Sunday, 19 December 2010

The Ear Chronicles

Mid-November, Lee had the hole in his eardrum fixed, care of the NHS.  The Australian and UK governments have fixed a sweet deal where they look after each others' citizens, which meant free assessment and surgery for Lee after first visiting a Doctor with an ear infection in August.  
After waiting most of the day for his 'morning' surgery, he got changed and switched off phone at 3pm.  The surgeon sliced behind the ear and used the fascia from muscle behind the ear to fashion him a new eardrum.
Lee returned to the ward from recovery at 6pm, charming the nurses and was soon scoffing some food, napping and scoffing more food.
The next day, the outer bandage removed, drugs dispensed and minimum instructions given, I could take him home (3pm).

Below are shots I took of his recovery.  As you can see, the ear is quite swollen to begin with, but goes down with time.  The day of the surgery is Day 0.

Day 0

Day 1

Day 2

Day 5

Day 7

Day 9

Day 11

Day 13

Friday, 3 December 2010

A walk in the park

There's something special about a park covered in fresh, powdery snow. The white expanse is like an invitation to run across it, scooping up handfuls, tying to bunch them together and throwing it, trailing white, towards the target, so much that its impact is barely felt.

The large flat expanse is far more inviting than its previous shade of green. Walking through the park in autumn, I did not see the appeal of leaving the path to head in a random direction. Covered in white though, I could not contain myself to the path, following the example of other tracks traced in the snow. The sensation of walking across the fresh snow is like walking across squeaky beach sand, as it gives way a bit at a time with a slight crunching sound. As you step forward, small pieces fly forward and on top of your boots, just like beach sand. And as you look back, you can trace your footsteps imprinted there.

There is often a high-pitched squealing as children run from each other, and the same actions are repeated in small groups all over the park, regardless of age: scoop, threaten, grin, chase, aim poorly, repeat. There is a child-like mischievousness that is revealed in people of all ages in a fresh fall of snow. And what's not to love?

Thursday, 2 December 2010


It snowed pretty much all day yesterday. It is the first time I have ever looked out my bedroom window and seen snow. For someone who has seen snow 3 times in life, it was a surreal experience to see it falling from the sky. Every hour or so I would look out the window and give Lee a snow update:
"It's snowing"
"It's snowing!"
"See that? It's snowing"
"Oo, big snow flakes"
"It's a bit swirly"
"It looks deeper than this morning"
"There's someone walking past with an umbrella - they're walking in the SNOW"
"It's snowing, and I'm here"
"It's cold out there and I took some photos"
"It's snowing"
I think I got a bit predictable.