My Body Remembers

The Obus seat cover is complete! It is made with a simple stitch, and of a simple design. A single crochet stitch was used to create a “cylinder” to slip over the seat cushion, using worsted cotton yarn and a 5 mm crochet hook. The seat cover “cylinder” is open at both ends, designed to stretch slightly across the width of the cushion. It will not shift or bunch, and can be removed and thrown in the washing machine for cleaning. It has taken a very long time to complete this project. I may forget how to do a single crochet in future, but relearning it will be like riding a bycycle, my body will remember how as soon as I get going.

Last month I purchased an Artbin Yarn Drum from amazon dot ca. The only issue with it has been that the soft fabric sides collapse, so that the yarn does not rotate well when used from the outside of the skein. An 8 ½ by 11 sheet of cardboard worked until the drum was moved, then it shifted and failed to hold the walls of the drum rigid. A visit to the Dollar Store solved the problem for $1.25, the cost of a round plastic basket that now acts as a liner for the drum.

There are four devices that will record images in this household. One is an iPad, the sole domain of Attila. Two are computers with built in cameras. One is a digital camera, which must be connected by a cable to the usb port of one of the computers to download images. The iPad and computers are seldom used to record images. The camera requires connecting cables, and exporting images from proprietary Apple software, before they can be worked with. More and more these multiple steps act to impede the inclusion of images on the pages of this journal. The completion of the seat cushion has inspired an effort to take photographs and export them so that they can be shared.

DSCF0585 seat cushionThis is the newly crocheted cushion cover on the Obus seat. Since my skin reacts to synthetic fibres, and the original covering on the seat is made of synthetic fibres, the 100% cotton cover means there will be no worries about bare skin coming into contact with synthetics. Now, to consider how to crochet a cover for the Obus back support. It need not be so sturdy and close stitched as the seat, as it will receive less wear. It will not be made with single crochet stitch, that is for certain!

DSCF0592 artbin plastic linerThe yarn drum, sporting a lovely lime green plastic liner.

The temperature remains below average, but the clouds and the rain have finally moved on, and the sun is shining this morning. Yesterday morning it was snowing, with no accumulation, but snowing. The rain was intense this past week, and there was flooding in our area, but nothing so drastic as that experienced in Quebec and Ottawa. We had installed a sump pump some years ago, when water was coming into the basement due to a broken water main, in our front yard. It hadn’t run again until this past week, and it has had a good workout. The ground water level beneath the house rose to the level of the basement floor, at which point the sump pump worked for hours to lower the level of water. Now the water level is down a few feet below the level of the floor, our battle with groundwater was won, this time. The basement is dry, for now.

Outfitting Iris the trailer for the camping season had begun before the cold and rain arrived last week. Since there was no evidence of rodents having entered the trailer over the winter, it was safe to bring in the foam twin mattress, purchased from IKEA last year. After the mattress roll was uncoiled from its packaging, and had a few days to fully expand, it was covered with a full mattress cover, meant to prevent bed bugs from getting in, but intended in this case to prevent insects of any kind getting near the mattress itself. That is as far as the camping preparations went before the weather turned very nasty.

My thoughts are roving towards Iris once again. There are new curtains to press and hang. Attila’s front bunk needs a lot of attention. The seat cushions that I slept on last summer were moved to the front bunk, which is now three cushions deep, and hopefully will be more comfortable for Attila. But the catch is that the added cushions are not full length, so that supports must be found and installed under them so that Attila will sleep on a level surface. To that end, a very nifty wood box was snatched up out of the box bin at the local grocery store, the corner posts sawed off, to be used as a support under the bottom layer of cushions.

DSCF0594 iris trailer front bunkThis is the front bunk with all three seat cushions piled up high. The shortest one is on the bottom, with the wooden box beside it. The middle one is longer, but not full length, and it is propped up with a plastic tray, a discard from a produce department. The top cushion is slightly raised at the foot. It remains to be seen if this arrangement will be comfortable for Attila. We are looking forward to our first night out to find out.

DSCF0599 lungwort in bloom

The Lungwort in front of the house, blooming. The dandelions are a riot of yellow in our yard. I like it, but the neighbours use some chemical to prevent them from growing in their yards. The birds and the bees like to be around us, that counts for a lot in our universe.

Weather

5°C
Date: 8:00 AM EDT Wednesday 10 May 2017
Condition: Partly Cloudy
Pressure: 102.1 kPa
Tendency: Rising
Temperature: 5.2°C
Dew point: 0.4°C
Humidity: 71%
Wind: N 8 km/h
Visibility: 24 km

Quote

“Our houses are such unwieldy property that we are often imprisoned rather than housed in them.”
Henry David Thoreau
1817 – 1862

This is one of those statements that is only true under certain circumstances. Attila and I felt the country house to be an unwieldy property, because it was so much work and held us so close. Mist Cottage is almost the opposite, a haven and sn anchor point to return to after a wander.
I think of all those people in their huge houses, all over Canada, and how much care and expense those houses exact, and I think that Mr. Thoreau’s point very apt in such instances.

2016 Retrospective

Although the calendar year is a mere human artifact, it is one that is familiar to me, and so has meaning in my life. It is time to say farewell to 2016.

A year in retrospect, the highlights.

At the end of the years I always think of A Tale Of Two Cities, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” Who is to know what will come, I think to myself. How will we know until the end what was the best, and what was the worst, I ask myself.

The year began with Attila starting on regular night shift at his job. This was a big improvement over working rotating shifts, as he had done since our move to Mist Cottage the previous September. By May he had been offered a promotion to a position that was day shift, and allowed weekends off. This was the first time since we have been together that he has had weekends off, it felt like a miracle, and it still does.

Early winter also saw my Mom facing cancer treatment. There was worry involved for those of us who love her. Not a whine or a whimper escaped her though. She underwent radiation therapy with incredible courage, in her typical indomitable way. And now at the end of a very long year for my Mom, she is cancer free, and recovering from the severe effects of radiation treatment. The side effects of the radiation treatment were severe, and are ongoing. Mom seems to have made her peace with the reality, and has resumed almost all of her previous activities, and is a going concern once more. Sometimes I am in awe of my Mom.

Mom 1945 6 Parry Sound High School picture My Mom at the age of 15, cropped from a school picture, at the end of the second world war.

In the spring of 2016 Attila and I found and purchased the Rideau Camp. We spent every spare minute working there, clearing brambles, brush, dead trees, logs, and garbage. We built a fire pit and a compost toilet system. It was easily the happiest spring of my life, and Attila feels the same way about it.

DSCF8642 This is the Rideau Camp at the end of May, 2016. At this point we had owned the property for seven weeks, the brambles that covered the flat area between the gravel and the wood pile had been cleared and burned by then. We were preparing the camp fire pit, and enjoying picnics every weekend at the Camp.

We also purchased Iris the trailer during the spring. She is a 1976/7 Triple E Surfside trailer, in reasonable condition. We enjoyed camping at our Rideau Camp, and at our Ancestral Camp.

TrailerWEB Iris, on March 5, when we picked her up. It snowed that day!

Also in the early spring we demolished the garden shed at Mist Cottage, and Attila replaced it with a solidly built shed. This project was to take only a few weeks, but the summer had other plans for our time, and it was finally completed in late October. Attila also installed a dishwasher in August, and I must say it is game changer in the kitchen, we love it!

DSCF9742 The renewed Garden Shed, ready for duty at last on October 9, solid and roomy and hopefully mouse proof!

NewImage The new dishwasher. Our counter space is limited, you can see all of it in the photo, and it makes a huge difference when the dirty dishes are piled in the appliance and not on the counters. It also takes little time to wash and air dry the dishes, which are very easy to put away in such a small kitchen.

In late spring Sunny and Sky were born, 7 weeks premature. They were in NICU for six weeks, and Sky had a few touch and go moments. They came home with Terra and Lares, began to thrive, and are beautiful babies. One of Sky’s middle names is Robert, my brother Carl’s middle name, which is just a coincidence as the babie’s middle names are all after Lares side of the family, but it gives me comfort nevertheless.

FullSizeRender Sunny (left) and Sky (right) at 5 months (Gestational 3 months).

We had our first ever summer vacation last July. It was an event we anticipated with great excitement. It just goes to show you that you never know what is around the corner. After spending a few days at our Ancestral Camp, we returned home, then received the news that my brother had suffered a massive heart attack and lay unconscious in a hospital in Toronto. He experienced cardiac arrest for 15 minutes before being resuscitated, and never regained consciousness; my Mom, and all of my siblings were by his side through the long days of hope and disappointment. His funeral was held weeks later. Losing my brother was a profound experience for me, we were babies together, I feel his absence to the core of my being. Carl was an organ donor, and saved three lives.

LittleBrother1970sAtGrannys My brother Carl, at Granny and Grandpa’s house. He returned to spend time at the house almost every year, and that is where we experienced our reunion the summer before last.

By August my blood pressure was high, very high, and would not come down, even after quadrupling my medication. I began a round of doctors appointments at the walk-in-clinic (after more than a year, we still can’t find a family doctor), and had a nuclear stress test on my heart (normal!). The levels slowly lowered, but are still in the “high blood pressure” range. In September I adopted a low-sodium, low-sugar diet, and began taking Apple Cider Vinegar before each meal, which helped. By October I had decided to reduce the ineffective and redundant medication dosage back to the original low dosage, which made no difference at all, but I did find that discontinuing the medication resulted in my blood pressure skyrocketing again, so went back to taking the low dosage. The dietary changes are an intense experience, because something like a pickle and piece of bread could put me over my daily limit for sodium. I also found that food without sodium or sugar is not all that interesting, so that as soon as hunger is satisfied, I stop eating. I no longer eat for pleasure, because it is not pleasurable, just necessary. There has been a slight weight loss.

The most significant feature of 2016 has been that we live at Mist Cottage, and that Attila has regular working hours and weekends off. These two situations are game changers, and have improved our experience of life immeasurably.

It was a year of much joy and deep sorrow.

P.S. I invite you to share the highlights of your 2016, would love to hear them!

Worldly Distractions

Weather

-4°C
Date: 7:05 AM EST Saturday 31 December 2016
Condition: Light Snow
Pressure: 101.3 kPa
Tendency: Falling
Temperature: -4.3°C
Dew point: -6.3°C
Humidity: 86%
Wind: E 18 km/h
Wind Chill: -10
Visibility: 3 km

Quote

“You better live your best and act your best and think your best today, for today is the sure preparation for tomorrow and all the other tomorrows that follow.”
Harriet Martineau
1802 – 1876

Oh What A Beautiful Day

I continue to attack the mildew odour in Iris’ cushions. The worst affected are the back cushions of the dinette. The foam has been removed from the covers, the covers washed and one of the foams was soaked and washed. This morning the covers still retained a memory of mildew, and the foam has not dried, so that it is not possible to tell just yet if the washing has succeeded. I washed the covers for a second time, which seemed to marginally improve their aroma. I fear that these 39 year old cushions and covers cannot be restored to an acceptable quality for use. New cushions and covers are expensive, I am currently looking for a local source of good quality foam. I am considering covering new foam with makeshift “cases” made from shower curtains; it wouldn’t be pretty, but it just might be functional. If we do manage to get new cushions they won’t be stored in Iris over the winter!

We have a few mosquitoes here at Mist Cottage. They are a lethargic lot, easy to kill, if spotted before they have a chance to bite. I notice that they are stirred up when I walk through the grass on the lawn. There is no standing water here, so I wonder where they are breeding!

When we were visiting with Mom a few weeks ago, staying with my sister-the-oldest-girl, my sister gave us some rhubarb that had thrived in her garden. Tuesday morning the last of it was used to make a rhubarb crisp for Attila’s lunches; it was in and out of the oven before 7:00 a.m., when the cost of hydro increases.

The call came on Wednesday afternoon from the country GP’s office, he requisitioned tests to find out what is going on with the Chronic Kidney Disease diagnosis. I dropped in at the lab to see if the requisition for the tests had come to them, it hadn’t yet. It wasn’t a worry though. At the local lab’s suggestion I called the customer service number on Thursday morning. The requisition had indeed arrived at the central office, and was distributed to the labs immediately, I was good to go. Now I will wait for a call from the GP’s office to let me know about his assessment of the test results. This GP is a real gem, I wish all of them had his skill, sense of ethics, and compassion, it is really a shame I am so far away from his office!

It was definitely chilly this morning, 4C, but I think the weather will now warm up substantially, the high today of 23 will be lovely.

The preparation for our evening visit to the Rideau Camp is under way. I sprayed four pairs of cotton gloves with permethrin yesterday and set them aside this morning to put in the camp box. This morning I sprayed one of my light coloured t-shirts, and two pairs of light coloured socks with permethrin, all to be worn when we visit the camp. This should prevent mosquitoes from biting under my large man’s shirt, our hands as we work, and offer some protection from ticks as well. We now have two serious diseases to worry about from the biting insects in Ontario, whereas during my youth there were none. Both diseases are the indirect compliments of human progress.

For a few years I spent time as a volunteer on the stage and sound crew for the Mariposa Folk Festival. It was fun, I met a lot of great people, learned new skills, and enjoyed myself.

There were those at the time that felt it was beneath me to give away my time as a lowly crew member, there were smirks and some low key derision, but I did not understand their point of view, I still don’t. So I have mixed memories of my Mariposa experience, a contrast between hierarchical and non-hierarchical personality types; I bet you can guess who I found pleasant and who I did not find pleasant.

In 1990 I was on the crew for the 30th anniversary of Mariposa, and got the t-shirt. I haven’t worn it more than a few times, and I unearthed it as I was searching for a light coloured t-shirt to spray with permethrin, to wear at the Rideau Camp; this selection offered a perfect blend of past and present.

Mariposa t 1990

I received a call from my sister-the-youngest-girl, her oldest daughter, my niece, an Engineer who is working out of the country at the moment, has just become engaged to be married. No details at this point. It isn’t difficult to understand how old you are with the younger generation around!

Worldly Distractions

Weather

4°C
Date: 6:00 AM EDT Friday 20 May 2016
Condition: Fog
Pressure: 102.3 kPa
Tendency: rising
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: 4.1°C
Dewpoint: 3.5°C
Humidity: 96%
Wind: ENE 5 km/h
Today Sunny. High 23. UV index 7 or high.
Tonight A few clouds. Low 8.

Quote

“I did not see anything [New York 1886] to help my people. I could see that the Wasichus [white man] did not care for each other the way our people did before the nation’s hoop was broken. They would take everything from each other if they could, and so there were some who had more of everything than they could use, while crowds of people had nothing at all and maybe were starving. This could not be better than the old ways of my people.”
Black Elk 1863-1950
Black Elk Speaks: Being the Life Story of a Holy Man of the Oglala Sioux

I wonder, at what point in history did our branch of the human species begin to think that greed was normal. It seems so ingrained in the way we see the world, history assumes is was always thus, so it must have begun before written records were kept.

“Goats are very hierarchical, they aren’t a social animal, so you need to work out where you are in the pecking order.”
Thomas Thwaites
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/goatman-calgary-thomas-thwaites-1.3590342

That is interesting, hierarchical goats are not considered social animals. It would fit then that hierarchical humans are not social animals, which would mean that the power structures in our present social structure define our species as “not social animals”… it makes sense in an oddly disturbing sort of way.

Waiting for Warm Weather

Yesterday we needed to take Tank out for a drive, to keep the battery charged. The battery has been losing power when Tank is left unused for long periods of time. We have been using the car almost exclusively, since it uses far less fuel than Tank. This has worked well for us, because the car was here all day while Attila slept, so that it was always available to me. However, now the car will be away all day, and I will need to drive Tank if I want to venture away from home.

We decided on take Tank to a nearby city, where I would seek a haircut. It has been a while since the last haircut, and my hair was becoming quite unruly. Yesterday I had had enough! Visiting one of the in-and-out chain haircutting establishments is always a crap shoot, some cuts are good, some are not. I think I have found the secret to consistency though, it is to insist that my hair be cut very, very short. Twice this has resulted in acceptable cuts, albeit very very short.

The young woman who cut my hair was an unhappy person. She was pleasant enough to me, but there was a hangdog demeanour about her. I tried several times to chat with her while she cut my hair. My efforts were met with one word responses. I decided, upon paying the bill, to give her a 35% tip, which brought my bill to less than a third of the cost of my last up market salon hair cut. Her reaction was odd, upon seeing the tip she made eye contact for the first time since I entered the establishment. Her look was one of bewilderment. I’d like to think that little tip brightened her day a bit, but I will never know!

We visited Value Village and found the prices to be outrageous for used donated items. We can actually buy brand new items for less! We did not purchase anything at Value Village. We also visited the Habitat store, and noticed a similar trend there, high prices for well used items. The only thing we bought was a length of clothesline which was new and reasonably priced. We liked to go there to look for used and usable building materials, but their present stock did not include much in the way of raw building materials.

Today life on the day shift began. As Attila drove out of the driveway this morning my universe turned on its axis. Everything about being alive felt different this morning. Time itself altered, passing with a different tone, aroma, light, colour. And I am surprised by this. Life has gone from grey scale to glorious colour.

After a cold, cloudy, wet first weekend in decades, Monday morning has arrived cold and sunny. We are waiting for warm, sunny weather, which may arrive next weekend. Weekend, what a beautiful word.

I have plans for the day.

Today I called all the remaining doctors on the list for this area, none are taking new patients, and none are taking names for a waiting list. On the positive side, all of the people who answered the telephones were quite nice, and tried to be helpful despite the bad news they had to deliver. Later in the day I received a call from the clinic where I did manage to get on a waiting list last October. The wonderfully pleasant woman who I spoke with explained that they are trying to hire medical staff, but have not succeeded and are not taking new patients yet. Although I am very near the top of the waiting list, it will be at the very least two to three months before I could get an appointment, but it will probably be much longer. The truly horrific thing about the situation is that there are now 400 people behind me on the waiting list, 400 people in small town who cannot get access to family health care. There is something seriously wrong about that.

I have contacted the office of my former GP, and am trying to get his advice. This is tough because I keep getting the receptionist who repeatedly suggests I make an appointment to come in. I haven’t gotten past her yet, and I may not, but I keep trying. Hopefully the nurse will return my call and present my predicament to the doctor, as it seems I will not be talking directly to him at any point.

One thing was suggested to me, by one of the staff I talked to during my many calls, was to return to the emergency department and request a referral to a specialist for tests. This might work, but will require quite a commitment in time, as the emergency department wait times can be very long if you are not in the midst of an immediate medical emergency.

I intend to keep a record of my experience here in my journal. My story is just one of 400 in this little town. Two months ago there were only 300 people behind me on the waiting list, the number of people falling through the cracks is rapidly rising. I will resolve this for myself, and I hope to build bridges to solutions as I tackle the issue. There are good people aware of the situation, and they are doing everything in their power to resolve it. What is needed now is for people, with enough power to make important changes to the systemic issues, to step up to the plate; that would be the government and significant stakeholders in the health care system. Media involvement, while effective for some personal causes, seldom leads to systemic change, and usually diverts pressure towards quick fixes that offer good PR for those in the public eye.

Iris has two drawers, with very old and damaged drawer liners. Today the old liners were removed, and new liners applied to the drawer bottoms. The drawer liner material used was actually purchased and used in the Argosy Airstream trailer, many years ago. No wonder Mist Cottage is so crowded, we keep so many things that we might need someday; if we wait long enough we just might need all of it.

Next, it will be time to load the trailer. The first task is to research how to distribute the load weight in the trailer to optimize towing, there are a lot of sites offering advice on this subject. Next, a list of needed items needs to be drawn up, just the essentials to begin with. It has been over 20 years since the last camping trip, so this list will require a lot of thought. Once the check list is complete, the items need to be collected from storage and sorted according to weight, then placed strategically into Iris.

Attila arrived home after work, and reports that he is pleased with the job and the people. That is great news. The day job is a temporary one that we hope will eventually become permanent. In the meantime, we intend to enjoy this day shift experience to the maximum, while we have it!

Worldly Distractions

Weather

7°C
Date: 9:00 AM EDT Monday 16 May 2016
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 101.6 kPa
Tendency: rising
Visibility: 24 km
Temperature: 6.8°C
Dewpoint: -4.9°C
Humidity: 43%
Wind: WNW 34 gust 44 km/h

Quote

“Almost all absurdity of conduct arises from the imitation of those whom we cannot resemble.”
Samuel Johnson
1709 – 1784

Ah, the wasted years of my youth, when Olive Oyl was my heroine!

Musty Cushions

Monday, May 9th, 201§

The weekend passed quietly and pleasantly.

Attila and I took a whirlwind overnight trip to visit my Mom, staying with my sister-the-middle-girl and her husband. Mom is doing great, slowly building her strength, recovering very nicely. On Saturday we all went to Niagara Falls, Attila and I, both of my sisters, and my Mom, expertly chauffeured for the day by my brother-in-law. It couldn’t have been a better choice of company, day, destination, or route. The weather was warm and sunny, there were orchards of cherry, peach, and apple blossoms along the way, although not nearly as many as when I was a girl. We visited and spent time walking through the Dufferin Island Park, which is beautiful. Mom treated Attila and I to admission to the green house in the park, which was tropical and lovely. It was great to be out with loved ones for the day, in such a beautiful setting. When we left the park, our tour included a drive along the Niagara River to Niagara On The Lake. I grew up on a fruit farm in the Niagara Region, so this is familiar territory. We had a lovely time.

There is something very precious about spending time with people who have known you your whole life through, at least that is how I feel about the experience.

The drive to and from Mist Cottage and my sister’s house was uneventful, but rather long. We took the 401 across the north end of Toronto and it was stop and go almost all the way across the city, both there and back. I am trying to determine if we can find a better east-west route through the city for visiting the Niagara Region, one that does not involve the expense of tolls.

Attila and I spent Sunday quietly together, cooking the meals for the upcoming work week, hanging freshly washed laundry out to dry, and gardening. When we had the basement dug up Attila moved most of the ornamental perennials to the back vegetable garden to save them. It is now time to transplant them to the front garden. We discovered that for this front garden a bed of day lilies, with a border of lungwort looks very pretty, grows from spring to fall, and requires little to no maintenance. We don’t have money for annuals this year, so it is lovely to have the lungwort blooming happily out front.

This morning there was frost on the neighbour’s roof, so it was cold last night.

I had a lovely chat with sister-the-youngest-girl this morning. She has a long commute to and from work, so she has a bluetooth unit that she uses, hands free, to chat with people during her commute. It sure is nice to hear from her early in the morning, as I am an early riser and there aren’t many people craving a conversation early in the morning. Her beau treated her yesterday to a meal out, and a second visit to the Dufferin Gardens.

This is the week I have chosen to work on the musty smell in Iris the trailer. Having much success clearing the basement of all mold and mildew with aqueous oxygen, I decided to drag out the appliance and see if it would function properly. It did, and I was relieved. The unit requires a certain level of humidity to function, and I haven’t quite pinned down what % of humidity is required, so I am guessing.

I took all of the cushions out of Iris, placed them upright on the front porch and gave the fabric on each a good dousing of aqueous oxygen. The roof vent, windows, benches, and cupboards in Iris were opened up and given a good dousing. The awning, which had been aired out and thoroughly dried, was hung up on the back porch line, where it received a good dousing. At the end of the day the mustiness was still in the cushions. Now it is time to move onto steam cleaning.

While I was on a roll with the aqueous oxygen I took all my footwear out the back deck and sprayed inside every last piece. The winter boots I wore while working at the Rideau Camp this spring needed help, the spray did the trick.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

This morning Attila dragged the rug shampooer out onto the back porch and set it up for me. We bought the cleaner 12 years ago, and it leaked the first time we used it, which unfortunately was past the warranty period, we were that busy at the time that it took us a long time to get around to using it. Last year Attila opened it up, applied caulking, and now it works fine.

I shampooed all of the Iris’ cushions. There was a bit of mildew around the zippers, so I opened up the zippers to discover mildew on the naugahyde backing and the foam. Back to spraying aqueous oxygen on the inner backing and the foam. It will kill all the mildew and the spores, and might diminish the smell. It may need to be done twice, but hopefully not.

Attila also removed the door lock on Iris, which wasn’t working all that well. It was cleaned and adjusted and works a lot better now, although not perfectly, the key needs a bit of jiggling to do its job.

I removed the last pieces of fabric from Iris the trailer, the curtains. The rods were held fast with zip ties, which were difficult to cut away, but I finally managed.

I got a message from my Mom this morning. I love hearing from my Mom. She has turned another corner on her road to recovery! Congratulations Mom!

Frustration

It was good to be busy, as the day was a one of the lowest I’ve had in quite a while. After being told by my country GP’s office that I am not longer on their roster, I discovered that the Ontario Government will have none of it, and insists that I am on the country GP’s roster, so they won’t help me find a local doctor. Even if I gave up my country GP who is far away, the government would not guarantee that they would find me a local doctor, and if they didn’t I would be well and truly screwed and afraid for my life. So far the country GP has been providing me with the prescriptions that are safe in regards to my anaphylaxis, if he stops doing that I am in desperate trouble, so I hope he will continue, and I will not ask him to cease caring for me. So effectively I can only access emergency care, which is extremely limited and will not provide for my prescription drugs. Every single government person I talked to today could only offer as a solution the one or two sentences provided for them for the public, none of which apply to my situation. They can do no more. THE COMPUTER SAYS NO!!

So I spent the day printing out sheets of every single doctor within the area where I live.

There were 41 doctors on the list.

Five of the doctors on the list were so far away that I would have trouble getting to them, and they probably wouldn’t take me anyway because I am out of their immediate area. For instance, Ottawa is a two hour drive away, not affordable. I don’t know why the government put them on the list.

Fourteen of the doctors on the list work in the emergency department at the hospital, they don’t take patients.

Four of the doctors work at a clinic in town that does not take new patients and does not have a waiting list.

Two of the doctors have retired, but are still on the list through inertia on the part of the government.

One doctor runs the Methadone Clinic, not a family practice.

Two of the doctors work at the Clinic where I have been on the waiting list since last October.

Three doctors contacted are not taking new patients and do not have a waiting list.

That means that of the 41 doctors on the list, 31 of those doctors cannot offer me primary health care.

That leaves 10 possible doctors to be contacted to ask if they are taking new patients.

Some of these doctors share an office, which brings it down to about 7 offices left to call. Calls to these offices resulted in no responses. The person answering the telephone was either not at their desk, or there was just an answering machine to say that the office would be open at a later date, which was usually specified, but not always.

That is how I spent most of the day.

It was depressing beyond words.

My tax dollars are paying for this health care system, and I can’t gain access to it.

One of the doctors answered the telephone himself, he was retired. He let me know that the younger doctors are now interviewing people to see if they will accept them as patients. Personally I don’t think they should be allowed to access funds from OHIP if they are not allowing public access to their services. Tax dollars should not be used for private practises.

Although I managed to keep at it, dead end after dead end after dead end, I felt worse and worse about it as the day wore on. If I hadn’t been misdiagnosed (hopefully) with Chronic Kidney Disease, I would probably be able to ignore the lack of access to health care. Even though my former country GP says I do not have Chronic Kidney Disease, it was also recommended that I come in and have tests done. The two different diagnoses should be followed up by tests, they are simple tests that would confirm that I either do or do not have Chronic Kidney Disease. But I can’t arrange those tests for myself, I have to go through a health care professional, and I can’t get an appointment with a health care professional.

My solution was to spend as much time working on my projects as possible, to keep my mind from dwelling on a situation I cannot change.

I have to try calling the remaining possibilities tomorrow. No stone will be unturned; the failure is not mine, although I am bearing the brunt of it.

Worldly Distractions

Weather

1°C
Date: 6:00 AM EDT Monday 9 May 2016
Condition: Fog
Pressure: 101.6 kPa
Tendency: rising
Visibility: 24 km
Temperature: 0.9°C
Dewpoint: 0.2°C
Humidity: 95%
Wind: NNW 7 km/h

13°C
Date: 4:00 PM EDT Tuesday 10 May 2016
Condition: Mainly Sunny
Pressure: 102.4 kPa
Tendency: falling
Visibility: 24 km
Temperature: 12.8°C
Dewpoint: 0.3°C
Humidity: 42%
Wind: S 21 km/h

Quote

“Wheresoever you go, go with all your heart.”
Confucius
551 BC – 479 BC