One- Liner Wednesday

Badge by Laura

“Thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude. Gratitude is the completion of thankfulness. Thankfulness may consist merely of words. Gratitude is shown in acts.”
Henri Frederic Amiel

This is part of Lindaghill’s One-Liner Wednesday.

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS Dec. 15/18

This week LindaGHill’s #SoCs prompt is the word HAIRY. We have been told to use it anyway we like earnings extra points for using more than one meaning of the word, above all to have fun.

Well I have not gone for bonus points this week because a little Christmas story popped in to my head. As it’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday I just wrote the Yule Poem. Mind you I did start and finish with the prompt word …. So maybe I might earn an extra point.😉

Hairy Mary was so scary

Not a good look for a fairy

No one wanted her atop their tree

Not a pretty sight for children to see.

Cold and lonely, thrown in the alley

Mary sat making, of her misfortunes, a tally .

Ruby dog homeward trots

A delapitated form she spots.

‘Hello” says Ruby to the fairy

“What’s your” name, reply came, “Mary.”

“No one loves me” wailed Mary

“I am so ugly and so hairy!”

“Well” said Ruby, “you look fine to me.”

So Ruby picked Mary up

Took her home, kind hearted pup.

Curled up warm in Ruby’s bed

Happy, both after being fed.

Scary Mary not so scary

Snoozed in Ruby’s coat so hairy.

One -Liner Wednesday. Just Jot it January.Day 10.

Kindness is the language that the deaf can hear and the blind can see.

Mark Twain.

As this is a not only but also post I feel inclined (this week)  to talk a little about the above quote.

I want to add that kindness should be given with no strings and no expectations. If at some point down the line the kindness is used as a lever or a pressure it is not real kindness. So be kind to each other but don’t expect anything in return.

Part of #1lineWeds and #jusjojan.

Monday, Memories: Homeless at Christmas

I do  not  know  who  this  man is but  I have used his  face more  than once when  writing  about  compassion. There  is  something  in his  eyes that  reach out  telling  his  story pain, grief  rejection it is  all there!

I used  his  face  last  at Christmas while I was  talking  about  Crisis at Christmas .  Crisis is  the National Charity  for single  hopeless people. They  are dedicated  to  helping  people  and  giving  them a chane  to change  their life’s for the better, to give  them hope.

The  Charity  works  all year  round of  course  but  they  also do  Crisis at Christmas.  Volunteers spend a  fortnight  cooking, providing  a  warm place  to stay  for those  lost and lonely people. They  give  them new  clothes, a  hair cut   and  also help  them  to change  their  lives if  they  want  to. They  help  with  finding somewhere  to live  or a job  interview .

They  show  real  compassion  they  help  and  they are unpaid and  they  really  make  a  difference.

Happiness and Kindness for Rarasaur

SOMETHING BIG  AND  HAPPY  AND  KIND  RARASAUR!!

LOVE  YOU  RAW!!

PINGBACK

 

If We Were Having Coffee – October 25/2015

Sad

image

I’m Paul your Barista

Welcome to Willow’s weekly coffee and tea garden. My name is Paul; I’ll be your barista today. I’m happy to see you have come for a cuppa and a chat. I am delighted to be back at Willow’s serving you, our treasured readers, a cuppa and sweets while we chat. Please come into the garden and make yourself comfortable. Willow fluffed the cushions on the chairs and set the tables in the garden so we can have a cuppa and chat as we soak up the sun and enjoy the beautiful plants. She has also brought out the heaters so we can stretch our outside tea time further into the fall. As usual, I’d be pleased to bring a pot of whatever beverage you prefer – we have a wide range of teas and coffees to satisfy our world-wide readership. Also available is a large selection of spirits for addition to your cuppa or in its place. We can relax amongst the flowers while we discuss the affairs of the week both personal and/or worldwide. How has your week been?

I have spent some extra time in the hospital this week. I have an infection that is related to my dialysis and it is proving difficult to address. We’re currently using intravenous antibiotics and have just added a round of oral antibiotics. The infection is under control but is not disappearing as quickly as the doctors would like. The initial visit entailed spending the night waiting in emergency – which then stretched well into the following day – actually about 3 pm before I got home – that’s a story. The antibiotics cause diarrhoea and so on the way home, I had to get off my handicap bus when he stopped to pick up another passenger. The bus would not wait, of course, so I called for another pickup and explained what had happened. They have a policy that they do not pick up after 2 pm for same day calls as it is their busy period – which left me stranded at a mall many miles from home. @#$%^&*! I ended up taking a taxi home. Oh well – insult to injury.

So, I’m limping around feeling bad for myself when my friend John (name changed) drops by to visit. He has picked up some TP and bread for me as I can’t get out – he is a kind soul and always asks if I need anything when he is out. He sits down with a serious face and tells me that he has just come from a meeting with his employer and they are putting him on medical leave. He has been diagnosed with testicular cancer. It is early days yet as the diagnosis just came Friday so much testing has yet to be done. He has honoured me by explaining that he hasn’t told family yet. I have had and beaten colon cancer and we talked about the emotions involved and options available.

I explained to him that I have been told that cancer treatment is very personal – everyone reacts differently. For me, the treatment was completely pain free. It was the side effects that really knocked me for a loop. There are days when I would not go through it again, and days when I would. Each time I consider it I come up with a different answer. My best advice to him was to take it one day at a time by asking himself:”Do I have what I need to get through today?” When the answer is yes, then proceed. In the end it is actually amazing how little we really need.

Suitcases and food

Would you like another cuppa? Perhaps a sweet? Anyway, we spent some time discussing this and John went to leave. He went out my back door which leads to a small private deck and a set of stairs down to the parking lot. Sitting on the deck were a suitcase, boxes and plastic bags. John asked if they were mine. I told him they were not, that I was surprised, and asked if they were there when he came in. He said they were. We checked out the suitcases and boxes and they were all canned food and pasta and pots and pans and cleaning supplies – almost all new. Even the suitcase looked new.

We carted the boxes, bags and suitcase inside. There were no personal clothes or goods with the shipment. Mysteriously, there was one small transparent clamshell fresh food container that had been scrubbed so clean as to appear brand new. Written on the tag was “”Deluxe Fruit Salad – Large” We checked through everything and found canned goods, cereal, some towels, pasts and the like. It’s all piled neatly on my floor now except for a big can of Puritan Beans and Wieners, a package of spaghetti and the mysterious clam shell – which are sitting here on my desk as I write.

After some discussion, John and I have come to the conclusion that one of our mutual friends – Frank – must have left the goods there. Frank is as mysterious as the clam shell. He has a room here in our complex but says he spends time at a rehab centre sometimes in Kingston – about a 2 ½ hour drive from here. One day he showed up at my door with the most delicious homemade soup that I have ever tasted – soup he made himself. Another day he dropped off two seemingly random used books – no explanation other than he thought I might like them. He asked me to help him one day with his computer – a used computer he had gotten as a gift. It worked fine but wouldn’t hook to the internet – we have cable here. I was able to determine that the problem was in the wiring in the wall, not the computer and he had the manager get it fixed. It was about that time that he started dropping off things.

Anyway, John went and peeked into Frank’s window and although the bed and dresser were there, all personal goods appeared gone. I’m not exactly sure what to do with all of Frank’s stuff. There are a few items, like partial boxes of cereal that I will have to eat. I suppose I’ll wait for a few weeks to see if Frank comes back.

On that note, that’s about all we have room for this week, so it’s time to settle in with another cuppa and enjoy the garden.  Sweets anyone? I hope you didn’t mind the story today, and that you found it a bit more positive than last week’s story. Please join me in thanking Willow for her invitation to tea. We are all happy that Willow is back and honoured that you all dropped by today to visit. I hope you’ve enjoyed yourself and the conversation and please look around at Willow’s other posts while you’re here. Willow is over there serving her guests and chatting it up. Let’s go see how she is today. Have a great week. We look forward to seeing you back here for sweets and beverages of your choice again next week.

Sergeant Erica Hay bought food and coffee for the homeless man (Picture: TiAnna Greene)

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

If We Were Having Coffee – October 18/2015 Guest Post

Pay It Forward

Paul Your Barista

Welcome to Willow’s weekly coffee and tea garden. First of all I would like to offer my condolences and prayers to Willow and her family at the passing of her sister this week.My name is Paul; I’ll be your barista today. I’m happy to see you have come for a cuppa and a chat. I am delighted to be back at Willow’s serving you, our treasured readers, a cuppa and sweets while we chat. Please come into the garden and make yourself comfortable. Willow fluffed the cushions on the chairs and set the tables in the garden so we can have a cuppa and chat as we soak up the sun and enjoy the beautiful plants. She has also brought out the heaters so we can stretch our outside tea time further into the fall. As usual, I’d be pleased to bring a pot of whatever beverage you prefer – we have a wide range of teas and coffees to satisfy our world-wide readership. Also available is a large selection of spirits for addition to your cuppa or in its place. We can relax amongst the flowers while we discuss the affairs of the week both personal and/or worldwide. How has your week been? My week was pretty rough but improving, thank you. Last week I told a story here of the last time I was in the terminal where I spent so many years coming and going. I found it to be a sort of fun piece, however from the readers’ reactions it came across as a rough story of screw or be screwed. To a certain extent that is true and it is one of the reasons why I eventually got out of long-haul trucking – I dislike myself when I am always anticipating the worst of people, even though that is what is takes to succeed. That said, there have been some times when I felt good about the role I played in helping people. I’d like to tell such a story here today, with your permission, of course. Perhaps it will help balance the negativity of last week’s story.

This happened many years later when I was driving regional for a gas tanker company, hauling Super-B’s as pictured above. It was a good job but because people drove most on holidays – we always had to work. The pay was excellent – double time and a half on holidays – and the heaviest thing we lifted was one end of a hose. Besides the Super B’s were fun to drive at 80 feet long, 30 wheels on the ground, two trailers, weighing 140,000 pounds when loaded- that’s about the weight of two small houses. We could legally haul about 58,000 liters of gas (a little over 15,000 US gallons – or if you used 10 gallons a week, enough for 28 years). It was a scorching hot 100 degrees F at 7 pm when I finished loading at Suncor’s distribution center in Toronto and pulled out of the loading racks. The sun was just starting to lower itself in the sky on this July 1 Canada Day weekend. Standing in the air conditioned driver’s room signing my bills of lading fresh off the printer, I contemplated my log hours. I could see the heat waves rolling off the tanker outside the window, and unseen, the 58,000 liters of gas inside. I had lots of fuel aboard so I didn’t have to stop for that on the way to Ottawa but I would need coffee and cigarettes and a sandwich about the half way mark – perhaps Kingston. The service plaza off the 401 just before Kingston had all that and was easy to access with the truck.

I swung up into the cab and noticed the A/C was starting to cool the air after being parked for an hour loading. Updating my log book, filling out paperwork and filing load sheets, I then pulled to the exit gate and waited for it to open, spitting my truck and me out onto the mean city streets. Winding the truck through the street lights and intersections, I eventually turned onto the Eastbound 401 highway entrance ramp. Accelerating up to the speed limit, I engaged the cruise control and relaxed in the air ride captain’s chair. The next time I slowed would be to stop for a break and a coffee at the Kingston service plaza three hours from now. The huge Super B was at its best in this world – moving 100,000pounds of gas along at 60 mph smoothly and steadily. Inertia was its best friend. I was along for the ride, just making sure nothing got in the truck’s way. The Jake Brake- an engine brake on large diesels- was even keyed into the cruise, making sure that the weight didn’t push the speed too high running off the hills.

Would you like another cuppa? Perhaps a sweet or two? So, three hours later the service plaza exit signs came into sight in the dark. 10:15 pm now and traffic was horrendous. Even out here on the big road (trucker slang for multi-lane divided highways) all three eastbound lanes were solid with traffic –although it was still moving at speed. The service plaza had a separate area for tractor-trailers in the rear and I took the ramp leading me down. There were only a handful of trucks parked in an area that could easily accommodate 100 tractor-trailers- it being a long holiday weekend. As I glanced over at the car fueling area, it looked unusual – taped off with barricades and lines of cars. Snapping on the parking brakes, I left the truck running for the A/C and stepped out, locking it up behind me. The air was still sizzling at over 90 F as I hurried to the convenience store in the center block of the fuel islands. Here there were sandwiches to go and cigarettes and drinks. A crowd surrounded the cashiers and I could hear loud and angry voices. Keeping one ear peeled, I poured myself a large coffee and picked up two wrapped chicken sandwiches to go and made my way to the cashier for smokes and to pay. One cash was open and running through non-gas purchases. I could hear the conversations at the other cashes: “I’m sorry but our computers are down and we can’t pump any gas.” Angrily: “What the hell am I supposed to do with no gas?!” “I’m sorry sir, we are having them fixed as fast as possible but it may be tomorrow before we can pump any gas.” “I don’t have enough to get into Kingston, what the hell do you expect me to do?!” Yikes, the busiest day of the year on Canada’s busiest highway on a holiday and their fuel pumps were down? Wow, sure was glad that I wasn’t that station manager. I glanced out the store windows and realized there were literally hundreds of cars outside waiting. Well, time for me to skedaddle.

As I started for the door, my attention was caught by a young woman who had pushed her way through to the front of the crowd. I paused for a minute to see what she was going to say and after she had been told there was no gas she asked if any Kingston stations could bring some out to her as she was almost out. The manager told her they had tried that earlier but because it was a holiday none of the in-town stations could spare anyone to come out. She looked crushed and tears welled in her eyes. She asked what she should do and the manager just shrugged – the crowd ignored her. She turned dejectedly with wet cheeks and walked slowly out the door. No one paid her any attention and my heart went out to her, so I followed at a discrete distance to see if she was with anyone. Had she been with a group or even another person, I would just go about my business. If she was alone, I didn’t know what I was going to do but I couldn’t leave her stranded here in this crowd all by herself. She opened the door on a compact older Toyota that was clean but had obviously seen some years of life. Once I saw she had no one to help her, I approached.

“Hi there. I’m Paul. I couldn’t help but overhear your conversation in the store. You’re short of gas?” Not sure what to make of this she replied simply: “Yes, I’m almost out and I don’t have enough to get into Kingston (about 20 miles) to get more.” As she spoke she was wringing her hands with nervousness. “I can give you enough gas so you can get into the city for more.” I had no idea I was going to say that until it came out of my mouth – apparently I had a plan but had not informed myself. Her eyes lit up and she said loudly with excitement: “You can?” “Shhh! It would not be good if anyone overhears us.” “Oh, sorry,” she whispered. Ha! I hadn’t really meant to come across as so conspiratorial, just for her to keep her voice down. “Look there is an emergency cross over into the truck parking right there,” as I pointed, “Take that and you’ll see a tanker truck parked halfway down. Pull up in front of the truck so the headlights are pointing at the side of your car with the fuel tank. I’ll meet you there.”

The truck area was not well lit and I found myself thinking how brave she was to park in the dark where there was little help. By the time I had walked over she had parked as requested and I unlocked the idling truck, turning on the headlights. There were a few other trucks between us and the car area, so we were not visible to anyone else in the service plaza – thank God. I unscrewed her gas cap and looked inside with my flashlight – sure enough there was a spring loaded safety flap inside the neck of the fill pipe. I told her to stay beside her car while I opened the truck valve compartment and the storage compartment. I pulled out a new large red safety cone that had a hole in the small end – it would do for a funnel.. Putting on gloves I grabbed one of the 5 gallon steel drip pails we used under the valves when delivering, and filled it ¾ with high test gas – if I was going to give away gas, it might as well be the best. That would give her about 4 gallons of gas, plenty to get to town. Bringing the pail, a ground strap, a drip cloth, a new pair of gloves and the safety cone, I walked over to her car. I had also grabbed a big wire tie we used to secure connections when pumping. I stuck the wire tie in the tank neck to hold the safety open, placed the drip cloth on the ground and set the pail down while I clipped the ground strap (to stop any static sparks from igniting the gas when pouring it) to her car and the pail. Getting her to put on the gloves, I instructed her to hold the safety cone like a funnel, and I slowly poured the gas into her car. When we were done, we checked her gas gauge, which now showed ¼ full, removed the wire tie, replaced her gas cap, wiped the few drops from her car with the drip cloth and threw the equipment back into my storage compartment. She was quite amazed and asked how much she owed me. I told her it was free – I just asked that in the future if she found someone who could use help and she felt safe helping them that I would ask her to pay it forward. She commented that I could make a fortune here at this service plaza tonight – I told her to keep quiet, I could just envision a mob. And so we parted ways and I continued on to Ottawa not ever even having known her name or where she was going. As I drove I worried. Basically, I had stolen product from our customer – the gas was not mine to give away. Regardless of the reason or use, it was still stealing and I do not like that. Pondering this for the remaining three hour drive to Ottawa, I came up with a solution. When I pulled into the station to which I was delivering, it was 1:30 am and the site was open but with no customers. I grabbed the drip pail and ground strap and went over to the high test pump. I put the same amount of fuel into the pail from a pump and then went inside the station. I explained to the manager what I had done and told him I wanted to pay for the gas with my debit card, which I did, keeping the receipt. Then I took the pail of gas back over to the station’s fill pipes where I was delivering their gas, and again using the safety cone as a funnel, poured the gas I had paid for back into their storage tank. This effectively paid for the gas I had given the young woman in Kingston. I felt much better.

Finishing up the delivery I returned to the terminal and closed off my shift. After the holiday I was off for three days and I dropped by the office to see terminal manager. I explained what had happened and that I couldn’t leave the young woman stranded and how I had paid for the gas I had given her in the parking lot. I showed him the receipt. My biggest concern was that someone may have seen us and thought I was stealing gas and giving it to friends. I assured my boss that was not the case. It was the only time I had ever done this. He just nodded – I could tell he was split in that it was dangerous to take a few gallons from a tanker (it is called splash loading and is illegal here – because the gas coming from the valve splashes into the gas already in the pail and creates static and potentially an explosion). On the other hand he had a young wife and sisters who were often getting into problems like running out of gas and he appreciated the fact that I helped such a person. He just thanked me for telling him and left it at that –no official positive reinforcement for stealing and breaking the rules but no remonstration for stealing and breaking the rules either. It was as I expected, which was fine.

Epilogue: Two months later I received a letter in my company mail – it congratulated me on being chosen the Sunoco driver of the month and said I could pickup my leather jacket and gift certificates from the manager. No reason was ever given for my selection. On that note, that’s about all we have room for this week, so it’s time to settle in with another cuppa and enjoy the garden. Sweets anyone? I hope you didn’t mind the story today, and that you found it a bit more positive than last week’s story. Please join me in thanking Willow for her invitation to tea. We are all happy that Willow is back and honored that you all dropped by today to visit. I hope you’ve enjoyed yourself and the conversation and please look around at Willow’s other posts while you’re here. Willow is over there serving her guests and chatting it up. Let’s go see how she is today. Have a great week. We look forward to seeing you back here for sweets and beverages of your choice again next week.

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

If We Were Having Coffee – June 7/201: Guest Post : The Move

The Great Move

Afternoon Tea on the Move

Welcome to Willow’s weekly coffee and tea garden. My name is Paul; I’ll be your barista today. I’m happy to see you have come for a cuppa and a chat. Please come into the garden and make yourself comfortable. Willow has put out the cushions on the chairs and set the table under the canopy so we can have a cuppa and chat. As usual, I’d be pleased to bring a pot of whatever beverage you prefer – we have a wide range of teas and coffees to satisfy our world-wide readership. Also available is a large selection of spirits for addition to your cuppa or in its place. We can relax amongst the flowers while we discuss the affairs of the week both personal and/or worldwide. How has your week been?

Well, I finally moved this week and I am pleased. After a year of a leaky ceiling – management truly did exert themselves trying to fix it by patching then replacing the roof, the gutters, the flashing and so on – I have gotten a new apartment in the same complex. This one is bigger and newly renovated with a new counter and fridge and stove and, best of all, they gave it to me at the same price – I guess as a reward for my patience with the leaky ceiling.

Yup just about like this

The move itself was rather hard to get started –it has been eminent and delayed for a month now as the manager had promised to get me some help and other things kept popping up. I was in no position to complain as he was giving me help and the new apartment was a great improvement for the same price. I don’t walk very well, so navigating the stairs was not doable for me alone. The move was just a few buildings down and could be done through the back doors of the units as they share a parking lot at the rear. Ray is the handy man that the manager was going to get to help – and although Ray is a great guy, he is not enamored of work and I suspect he was delaying the move by telling Mark (the manager) that he was too busy. Anyway I have been preparing for this move for a month so most of my belongings were in bags and boxes piled on the floor waiting to go. It was getting annoying living out of the boxes but I was cool hoping the outcome would justify the patience. Rushing them could easily be counter productive – pissing off the handyman is not a good thing to do.

Would you like another cuppa while we chat? Perhaps a sweet? So finally Wednesday afternoon, Mark came to me and said we would make the move on Thursday, but he could not give a time. He asked to see my room to see what repairs had to be done and he frowned when he saw all the boxes and bags. He sternly told me I would have to keep the new apartment much cleaner. I reminded him that all the cupboards and dressers and cabinets were all empty because he had been promising to move me for a month. I had washed and waxed the floor just a few days previous and since then it had rained and dirty water had poured in through the ceiling. I had mopped it up, of course but the floor looked dirty. This was fine, so I made sure I would be in all the next day. I had dialysis Wednesday night so I was late getting home and then could not sleep, so I worked on the computer. One of the guys in my building – Steve – had been kind enough to volunteer to help, so I let him know it would be Thursday. I awoke at noon on Thursday, got dressed and made sure all the daily stuff was boxed up and sat down to wait. It was a nice day so I had the back door open a few inches for air circulation and was working on the computer. Steve called wondering about the move time and I told him it was up to Mark and I’d call him as soon as it was a go.

CAN’T YOU KEEP THIS CLEANER?

 

At 4 pm Mark called out to me from the back door and asked where I had been that morning when they had wanted to move me at 9 am. I said I had been in bed asleep and apparently had not heard the knock. I told him I had had my phone on beside the bed waiting for him to call. Ray (the handyman) insisted he had knocked at the back door and then at the front door and there was no response – yeah, right, the door had literally been open all afternoon and Ray spends most of his day going to and from the storage areas in back. So, Mark said it was too late to move that day and we would have to reschedule. AAAARGH! I pointed out that everything was ready to go and it would only take a short time to move it. Perhaps we could do it now? He said they couldn’t but he would give me the key and I could move lighter things at my own convenience. That was all I needed. I asked if I could stay in the new apt that night and he said it was mine effective immediately. I told him that Steve and I would move and I would text him when we were done. So I called Steve, told him what was happening and he was eager to get started. When Steve arrived, we went to the new apartment and decided where the bigger items would be positioned. I told him that I would pass him down the boxes from the back steps and he could carry them and pile them at the base of the stairs at the new apt. Then I would go over and we would pass them up into the new place. He seemed relieved that the plan meant no one had to traverse the stairs with boxes. Steve had just carried the first box over and I was passing him the second when a passer-by stopped to say hello.

Apparently, Nicholas – as Steve introduced him – was a friend of Steve’s. He asked if we needed help and I eagerly accepted. Nicholas (who I found out is from Gaspe – a remote part of eastern Quebec) pitched right in and he and Steve carried while I passed them the boxes and bags and lamps and chairs. Then while I was cleaning the old room, they carried out the heavier pieces that needed two people to move. With those in place at the new apt, the three of us passed all the boxes and bags from the ground into the apartment.

In an hour we were done and I texted Mark that were all finished and that I would drop the keys in the office mail slot. I’m still putting things away and organizing, but I am so happy that the move is done and I am in my new place. I Googled “Free image of Apartment Moving” and this is one that came up.

 

 

It never ceases to amaze me how giving people are. First of all, Mark was willing to give me a bigger and newer apt for the same price – he made sure it was on the first floor so I could walk in easily. He also offered help when he had no obligation to do so. Steve offered his help to move and remained patient and dedicated even when the time kept changing. Steve actually got a new cell phone this month and made sure I had his new number so I could contact him when needed. Then Nicholas, who I didn’t even know, came upon us moving and just started to help without even being asked. People can be so On that note, that’s about all we have room for this week, so it’s time to settle in with another cuppa and enjoy the garden. Sweets anyone? Please join me in thanking Willow for her invitation to tea. We are all honored that you dropped by today to visit. I hope you’ve enjoyed yourself and the conversation and please look around at Willow’s other posts while you’re here. Willow is over there serving her guests and chatting it up. Let’s go see how she is today. Have a great week. We look forward to seeing you back here for sweets and beverages of your choice again next week.

 

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

If We Were Having Coffee – Jan.18/2015 GUEST POST

A Rare Appointment

Paul your Barista

Paul your Barista

Welcome to Willow’s weekly coffee and tea garden. My name is Paul, I’ll be your barista today and I’m happy to be here once again. Please come in and make yourself comfortable. Willow has plumped the cushions and started a cozy fire so we can warm ourselves while we have a cuppa and chat. As usual, I’d be pleased to bring a pot of whatever beverage you prefer – we have a wide range of teas and coffees to satisfy our world-wide readership. Also available is a large selection of spirits for addition to your cuppa or in its place. We can relax while we discuss the affairs of the week both personal and/or worldwide. How has your week been?

It has been a chilly week here in Ottawa, forcing everyone to scuttle from one building to another in an attempt to stay warm. Right now, as I write this, it is -23 C (about -15 F) with a wind chill in the -30’s. Brrrr! So, anyway I had scuttled to the hospital one morning for a consult with a new (to me) doctor who will perform a minor surgery on me in a few months. It is another domino in the dialysis chain that has fallen and the procedure is necessary to straighten out a side effect. I am told that it is minimal invasive but necessary and will require a few days stay as an inpatient. Anyway, I have never met this doctor before, so, of course, we have to go though my sordid medical history and I am to be poked and prodded to ascertain my medical fitness to qualify. Now this is an “ENT” (Ear, nose, throat) doc, so it’s all about my head and neck and the parts therin.

 

(See that headrest? I thought it was for my comfort – WRONG. It is to keep my head from running away )when a probe targets my nose – AAARGH!.)

I present myself and am ushered in short order into an exam room. My wait is minimal and two young (my God they don’t look a day over 19) med students (3rd year)  and introduce themselves – Dana and Pirya. Sigh. They are eager and humble and attentive and ask my permission (imagine that, a doc who asks permission) to do all the prelim work for the record before I see the doctor. There are advantages to this hospital being a teaching institution – all the docs are not old and grumpy. Ha! Of course, faced with two young, attractive women who ask me to talk about myself, while they listen attentively, is not unpleasant and off I go on my favorite topic – me.

This back and forth goes on for a bit and then they inform me that they would like to check a few things, again with my permission. Then they proceed to pore over my head, looking in every orifice and discussing their observations with each other and me (amazingly). I have to tell you, I was impressed. For the first time, in as long as I can remember, a doctor (or a pair of doctors) began to list all the things that were right with me. As I sat there they each declared both of my ears in excellent shape (“What am I looking for? “ “If you shine the light at an angle right there (positions instrument for partner to look) you will see a reflection off the ear drum and you can see that it is all symmetrical and clear and very good looking.”) I have never had my ears checked and often wondered if I was taking good care of them – having never used any of the oft toted ear products such as swabs. I felt as if I had perhaps ignored my ears and they were waiting to wreck havoc. But no, in two professional opinions, they were as good as the day they first started hearing. And pronounced so by two attractive young women.

Then they want to look down my throat and with the help of another oddly shaped light and a tongue depressor, proceed to tell me that my throat looks wonderful (my words), that my gums look very healthy and that there is no sign of any irregularities in any of the linings. Pushing my tongue around, one doc holding the light and the other the depressor, they examined it, top, sides, bottom, and declared it too a fine specimen of a tongue, well maintained and definitely worthy of my head. Ha! All this they do with an air of humbleness and constant requesting of my permission. Often one will say “I’ve never done this before” and the other would reply “Oh, let me show you.”

Then they decide to check all the lymph nodes in my neck, a procedure that involved standing behind me and basically massaging my neck and throat as they looked for the nodes. They knew where they all were – and there are apparently a whack of them – in theory but finding them in real life was a challenge. Then of course, once one doc had found some, they would change places and the other doc would find them too. I must have shown some signs that I was enjoying this as Dana asked if it was pleasant. I replied that they could look for nodes in my back too when they were done. Ha! They pronounced all my lymph nodes in perfect condition. Whew, I was batting a thousand They were busy marveling as they watched my thyroid move up and down while I swallowed sips of ice water, when the doctor herself entered. No one had ever paid much attention or been so riveted by my swallowing before and I was quite pleased.

Apparently, from their reaction, I was doing it especially well and I felt proud. The real doc – Dr. McLean – is also a sharp looking woman but about my age with an amused smile and a no-nonsense manner. “So, I hear a lot of laughter from this room, are we all having a good time?” As the students watched she went over the procedure and did a nasty but quick test by inserting a probe through my nose and down my throat – again declaring all she saw as in good shape. We exchanged some info about procedure timing and such and she left. Just before going, and apparently looking for a learning experience for her charges, she asked if I would mind explaining my dialysis fistula to the two students. I am sure she knew I was enjoying this and playing to my ego was a fine way to keep her students busy.

And so I set off on a show and tell of my dialysis fistula to my rapt audience of two. Not a large gathering but certainly one of my best performances. Ha! A while later, the doc stuck her head back into the room and thanked me and departed with my audience, who left with a cheery good bye, a wave, and a thank you. A nurse appeared, gave me a brace of forms to complete and sign. Having done that, I was free to go.

As I walked down the hallway I realized that this was the very first time I had ever had a doctor’s visit where I had been told what wonderful shape I was in and been given a list of all the things that were good and right with me. It occurred to me that doctors likely see all these things normally but don’t mention them –either because of time constraints or the normalcy of their observations. It would be great of all the good things could be mentioned occasionally. The time and attention of the young students certainly didn’t detract any from all the good news either. Have you ever left a doctor’s office feeling more positive than when you entered? It’s a nice change.

That’s about all we have room for this week, so it’s time to settle in with another cuppa and watch the fire. Sweets anyone? Please join me in thanking Willow for her invitation to tea. We are all honored that you dropped by today to visit. I hope you’ve enjoyed yourself and the conversation and please look around at Willow’s other posts while you’re here. Willow is over there serving her guests and chatting it up. Let’s go see how she is today. Have a great week. We look forward to seeing you back here for tea again next week.

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

Follow me on Twitter

Follow Us

Follow Us

Follow Us

Follow Us

like mercury colliding...

...moments of unexpected clarity

G-Bears Blog

Real Life - Hard Facts !

All in a Day's Breath

Art, Love of Life, Philosophy, Writing, Spirituality

Kevin Parish

Poetry, lyrics and other words...

Claire Ladds

Novelist and short story writer

adamdixonfiction

Short stories from a fiction addict

Write to Inspire

Lance Greenfield - Night Writer

Thoughts by Mello-Elo

Books, Poems, Stories...and a cup of coffee, or two!

Tent Stories

The untold tales of paths trodden, fears conquered and battles won.

Jemima Pett

Writing and reviews with an environmental, science fiction, and fantasy touch

My Colourful Life

Because Life is Colourful

Marian Wood

Aspiring Author and Poet

Ritu Bhathal

Author, Poet, Storyteller

besonian

musings on life, love, people, why we're here and where we're going

Author Steve Boseley - Half a Loaf of Fiction

Horror and Dark Fiction, and assorted other topics

Ben Naga

Gifts from the Musey Lady and Me. "Laissez-moi vous raconter ma vraie histoire."

A Unique Title For Me

Hoping to make the world more beautiful

Looking For The Light

Keep Moving Forward

M J Mallon YA/Paranormal Author

Kyrosmagica Publishing - The Magical Home of Books, Writing and Inspiration

Jane Dougherty Writes

About fantastical places and other stuff

chuffincat

By popular demand.

Art by Rob Goldstein

There is no common truth, but there are facts.

Thru Violet's Lentz

My view, tho' somewhat askew...

The Sound of One Hand Typing

Music, Musings, Memoir, and Madness

Savoring Sixty and Beyond

"So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day." 2 Corinthians 4:16

Antonia Sara Zenkevitch

poetry, writings & rants; hope in the margins

SaylingAway

Shorts, Novels, and Other Things

Joy Lennick

Writing and Reading

The Swan Song

Words and Words are all I have!

EveryDay Wonders

my little soul corner- come and pop by!

The Silent Eye

A Modern Mystery School

TanGental

Writing, the Universe and whatever occurs to me

The Annual Bloggers Bash

The Official Website for the Best Blogging Event of the Year!

Just muddling through life

The ups and downs of a working mum

ThoughtsnLifeBlog

Our Thoughts Influence Our Life.

Iain Kelly

Fiction Writing

Roberta Writes

How you see life depends on how you look at things