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Preparing for hospital  16

After the good news that I can spend Christmas at home, I’m now preparing myself for next Tuesday or Wednesday when I will have to be admitted for some treatment of various sorts.

When I say “preparing” I mean mentally as well as physically. For all my ailments, I have never needed to spend anytime in hospital and appointments have always been as an out-patient, so this will be a new experience for me. I should be in for at least a week so I’m expecting to be severely bored on more than one occasion. Fortunately, I am equipped with one vital piece of essential kit: my iPod.

I’ve subscribed to a few podcasts as I’ve never actually tried them before - I was mildly surprised and glad to see that they’re all free, so I downloaded plenty. I’ve also been looking at some audiobooks, but they’re quite expensive on the iTunes music store (18GBP for any of the Lord Of The Rings trilogy and between 18GBP and 45GBP for any of the Harry Potter books!) so I may just stick to a few comedy ones, e.g. Eddie Izzard, Bill Bailey and The Two Ronnies.

Any pointers to some cheap (or free) audiobook sites would be greatly appreciated and will be rewarded with, erm, me smiling and thinking nice things about you.



So sorry to hear about this Timmy! But this will be a fix-you-upper so you’ll come out of this repaired, kinda. About the audiobooks, I don’t know much about them but I might know someone who does. As soon as I can make contact and ask for links and stuff, I’ll get back at you with some info… Any interest in eBooks? Or other things like that? - MHC

DOH!!! Assuming you can read eBooks on iPods which are not the same as Palm handhelds… - MHC

Tim, if you’ve never spent time as an inpatient, there’s things you need to know about hospitals: 1. Tend to be very noisy at night. Take wax earplugs. 2. Lights on at night. Take face mask as worn on aircraft. 3. Lose things. Take spares of the above and label everything personal. 4. Crap food. Arrange for alternatives to be brung in by wellwishers. 5. Hopeless with medications. Take your own with you as Pharmacy are apt to say, of anything more esoteric than aspirin, that they can’t supply it for 24 hours. 6. Overheated. Don’t take thick nightclothes. 7. Water tastes foul. Take own soft drinks. Hope this doesn’t put you off. All the best. - charlesdawson

Another precaution. Your iPod. If you can’t be absolutely sure you can take it everywhere with you (yes, including the loo) then you’d be best leaving it at home. I dunno about the UK hospitals but theft in hospitals here is pretty high and it might get stolen when you’re asleep or gone for exams, etc. - MHC

I’ve stayed overnight a few times in hoapitals and my stepmum works in hospital, luckily in the UK theft in hospitals (at least in this area) are fairly scarce. And you can always keep your iPod in your little cupboard thingy. And as for the audiobooks, it is possible to get them for free, i’m sure you know this ;-) - SoulSniper

It’s a bit late for this now, but when you can, check out your local Library for a loan service to “housebound” readers: this means they deliver books to your home on a regular basis. Usually they can supply audiobooks, videos and DVDs as well, tho the latter two categories tend to attract a small fee per loan. - charlesdawson

MHC: not to worry - I’ve managed to “acquire” a few audiobooks - enoughh to keep me going. CharlesDawson: thanks for all the tips - I take it you’re a regular, erm, visitor? Seriously, though, that’s helped me loads. And I’ll look into the library thing. Soulsniper: yes, I managed to get hold of some audiobooks for free - entirely legal, of course … *ahem* All: I was aware of the danger of taking my iPod in with me, but I’d be lost without it and I’d like to believe that nurses are too nice to steal anything - I’ll just have to keep my eye on the other patients! - Timmargh

My iPod would be at the top of my list too. Along with my iBook, if I was going to keep it. Merry Christmas Timmy, and shall hear from you when you get back. - Stretch

Oh, sorry to hear about this, lets hope you come back “repaired”. best wishes. - LobsterMan

Merry Xmas, Timmy and to all. :^D - MHC

Merry Christmas Tim, I agree with the list CharlesDawson has given (especially about the food) and would like to add that you bring a clearly typed list of everything you are allergic to (food, medications, latex, etc.) and keep a list with you as well as one to give to the staff. I’ve had very bad luck in hospital with medication mix-ups and found that asking what every pill was before taking it and having a clear list to consult (sometimes my mind was foggy while on some of the meds) really helped. Best piece of advice. Don’t be afraid to ask, or demand. You know your needs best and those people are there to help you but you must speak up. Now that I’ve painted a bad picture (sorry!) I’m sure you’ll be in good hands :) Best of luck. - gimpy mumpy

Thanks, Stretch, Lobsterman, MHC and GM - Merry Christmas to you all, too. *holds up mistletoe* Christmas kiss? ;^) Thanks for the advice, too. Fortunately I’m not allergic to anything that I’m aware of - I’m quite lucky in that respect and even manage to avoid things like hay fever. I’ll make sure I ask when I need something, though - I am quite crap at that (don’t like to make a fuss) but lately I’ve come to realise that it’s much better to make your feelings (or needs) known, rather than hoping someone asks. - Timmargh

**Kisses Tim** Who can resist the power of mistletoe? xoxoxoxo - gimpy mumpy

I’ll probably see you when you get out of the hospital. I’m going to Québec city tomorrow morning and will be back on December 29th. So good luck Timmy. And don’t flirt with the nurses otherwise they’ll go dreamy eyed and get mixed up in your meds. ;^) TaTa. See you when you get back! - MHC

I called my specialists secretary today but there was no answer so I called his registrar but, again, there was no answer. Technically it’s a Bank Holiday today so I guess they’re all still off work. No doubt I’ll be going in tomorrow. - Timmargh

It’s an educational experience to go into a hospital over a public holiday or indeed during “unsocial hours”. All the junior doctors, nurses, porters, ambulance/paramedics, technicians, domestics, and security staff are working as usual - and yet the place seems empty. There are no managerial, financial, or clerical staff working. You suddenly realise how many of them there are, and how few actually physically dealing with the patients. - charlesdawson