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Showing posts from November, 2010

The disadvantage of having a DSLR

As far as I can tell, there's only one. Well, other than dropping the lens cap out the window on the highway.
In 2006, I saw KT Tunstall in concert and didn't bring my camera, assuming that I wouldn't be able to keep it, and taking public transport, there would be nowhere to put it without having to trust the venue. It turned out we stood three feet from her, could have had a camera, and had none. Oh well.
So, the boyfriend took me to see her again last week and I brought the fancy-cam, determined to get at least one good photo. At the door they checked in my bag and told me I couldn't take it in.
them: "That's a professional camera, I can't let you take it in."
me: "But, I'm not a professional."
them: "Yeah, but since that's a professional camera, we can check it or you can put it in your car."
me: "WTH?!....fine" (after some irrited sights and feeble protesting)

I found myself again three feet from t…

A 'Lively' Place

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I've described many towns and cities in my journal as 'lively.' It wasn't until I saw Marrakesh that I realized how  when concerning any other place, just how pointless the word was. Marrakesh is hands down, the strangest, busiest, and most chaotic city I've ever been in.  Describing it as lively would be the understatement of the century. 
We arrived in the evening, settled into our riad and headed out into the Djemaa el-Fna, the central market. At night, the market becomes (even more) alive and a series of food stalls pop up as well as OJ stands, date sellers, fortune tellers, street performers, snake charmers, and all manner of people. Oh, and pickpockets too.
We ate dinner right in this night market which was very exciting for me, as it is very difficult not to feel like a tourist in Morocco, but this experience felt very real.  We sat along a long row of tables, 24 of us squeezed into a table built for far fewer. It was a good dinner with plenty to eat,…

The weirdness of being home

It has been difficult to admit that after a year of planning and a year of execution that the wild-ass plan is sadly and officially over. Although I'm not there anymore, it will certainly remain a part of my everyday life and ongoing friendships.

I have had a definite reluctance to change my location on Facebook or the lappys clock back to EST. And, this past weekend I felt a near desperate desire to be back in England for the Harry Potter premier and all of the Coventry blitz anniversary happenings. Alas. At least I could catch the cathedral service on BBC radio.

I have a few residual quirks from being there. It's amazing the affect being on the other side of the road has on the psyche. I still inadvertently look the wrong way before crossing and have occasional flashes of panic as I pull out onto the 'correct' side of the road. I had happily forgotten all of the rage that driving sometimes fills me with, and failed to truly appreciate the tranquility of a co…

Sometimes, I believe them

I finished up my 're-orientation' at work this week.  It was altogether great to get back into it and catch up with work people.  We ran a couple of 'good' calls and I feel pretty confident about heading back out on my own next week, I just won't know where I'm going, but that's nothing new.  It's difficult to work where I don't live- street names and directions are never reinforced. 
Anyway, we met up with a far away crew for a guy with chest pains.  We got there, ready to believe that the call had been talked up by overexcited providers, but this patient really looked, if I can use the term, poorly.  He was, pale, drenched in sweat, had truly crushing chest pain and was struggling with the EMT to keep the oxygen on his face while declaring that he was going to die.  When certain patients say this, I believe them, as it is usually beyond theatrics, and I have heard too many stories of a patient saying they were going to die and then, well, they do.…

By George, a Gorge

When we arrived at Todra Gorge, the sun had already set, but even so, a quick look around helped us realize we were in a unique place. When we looked up, the sky was again filled with stars, although the stars appeared to be blocked out except for a narrow strip above us. It was strange to realize that we were not staying at Todra Gorge, we were staying in it.
Our hotel was situated against one wall of the gorge and we slept on the roof which was wacky but fun. Laying on my back in my sleeping bag I looked up and followed the dark canyon wall as it rose a hundred feet in front of me. It was truly strange, but waking up to see where we were in the daylight was magic. The canyon's narrow passage passed in front of the hotel and stretched out on either side of us. Most simply, we were in a gorge and as the sun rose, it threw light on the dry, red walls of the canyon and was one of the most amazing places I've seen.
I was the only one of our group to take a trek through …

The Desert

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Alright, I'm going to try again to finish writing about Morocco.  From Fez we traveled all day to the edge of the Sahara desert.  After a long drive that literally drove off of the roadway into seemingly nothing, we  clamored onto camels and headed into the soft, red sand dunes.  In about an hour, as we watched the sun set, we arrived at the Berber camp where we had dinner and spent the night.  We had, predictably, a tagene that was great, had an adventure not finding the toilet, and were entertained by some of the Berbers who played traditional drums around the camp fire.
The sand there has the most inviting texture and temperature.  Instead of cold and wet, the deeper I dug into it, the warmer and dryer it felt.  Burying my feet in it was like having a heater around them, and the sand felt soft and smooth and I was completely content sitting it it, doing nothing else.  I leaned back against it, spreading my arms out like a snow angel; my entire view was filled with stars-180 degr…

Back in the Saddle

I hopped into the drivers seat of our new truck and as I pulled away I had several questions.
"Where are the lights on this thing?"
"Oh, okay...Where is the siren"   "Thanks.  Ooh! I like this!"
"Um...Did we call responding?"   "Awesome."
"Oh, One more thing.  Where are we going? Because all I care about right now is finding the button for the rumbler."

It is with joy I have returned to work and I was given two weeks before the next schedule to hang out and acclimate.  My first day was like Christmas, other than the new truck, we opened a satellite station, and got some new toys (including two very new lifepak 15s! I know, squirrell!).  We've run some good calls in the last week, and it's really felt like I never left.  The new schedule comes out next week and I'll be back officially. 

But I have simply been thrilled by driving fast, clearing intersections, and blaring the siren to the point of absurdity.