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[personal profile] misspotter
Time for an update, I think. The last few days of my second week in hospital got kind of hectic, because the guy who was meant to be my supervisor finally showed up. So I had to be on my best behaviour and stay in hospital til at least after 4pm. But I learnt lots of stuff! I have played with an ICE catheter! I have heard a lot of ESMs and felt "slow rising" pulses! I have gotten horribly confused by the different units used to report blood test results! I have met lots of patients/doctors/students who think I'm American! I have spent a lot of time in the med student clubhouse known as Osler House (WHICH HAS A PIANO OH MY GOD MY WITHDRAWAL SYMPTOMS ARE CURED)! My team have made a LOT of orthopod jokes! Also for some reason I’ve had to chaperone 2xPRs. And this is the cardio ward! I shudder to think what gastro/neuro wards are like here!

Also I saw a blood glucose monitor that claimed it was "fast, compact and stylish". Excuse me, "stylish"? How on earth can a piece of medical equipment be "stylish"?

The other elective students (C, H, J and R) have all started now, which has made my life a bit more interesting (though K has gone home, sadface)! Although nobody is staying at the hospital with me (maybe I should've paid the extra $$ to stay in college...but then I'd have to catch the bus into hospital every morning, and I hate mornings), we've had dinner together (<3 Wagamama!) and gone to a party (or rather, a "bob") together, and I'm hoping we can do a pubcrawl together too (C's idea).

Ah yes, the "bob". Where the action only starts after 10:30pm, 6-shot cocktails cost a mere 4 pounds (my readers will probably be dismayed to learn that I asked for a half-sized "Willy-O", the Osler House specialty), candy brains/eggs/teeth etc are served, people proudly wear cardboard boxes/paper plates/newspaper/garbage bags/next to nothing, "Gangnam Style" is the only song that brings everybody together, and the vodka lemon/lime consists mostly of a really disgusting green cordial. It was held in the main room of Osler House, with the canteen being converted to a bar and the couches being cleared away to create a dancefloor. However, I noticed people spilling into other rooms, especially the pool room (but alas, the piano room was locked for the night). And despite the bitter cold, a number of people were loitering outside...smoking >_<

I've also been adopted by the Quidditch Society and the Harry Potter Society (which overlap a bit). Thanks to them, I've gotten some serious exercise, I've had someone to see Pitch Perfect and Les Miserables with, I've gained the courage to just stroll casually into colleges (thanks soooo much B and M for taking me to Trinity and Oriel!), and I've consumed a significant amount of chocolate biscuits while knitting my next sock. They are also teaching me to speak Oxford English (yeah, apparently it's not all about the Oxford Comma). It's not a library card, it's a "bod card", for example. And we have to be quiet because of "collections".

Actually, their knitting club, a subset of the HP Society, deserves a whole paragraph. Not only is everyone making Hogwarts scarves and eating chocolate biscuits, they are the coolest (read: geekiest) Oxford students I've met yet. And for this I love them all. Today, they sang excerpts from Les Miserables, spent >15 minutes discussing the number of minutes in a year, and discussed past and upcoming D&D campaigns (admittedly, I don't play RPGs because I lack the time, but for all my dating I have {happily} been a D&D widow, which I prefer to being a football widow or something because at least D&D/Shadowrun/Pathfinder/Dark Heresy are compelling intellectual pursuits).
But generally, I love Oxford students in general (except the smokers, they’re just gross)! Even though they say things like, “awwww, who thinks it’s cute that the Aussies are cold!” I’ve still had really fun conversations with them. Especially about our wildlife. And our beaches. I’m so excited that some Oxford med students are coming over in the next few months! I hope I’ll be able to drive them up to the northern beaches and stuff.

This week I also managed to fit in lots of touristy things! I did the free Footprints walking tour on Saturday morning when J, my med school colleague/neighbour/revue friend came to visit. The guide was genuinely funny, eager to tell us all the tales of Oxford (e.g. the Mallard Duck story, the college “where fun goes to die”, and the antics of several Rhodes scholars including Bob Hawke and Bill Clinton). We also wandered down many cobblestone roads, got inspired by the same sights/sounds that CS Lewis (omg the Narnian lamp post!) and Lewis Carroll did, discovered what a “kissing gate” is, and took a jumping photo near the Bridge of Sighs. Today I visited the Bodleian Library, the Radcliffe Camera, the Divinity School, Harris Manchester College, New College, and the Museum of Science (so I’ve now done most of the Harry Potter sites, apart from Christ Church, which is a work in progress as I’m trying to get myself invited to dinner there).

And don’t get me started about my retail therapy…remember that red dress I mentioned a few entries ago? Well, it got marked down from 18 to 10 pounds, so I caved in and bought it. Since I’m going to start going to parties more, investing in a decent dress is not a bad idea. I guess the problem is that I also caved in and bought a 20 pound wool trench coat and a 5 pound pair of cute pink shorts (I’m planning to wear them to skype the bf). Oh, and today I did my varsity shopping…bought a Green Templeton hoodie (whose logo DS will approve of), an Oxford t-shirt to match it, and some track pants. WHAT?!? I got a student discount! Oh, and I bought some tea towels for my mum and grandma and another female relative that I have forgotten to buy presents for. Oh well, I plan to chuck all my toiletries before I leave home, so that’ll free up significant weight/space in my bag…

And now speaking of toiletries and things, I can’t help making a few comments on my accommodation. It’s reasonably clean, spacious, etc, but there are just little things that bother me. I just wish…
  • There was communal oil, soap, salt, sugar, washing powder etc…little things that I hated buying because I just know I won’t use it all up in a month.
  • There was a bin in the bathroom so I didn’t have to take rubbish back to my room.
  • There was a hand towel or some paper towel or a hand dryer or just a towel rail in the bathroom (the shower and toilet are in separate bathrooms, and the one with the toilet has nothing to dry your hands with, which is slightly annoying when the temperature’s cold).
  • The sinks had a single tap, as opposed to one hot tap and one cold tap (so you either freeze or scald yourself). Luckily the shower has a mixer tap.
  • There were bath mats (one day I will slip and fall flat on my behind).
  • There weren't three functional washing machines and three functional dryers shared between >100 flats (there should be six of each but for some reason, two aren't working). 
But again, I just want to emphasize, they’re just really, really little things. It is so much better than the last hospital I stayed at (Wagga Wagga) where about 30 people on a floor were sharing one kitchen, one common room and two blocks of shower/toilet cubicles (the laundry was free though, haha).

In summary, it’s been a really hectic week, but I love this place and it’s going to be so hard to leave after one month (except when I think of the warm weather back in Australia, then I can’t wait to go home and defrost)!

February 2013

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