Saturday, April 18, 2015

It's mid afternoon and it has been a busy and active day. I went out cycling first thing after having the bike mothballed for the winter and I am sadly convinced that although it's a lovely bike it is too small for me. After some research last year I discovered it is a 'Damen Fahrrad'.... a ladies bicycle. It is tall enough for me but I still feel scrunched up on it and somewhat awkward  as I cycle along. I may have to sell it and look for something more suitable although for now I will continue to use it.

I also got some walking done, shopping, gardening and I finally collected the Lexus from the garage. I had planned to drop it in for a service and a new battery having read through the history of the car and thinking that five years since the battery was fitted isn't a good sign. However, fate intervened and come Monday morning and ready for work the car wouldn't start.  A quick word with the local garage I use and they agreed to fit a new battery and give the car the once over. I also asked them to check the breaks because they felt odd. I was shocked to discover the rear brakes were missing part of their fittings and the clutch was on its last legs. The latter I am not too surprised about because it's a fifteen year old car but the rear brakes is pure negligence on the part of the seller and dangerous to boot. The mechanic said I was lucky I hadn't gone on any long trips or at any great speed! I shall be having a chat with the seller on Monday and suggesting that the mechanic who passed the car as fit for MOT will be reported to Trading Standards. Some dodgy MOT work and lack of standards going on there.
The car itself now runs like a dream and I am very happy with it. Mrs C. says I can stop fretting now that I have my favourite toy back! More importantly, I now know it is fit for lengthy journeys and a trip to Essex will be on the cards in the next couple of months. That may depend upon work commitments with a number of colleagues off sick we are very short staffed. Hence the past week has been absolutely crazy for the nurses in the team trying to cover the case loads of two absent colleagues. One of them was crossing the road when he was hit by an absent minded elderly driver who had turned the wrong way! He continued working the following week  until we and his wife prevailed upon him to go off sick because he could barely walk. With three members off sick and short staffed already it is all go...
I must away as the sun is shining and, although it isn't very warm, I want to make the most of it.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Hooray! Gardening at long last...

After succumbing to some revolting lurgy over the bank holiday weekend which ruined my plans for making the most it, this morning has been spent tackling the winter ravaged garden. Grass cut, weeding done, two cucumbers, a chilli and a raspberry plant all now in and cosseted against the cold and winds. Also small cat protection (wire grills!) put in  to prevent inquisitive moggies digging for victory. Now my feet are up with a mug of fresh brewed coffee and resting my weary bones... especially my back! Fingers crossed that the plastic cloches stay in place because the weather forecast is for strong winds and more rain. I have also bought a small tomato seed kit in a metal bucket which is now  planted up and safely secured against the cats in the kitchen. The trouble is that the curiosity of the two 'small' cats means they throw stuff to the floor. A packet of brioche rolls ended up in the dog yesterday who is not losing weight because of these two little buggers.  I think a hot bath and a long soak may be required with added Radox.

Saturday, April 04, 2015

Marvellous! Four days off over Easter and I have yet another cold. I believe this may be my fifth cold since October or else it is the same one with breaks for adverts for cold and flu products. So I shall be taking the latter plus lots of fluids and I will be confined to quarters. However, one advantage of the coughing is that I was up early and out shopping with Mrs C. In the local shopping centre there was a local man with three Barn Owls collecting on behalf of a local Barn Owl rescue service. I had mentioned this to Mrs C. yesterday so I was delighted to see and touch the Barn Owls. They are beautiful birds and I gave a good donation to his rescue work and happy to see someone dedicated to their care. He spoke about two of the birds being stolen but he managed to get them returned as the thieves lacked the wit or intelligence to realise these are birds of prey. Their claws apparently caused the thieves a few problems!

( Courtesy of the  Grimsby Telegraph  )

Back to tea and wrapping up warm although I will have to venture out if I want to have some beer this weekend. Hopefully you will all have a happy and relaxed Easter break. I shall be scanning t'net for any Morris sides out dancing this weekend.

Friday, April 03, 2015

Blue Witch asked me about the incident where I was punched in the jaw by a patient in my last blog post. What was the aftermath of the incident and what happened to the patient.

Well, we did not resort to that pictured above!
I managed to bring him to the floor using control and restraint techniques and because there was only one other staff member around who went for help... I sat on him! We used the time to talk through why he attacked me and to reassure him because he was distressed and frightened. In his case, he attacked me because the hospital, his home for twenty years, was in the process of closing down. We were moving the last residents into the community which caused many of the patients huge distress, fear and anger. This particular chap was responding to delusional ideas about him being victimised and he just 'lost it' one afternoon and punched me. Once other staff arrived, we went somewhere quiet, talked with him and he requested medication. I was more annoyed with myself for not picking up on his anxiety and agitation that day although two staff with twenty patients meant we were kept busy. I also had a good relationship with this chap and he apologised the following day saying he was horrified he had attacked me.
Nowadays, as back then, we try to ensure a stress free environment on the wards recognising what the early signs of anxiety and distress  are for each person. We look to de-escalation of this before it does become aggression or deliberate self-harm. I have certainly been in very scary situations on the ward and in the community but recognising the potential risks and dangers, minimising these and managing the situation before it develops does help. The control and restraint techniques used these days are more gentle and only used to ensure the safety of the individual and others (us!). Sometimes people are surprised that an individual can be extremely noisy or appear threatening but staffs have backed off to allow them space and time to vent their feelings. It can be noisy and look chaotic but is in reality controlled and managed by the staff. The chap mentioned above was mentally ill but I have had confrontations with individuals who use mental illness as an excuse for their aggression and bad behaviour. I make no bones about it: if someone has capacity for their actions or uses alcohol / drugs knowing it is likely to fuel their bad behaviour, they should be culpable for their behaviour and be punished accordingly. It's one of the reasons I love reading court reports in the newspapers to find out what the defence lawyers cite as mitigating circumstances. It's also another reason why I have little love for lawyers defending thieving, lying, violent scrotes who lack empathy for their victims and usually have an extensive history of similar crimes.
As for the chap above, we moved him eventually into a small 24/7 supported accommodation with other patients who were unlikely to survive in their own accommodation. He was very happy with the move because he felt supported and safe there. One of his fellow residents had been in hospital for over 50 years having been admitted in 1938 and others had spent 30 years inside. Individuals who nowadays would possibly manage to live in the community although my views on community care may require another lengthy post! I hope that answers your question BW.