I spend more time with my work colleagues than with my own family.
This happens when one is a mean, lean, life-saving machine working night shifts when everyone is sleeping, and is sleeping when everyone else is working.
I'm spending so much time at work that it's like my work colleagues are starting to become my family.
The team effort it takes to piece together a polytrauma victim, take down a violent psychiatric patient, or resuscitate a patient back from imminent death is certainly a bonding experience.
Witnessing one's colleague being vomited/urinated/shat/bled/spat on are all priceless moments of hilarity that provides the fodder for friendly family-type banter.
Spending four nights on call in a row with the same people provides insight into their characters which would otherwise not have been learned during polite dinner conversation.
Sleep deprivation is like being drunk, it loosens the tongue and disinhibits the mind.
What I'm saying is, we're getting way too comfortable.
It's only a matter of time before we start farting around each other, and then rating those rectal whistles like real siblings.
Here's the family breakdown:
Dr D: A specialist neuorologist. She does locums in our trauma unit sometimes to supplement her income. She's like everyone's mum. She doesn't hesitate to dole out the "mama treatment" when you've screwed up or are pissing her off, but is also quick to praise, offer advice and soothe.
Dr MB: You've read about him and his drunken exploits already. He gets to play the role of the mischievous older brother.
Dr S: That's me - taking centre stage as the misunderstood, brilliant, beautiful and slightly insane little sister.
Which leaves us with Dr K to play the role of father.
Except that Dr MB and I are convinced that he should actually be playing the role of Godfather.
And by Godfather I mean the scary Sicilian-mafia-gangster-type godfather, not the sweet loving I'll-take-care-of-you-when-your-parents-die-and-raise-you-in-the-name-of-Jesus type godfather.
There have just been too many incidents pointing to the fact that Dr K could currently be, or previously have been, a gang-leader on the Cape Flats.
1: He has an expressionless face with cool green eyes.
2:He broods. A lot. And skulks around the unit like a moody killing cat.
3:Whenever the hardened criminals come in to the unit and start trying to cause chaos he manages to silence them by just looking in their direction.
4:He revealed that he goes to visit some of his "friends" who currently reside in prison!! He claims that these friends are actually really good people and that when they get out they will be staying with him.
5:He only wears tops with long sleeves and high necks. We're convinced that this is because his torso is riddled with gang tattoos which he can't reveal in public.
6:During an episode of "immobilise the violent psych. patient", I watched as he controlled the guy with a one-handed vice-like choke hold. When we mentioned that perhaps this was not the healthiest method of immobilisation, he simply informed us that this was indeed the best way because once they become hypoxic they stop struggling!!!!!!
7: Whenever a gunshot wound comes into the unit he can correctly identify the type of gun that was used and the calibre of the bullet retrieved.
8: It's possible that he's packing heat.
Do you get the picture?
I mean it's pretty cool to have the damn Godfather on our team right? Lord knows we need some extra protection in this gangland trauma unit.
So now my pseudo-family is more like a pseudo-familia
And I'm loving it.
Except, that I'm also slightly nervous that I might do something to seriously piss him off and then wake up dead the next morning....
Only 5 weeks to go until the registrars rotate and he moves off to another unit elsewhere in Cape Town.
So until then it's yes Dr K, no Dr K, please don't kill me Dr K!