Category: Journal

Things that you can’t forget

It’s the beginning of the ski patrol cycle again. Last Saturday was the pre-season refresher training for returning ski patrol instructors. The makeup for ski patrol training is that we cover the whole corpus of patrol training on a three year cycle. The focus this year was environmental and neurological emergencies.

Trauma being ski patrol’s bread and butter, neurologic topics always includes a healthy does of spinal column and spinal cord compromise. Everytime we cover spinal injuries, I always get drawn back to when I was training to be a paramedic, and we were required to do hospital rotations. One particular rotation was to the ICU, where a nurse recounted to me a recent patient who was a below waist paraplegic resulting from diving into a pool and hitting her head on the bottom of the pool, and suffered a complete spinal cord transection. One day, while still in the ICU, she asked, “I’m only fourteen; I haven’t even had sex yet. I guess I’ll never know what that feels like, will I?”

Musical kitchens

For the past two years, the management company of the apartment in which I live has offered to update my kitchen, following which my rent would be increased by $50.00 per month. Each year, I’ve ignored them. This year, as part of my lease renewal paperwork, they’ve included an addendum indicating that my lease was subject to me letting them update the kitchen, and that starting the month following completion of substantial kitchen work, my rent would be increased by $10.00 per month. Of course now I wonder whether it’s going up $10.00 because I held out, or whether the rent increase I got last year was actually for the kitchen upgrade, and I’ve basically been paying “new kitchen” rent without actually having a new kitchen for the last twelve months.

Anyway, two weeks ago, even before I had signed and returned the new lease agreement, someone from the rental office called up to say that they would like to start on my kitchen on the Monday of last week, and please to get all my stuff out of the kitchen and empty out the cabinets.

Sure enough, on that designated Monday, they come banging on the door early in the morning waking me up, and raring to get to work. I told them to come back later. On the first day of their work, I came back home to discover that they had moved the refrigerator into my living room, and half the cabinetry and counters ripped out. On the second day, everything in the kitchen had been ripped out and that they were putting in new flooring. Every evening when I came home from work was like Christmas: the anticipation and expectation of something new. The third day brought a sink and some new walls. It was an odd thing, that sink. It was kind of like a stand-alone sink, just by itself without much of any of the surrounding counter-top. Each day brought a little more completion to my kitchen. In all of this, one day I also discovered that they took away the medicine cabinet mirror thing in my bathroom, and installed a new mirror and new cabinet. Finally, on the Monday just past, I got home to discover yet another refrigerator in the kitchen in addition to the fridge that got moved temporarily into my living room. They left a note
to tell me that they’d take away the old fridge on Tuesday (yesterday), and that the floor would be done next week. So I spent Monday night moving the contents of old fridge into the new fridge, and moving all the magnetic poetry thingies from one fridge to another.

Last night, I got home, and damned if I still had a fridge in the living room! On further inspection, they had taken away the old fridge, and moved the new fridge from my kitchen back into the living room. Half the new flooring for the kitchen was done. I also discovered in my freezer a frozen bottle of orange drink which I did not put there. I guess the floor guy wanted to chill down his drink fast, and then had forgotten about it.

This morning, the floor guy woke me out of bed, asking what time he could come back and finish the floors. I’ll be so glad when all this work is done, and my fridge goes back to living in my kitchen.