Friday, December 7, 2007

Light relief, smoked salmon and London busses

Lisa’s parents visited the hospital today on their way up to Manchester. Last night was Lisa’s uncle Peter’s party – a yearly Christmas event in which he invite his work colleagues and family to the flat he rents in a block in Docklands. The block has a great location looking out over London, but you have to sign in with security in the foyer to get in. This makes it feel more like a workplace than a home.

Anyway, his Christmas party usually involves him buying in lots of top notch party food – sushi, nibbles, etc. and champagne, and only using half of it. Consequently, Lisa’s parents arrived with a suitcase full of snack food – enough to mean the hospital’s food could be avoided all day (although I’ve had about enough Panamanian king prawns to last me for a while now).

Well, it now seems that it is the heart problem causing his lack of weight gain – at least they haven’t been able to find anything else that it might be.

Lisa asked one of the doctors what the treatment George is having is supposed to be doing to help close the hole in his heart. “nothing at all” was the answer.

It seems more and more likely that this weight gain (necessary though it is) is really aimed at fattening him up so he’s ready for surgery. It looks to us like that’s the way it’s going and I’m pretty certain we’ll be back in the hospital around Christmas or just after for the operation. Nobody’s said that in so many words, but Lisa’s resigned to it already. The way she puts it is that if it doesn’t happen, it’ll be a bonus.

Lisa’s having to express milk (using a machine that looks like it belongs in a metalwork lab) to keep her milk going while George feeds on the bottle. Luckily he’s drinking both the breast milk and the formula feed without any trouble.
We managed to get Lisa to come out for an hour in the café – leaving George to sleep. I think she did relax, but she’s still tied to the ward. I’m convinced she’s going to be at the end of her tether by the time she comes out.

Russ and Pietro
Russ and Pietro came over after work. It was good to see them and we sat in the parents room eating smoked salmon snacks and fallafely things while somebody who’s husband was very keen on the alpha course read trashy magazines and didn’t watch a video of “liar liar” with jim Carey that they’d put on the TV.

After visiting, Sam, Pietro, Russ and I went to a café/restaurant (even though they were supposed to be going to a Christmas meal) just down the road for a bottle or two of wine. I was so glad of their company – such a good diversion and a great laugh. I’ve been doing nothing but going from home to hospital this week. Tomorrow I’m going to the Christmas meal – which should be fun again.

I’m acutely aware that lisa has no such freedoms – she’s stuck in the hospital all the time and even though George is well looked after there, she doesn’t feel she can leave. I can understand that, but really feel for her.

oh, and we had a quick trip to Paris via the hospital's cromakey wing:

Sam persuaded me to try going by bus instead of train, as the route to the hospital is straight and easy. On the way there, the driver got into an argument with a passenger and when asked refused to show his ID and wouldn’t move the bus for about 10 minutes for no reason I could gather. On the way back, the bus juddered to a halt outside a shop bearing the words “continental delicataessant” – spelled backwards and upside down. The shop was in between the strangely named “Rimworld” which described itself as “a fusion outlet” (which I took to mean they dealt in nuclear weaponary) and the strangely named “mixed blessings bakery” (which I took to mean they sold freshly baked bread mutated by the effects of “rimworld – a fusion outlet”).

The bus driver quickly announced the reason for the stoppage. He said the road ahead had been closed by an “RTA” and that we’d be better off walking. The passengers looked at each other in confusion for about five minutes before the driver realized the problem and announced “an RTA is a Road Traffic Accident” at which point most of the passengers left the bus. Walking for us wasn’t an option since we were miles from home, and at 10pm on a Friday night cabs weren’t an option either.

However, about five minutes later, the now nearly empty bus moved off and continued its journey.

I think Ken Livingston is trying, but the service has a way to go yet.

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