Monday, 9 August 2010

Much Ado about Nothing

Hot news since the last post:

Anyway, moving on, my toe still hurts, but not as much. On Friday I went up to the hospital to attend the fracture clinic. Astonishingly my appointment was delayed by an hour, so the kids and I passed the time hunting for wildlife in one of the out-patient courtyard gardens. This was a stunning success with a new moth species found, the Vapourer, which if handled correctly destroys tardy NHS staff with a powerful distintegration beam. When I was eventually called in, the doctor asked me to take my sock off, made me wiggle my toe, and then said there was nothing they could do and that it would take six to eight weeks to heal and not to do it again. Er, ok then, I won't. Ninety seconds later I was limping out into the fresh air.

Time spent at Whipps Cross as a result of patio step jumping out at me: 3 hours 50 minutes
Time spent with medical staff: 10.5 minutes.

Broken down as:

1 minute for the first nurse to look dispassionately at my foot and send me to the x-ray room
2 minutes to get x-rayed.
3 minutes with a doctor looking at the x-ray, declaring a fracture, and sending me to a nurse.
3 minutes for a nurse to bandage up the foot with tape
1.5 minutes for the fracture clinic doctor to tell me to go away

Other interesting statistics include approx 20 minutes booking in at casualty, including needing to provide the personal details of my entire extended family and the religion of each of my toes, another 5 minutes getting a fracture clinic appointment from the same man, £2.50 on parking, and about 8 miles walking to the x-ray room and back.

I ripped off the bandage they put on after about 3 hours as I felt it made my foot throb, so that was 3 wasted minutes, and I very nearly didn't bother attending the fracture clinic, guessing that they would do nothing. Maybe I should be a doctor next?

Hawky and I found this fly at Rainham. We didn't know what it was, but it looked funky. It was quite keen on following Hawky round, eventually posing for a photograph on his forehead. As I lined up the perfect shot, carefully selected the right aperture, asked him to turn a bit to the right for better lighting, re-framed the shot and so on, it proceeded to bite him, thus causing me to blur my shot at the crucial moment. Honestly, what an amateur. I looked it up when I got home. It's called a Twin-lobed Deerfly, a particularly malevolent type of Horsefly. Pretty cool huh?!

So, can I walk? Just about. And I have been. And naturally I've been overdoing it. Saturday Hawky and I did a full circuit of Rainham and the full sea-wall, laden with camera and scope. I got progressively slower on the return leg, and so strained my calf muscle which prevented me from going out yesterday. Today it felt sufficiently better to try Wanstead Flats in the morning and Rainham in the afternoon, so presumably tomorrow will also be a write-off. I just don't do sitting around doing nothing. Why couldn't this have happened in June?

Ultra-pro shot of a Lesser Whitethroat.

In between bouts of attempted birding I have played a lot of Lego, been to a Moth Night at Rainham (Jersey Tiger and Elephant Hawkmoth, thank you very much), been to the pub, watched Toy Story 3 (superb), listened to a lot of cricket, and drunk a fair bit of wine to help the healing process.

Common Lizard on the boardwalk at Rainham. Also on the "broardwalk" at Rainham today was a Wood Warbler. Awesome. I didn't see it, but it was in the sightings book so it must be true.

And that's it. The last four days encapsulated in a single blog post with some totally unrelated photographs that make for disjointed reading. I wouldn't have it any other way.


  1. Interesting. Your vicious fly, though not closely related, looks like much like a notorious offender around here:

    (Not totally boring, scroll down for a photo of these flies in action)

  2. no surprises.

    Organisations have to limit uptake of their services somehow. Most do it by charging, but the NHS can't do that, so they control demand by making visits so miserable no-one goes unless they have to.