my life's all planned

fishlamp and data1ore both seem to be going through subtle heart trubbles.. the kind that bubbles under the surface and doesn't quite want to evaporate nor sink. well... i guess i've unwittingly joined the bandwagon in a much less personal way.

did you hear the news? did you hear?? it's been a month old already!
did you hear that amy has a boyfriend?!

(no A, he's not bob with his marriage proposal by mail *grin* he's better than that ebayer!)

this boyfriend of mine is a doctor. we were spotted at charlestown square.
now, if i could only confirm that he worked at the john hunter hospital and find out which department he belongs to, maybe... just maybe, could i sneak a lunchtime rendevous with him during the week.

i hope you could detect the sarcasm. i really hope you could! really, it was disconcerting. it was just plain weird.. to be pounced on by a classmate, eyes wide as saucers and a grin that would shame the cheshire cat and be asked "so amy, i hear you have a new boyfriend!"

excuse me???

"so who is this boyfriend of mine?"

"i don't know. i heard he was a doctor"

"right. so what kind of doctor is he? does he work in this hospital? where'd you hear this from?!"

a different person pounced on me this morning and practically the same conversation happened in the same order again. almost word for word. i haven't been shopping at charlestown square since my parents came, save last week but i was alone.
i wonder who was next to me all that time.
i wonder who this doctor boyfriend of mine is.
i wonder..

is it still the 7th month of the lunar year or has that passed and the gates of hell closed?


weekend wrap-up

only in australia...

will you find a website dedicated to bathrooms.. the national public toilet map to be exact. a project of the national continence management strategy, under the wing of the department of health and aging. ahhuh. dudes! when you gotta go, you just gotta go! unless you make a printout of the public toilets near your destination(s) for the day, you're not really gonna have time to go online and do a search for the nearest john... will you? looking at the map, they got it from whereis.com.au, our online street directory thingie. to have the option of seeing the locations of public toilets, shopping centers, places of worship and such on there would make sense, but even the whereis.com.au people don't have the option of searching for public lavoratories on their own site. i guess bathrooms don't exactly belong in the "places of interest" category huh...

only in america...

will you find such overpriced, but awfully cute usb thumbdrives that you can "adopt" by mimoco.com. i love the marketing ploy and i almost fell for it too, until i realized that the prices were in greenbacks, not aussie dollars. 90.. ninety bucks for a 512mb drive! yes, fairybit may be cute and she may have been concocted by the mimoco labs as one of their mimocobots, but hey! gimme some pots of nail polish or acrylic paint and some sculpey and i'm sure i could whip you up a cutiepie. she might not be as refined and you may see my fingerprints imprinted on the clay but hey.. it sure beats shelling out US$90 for fairybit!

totally unrelated.. do you remember my music madness over an electric violin a while ago? well here's a one up! remember those pianos in the middle of malls that would play by themselves? my mom used to tell me that a ghost was playing, so stay away and don't touch. man, the things parents get away with telling their kids! anyway, this is the violin version of that.. the world’s first player violin, according to the folks at QRS.

i do apologize for the random jumps of subjects ~ blame that sore throat i woke up with on thursday morning. it must've liked me a lot because it hung around. by thursday night, it had invited its friends over and were having a party. there was a lot of farting going on, but it's not what you think! 'twasnt the smelly kind but it upset my thermostat enough to gimme consistent readings of 39.6s - 39.9s throughout the night. (that translates to high 103s in fahrenheit). managed to quell it somewhat with T's lemsip and panadol.. enough to let me go to NICU, walk out after 5 mins to puke, walk back in and stand for another 5 mins b4 getting queasy and to get my logbook signed off as i got chided and sent straight home. not the best place to be when one is feeling sick, that NICU. neonatal intensive care unit. i felt like i needed the intensive care =(

the nasty party bugs lasted through to saturday until i took some of A's nurofen. it worked the second time and now, i'm stuck with my motion-activated headache and the initial sore throat. i guess eating spring rolls yesterday didn't help *oops*

it always takes something like this to make me realize how much i miss being home, where my mom would hover around and annoy the heck outta me, but ultimately treat me like a princess til i got better. to realize how much the state of being healthy is taken for granted and how much i miss it now that i'm sick and miserable. yet, despite knowing this and having gone thru this many a times, i'll be back to taking healthiness for granted once i get better. i just know it =(


no more headaches

woke up this morning feeling like i've been slammed into a concrete wall. i couldn't tell if i was dreaming or awake. my throat felt like it was cracking open, my lips felt like they were peeling, i thought i was stuck in some egyptian pyramid smack in the middle of the day. my head was being a bitch ~ it wouldn't let me move it. everytime i rolled an inch to one side, it felt like my jello brains were shifting inside its empty shell, thumping at the sensitive walls. my eyes were still asleep. they took a while to adjust, to read my clock. a few more seconds pass for that mass of jello to register that it was 9.20am. i jolt upright, only to instantaneously groan in pain and hold my head in my hands. the groan caused me to wince, for it was irritated my already angry throat. i literally roll out of bed. *sigh*

what a way to start the day! late for my 9.30 tutorial. to my credit, i got there at 9.45 and i was the 3rd person there out of a group of 6.. yay!

tut was great. i didn't yawn once today. that's really odd.. someone should take it as a sign and go buy a lottery ticket. you might strike the jackpot =) went back to sleep this afternoon and when i woke up, i had deja vu. it was like the clock turned back its hands and we were at 9.20am this morning again! arghh.. this is what made up for it tho. *big big big grin* the cut on my finger suddenly doesn't seem as important anymore =)

it's a huge relief. i also found out my placements for next year and they're pretty much what i had asked for, in the particular order i asked for so i shouldn't be complaining!

and for those of you with eyesights akin to hawks, if you were wondering about my "Sharon, Lois & Bram's El..." tab... they were the people that sang the "skinamrinky dinky dink" song!! i obviously grew up watching them because i had that stuck in my head all of last nite. i could even see them wiggle their arms and do the little actions that accompanied the song..

so with that, i'll leave you with some skinamrinky dinky dink...
skinamarinky doo... eye love yooou!
skinamarinky dinky dink, skinamarinky doo... eye loove yooou!
i love you in the morning and in the afternoon,
i love you in the evening and underneath the moooon!
skinamrinky dinky dink, skinamarinky doo...
eyyyye-ai-ai l
uhhhh-uh-uhve yoooou! doop boop boop de doop!


better late than never

hmmm what could this be? i pondered as i collected my snail mail today. i don't remember donating anything to world vision lately. i don't remember donating to anyone lately. frankly, i don't remember many things lately.

i open up the thick letter, see a self-addressed envelope and promptly got mad. i've been a little livid hot tamale this past week ~ i guess i don't handle pressure too well. hmm. another wad of papers telling me how great they are so i'll donate ehh? bloodsuckers! i thought. i flip open the thick stack of what looked like brochures and pamphlets to see a handwritten note. awww.. how sweet. now why would they write me a note? i mused. then i noticed something gone awry. have you noticed it yet?

i initially thought that they had a lousy database or a huge backlog and had only just gotten around to replying me. i got curious and checked the envelope for the postmark. whaddya know... it was stamped on jan 11 2001 too... *sigh* the poor lady prolly thinks i'm some callous prick who made her compile this volunteer pack for nothing just so she has extra work!

now that i don't have the time to search for volunteering positions, only now, do i get the information i requested 4.5 years ago. i guess i can't complain too much... better late than never eh?



strings around my finger

for every action or situation i come across during placements, attachments, tutorials, clinics etc that bring a cringe, a reaction of shock or horror or anything along that vein, i've decided to list down. i'm not sure if this little project of mine will last, or last for how long but i can try for my own sake... just so i can look back and see all the pieces of string i've tied to my finger over the years. memory's been deteriorating... no harm documenting things so i won't do them in the future =)

  • so here's string #1 ~ make sure you change the plastic sheets on the bed after every patient. especially after they've told you they have stinky white discharge and you've just taken 3 swabs from down there and you sit the next patient down on top of the same crumpled plastic and paper.
  • with that, comes string #2 ~ learn that the biohazard bins are put there for a reason. don't dump the urine sample down the sink drain in your office. the same one you wash your hands over between patients. without running the water afterwards.
  • string #3 ~ answer to your patients when they ask you questions. don't answer 'em only after you've finished typing up their notes on the computer, printed out their prescriptions and sick leave letter, and had several sips of coffee.
  • string #4 ~ learn to suppress yawns, especially ones that make Jaws look tame. especially when your patient is in the middle of telling you what's wrong with them.

more to come through the years...


bettina's bdae

having L not show up at our 4pm appt to crash the emergency dept was a huge raincloud. was planning to spend the night there, admitting sick febrile irritable vomitting screaming kiddies with or without diarrhea. fun stuff! i was really tempted to go home but the mommy that was my conscience made me trudge down to the kiddie ward. i met my silver lining there in the form of m.m. who has graced many a tv screen among my friends' places with his role in Sur viva, the student-produced spoof of Survivor made by the 5th years about 4 years ago. besides directing me to the tiny 19 day old little girlie with bronchiolitis, he was nice enough to sit down and listen to me jabber, slip, stumble and finally spit out my presentation as he sipped his coffee. he also spent the hour giving out pointers and enough confidence returned.. so much that i was inspired to turn bradley into bettina =) as you can see, i don't think any bit of poor bradley... all 5cm of him was too impressed...

if you've been hovering around me long enough, you'll know my fingers concoct things only when i'm relaxed enough to let whatever kookiness get through to them. i used to have a lot of those days and i suppose that carefree-ness came hand in hand with my particular childhood. nowadays, i don't usually have the time or energy to be inspired by random muses passing by. the cards and knick knacks i do make usually end up as some half-hearted attempt to meet deadlines like mothers' day or birthdays. today was one of those rare days although i made bettina because i wanted to give dr. r a thank you card for being such an inspiration and taking the time to teach me despite her busy schedule.

::snip snap::

i couldn't help but add this felt cutie in... iwantoneofthose!! but they don't ship outside the US *sniff* guess i'm gonna hafta make my own once the holidays roll around...

i've also been wasting precious sleep times by doodling with typedrawing to come up with this to celebrate nerdette-ism *grin*


two decades and not quite six months

look what i found today... looooook! argh argh arghh.. my first white hair was apparently found when i was just a month old. my parents have cut out a huge chunk of hair containing the offending white strand and taped it to my baby book. it's still there except it wasn't white. it was transluscent blond and there were a few strands ~ it never really concerned me because it wasn't stark white.

today's find.. it was stark white. i couldn't find a smidgen of yellow anywhere.. and the worst part is that it's about a foot long. the sneaky thing's been quietly growing for months!! bah. the pix don't do it justice and you'll have to take my word that it's white. really, it is. i've pointed it out on the left pic... can't u see it in the picture on the right? *sigh*

i'm turning into a wrinkly =(

the only saving grace was my little tub of baskin robbins ice cream filled with green tea, white choclomania, baseball nut, midnight expresso, boysenberry cheesecake and choc chip cookie dough *big ice cream covered grin*

::edit:: seeing myself, even bits, bug me a lot and i couldn't stand having my screen being filled by all that hair so i've shrunk the pic and made it clickable. =)


bubbling soapbox

the news anchor announced that "thousands gather as they commemorate victory in the pacific" or something like that. for some reason, that one line really bothered me. victory. they were showing war veterans. where is the victory in a war... where there is victory, there was also defeat. you can't really have one without the other. here you are, celebrating your victorious win on the battlefield. i can understand the joy in winning, i can understand the jubilation of seeing a close friend emerge from battle, alive. but don't you see.. you thousands of people gathered there in full military glory. don't you see that the other side lost so you can have your victory, no matter how wrong you think they may have been? don't you see that other people's friends never came back?

it bugs me when people say they've won a war. you can't win a war. sometimes, you can't even break even. at most, you get a pyrrhic victory, sillies.

and while i'm still on my soapbox, i might as well rant on.
had a horrible day that didn't start out well at all. i was supposed to be at the gp's clinic by 8.30am. i woke up at 8.30am. you can guess how the rest of the story goes..

so i finish up at the gp's by 1pm. ran into an old friend who's turned drug rep and said hi, which was nice =) i even managed to fill up my car and grab lunch from raj's corner on the way to my next placement, which started at 2pm. that was the highlight of my day.

i spent the next 2.5 hours listening to one lady take an hour to explain how to use the database program they've installed (now why the heck would i need to attend their "training session" ...those things come with a manual and a help option on the menu. the rest is self explantory. i mean really.. what else could the "cancel" button mean?) and asking random questions that i had no interest in (soo.. what kind of patients do you usually get? no duh, it's a gp surgery. you get the usual coughs, colds and wrinklies with a problem list down to the floor.) anything to fill up the silence. it was either that, or watching dr. k type away at her computer and stare at forms for 5 mins before she checked a box and filed that piece of paper away.

after all that agony and not a single patient, she finds out from her colleague that he's cancelled all her appts for the day because she usually didn't work in the afternoon.

after all that agony and not a single patient, i was told to come back. same time next week. and she didn't sign my friggin logbook because i didn't see any patients today!!! it was a 3hr session, validated by her scribble. i was half an hour away and now i need to be tortured for another 3 hours.. friggin hell.

i hate how we're treated like scum. how we're "just the med students" who are expected to be the model doctor that patients expect our supervisors to be, but seldom are. it's as if they forget we're human sometimes, that we have emotions and that our time is just as valuable as theirs.

that was one refreshing change upon starting pediatrics ~ most of the lecturers and consultants treated us like people... sometimes, it even bordered on friendship! wow.. now if the rest of the medical world can start treating us better than your average stray dog...

*gently steps off the soapbox and dusts off the footprints*

late bloomers

about a fortnight later, they decided to bloom. =)

what a wonderful way to end the week... to open my door and be greeted with waft after waft of the sweetest perfume, a cross between nectar and any of the issey miyakes. these were the wee bitty ones hanging out by a stalk. the rest of the family is residing on flickr

what an awful way to start the new week... to stare at my SCAL appraisal forms and not remember what to write, knowing fully well i need to produce at least one completed one in about 6 hours.

what a great way to start the weekend... to be greeted by a very fluffy local, perched outside my window to sunbake in the gentle winter morning sun.

what a great way to end the weekend... to be able to close my powerpoint presentation for the final time and heave a huge sigh of relief. my sleepyheaded bear will be making a guest appearance at the said presentation this coming tuesday as i attempt to demonstrate how to elicit primitive reflexes on him. somehow, i think he will be quite hypertonic and may trigger alarm bells warning of cerebral palsy as a differential diagnosis.

1 awful vs 2 greats + 1 wonderful amongst other things...

may i be bold enough to hazard a guess that my weekend has been more than great this week? hope the weekend has been just as good, if not better for you =)


rolls of fat

tubby little babies *gush* a room full of tubby little babies!
most were oblivious to their imminent fates of getting bilateral inguinal hernial repairs, sleeping soundly or wriggling and gurgling on their little hospital cots. there were little waves of odd surrealism, washing past every so often like the quiet lapping of the water at the beach.

cute wriggling baby. screaming baby, shaking fists and kicking like mad. nothingness. soft rhythmic beep beep beeping of the machines. cute still baby. sleeping baby, limbs all droopy and floppy. calmness. quietness... shh...

scapel! rolls of tubbiness. pink michelin men. what are the landmarks i'm finding? blood oozing from the fresh cut 2/3s of the way between the asis and pubic tubercle. tearing of tissues. what's that white structure running through? what area does it innervate? what are the other structures in this bundle? bright lights. masks and shower caps. sutures! is it better to join the two sides with a bit of inversion or eversion? snip snap! here, have a feel of that. play with it and have a fiddle. slimy stringy membranous bloody tissue. all done!

hissing of air. spluttering and some coughs. shaking fists and tubby kicking feet. sporadic wails. the fading sound of the hospital cot rolling out of the operating theater.

my first encounter with pediatric surgery.

a couple more babies later, my stomach started embarrasing me with random gurglings that weren't as cute as those from the babies and i had to eventually excuse myself. never ever go grocery shopping on an empty stomach i tell you...amongst other things, i proudly lugged back half a pound of choc in various forms, 2 boxes of twix pods, large bag of the local version of teddy grahams and blueberry bagels.

i should really stop grazing on junk all day. A had a sudden pizza craving while i still hadn't satisfied my own from last week so we ordered a pizza. we have no little caesar's or shakey's pizza over here. just pizza hut, dominoes and the local eagle boys pizza. oddly enough, pizza hut triumphs over dominoes over here so we ordered, retreated back to our respective rooms, had a slice each and promptly felt quite sick. A couldn't eat anymore. me, on the other hand... being the perpetual grazer that i am.. well, out of the 4 slices i got, i polished off three throughout the night. one lonely little slice remains in that little oil stained box, looking very pitiful. "eat me!" it calls out... arggghhh.


sleepy head

out came the camera. *snap snap*
i couldn't help myself when i woke up to this sleepyhead hogging up half my bed...

here's another roundup of the weird and wacky

¤ for those inclined to dabble in the black arts, here's a voodoo knife block to consider buying
¤ if you're not so into the voodoo thing and would rather wear people instead of stabbing them, you might like smoy's photocuffs
¤ if you're into putting things into deep freeze, you may want to look at a portable alternative by promise design
¤ if you want to get away from it all, why not box yourself in at the ten year hotel by Lee Ferguson
¤ if all that's too much, you should prolly make yourself a flute of tea with your teastick. it'd be a bad idea to try out these bottles of coke if you want to escape the jitters...

and with that, i'm off to dream about gadgets and gizmos and try to forget my $70 parking ticket.
nitey nites ~ another half a week's come and gone. *sigh*


ba ba jie

daddy's day. that's today ~ ba ba jie (literally translated as eight eight day in mandarin). the day the taiwanese honor their daddies and say thank you in a myriad of ways to bring beaming smiles to those daddies' faces. the only reason it's on august 8th every year is because the chinese word for eight, ba, sounds like the chinese word for father... also pronounced as.. surprise, surprise! as ba (d'oh!) =)

please excuse the awful fashion sense of the 80s *grins* man.. the hair! the hair! what were you thinking, to not get a haircut! what was my mom thinking, to let you grow your hair out! thank goodness it's never been that long again...

you've been there for me, through the happy and the sad

i was always stepping on your toes, i was always trying to measure up to you.
i wanted to be just like you when i grew up.

they say that girls tend to look for daddy-attributes in their hubbies and guys, mommy-attributes. tho i don't suffer from the elektra complex, you sure have some qualities i wouldn't mind seeing in my future hubby =)

even though i've just called you up a few minutes ago to wish it to you, here's a happy happy happy ba-ba jie wish again, daddy =)


i finally listened

j*me once encouraged me to just tell the boy instead of writing poems. i didn't have the guts back then, nor did i feel i could justify a phone call to anyone to talk about the boy. that was 3 months ago. despite having her piece of advice disappear into the nether regions of the online world when i added the haloscan commenting system, a carbon copy remained etched amongst the other scribbles on my jello brain.

after a study session at the usual place that involved 2 girls, several books, chocolate, a spider and a can of insect spray, i reached home dead tired. by the time i got myself ready for bed, it was 1am and i was pretty grouchy. i was really cranky at myself for taking so long to dilly dally, hoping that i would get a good 8 hours of sleep but would only get the usual 6 or so that night. as i crawled under my umpteenth layer of blanket, i heard the low boom boom boom of a bass through the wall. i gritted my teeth, mummified myself with blankets and pillow and willed myself to sleep. i could feel the vibrations from the boom boom booming.

*blood pressure rises a little*

i hear the boy. i hear laughing. i hear the stomping. i hear the running. i hear the girl's giggles. i hear that voice in my head yelling "SHUT UP!"

i tried to cover my ears with blankets and pillows again but after what seemed like eternity, i couldn't handle being suffocated by my own linen. my blood pressure would've shot through the roof had you tried to measure it. the music was louder, the voices were louder, the stompings more frequent. now, i've learnt that it's never a good idea to take out one's anger on inanimate objects many a time. one incident in particular resulted in me ripping out my fingernail after it somehow got caught as i slammed a dresser door shut when i was 13. you would think that i'd learn my lesson after doing something like that but noooo... i got mad enough to bang on the wall. think of it as punching a solid concrete stuccoed wall not with my fist, but with an open palm. ouchies =( the worst part was, the thud created wasn't audible at all! i had unnecessarily experienced pain... the thought made me more mad.

i would've liked to kick the wall but i was too far away to land a sizable thud and was too tired to position myself so that i could. i tried humming to drown out the noise. hell, i was having my own karaoke session sans background music at the end of it all and it still didn't help. i tried to turn on the radio but that didn't work either. i thought of calling them up, but i've already done that several times this year to no avail. 40-odd minutes later, i was fed up enough to justify calling up S to ask for advice. i just wanted someone to gripe to but nobody to call at such an odd hour so i vented to S's answering machine. i guess it helped that S was the mother of all RAs (residental assistants) of this place.

i came home happy today =)
not because i ratted on someone last nite... it was a relief to have vented, even if it was to a machine and i eventually hummed myself to sleep.

i was happy because the gp i'm attached to for placements was such a refreshing inspiration. i haven't come across many people who have made me think "hey, i wanna be just like them when i grow up!" but she was one of the few that did. lectures were good... i spoke up in class not only once, but TWICE! that's a huge thing for me.. it means i'm getting comfy with my group =) to top it all off, a little brown paper package not tied up with string arrived in the mail for me. i had mentioned that i wanted light-colored/white shoes to go with some of my paler skirts when my parents were here a month ago. my mom remembered and had found me a pair of comfy white mary janes so i could wear 'em to the hospital. that was what my parcel of love contained *melts*

the icing on the cake was the message S left on my answering machine in response to my complaint about the boy last nite. apparently, my neighbors are supposed to be a pair of sisters with a boyfriend each. to have 1 person as a neighbor can be bad enough, but to have 4!! that explains the noise tho not all 4 are usually in there at the same time. they're gonna get a warning about the extra ppl in their room and also get a lesson on basic respect for other people. their chances of getting a room back here next yr will also be affected. if there are further complaints about them, they'll be speaking to the deputy head of the dorms and finally face some consequences.

i guess today was my turn to smirk... and with this smirk, i am thus back in tune with the karmic forces of the universe *beams*

and with that balancing of karmic forces comes the imbalance it created. the boy pansy
is back...
oh frowny tree, i see you've announced your presence!


happy tree

aw, my little happy tree. my mom says he's happy. i totally agree ~ must be all that music it gets to hear, with the radio right under it. *beams*

i was running late monday morning, rushing off to the special education center on campus for a community attachment session. after a tour and many shrugs of "i don't know what the school wants us to do here" by both me and the supervisor, i was placed in a class of 3 - 4-year-olds. all 8 of them. all very different. all very cute! one kid was a hottie (well, you know.. extrapolate and age him about 20 years. he'll be a hottie) but was small for his age and very very quiet. another was a cutie in pigtails that was so outgoing and attention-seeking she should be applying for a spot in big brother in another 20 yrs' time too. some others were shy and took some time to warm up to me while some were giggling their heads off as we vrrrooooommed around toy cars, got tickled through a cloth tunnel or went exploring the playground on their tricycles.

i came home happy. absolutely beaming actually... the kiddies were sooooo cuteeee! sorry, i have a bad habit of gushing at times..

i came home to my happy tree. it had scared me this morning when i noticed weird things sprouting from the tops of each bunch of leaves. at first glance, i thought they were balls of fungus or some other cauliflower-shaped ailment afflicting the tree. now, i'm not one to have any luck with plants. i love them to bits... i love flowers, love plants but you're looking at a cactus killer here! don't ask.. it wasn't an accident. i don't think it's accidental when you kill 2 cacti in a row... i um, i .. well i think i drowned them in too much water. both kinda turned to mush when i poked 'em. anyway, i later googled for those cauliflower attachments my happy plant sprouted and confirmed it with my mom ~ those weren't fungus balls! who knew... apparently, happy plants do flower! (more pix @ flickr)

Happy plant (Dracaena fragrans 'Massangeana')

This popular indoor plant has variegated leaves that sprout from a piece of apparently dead wood. Happy plants are extremely tolerant of harsh conditions and many have survived indoors for more than 20 years.

Happy plants are supposedly called 'happy' because they are thought to bring luck to the household. If the plants flower, which sometimes occurs especially with old plants or those grown in warm climates, it is also considered to be a sign of good fortune.

-Burke's Backyard Archives

yayyy.. now where's my pot of gold?