Thursday, May 17, 2007

Cascade Chaperone

A couple pictures taken during my afternoon of work as a chaperone on a 2nd grade field-trip.

Dr. Bedell has been as enthuiastic about teaching me how to successfully diagnose and manuveer through a Class 3 rapid as he has with teaching me how to sew up lacerations and perform a thorough work-up of a patient presenting with atypical chest pain. Bedell has the charm and knowledge of a rafting guide and the modesty and experience of a true outdoorsmen, all qualities which make him this great doc to work with, and for his patients. More than just concered with teaching me medicine, Bedell extends his obligations to introducing me to new life experiences. On the river and on the trails, he'll make up case scenairos of potential wilderness medical situations, even if only seemingly to disrupt the silence and monotony of a long hike. We'll hit up topics including high altitude sickness, contact dermatitis, giardia illness, tick and animal bites, traumatic c-spine and bone fractures, and lightining strikes-- real life stuff that interests me, but not necessarily what you get from reading textbooks or attending class. If Bedell thinks that there is more to gain from hiking to the summit of a local mountain than there is from a slow day spent in the clinic, he'll make sure that I've brought along snowshoes so that he can send me packing. The same is true for a day spent as a chaperone for an elementary school hike around the scenic Lake Cascade. Who'd have ever though I'd be riding in a boisterous yellow school bus packed full of second graders in the middle of Idaho? My boss' daughter had a school fieldtrip to Crown Point, and I was offered the opportunity to attend as a chaperone. Yes, there are certainly worse things in life than spending an afternoon under the sun, taking a pleasant stroll along a scenic lakeside trail with funny little school children.