Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Boozy Sunday Brunch
Sunday morning 8am:
Arrive at work for the third time this weekend.
Dr K arrives shortly after that.
Dr MB is currently AWOL.
Sunday morning 9am.
In the short space of time that I've been at work, I've already drawn blood from three drunken drivers for forensic purposes. The police bring them in is as "DUI's" (driving under the influence). These patients are highly inventive and almost always create bullshit stories which are supposed to prevent me from taking their blood as evidence.
For Example: "I refuse to let you take my blood doctor, I'm a liver patient and the Professor of Livers at Groote Schuur said that you must be careful when taking my blood." Oh yes you most definitely ARE a liver patient my friend, being an alcoholic is compatible with destroyed livers. But I guess the liver is evil, and must be punished.
Or:"I have very thin blood doctor. And I have very thin veins. Don't take my blood or I will bleed to death. I don't want to bleed to death!" Oh yeah dude, I get what you're saying! You mean, you don't want to bleed to death like the people you could have hit while drunk driving would bleed to death? Good call, I wouldn't want to die that way either, you imbecile.
One of the three DUI's happened to be a police officer, caught drunk, on duty, while driving the police vehicle at 8am that morning.
This genius, after I shook my head at him, tried to convince me that he had just been working a very long shift and that he was so tired that he merely appeared drunk!
By the time I was done listening to how simply tired he was, I was getting simply drunk off the concentrated alcohol fumes emanating from his rancid mouth!
Sunday morning 10am:
Dr MB currently NOT at work.
Have received text message from him saying that his flatmate has parked his car in front of his and has lost his keys, thus resulting in his lateness.
I attend to a patient with multiple stab wounds. This guy is still trashed from last night. Too trashed to feel the pain of the, fortunately superficial, gashes on his scalp, back and torso.
He proceeds to blame the stab wounds on his wife. Apparently he was out drinking last night with his friends, when she came looking for him to drag him home. On their way home they were stabbed and robbed by gangsters. Stupid wife is clearly to blame,of course, and should have rather let him drink himself into a coma.
Sunday morning 10:30am:
While still busy suturing the lacerations, the cleaner stumbles into the room and stands next to my suturing trolley. He sways slightly while informing me in slurred speech that I need to throw the unused instruments in the special bin placed outside the room.
"Why thank you cleaner dude, I know this, but thanks for reminding me anyway!" I say. Cleaner dude now needs to leave me alone to finish suturing. Yet, he continues to stand there swaying to the rhythm dictated by the alcohol pumping through his veins, and stares intensely at the instruments on my trolley.
As a little bit of drool starts seeping down the side of his mouth onto my sterile field he begins again, "You know doctor, you must throw these instruments into the bin outside when you are finished, because that is where the dirty instruments must go."
Yes I know you drunken fool! Now take your alcoholic self off to the nearest dark corner and help us all by sleeping off last night's party before attempting any further brain function!
Sunday morning 11:00am
Still no sign of Dr MB. I'm starting to get worried. This is South Africa after all, and these foreigners from the UK don't understand words like, security, and hijacking and trellidoors and safety!
At this point I notice Dr MB's flatmate walking through casualty happily jangling his car keys...Dr MB is not in tow.
Thus my hijacking fears are allayed. Me thinks that Dr MB, like everyone else in casualty today, is also suffering the after-effects of drinking the devil's drool!
The paramedics wheel in a morbidly obese lady with no past medical history other than being a known alcoholic. I get the feeling that in the last few months she has been sober less times than she has been able to view her own genitals beyond her massive stomach. She is currently comatose. It could be that she has drunken herself into a stupor or that she has suffered some other major pathology. First rule of intoxicated patients: Do not assume that all their symptoms are attributable to the intoxication. So after some major resuscitation, we send her off to Groote Schuur for a CT scan of her brain. My friend texts me later from Groote Schuur to inform me that she has suffered a massive sub-arachnoid haemorrhage*, whose initial symptoms were probably not picked up due to her having imbibed satan's sap all weekend. Brings new meaning to the term, "smashed out of your skull".
Dr MB arrives, body intact, in the casualty unit. Hoorah!
He looks more like a patient than a doctor:
I begin my examination....
No evidence of hijacking noted, thankfully.
On observation though, possible evidence of a rough Saturday night: hair unusually unstyled, face slightly puffy and red, eyes glazed.
Clothes noted to be dishevelled: having fallen asleep in them last night is highly likely.
Non-purposeful wandering around trauma unit: a clear indication of hangover. That and the fact that he is periodically pressing his palms to his temples and moaning softly.
Patient delusional: Believes that he got two flat tyres on the way to work and thus had to spend the best part of the day sorting it out. Patient even promises to show me the receipts.
Patient forgets that I am female, have two brothers, am a wife, and a doctor. I can smell bullshit from kilometres away.
Never mind, Dr MB. I'll forgive you seeing that after your IV caffeine treatment you perked up and saw most of the patients for the rest of the day, while the rest of us slacked off a little.
I was just annoyed that EVERYONE was enjoying a boozy-Sunday-brunch style afternoon in casualty EXCEPT ME!!!!
It was then that I decided that I needed to get my own back.
Come Monday morning, I would stumble into work stoned, drunk, high on tik, still wearing last night's clothes and screaming like a lunatic that somebody needed to get me another drink...
But I didn't. I remained the diligent little girl that I am, had a good Sunday night's rest and arrived in good spirits, unfortunately not methylated spirits, for work the next morning...
Good little Dr S, always doing the right thing. I have terrible luck though. Knowing me, if I did ever try any nonsense I most certainly would be the ONE person in the unit to get caught, reported and probably disbarred.
Wait...hold up! Being disbarred means I never have to work as a doctor again right? Pass me that crack pipe!!!!