stormtouched earthquake

Well, it’s been some six months-ish since I last poked my head in here, said hello and spent a half hour or so following my stream of consciousness. It might have gone for a bit longer if I didn’t have a free afternoon in a foreign city to fill, or at least take up some time with, so here goes. 🙂

It’s now September and I’m currently sitting in a small room in John Harrison House, Whitechapel, London. I’m over here for an elective term at the Royal London Hospital with a Professor of Neurology, and have spent the past couple of days settling in, finding a supermarket, discovering three bad, one okay and zero good nearby coffee shops, you know – that kind of stuff.

In terms of what’s been going on… hey, well. I passed medical school back in June. That’s a big deal right? My final exams were at the end of June and I sailed through the written, and dare I say, smashed the living shit out of the clinical. I’ve just spent six weeks on the renal ward at the Wollongong Hospital doing a PRINT (pre-internship) term, learning what I need to know for next year (so doing some bloods, cannulas and a lot of paperwork) – that was fun, I had a great team with awesome interns and regs, so that was good fun.

I followed that up by flying overseas (for the first time since I was what, fifteen) solo to London via Dubai. Great fun and a lovely experience, even for someone who’s six feet tall. Airline was great fun, especially the A380 from Dubai to London (wireless internet at 38000 feet!) with surprisingly decent food.

I’ve since found my way to Whitechapel, have learned how (more or less) to use the Tube, and enrolled in my elective today at the medical school – and don’t really start until tomorrow, as my supervisor is off today. So I’m thinking I might go exploring again – I visited Westminster yesterday but the Abbey was closed, so I want to go back and do that properly. It’s also sunny and such in London, so it’s a shame to let the day go to waste.

In other news, I have a job for next year – I’m moving to Tamworth for 2 (probably 3) years to do my internship: one of my top two choices so that’s pretty damn nitty, and otherwise well, I’m well. Miss Butterfly is still well (and still together with self), and the family is well.

Ho hum.

At any rate, I’m going to try to blog more frequently now that I’m overseas – I want to talk about MedRevue this year, amongst other things. Talk soon darlings.


-Benjamin Andiyar

a warm gun

So, the Beatles tell us, happiness is – and so, Across the Universe showed us, is being addicted to opiates while being injected by hot blonde nurses.

Hm? Oh yes. Relevance.

Today is Friday, and as Rebecca Black has recently taught us, we’re all looking forward to the weekend – although I can’t honestly claim there will be much “partying” or realistically much “fun”, no matter how many times said “fun” is repeated – and to be honest, sufficient hours have elapsed since this entry was started (I know, some fifty-odd words ago) for it to no longer be Friday, but I enjoy the joke too much to change it, so let’s just dive in and see what’s happening shall we?

This has been an interesting week for me in several ways. Since my last post, I can honestly say that my mood has remained high, or at least high for me, and that my overall level of emotion this week can be best described as ‘contented’, and even ‘happy’ as an elevation thereof. This is… quite a different situation, from my typical. I sound like a fourteen-year-old wearing eyeshadow no doubt, but I find my natural state of being these days (these years?) tends to be at least 20% below contentment, even when I am content – as if I have titrated my own state to be slightly lower than it should be. This may be a result of the slow grinding down of the soul that life and med school have engendered, it may be due to the burdening cynicism that I tend to filter my surroundings through. Oh yes, I’m a cynic, despite what many people have said to me about my ‘optimism’ and my ‘naivete’, I just find it easier to present the happier, or at least less cynical face to the world. Ask any of my family though, and you’ll definitely hear the ‘glass half full’ argument as applied to my perspective. I don’t know that it’s entirely fair, but I do perhaps come across a little un-optimistic.

Ties in a little with an entry here from a few weeks ago, where I mentioned the “I have to laugh or I’d be crying” perspective, which tends to be my actual outlook on life itself, or at least on the life I tend to lead. I imagine clowns must have the same thing – cry on the inside, as it’s a show. Damn right it’s a show, and my chosen profession, my calling, requires the happy or at least the compassionate face. The second is easier, it’s more default, but as I seem to have ranted in several essays submitted to the GSM under the guise of professional development, there is no clear boundary between compassion and over-involvement, and to me that is the flaw that will, I am certain, lead to burnout.

But not this week, oh no. This week has been different!

I’m sitting at uni on the Saturday now having worked through two surgical CBL cases (I’m only 3 behind over the whole phase now! 3 cases!), have half a container of Vietnamese saté chicken in the fridge to eat in the next hour or so when I feel snackish, and am reflecting on the week gone and (being the eternal optimist I just described myself as) I’m trying to pick holes in it, and… mostly failing. This week, I’ve had my ego boosted immensely by showcasing a piece of short fiction I wrote to several groups of friends and receiving feedback that basically boils down, to me, as “yep, still got it!” (the piece is called “Fallen” if you’re interested, and it’s on FB); I caught up with several friends, being on break, that made me smile; I spent time with the family which was lovely; I… well, to be honest, I had a week of horrible eating patterns but hey, there was delicious food involved; I managed to get my GP to agree that I should have medicare-assistance for my current physio so it’s free until May; I read three novels… overall, a fairly positive week!

There is a slight negative of course in that a young lady seems to be overly enamoured of me in a way that I can’t/won’t return for her, and I’m sad to see it, but that is something that I feel will work out with time. It’s noticeable enough that friends have been commenting, and my response has been “yes, I know, and it makes me feel bad” – I dislike hurting people, in fact I tend to be harder on myself so as to spare others, and this incident is only really proving that point, but I digress. That’s the negative of the week, and as such, well… I can deal with that negative. No choice in the matter!

I suppose there’s another brief negative too in the lack of the company of some people who haven’t been around, either recently or for a long time, but sadly the stars do not always align the way that would be nice, and sometimes the lack makes for a clear head, or at least perspective. I predict, at the moment, that the upswing might just last for a while longer, and isn’t that a happy thought – I’m even planning a poetry collection I think, as I have a few things I want to put together. The last book, letters to Jessica, is a book of love poetry, effectively, and there were I think three specific subject people in the book as well as a few other tangentials. The next collection, well, for some reason I want to write a collection where the title includes the world Conversation, and each poem is actually a real letter or discussion that I wish I could have had/could have with someone(s) special, noone necessarily in particular but a similar theme to ltj. We’ll see.

I do think, though, that Conversations with You makes for a cute sounding title.