terlingua Texas, a town of only 58 (according to the 2010 census)- probably the smallest town I've ever been in.  We had dinner- a sit down dinner- in a gas station because that was the only restaurant we could find.

Terlingua is the closest town to the entrance to Big Bend, and when we left to enter the park, we still had a 40 mile drive to the first ranger station.  The size of this area is not something that this east coaster could comprehend. Miles and miles of isolation.  I say isolation and not …

Milos et al.

We traveled by boat to Milos next.  Milos is famous for it's bleached white beaches, distinct rock formations, and mineral veins.
We went to more beaches than I can count, each more beautiful than the next.  The most bizarre we visited to was accessible only by climbing down the cleft of a cliff using a rope hastily nailed into the rock and an aging wooden ladder. We must have lost our minds- the sand rained down on my head while I watched others panic at the top of the ladder and give up on visiting this exclusive beach.
A visit is incomplete without a boat trip around the island to see the cliffs.  Kleftiko is one of the best places I've ever seen.  Snorkeling with tropical fish in the warm waters and eating fresh watermelon on the boat is a wonderful memory. This outcropping is only accessible by boat and well worth it.
The next day we took a ferry to Kimolos where we enjoyed an exclusive beach and a charming medieval town.  This place is a bit tricky as we couldn't tak…

The Islands

We met up with my Greek friend at her home in Thessaloniki.  In her typical style, we hit the ground running- starting by whipping through the ancient narrow streets to an overlook where we could take in the entire city and surrounds.  Unfortunately we didn't have enough time to explore the city properly but it's good to have something to do in the next visit.
We then flew down to Santorini (or Thera, or Thira).  The quintessential Greek island, which did not disappoint.  To say it is beautiful is a gross under-description of the island.  Crystal clear blue waters, volcanic landscapes, and white-washed towns clinging to the edges of sheer cliffs.
We attempted to catch the famous sunset at Oia and I was struck by the sheer number of people willing to camp out for this daily event. It was beautiful, but I think everyone forgets that the sun sets all over the island with equal grandeur and far fewer people.
The town of Fira is where we took a boat to the neighboring volcano, it&#…

Mt. Olympus

Our first adventure outside of the area of our camp was to Litochoro. This town lays in the shadow of Mt. Olympus.  We came here to hike the Enipeus Gorge and say hi to Zeus.  We met our guide and took a taxi to our starting point, about half way up the mountain. We started by visiting an old monoestary that has been destroyed many times, lastly during World War II. Two monks still live there and are slowly rebuilding it to its former glory.  We were kindly provided skirts for our visit.

We hiked down to the cave of St. Dionisis where the order started. There is still a small church here and a spring providing the coldest, clearest water I'd ever experienced.  We crossed the river of the Gorge several times. At lunch we stopped for a dip in the freezing waters which was bracing to say the least. The water was crystal clear and we could watch tadpoles and frogs darting between the sharp rocks. It is a beautiful place where I would have stood happily for the rest of the day.  But, a…

He's Dead

"Hurry up, hurry up!"  she shouted.
Why were they getting out of the truck so slowly? "He can't breathe, he can't breathe!"  she shouted. They are still taking forever. "He needs oxygen, he needs oxygen!"  she shouted Finally they are at the door. "Where is he?"  they ask.  Isn't it obvious? "In there, in there!"  she shouted.  "What happened?"  they ask. Isn't it obvious? "He needs oxygen, he needs oxygen!" she shouted. They are standing on his oxygen tubing. "Don't stand there, don't stand there!"  she shouted.  They opened their bags. "No breathing tube, no breathing tube!"  she shouted.  "What do you mean?"  they ask.  Isn't it obvious? She waved a paper in their faces.  "It says it right here, right here!"  she shouted "He doesn't want any of this?" they ask.  Isn't it obvious? "He just needs oxygen, just oxygen"  s…

He's Dead (reprise)

"Hurry up, hurry up!" she shouted.
They're going as fast as they can
"He can't breathe, he can't breathe!" she shouted.
Get the bag, the oxygen, the monitor, the board
"He needs oxygen, he needs oxygen!" she shouted.
Crossing the threshold.
"Where is he?" they ask.  How would they know?
"In there, in there!" she shouted.
"What happened?" How would they know?
"He needs oxygen, he needs oxygen!" she shouted.
They enter the room, evaluate the situation.
"Don't stand there, don't stand there!" she shouted.
CPR started, oxygen delivered, heart monitor on.
"No breathing tube, no breathing tube!" she shouted.
"What do you mean?" they ask. How would they know?
She waved a paper in their faces.
"It says it right here, right here!" she shouted
"He doesn't want any of this." they say.  How would they know?
"He just needs oxygen, just oxy…

Paramedics are like cats

Growing up, our outdoor cat would often leave us 'presents' after a successful hunt.  She sought praise, but often got indignance as we mourned a cute little mouse or baby rabbit.  Even now, my indoor cats will stare at a mouse- trapped behind something- for hours before eating what they want and leaving the rest for me to find (usually by stepping on it).  Oh, what good cats they are!

My favorite doctor in the ER used to be a paramedic.  So he knows it for a fact: paramedics are like cats. I proved this just the other day.  We started with a cardiac arrest. But not just any arrest:  one where I actually got to do stuff! To feel like I could do something or make a decision that would improve the outcome of the call.  It felt really good, (despite the ultimate patient outcome) to actually have to think and remember stuff that I haven't practiced in a while. (I'm not sure if that sounds good or bad to you, dear reader).  When got to the ER, the doctor too, seemed happy …