"The world is changed. I feel it in the water. I feel it in the earth. I smell it in the air. Much that once was is lost, for none now live who remember it. It began with the forging of the Great Rings."
First off, a couple of things that I have overheard or seen that made me laugh. Both of which occurred at the swimming pool.
I was changing in my cubicle when judging by the noise a number of young boys had entered the changing room and seen it as their duty to make as much noise as possible. One of them, we’ll name him Boasty, the incredible Shouting Boy was showing off about a big holiday that him and presumably his parents were about to take. I think it was to Germany. As he went on and on about how good Germany was going to be to his friend who we shall name Larry Idiot-Face it was clear that Larry was becoming increasingly jealous. Eventually Boasty, apparently quite pleased about his ability to induce jealousy in his peers, said to Larry “I mean have you even ever left New Zealand!?”
Larry hastily replied, “Of course I have, I’ve been to the South Island!”
The second thing is just a sign they have in the men’s toilets at the swimming pool. There is a sign warning how Campylobactor, if it got into the swimming pool could close it down. This sign then goes on the list the symptoms which if you have them you shouldn’t go swimming. One of these symptoms is, “Headache and electrolyte imbalance” How would you know? The headache is obvious, your head would ache. But I for one have never woken up thinking, “Oh dear, best not go swimming today, I don’t have enough potassium. Damn you Campylobactor!”
In every other respect the swimming pool here is lovely. It is geothermally heated so is lovely and warm when you get in. Also it sits at the centre of the park which was the site of the last geothermal eruption in this area. This is great as there is smoke coming out of much of the ground, the pools of water around the park and indeed many of the drains. While you are swimming you can give the odd thought to how you could blow up at any time, giving a hint of danger to the whole proceedings. I am James Bond. And so is the old man doing Aqua Jogging in the lane next to me.
The hospital where I am doing elective is up the hill from this park. I guess if you’re going to build on the area in the city most likely to explode you may as well put all the sick people there. It also means when I come to work in the morning I have to head towards the permanent cloud and smell of egg in direct contradiction to what I would normally do in this situation.
The elective is going well. There isn’t much to tell you about at the moment. A large part of my elective is a research project and I am sure my collection and analysis of data concerning accident and emergency patients wouldn’t make a particularly good read. Having said this I am fully aware I just wrote about a sign in a swimming pool toilet.
The hospital is very nice and the staff are all very relaxed and friendly. Many people have gone out of their way to help me settle in and to help me get started on my project as well as setting up more clinical opportunities for me to take part in. Added to this I am going to be taking a Maori pronunciation class. We’ll see how that goes and if I am allowed back in New Zealand after it.
The consultant who is supervising me is great. Very relaxed with an all-important sense of humour.
We were both working in her office at the end of the first Friday of my elective (I have a desk in the corner of her office where I do my project work. It has been pointed out by others that I am sort of like her pet. If this were the case then I am sure I am owed some biscuits.) She turned to me and said, “It’s probably time you should go, I make it Wine O’clock”, I looked at my watch and replied, “Actually I think it’s half-past wine. I should get a move on!” She laughed. I think we’ll get on fine.
On my first day I went to make myself a coffee in the kitchen they have along the hall. It turned out someone had spilled sugar in the coffee pot. Instead of taking it out they had decided to try and hide their mistake by stirring the sugar into the coffee. I don’t take sugar in my coffee and was confused by this sight. My initial thought that this was some sort of special Frosted Coffee with sugar already mixed in, like a coffee version of Frosties. Before I started looking for the plain coffee my stupid bran worked out the nature of the accident. Then it started to think how Frosted Coffee (Froffee) would be a good invention (Frosties seem to do alright) and that I would make millions. Then I became more sensible and realised that this was a ridiculous idea. Frosties themselves are a ridiculous idea. Aimed solely at people who like that exact amount sugar on their cornflakes. If you want less sugar then you have to buy cornflakes and add that small amount of sugar. If you want more sugar then you either have to add more sugar to the Frosties, defeating the object of the Frosties in the first place or you have to buy cornflakes and add loads of sugar.
Bloody Frosties! Ruining my coffee/Froffee.
That’s probably enough for now. I will write about my trip on the gondola and the luge next time.