It's a busy night at the station; it's Wednesday, which is known by many to be the night of the clown cars. On any given Wednesday night, you're bound to have at least three and a half full crews ready to go. But, of course, nothing ever happens.
The county is quiet, save a few fire alarms here and there, but they all end unspectacularly.
I sit on the couch, yawning as I work on a cross-stitch. My fingers are numb, but I push the needle through again, watching as the teal thread slides its way through the fabric. Mesmerized by the rhythmic sound of the needle, I jump as our tones drop; I didn't even hear a pre-alert.
"Flu-like symptoms," I hear the dispatcher say, and I groan. It's BLS, and that means that the first run BLS crew is responding; just so happens that tonight, that crew is Eric and me.
"Station 1 copies," he says as I grab my coat. This house is way out in the boonies, and I sigh as I snuggle into the passenger seat sleepily. There's no rest for the weary, I remember as he lays on the air horn. Cars in front of us weave out of the way like small, frightened animals, and I grab onto the door handle. My eyes as wide as saucers, fearing for my life which is in the hands of a maniac driver, I grab my cell phone. "If I die en route," I text, "tell them it was Eric's fault. Seriously."
I do little more than glare at him after we arrive on scene, about 5 minutes later than we should have, due to his poor directional skills. I remind myself that it's not even worth it, and I grab the jump bag.
The dispatcher did not steer us wrong; inside we find a seventy-something year old man who has been nauseated for a few days, and has recently developed fever and diarrhea. A female neighbor who looks to be about his age comes into the living room and tells us that she just doesn't think that he should go another minute without seeing a doctor. It's flu season in the county, and I know that he'll be triaged upon arrival. Every other bed is taken by somebody just as flu-like as you, sir.
He doesn't want to go, because he doesn't feel very sick.
"I'm an old man," he reminds us, "old men get sick."
Like a burr in his side, though, his neighbor pushes him into going with us. I had been taking information down on the PPCR, and when Eric looks to me and says, "I'm assuming you want me to take this nice and easy to the hospital," I smile back at him and say "I sure will, partner." I push the clipboard to his chest as he looks back dumbfounded.
Climbing into the driver's seat, I hear our patient start to vomit. Yes, turnabout
is fair play, my friend.