Saturday, 9 June 2012

Back to last Year !!

You'll remember from 2 blogs back, it was nearing the start of afternoon visiting session.

I had decided that I didn't want to have any visitors. Firstly from previous experience as a visitor, I find it an alien experience, and secondly a round trip of 130 miles added to the parking problems, it's not fair on family and friends. It may actually be that I'm just a miserable old Sod !! and that's probably nearer the truth.

First through the doors are the Asian family visiting the guy 2 beds away. I don't have enough fingers to count how many there are, but the two unruly children are there, and they immediately start racing around the ward causing mayhem. I lay back on my bed to observe as other visitors start to arrive.

Opposite me is a gentleman a few years younger than me, I'm guessing in his middle 50's. Since being back from the operation I haven't spoken to him. His visitors arrive, a dour looking lady who I assume is his wife accompanied by a younger female, probably his daughter. The older woman places herself in the chair to the left hand side of the bed, and the younger lady in the chair to the right hand side. Some conversation ensues, mainly from the guy in the bed, he seems to me to be snapping out orders in a military fashion to his wife, who obligingly nods at what appears to be the right time. He's obviously the dominant one in the family. The one sided conversation ceases after about 5mins. For the next 1.3/4hrs (I timed it) the three of them sit, starring blankly in my direction, not another is word is spoken !!  The visitors then up and leave, and I think to myself this is so typical of hospital visits.

All the time I'm observing the visitors the Asian kids are running up and down the ward totally out of control, so no change there. I notice one of the Asian ladies, possibly the patients wife goes over to the sink to wash her hands, they bring in food and tend to have a mass meal around the bed. After washing her hands she pulls about 50 paper towels from the dispenser, dries her hands and dumps the towels the bin. This sort of wanton gratuitous waste really annoys me and I nearly shout out across the ward, but sense prevails, not wanting to start what could be seen as a racist outburst !!

Later that afternoon I get a visit from one of the surgeons team, I ask if I can go home tomorrow (Thursday) he checks the drains in my leg, and is happy that they have reduce sufficiently, so I'm given the OK. The drains are removed, and I'm all set for the morning.

Thursday morning I have a chat with the guy in the bed to my left. He's probably in his late 30's. I find out he's in the Royal Air Force, and is based in Camp Bastion, Helmand province, Afghanistan. Married with two young children. He's back in the UK having both hip joints replaced due to them just wearing out. He's scheduled to go to theater after lunch to have the second hip done. The first one having been done the previous week. We chat for an hour or so, mainly about his job in Afghanistan. He's in the fire service and part of the job is going out to injured army personnel hit by roadside bombs (IED's)  I wont go into detail, suffice to say that during that hour I gained immense respect for these guys who put their lives on the line. Until you learn first hand what goes on, you really don't have any appreciation for the work our forces do. I'm humbled.

Tom and Jane arrive around midday and I'm discharged.

If anybody would like to contact me direct my eamil is

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