Tag Archives: hospital life

Drip Cycle

0000 can’t believe two hours have passed and the drip is finished. Finished reading Next (a gift from AfroM) and I now start reading this week’s Time. They can’t start a new drip because wrist is swollen where the vein has had enough. Note: Nurses seem more callous at night. Are they tired or more hardened to the calls of patients at midnight?
0012 Nurse disconnects drip – releasing me to go to the toilet. “Always carry your phone with you” – is something you are advised when you check in as phones tend to disappear, usually if you fall asleep during visiting hours. The toilet lights are off at night and there’s no switch but using my Nokia screen – there’s no need for a light.
0017 Back to bed. Not really sleepy and I don’t use the mosquito net
0028 Mosquito buzzes my face. There’s a myth that Nairobi mosquitoes don’t transmit malaria, but I don’t wish to complicate my recovery/treatment by proving this out and I clumsily put the net down to cover the upper half of the bed and fall asleep
0145 Doctor comes in with a nurse. They make a new cut in my left hand and insert a tube to attach a new drip. Drip in right hand is removed and sealed with a bandage.
0200 Another nurse comes and connects the drip bottle to the new tube. Back to sleep.
0530 Use toilet but this time I use the urinal – it’s a paper gourd that they bring round and is good for two flows. When on drip and drinking fluids throughout, one needs to go to bathroom a lot
0625 Nurse comes in to administer blood pressure, pulse, and temperature tests
0632 Get SMS from Couch Tato telling me when I might find a rare DVD I am looking for. (Does he ever sleep?)
0640 new jug of drinking water delivered by a waiter.
0800 Watching CNN news: I must find out what the differences are between Sunni’s and Shiite’s.
0821 Breakfast brought in. Even though I am supposed to be on a low-fat diet, they keep bringing some fatty foods. Take porridge, Weetabix, banana, and tea leaving aside the boiled egg and sausage.
0852 finish breakfast – takes longer to eat with the wrong hand
0937 finish reading Time magazine
0955 Take a shower, and get new gown & shorts as my bed is changed. I am not able to walk about because my doctor shows up. She examines me, is happy with progress but asks that a blood sample be taken tomorrow morning after which she’ll consider discharging me
1000 Back to bed. If I had my Celtel line I’d be able to make more daytime calls, but stuck with Safaricom and waiting for whoever calls. I get a call from the office
1005 Drip reconnected. Must finish my Lucozade bottle by tomorrow when I leave. Hate this stuff
1145 Finish reading a chapter of a manuscript and use paper toilet before visiting hours start
1150 Dietician brings suggested menu/foods for my recovery after I leave hospital and we discuss what is acceptable and what’s banned
1205 Have to use the toilet. This time I ask to be disconnected and walk to the bathroom. Getting sloppy, this is the first time I have left my phone behind. I rush back to find its still there
1210 – 1215 first visitors of the day – and one brings another bottle of Lucozade
1220 Itch on my right hand and realise it’s a mosquito bite from last night – I hope it drank saline instead of my blood.
1222 Lunch arrives
1225 More visitors. My sister is first and I send her downstairs to buy the newspapers (perks of being in the hospital) and a Safaricom airtime card. They’re here as I eat lunch. Have a wide discussion about the poor state of roads, book publishing.

1405 Back to the toilet. As I am washing hands, I drop my phone in the sink. I scoop it up and take paper towels back with me where I strip, dry, and clean the phone which seems to be intact.
1440 Still reading a newspaper but no drip running. I go to the nurses’ station to ask to be reconnected to drip.
1500 Still no one. I ring my buzzer and when nurse responds, ask again to be reconnected to drip. There seems to be a slacking of work as nursing shift ends and another begins as those going off have to prepare extensive reports.
1520 – 1530 New nurse comes and attached new drip bottle
1540 Start reading Foul about corruption in the soccer administration world. It’s a great and someone should give a copy to our sports minister who’ trying to sort out Kenyan soccer. Other countries like Antigua and Jamaica have gone though what Kenya is going through (interim committees, normalization committees, suspension, and threats) FIFA does not appear to like government interference and prefers to deal with local sports administrators however corrupt they are.
1550 Waiter comes round but I decline afternoon tea. Other patients are asleep and I ask him to turn off TV, which is now showing an (annoying) kids variety show.
1650 Still reading Foul when first evening visitors arrive. Some visitors are interesting, others are tiring. For many, I have too repeat the story of who I ended up here. I engage some visitors in constructive talk; get advice on recovery while others have nothing to say. Still pick up some tips – I may get my full allocation of Stanbic IPO shares, and while this hospital has no internet for patients (am told), Kenyatta National Hospital (of all places) is a wireless hot spot
1830 I get a late visitor. Near the end of visiting time, guards don’t let in more visitors (except VIP’s) but my buddy assures me she can get past any time as she has a stethoscope in her car she wears.
1850 My boss visits. He’s on leave, but working on other projects. He advises me to enjoy the enforced rest and avoid dealing with office matters
1900-1920 Watch the 7 PM news as I eat dinner. Chicken again though not as fatty this time.
1945 Go to bathroom again
2000 Drip is reconnected. Lie back and drift in and out of sleep. TV still on with Spanish soaps with bad accents, and later the 9PM news. I try and remember the name of the movie where Wesley Snipes or Steven Seagal’s characters’ rip drip tubes from their arms, fight people sent to kill them and flee from hospital in a wheelchair.

0015 Wake again TV still on. Busta & Diddy’s “Pass the Courvesoir” video is on but not as interesting to watch three years later.