Monday, 9 January 2017
Backstreet Boys Make an Appearance...
Dagnabbit! The fates really do seem to be conspiring against us. Two nights ago the weather was so bad that we ended up hove to (that means staying still but facing into the weather so that it isn’t so rough) which meant that we were pretty much going the wrong way to get to Rothera. We took a very exciting 35 degree roll which made life rather fun for a while. I was actually on the phone to my other half and all the poor man heard was expletives followed by loud banging and then the phone cut out. Interesting.
On my side of the Atlantic, the chair that my patients use was thrown across the room and hit the wall cupboards. My chair went sliding, with me on it, across the deck and away from the desk. And then the autoclave (that thing has always had it in for me) seized its opportunity and leapt for me. It was foiled by the fact that my chair had flung me away from the desk and it ended up hitting my computer screen instead. All I could do to try and control the chaos was cling onto the desk with one hand and pin the autoclave down with the other whilst desperately hoping that the rolling would stop! Luckily I’d finished my tea because my mug and my paperwork were strewn liberally across the floor. What fun we had.
I called the other half back and told him to cancel the coast guard and then sallied forth to see what had happened to everyone else. Luckily the biggest injury seems to have been a carpet burn (I told him we’d need to amputate at the neck) but one man had to break into his own cabin because his chair had plunged across the room and lodged itself under the door handle. I’m sure that he didn’t enjoy that John Wayne moment at all... I nearly decked the radio officer who appeared in the bar clutching at his elbow and whimpering “I think I’ve broken it doc.” And then when I sighed and said “Let’s get you into the surgery then” he straightened up with a cheeky grin and laughed at me. Evil beggar. He would have been well served if he’d turned around and walked straight into the door. And how I would have laughed!
We did some major incident drilling today. A major incident is one in which the number or nature of casualties attending outstrips the ability of a unit to cope with those casualties. So in a major A&E that might mean that 50 patients had descended on the hospital at once. On board the ship it means 3 or more casualties at once because my little surgery and first aid team would be completely overwhelmed. It was actually good fun in a weird sort of way. I triaged my “patients” and then they were treated by the first aid team in the casualty clearing station (Otherwise known as the bar because alcohol is wonderful for sterilising wounds, you see.). So I had two “patients” that had severe burns and varying levels of consciousness, a few walking wounded and one scientist whom I tasked to be as irritating as possible and demand assistance for his minor injury constantly! He did stellar work and is currently expecting an Oscar. Perhaps we could call it a Jimmy?
My first aid team handled things really well and I was very impressed with them. We’ve definitely come a long way from the days in which we ripped our dummy’s arm off when transporting it to the surgery and then had to staple it back on!
I engaged in some bullying behaviour yesterday which was quite enjoyable. One of the engineers had told me of his deep and undying love for the Beastie Boys. Apparently he’s even altered a poster of the Beastie Boys so that the heads are replaced with the heads of the engineering team. I ruminated on this for about five minutes and then found the cheesiest picture of the Backstreet Boys that I could. Cut out pictures of the engineering department’s heads and then glued them in situ. And then I laminated it so they can never get rid of the thing! Naturally they were thrilled but it’s simply a fair retaliation for the picture of Jeff Goldblum hugging a gorilla that arrived on my cabin door a few days ago! I actually think this may be the best piece of artwork I’ve ever made.... Backstreets Back, alright!