Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Unless it is a matter of life and death

"Severe weather warnings remain in place across the region because of the snow. The advice remains do not travel today unless it is a matter of life or death." said the weather report on the telly this morning.

I sip my mug of tea and peer through the curtains. The world outside is covered in a white blanket and it's still snowing. In the darkness, the snow makes everything look much brighter than normal and, as the snow comes down, the scene outside kind of shimmers. It's like a postcard or a scene from a Dickens novel.

"Do not travel unless it's a matter of life or death," I repeat to myself.

I briefly consider not bothering to try and get to work but I'm covering the Intensive Care unit today, so I think I can safely say the "life or death" thing applies to me. Plus, I know that if I don't turn up, the poor person who's been working on ICU all night will probably have to continue working into the day as well and that would be horrific and unfair.

No, I have to go to work.

My only question is, will I physically be able to get there? I pull on my coat and wellies and go out to survey the damage. My little car is parked on the street covered in about 10cm of snow. The council have had the gritters out and whilst my street has not been treated, the main street has been gritted and I assume that all the other roads on my route to the hospital will have been treated. I reckon if I can get my car to the main street, I'll be able to get to work. Fortunately, yesterday I had the sense to park it at the end of my street, so I'm only about 30m away from the junction.

I turn and go back inside to prepare what I'm going to take:

Hat: check

Coat: check

Gloves: check

Spare jumper: check

Scarf: check

Sandwiches: check

Wash bag: check

Toothbrush: check

Phone: check

Book: check

I pick up my spade as I head out into this particularly cold and frosty morning, crossing my fingers as I do so.


StorytellERdoc said...

Did you make it? :) I assume so...and don't forget about thermal underwear, jolly ranchers, and matches!

Near the Great Lakes, I think we all have a mini-mart in our cars! LOL

Nice post.

Nikita said...

Hi Junior Doctor,

Did you make it okay? I am not a car driver myself, so it took me nearly three hours yesterday morning to get home from work. Bus arrived nearly a hour late and the journey home took double time as the roads were ungritted. I am so pleased I do not return to work until Sunday night! Hopefully, the weather will have improved. Thanks for all you do.

Mags. xxx

The Manchester Medic said...

Hi Junior Doctor,

I have been reading for a long-time now and I'm a big fan of your postings - you always have something interesting to say.

I'm a 5th year student and I'm considering a career in anaesthetics myself. I was wondering whether it would be alright for me to email you with a few questions about selecting the best foundation programmes and what the job is actually like. If you are happy for me to do that then you can drop me an email (won't post address here but it's in my profile) letting me know how best to get in touch.


Manchester Medic

Fizzlemed said...

Yuck. It's still snowing stateside. Yuck. Even though the streets are plowed, I have to park in a snow pile.

Be safe.

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Dr Michael Anderson said...

Yeah, I made it. Slowly and gently, with a few slides but I got there (and back) in the end!

Manchester Medic - feel free to email me and I'll endeavour to answer your questions drmichaelanderson AT

online ask a doctor said...

It is better to be careful with these wild snowfalls. They behave differently each time. They are violent sometimes. So it is better to always watch back and then carefully step in.
Nice sharing. Keep posting.

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Put safety before punctuality in the event the bad weather closes in. Allow more time for winter journeys but be ready for the inevitability for being late for work because of unexpected delay.

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