Sunday, 15 July 2007


Right, A roundup of what happened after the eventful Friday night. Woke up, feeling OK thinking "righto... will be able to go home soon and might even get the Kitchen door painted on Sunday". This illusion was rapidly shattered by the arrival of Dr Bex who filled me in on the seriousness of the situation. Her initial thought was five days bed rest then a flight to Santiago on Saturday for tests - this was confirmed later in the day by a Cardiologist in the UK. Bugger it, no work on the extension this weekend then! [This is Philomel Hill on Saturday morning.]

The situation pretty much remained the same for the next couple of days - ie, five days bed rest with view to Santiago on Saturday. Bex decided it would be sensible to treat me for heart disease - ie aspirin etc - as this could do no harm and, if I did have early heart disease, it could only help. The real downside to this was that I had to have injections in my stomach twice a day and it made me wish I was carrying a bit of extra lard - if you have a bit of flab it doesn't hurt too badly but I found them effing painful. I was constantly connected up to a monitor and had regular ECGs. The nurses were great and very tolerant of my interference with the monitors - I had them sussed within hours and worked out how to silence the incessant bloody beeps.

On Monday, Bex came to say that the hospital were trying to organise an aeromed for an ill Russian sailor and were looking into the possibility of me being chucked in the back and flown up to Santiago. (Jenny wasn't going to be able to come as there wouldn't be room for her so we started organising for her to fly out on Lan on Saturday.)

After an apparently bad night, in which my blood pressure and pulse weren't satisfactory, the hospital decided on Tuesday morning that I was becoming the priority for the aeromed. The doctors - Bex, Jacqueline (Bennebroek) and Richard (Davies) seemed to think it was better to be cautious and get the tests started asap.

The aeromed contractor, Air Cardal, were not happy to carry both me and the Russian in the same aircraft so it was decided to request two separate flights - the first was soon on its way and Jenny was able to come with me. We got in the ambulance to head to FIGAS (the MPA road was covered in snow and ice and it was deemed safer to fly us to the airport on the Islander). Just as we were at the cemetery (!) we learned that the aircraft had encountered bad weather 150 miles out and had diverted to Comodoro Rivadavia (ironically, the place I was born!) So, back to the hospital to see what happened next. Everyone was brilliant, Paicey brought in his XBox but unfortunately as soon as I grabbed a controller my monitor went berserk so it was cards only! Paicey and Corrinne and Sam came in every night and spent most of Tuesday with Jenny and I which made life much more bearable, plus phone calls galore all of which really helped to keep my mind off things.......

We finally got away from the Islands around 2pm on Wednesday, aboard an Air Cardal Lear Jet. I had a nurse and doctor on board and was hooked up to monitors before take off. The flight was uneventful; three and a half hours (straight over Argentina) was quite something, instead of the 6+ hours normally involved but, with all the necessary equipment, the plane was fairly cramped so it was a relief to get to Santiago. At the airport I was taken off the aircraft and straight into an ambulance - no mucking about - and on to the Clinica Alemana (lights but no sirens!).

I was wheeled up to the cardiology ward where my first nurses were waiting, changed into the fetching nightie you see me sporting now, hooked up to monitors, a saline drip etc... let the ticker testing commence!

Ironically Dad is in Santiago at the moment as well, undergoing treatment for...... heart arrhythmia! Although it is a completely different syndrome to mine it is really rather a coincidence, a useful one though as he is an out patient so is able to help Jenny out with things...

The hospital has free WiFi which is brilliant, hence how I am able to keep this blog up to date and email etc etc, this is me today....

That pretty much covers it all... Are there any questions? ;)


Kerrio said...

those stomach jabs sound nasty. Too late for extra bacon butties?

Anonymous said...

Hey ya shandy quaffin' lightweight. What ya been upto while i've been away. I dunno......little bit of downhill fun and you're completely buggered ! If ya need something organising to get ya back like the odd Commando Raid drop me a line.

Seriously though mate, just got back and heard the news. Bit of a shocker eh. Hope you're making a good recovery and i hope to see you very soon. Tell Jen if she needs help with anything to give me a call. I know you have family and stuff but i'm here to help in any way i can and thats not an idle promise. I'll even paint ya door !!

Look after yourself mate. I'll be in touch again soon.

Take Care......