Monday, November 28, 2005

Something old something new, something borrowed something blue.

There is a real danger when one’s car ceases to function properly. The danger is not in the context the car swerving, careening, flying off, toppling, turning over and ending up in the ditch. The danger is real. The danger is in the waiting.

In this weather one really didn’t feel like waiting in the car garage while muscle-ly oil- covered men fixed the exhaust and change the tyres. So one went to the nearest shopping place and pretended that one was just window shopping. Then, for some bizarre reasons one still couldn’t bring oneself to comprehend, one ended up going home with something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue. No, one didn’t get married in town.

Trouble with me is, if I have an event coming up, I keep thinking about it hours on end, until I get everything prepared and ready. It’s pretty tiring. You know having the same thing in your mind all the time. Unless it’s a new boyfriend and new tricks.

This upcoming ‘thingy’ is just a Christmas dinner party but I have nothing to wear. Any dress would be too little coverage and too skimpy for winter chill. I sometimes wonder why we have to always suffer to look nice. This Christmas dinner party on the 14th would want to see me in something descent. Not bluescrubs, not jeans. That is tough.

In no particular order to the old saying, the dress I bought would probably end up as something borrowed because I am going to return the size 8 dress. I cannot imagine myself wearing the same dress again. How many people do I know stay the same dress size? None. Having said that, the satin felt so good against nakedness. Satin, against a velvet skin is like Bailey’s down a dry throat. That set me back about 100 quid.

I know there is no need for any new perfume what with 4 still-unopened boxes of them. But, I am a sucker for anything intoxicating. Not in a sick druggy way, yes? This one is something blue. Gorgeous and light.

When I was in Bali, there was a distinctive smell of the ocean blended with the strong concoction of tropical flowers, baked sand tinted with stale chlorine from the swimming pool caking my hair in the sun, that I savoured with all the olfactory that I had. All that equals a squirt of Michael Kors, Island. It is so awakening. It was sunshine, parties and debauchery in a bottle. I digress.

Something old would be me and Megane. Old, battered but fazed. Did I mention my fingers felt like they were going to fall off while walking in the cold? Looks like none of us are going anywhere this winter despite the awful weather. And we’ve decided we’re going to grow old together but Megane seems to fall apart quicker than I thought. So I guess I got something new as well. A new exhaust pipe and a pair of new front tyres. All the way to the back box, the pipe stretches. Sturdy and shiny.Which all in all cost about £200.

The damage is diabolical if I may tell you.

Going off- tangent slightly now.

Two things I learn today. (Just because I like sharing)

1. Different clothes and different undergarment give different effects on the contour of the buttocks. If a style makes your peaches pert, stick with it.

2. When a guy fancies you he’ll look at your lips lingeringly. Make sure you haven’t smudged your lipstick or have bits of chillies stuck in between your teeth.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Weather Girl

It must be very cold outside. I heard a baffle. At the same time, I heard a splutter of dry seeds against my window.

When I turned, it looked like a giant man, with a giant mouth, with giant teeth, had taken a handful of iceberg and chewed them and then spat on my window.

Nasty weather.

p/s: I know, best stick to my day (and night job). You have to be blonde and 'hefty' anyway
to be a weather girl these days.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Girl On Drug Talk

You know how we blame hormones for most things? Now, you can blame hormones for EVERYTHING!!! Isn’t it great!

This is highly academic and very very boring I must warn you, and so I have spared the details. You know the molecular structure and how it’s actually an octapeptide and how it is excitingly synthesized in the hypothalamus?? Yes I am sure we all know that. Because we are women and we fuss about details.

But, but.. I could just make you feel better for when you have to confusingly pick up your clothes scattered on his bedroom floor on one Sunday hang-oh-so-over morning.

"You first meet him and he’s passable," Witt said of the phenomena. "The second
time you go out with him, he’s OK. The third time you go out with him, you have
sex. And from that point on you can’t imagine what life would be like without
"What’s behind it?" she added. "It could be oxytocin."

Oxytocin is also called a ‘cuddle-hormone’.

Now for future reference and for me to actually survive this mind numbing world of drugs, let’s remember that,

Oxytocin causes vasodilation- TRUE
Oxytocin causes reflex tachycardia- TRUE

Yes I am a no-lifer. And if none of it feels like it makes sense, chances are it probably doesn’t.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

It was cold that night.

It’s been like living in a fridge past few days. The new ‘I’m a celebrity get me out of here’ programme commenced yet another chapter. I wasn’t all that keen on the pointless programme, or any reality show for that matter. But he does. So he was watching it.

I was just keen on the heat emanating out from the fire place. I love coal fire. The blazing fire popped and crackled and at times made a hiss. It was all too nice to take my eyes off. To miss the slow relinquish existence of a substance. Rather a transformation of a substance. The leather sofa was warm and the coffee he made had just the right amount of milk.

Out of the blue,

“Do you want to get married Naj?”

I was startled, but I didn’t take my eyes off the fire. I wasn’t prepared to see what answers those hazel eyes anticipated. Something was helplessly bewitching about coal fire. I could just stay there forever. Just watching. Buying time? Wasting time? Making time? I wasn’t so sure on that.

At some point I said, taking a sip, without looking at him. I curled up. My oversized pullover had long sleeves just right to mitt the mug with both hands. I felt like a foetus all over again. A dry, breathing air, foetus of course.

I can hear his mumble in between the narcissi dance, bellied by the famished fire on the helpless logs.

He stopped mumbling and I looked at him.

His green eyes looked sallow from the dimness where he was sitting. But his skin justified salubriousness. There was something firm but accusing in his stare.

“But you said you’d never marry a white guy”,
he reminded me of what I said a few days earlier.

Oh here we go again…

Thursday, November 17, 2005

When You Thought You're Retiring for The Day

Never have I smelt so much anger, frustration and sweat in that one hour we worked on the 15 year old girl. She was just 15. She had so much to live for.

My bleep went off at 05:50 and it was not the normal cardiac arrest call. The bleeped actually shrieked my name to go to Accident and Emergency at lightning speed. When I got there it was like a scene out of ER. The skinny blonde nurse with blue mascara was doing the cardiac massage and the paramedic was at the head end. According to him, it was his third attempt at putting the tube and he’s just about to give up.

One look and my heart sank. The girl had that ashen mottled colour. Almost blue. The colour of death. We did a cycle with just a mask over her face. The Medical Guy whom I’ve only just said ‘Hope not to see you again tonight’ an hour before, at another cardiac arrest, gave me that we’ve-been-jinxed look. He tried a subclavian line ( bloody good at trying as well if I may say). Almost black blood trickled out instantly, driven by no pressure whatsoever.

I pushed my luck at my end. The mouth and jaw were rigid. No way I thought I could shove anything down. How could I when I could only see the base of the tongue. Broke into cold sweat, my left hand was shaking, resisting fate. With one deep breath I thought why not and shove down the bent bougie and pushed the tube in. On one squeeze, hard squeeze, the chest moved a fraction, and I felt warm and giddy. It was in. But on the recoil her presumably dinner, gushed out from the lung, through the tube filling up the AMBU bag. Fate had decided that whatever she had for dinner, wouldn’t end up where it should and now her lungs were filled up with it.

One cycle, two cycles, three and four, I lost count. Everybody was high, hopeful. Empty ampoules and syringes scattered on the floor. It was like a battle field, only there was no blood. Only vomitus. She was a body full of adrenaline and atropine. The colour never returned, her pupils never reacted, her body, remained like a log. Yet the scene was a sheer vessel of panic, catecholamines, action and tears.

Somehow I caught the glimpse of the dad. In the far corner, body shaking uncontrollably, his face flushed and full of hope. I then realized I had been shaking my head non stop, while handling the tube earlier. I really didn’t mean to do so. I wish I wasn’t that transparent. Body language I believe is always the true language spoken by the human race. But why should I lie? Why should I feel bad about my body language?

06:45. We called it off. Some of the nurses started to become emotional. There was nothing else we could do. One could argue that, maybe we shouldn’t have done anything on arrival, because she was already in rigor mortis. But she was 15, and the dad was watching. Justified? I don’t know. I knew everybody knew we were just working on the idea of miracle at that point.

What caused her to vomit in her sleep (which probably caused her to stop breathing) remained a mystery. Post mortem will give us a clue, but the fact that we are not always given the clue when our number is up always leaves me with a cloud of edginess, which will last a while.

I am not your mum, and I don’t support WeightWatchers UK, but whatever you do, don’t sleep with stomach gurgling and bursting at it's full capacity. It's not clever.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

I need,

A bigger head, that spins 360, which also does auto nodding.

8 arms (answer phone, change gear, looked through presentation notes, tie hair, pin hair, hair won’t stick, pin hair again, pin in mouth, lip gloss stuck on pin, pin no good, hair messy, run to seminar room, one laptop, one bag, one pack lunch , pick up thumb drive from the floor, open door, … “the superwoman has arrived”…late)

8 Longer legs,

A body that mitotically splits itself into 2, 3, 4, 5 heck lapan teruslah.

Lungs which accommodates tidal volume of 8 litres. Hehehe, so I can race against roaches without getting out of breath?

Stomach that can stand laksa johor and Saturday night without vomiting on a blonde girl’s shoes. (think they were pink)

And why does a week feel like 2 seconds?

I need to be an octopus with a PDA and a bit of decorum. That’s what I need to be.

Friday, November 11, 2005

What is it?

Woke up in a daze, I struggled to match the time on the clock to night or day. It’s typical of a conundrum one has to go through after an on call duty I guess. I just hope this doesn’t accelerate Alzheimer’s or madcowism.

The radio was on and they were giving out £10, 000 for a right answer.

The riddle if you like went like this;

Those who make it don’t say it,
Those who have it don’t know it,
Those who know it, don’t want it.

What is it? Flipping 10 grand!!!

My brain seems to selectively retain things well within first five minutes of being awake. Best time to tell me you love me baby.

I don’t have 10 grand to give away but if you feel like having a guess, what is it.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Touchy feely

Absence makes hearts grow fonder? I suppose that’s what it was. I don’t expect you to know but I have been away from this hospital for 3 months and now back here again. If I start explaining the reasons you’d probably think I want to overthrow Tony Blair and the Queen.

So, back to being back here. I notice a few people being slightly uninhibited when they talk to me. People who were not as touchy touchy with me before.

I saw Dr.B emerging out from the theatre door and walking fast towards me, which made the time to put away Cosmo magazine very tight so I did what’s best. Pretend that it’s completely ok to flip through the magazine at the theatre reception. He got close and put his arms around me and as if he had a sore throat, grovelled something like … “That is not anaesthetics, …blabla woman blabla domestic blabla” so close, that the hairs at the back of my neck stood on ends. I couldn’t concentrate because he was that close to my ears. I am sure something else like “Oh my darling my sweet sweet darling” would have made me go into tonic clonic fit. So the grovelling was far better.

Stuck my head through the Mr. M’s theatre to see if the list had finished and he came from the side and patted my head. “Ahhhh you’re back. We missed you!” I had Rowntree gums in my mouth otherwise I would have said something complementary, but what though. It was strange having so many eyes looking up and down at you. Well they didn’t have to do much up and down because as soon they look up they’d have to look down again. Yes I know I have real complex with being vertically challenged.

Dr. D was supervising me doing an 8 year old tonsillectomy yesterday and asked what the dose of a drug was. I said 20 mg/kg, which I just read the night before, for fun. And he squeezed my arms, “Good girl. Most people underprescribe and write 15mg/kg. But that’s good”, followed by another squeeze.

I really don’t mind. But, I tell you what always always happens. Which made me prefer the ground to open and swallow me instead.

The muscles in my neck will tense up, my ears turn red, the colour will ripple horizontally to my cheeks, which in turn setting into bright red colour and I’d feel hot and would start blowing air up my face by jutting my lower lip forward. My knees fold inwards like I ‘d hold my wee and my left shoulder would turn in. Just my right shoulder. All you need for completion is if my arms would fix flexed and start to jerk like a spastic dog. Oh for completion, let’s have my eyes rolling 20 times front and back and side to side too while we’re at it.

Right, I think my trauma case’d arrived in theatre. Better put this one to sleep before I myself induced to sleep by the interesting wall colours , artistic display of paper cups and plates and thick anaesthetic books in this seminar room.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

I think, I think

I think I am changing hospitals faster than I do my knickers.

I think I am spending more time running around this region than actually doing my job.

I think my Megane is also making a high pitch noise now and again which adds up to my lack of desire to go to work. Laziness some people might say but that’s too harsh, I think.

People here are pleased that I am back though; which made me very pleased; which put springs in my steps; which made me smile all the time; which made me gave up my shimmering fuschia Approvel pen I got off a drug rep to one of the nurses, after being told I looked _______; which now I thought was a daft thing to have done. (I am so easy and so cheap).

I think my N-methyl D aspartate receptors are depleted from many nights of succumbing to peer pressure. (I just have to show off my NMDA there because I don’t think I can pull any big words stunt these days, but I always compensate well I think and that is also applicable to my height, my big hands and big ‘sampan/itik’ feet).

I think, many a time I tried not to be available during weekdays in fear of the deleterious and detrimental after effects. Standard answer I get when I gave I- don’t want- to- go- out- because- I am on call- the- next- day excuse would be;

“Hahahahaahha (very loudly) since when that stops you?”

But I have been good last few weeks..I mean days. Still though, I think I need to defibrillate my brain back into the slightly more organized chaos that it was before.

Yesterday at 0800 hrs:

Steve : Oh helllllooo Naj, good to see you'r back….and front.

Naj: Good to see you too Steve.

Rushed off to Theatre 2. Jiggled things about and the day started clawing into my skin like a crazy ex-girlfriend taking sweet revenge.

Later, at 2000 hrs:

I was cooking my tea, and thought about what Steve said.

“Good to see you'r back..and front”.

Hahahahahah. That’s quite funny.

Took me 12 hours but got there in the end.

What la.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Dr. Chemo is coming to town

A few times, I have tried giving this friend of mine a name. You know like, a clever enough nick names like Dr. Vagina or Dr. Bowels. Something that bears no resemblance to their real name but very much describes who they are relative to the people around them, or to what they do.

I could use so many like Miss Tinggi – she sometimes wishes that she’s not that tall so she doesn’t scare Malay men away;

Miss Sporty- we never missed playing netball for Southampton team every Nottingham games, even though it was 2 years after we have left the medical School. For the 3 years we were final years, (again and again) and still some ‘babies’ came up to us and said
‘are you guys first years as well?’ followed by a big ‘first year’ grin. And we would say yes, naturally.

Miss Sangat Baik- On my birthdays, she’d be the one organizing things to happen right on time, rightly subtle, like that year when Cik T was here for the graduation. But oh well, just how do you look surprised?

Miss Honest – She’d put up with my wittering , blabbering and compulsive fits secondary to the opposite sex which at the time caused me a lot of heartaches. But she’d put things in perspective which put me and my wonky head straight. True what she said but boy it hurts.

Miss Caring- I remember the time I was hit by a car on the way back from med school and was brought back to the med school. You see, if you are clever you’ll spot that my school was also a hospital. Aaaaahhh. See? Now how many people can make people confused like that? Anyway, for many days she looked after me and treated me like her own sister. On the bedside in A&E I heard something like ‘Pleaselah janganlah mati, please please please’, which I thought was sweet. Had my eyes closed all the time.

So, I have all those options but I am going to go for Dr. Chemo because, she’s now passed all her exams, she’s a 2nd boss ; Registrar that is in our lingo. In couple of years she’ll be a chemotherapy specialist. What scares me is just how is she going to get a man when she says ‘Saya kerja apa awak tanya ya? Saya pakar chemotherapy’,

when before, when we say ‘Saya kerja apa? Saya doktor’ men usually stop being themselves and talk funny and then just leg it. BUT, for 12 years being friends with her, these days I am at my proudest being a friend.

So, Dr. Chemo rang me and said that she’s coming to cook some Rendang, lots of staying in because the weather is pants, going to the movies because it’ll be warm, waking up late because it’s Sunday, English breakfast because we both missed our boarding schools, cold walk by Cleethorpe ‘beach’ because we always torture ourselves like that in the cold; either that or a jog in the rain, and a coffee in Strabucks, because we love it. Couldn’t be bad, couldn’t wait.

So I was tidying up my room, hoovering my living room, scrubbing my bathroom, mopping my kitchen- why didn’t I just say tidy my flat. And I found this little magic chant. I thought this will be good for the girls having binged during this festive season and still want continue to do so but also want to remain perfectly slender.


“ I call upon a Fairy’s Magic Power,
To fall on me in a shimmering
Let me eat as much as I wish,
Emptying every delicious
But as the next day doth come,
Keep me thin around my thighs and

I found many more like a spell to look sexy, a spell for thinner waist even a spell for
Revenge on a Love rat. Which will definitely be shared in good time.

p/s: Dr. Chemo is single.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005


Just the one card

Why is it that when you are completely bored out of your ears, eyeballs, head (insert organs you think could combust and expulse semiliquid content),

and you just hope that somebody would just text you and say something like, “hiya, how are you” or “hi how zit going’”or anything to that effect ,

the phone keeps it’s silence like you have lost reception to your mobile phone forever?

But when you are running around like headless chicken trying to settle yourself in a new work place, missing breaking fast time because the time goes back an hour, forgetting deadline of some important tasks, your phone also beeped and burped and blushed and gone completely berserk, non-stop. Everybody seemed sooooo happy and sooooo festive. Don’t get me wrong. Love it. Ecstatic and joyous over the arriving of Syawal. But, I just wish it’s not so tight for me.

Without sounding like a scrooge, I’ll tell you what my baju raya colour is. Go on take a guess. Starts with B. Yes ..burgundy did you say? Nooo…again..what? blue? Bet yours is blue as well.

Well mine is the bluescrubs. I start at 8:30 am tomorrow and it will be a long day. And yes tomorrow is Eid in UK. Somebody suggested a baju kurung underneath the scrubs, you know just to get the flava (as Craig David would put it) and I wasn’t sure whether I should laugh or cry or wax his chest. I can imagine your chest hairy for some reason.

Few things are also worth weighing against the fact that I am working tomorrow. Number one, my sister. My only same mum same dad sister scored 4 in her SPM trial.

Apparently that’s good and by definition, a perfect score. Bit like scoring a perfect ten in a gymnastic competition.

I didn’t use this system in my time, it was all about getting low aggregate. When I talked to her on Yahoo Messenger, she was very modest about it. I knew somehow that she was going to do well. She just needed to cut down reading books like Harry Porter over and over again (which will be good for her eyesight; every time I saw her the glasses seemed to have thickened more and more.); stop going to shooting range and get sunburnt like a boy, cut down travelling to Bangkok and various other places. Which she did. She said she might take up that offer to do medicine in Russia and I cringed. Don’t la darling, you want to be spinster also ke.

Next is my brother. Who is going to join The Star newspaper to do some proper writing jobby. And I just hope that with everything that’s happening around him, he could keep his girlfriend calm until the day comes that they’ll be joined in a holy matrimony. I know he’s trying to be polite and not jump the queue at getting hitched. What with me taking my own sweet time on my donkey ride up and down the Himalaya and all. To be honest bro, I don’t mind, be rude, be bold, get married, get happy. You deserve the happiness and nobody is going to give you that unless you let yourself be.

Now my little brother, what can I say. I said to him once, “Apa ni Oli, kasi perempuan nombor satu, tak hero laa”. He sulked.

However, he must have taken it as a challenge and bite the bullet, hard. He got first in his class recently and probably going to be the head boy next year. He’s going to break some hearts I am sure, but for now, I must not break my promise. Just why did I say PS2? It could have been shoes, caps, racquet of some sort but no, big sister was feeling generous and dim.

Times like this, I could hear lagu raya, smell of kuah kacang, rendang , filtering the air and flooding every corner of the living room. Could imagine Oli lighting up pelita all around the house. Screaming and shrieking full of excitement with his neighbourhood football and BMX friends. Lots of telling off later because of the mess he made and I think once it rained and he forgot to rescue those kerosene pelita from the downpour. It didn’t matter because those were the sounds of the many Hari Raya I had, at home. Those sounds and smell defined my Hari Raya.

In the morning some more screaming and shouting because everybody wanted to use that bathroom all at once and nobody wanted to be late to the Salleh’s; Tok Ayah. But again it doesn’t matter because later, we asked for forgiveness, we hugged, we forget we ever shouted at each other, or nicked each other’s stuff (borrowed without owing up to having it in possession), broke each other’s stuff, or even sold one’s painting for God knows what reason. (remember you have forgiven him)

At the Salleh’s, it’s like an international conference. Bibik talking Indon, little boys and girls talking in English forgetting Tok Ayah understood none of it. Uncles and Aunties talking ..well just about any language as long as it’s loudly because it’s just hard to be heard with that number of people around. Oh so noisy but so much missed.

I could go on and on, but all I wanted to say is yes, I am missing those merriment and joy. I wish all of you who come across BlueScrubs: SELAMAT HARI RAYA AIDILFITRI, Maafkan segala salah dan silap Naj/Mie/Me’ah/Namia (I don’t know how I got to be called and known by that many fancy names), terkata atau terkasar bahasa. And also eat well, and in moderation. Take those tablets and not too much red meat now you hear. There are doctors doing on call during this festive time, and I am sure they’d be pleased with less work and going home on time.

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