Sunday, March 26, 2006

Birds of Pray

[Thank you all for birthday wishes, station wagon is indeed the present from my parents, which will fulfill the dream of not asphyxiating in dog hair every time I enter the car but it is still not here bcs I still have not decided which one to buy. Eh. So, Skoda Active, Peugeot 206 Sw or something, or some other make? Car buying is the pits. THE PITS.]

Was assaulted yesterday by a few, birds of prey and others. Took first-Aid for Wild Birds course, very interesting. We have a rehab centre in the middle of the city, in the woods (oh the difference in smell, OH THE DIFFERENCE IN SMELL!) near the university actually. A very poor centre and yet highly resourceful thanks to the commitment of a few, especially Dr. PM, I should think. I entertained dreams of volunteering in the 1st year, and then vet school happened, and then I didn't. Was hoping I'd somehow manage to this year but, wouldn't you know it, virology exam in a fortnight. Also, comp dying several times a week, if i ever write that saga I promise you will die of fright. Also, translation job, words fail me.

So these were the beauties I worked w [images may be copyrighted etc], the top ones alive, the last one very dead, which was fortunate bcs sad little bird had re-invented cachexia (which comes after emaciation) and a) I am not so good at this bandaging thingy yet [but do you know how hard it is to bandage birds' feet? Ends up looking like a cute Vet-Wrapped pompom but dead, sticking-out feet weren't helping much] [LOVE Vet Wrap though, and Vet Lite], and b) sad little bird kept threatening to come apart - literally - in my hands. Now, injections I'm good at, got my intra-ossea (??? IO injections, Diana?) ones right immediately, both the ulnar one and the tibio-tarsic one.

Curvus corone

We got them all from the non-releasable cages, there was a vulture that wanted to make friends - I didn't know this but vultures are highly imprintable and this one was a human-bonding poster child, very much wanting to jump into our laps if given half a chance. In the Grackle enclosure I went in w a colleague, up the slippery slope w the catching net, we were not allowed to bring in wet animals and that was a shame for there was a little, cutey, bald and dripping one that was also majorly imprinted and kept following us, barking very accurately. Hallo, look at me, take me, taaaaake meeeeeee! WOOF WOOF! But we had to break her heart and choose the ones that could actually fly and were not amused. Smallish buggers but their beaks can hurt like the bloody hell.

Buteo buteo
Buteo buteo

Then we moved on to the Common Buzzards, the biggest of all the animals we handled. They were much easier to catch than the grackles. Flying into the wire and becoming disoriented and tired helps every time.

Falco sparvarideo

Finally, the kestrels. Don't be deceived by the pic, they're actuallly quite small. Full of tricks though. There is a pair that has nested near my building. I actually saw the female tring to claim a flower-vase-space-thingy outside the window of a 6th floor (no, come to mine, bird, come to mine!) and the stupid human saw her and opened the window and broomed her away. HOW BLOODY INANE CAN ONE HUMAN BE??? A kestrel pair nesting by my window, that'd be a horror indeed. Stupid ignorant cow. I know they were kestrels bcs I got my bicnoculars and the bird guide and ID-ed them. Then one day, as I was opening the window upon waking up, the male suddenly flew up, belly parallel to the building wall and IN MY FACE, close enough to touch, and we both retreated in shock - it was absolutely one of the beautiful high points of living here.

I worked on these and the grackles in the clinic. Kestrels are a bloody pain, let me tell you. They use their beaks and sharp tallons as a weapon and complain noisily the whole time, even w a covered head. Ours was, to fit in with the theme, a bit on the emaciated side. His feet also were'nt as yellow as they should so I will wildly guess this bird wasn't in the best possible shape. Falcony birds have a claw in their wings, very cute. Anyway, it was my turn to do tyhe clinical examination and my colleague was supposed to be keeping the bird still and harmless within his leather gloves and bcs he was feeling a bit insecure abt it the feet and head kept moving and we spent more time extricating sharp, little strong tallons from my dermis and me replacing latex gloves than examining the beast. [We wear latex gloves bcs 50% of humans carry some Staph. strain in their skin and birds don't and you see how that could end well for the avian contingent.]

Egretta garzetta

Then we moved on to the corpses and my Little Egret was, as mentioned, almost coming apart in our hands. It was funny to see the 2nd year students diving for the needles and syringes (we don't have much of a hands on approach till the 3rd year so they're famished.) If my bird had been alive we'd have had to stick a cork in his beak bcs, have you taken a good look at it? Piercing! This bird was in such poor condition he had barely any muscle left.

We were working outside and it was getting dark and cold and damp and by the time we were finished the birds looked delapidated and so did we, and it was absolutely brilliant and fabulous and I remembered why I must become a vet bcs there's nothing quite like the sight of a released bird flying back into the wild and knowing you helped make it possible, you are one of the few who are not powerless due to ignorance and therefore knew what to do. [This is, incidentally, also why I could never be a nurse or a vet tech. To think I may actually know better than the doctor what should be done bcs I am more experienced in that particular thing or he is incompetent AND YET he is the doctor and his world is law - no no no, MY word will be law and I will be more than happy to be counselled by all but no helplessly standing by while an animal is butchered/maimed/killed for me.]

This post is called Birds of Pray bcs I did remember, see, and every so often I need to. I do have that untimely exam in 2 weeks and feel not in the least like studying viruses right now but every exam brings me closer to being powerful in the proper way. Those are my foundations, they will be the ones who make the difference, and it's perfectly all right if I feel overwhelmed and fed up and tired and frustrated with how bad it all is if I also remember to be appropriately grateful.

And grateful I am.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Dearest child,


Skoda Ambiente


Your parents


And yet.

And yet, I still cannot believe the phone isn't ringing. Again.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Lioness Was Here

And this is why one should never devote it its own category

So, this sleep thingy? Apparently gone. I am torn btwn maybe gratitude and the feeling of ridiculousness that comes with thinking it may be insomnia when it's only 10 past midnight. The gratitude bit -


Look, I cannot write anymore. Seriously, I CANNOT WRITE ANYMORE. I seem to remeber how to, vaguely, but it's mostly gone. As we can see from the dearth of posts. This is exceedingly not good. Writing is like a mirror, and if a Johnny falls in the forest and there's no one to type it, does the Johnny make a bloody sound? I cannot even muster enough energy for a fuck! these days. I know what I want to say, but the words keep not getting in my way. F!



I have just deleted another paragraph bcs, I think I should mention it, this stringing of sentences? Rotten.

Let's try the diagramatic approach, which works so well for school [btw, passed 12 out of 13 exams, which is astonishing in itself and especially so if you consider that we're talking abt me, so thus we learn that all one needs to do well is to have a massive exam overload, someday I'll post the schedule so we can all bond over that and a cuppa, no time to properly study for all of them, or even any of them, become ill right in the middle of it, and presto, you're done. The 13th exam was no great surprise, I wrote it on a Friday, the last exam bfr that had been on the previous day so I decided exam season was officialy over and went to bed w a book and circled random letters under the guise of answers w the usual result - for me, my colleagues often are quite lucky - that I failed it. I actually like that subject - anat. path. - so the thought that I will have to re-take it in Sept isn't vile at all.][And here's another bit of sageness, when no words are to be found on a particular subject, veer off in an absolutely unrelated direction and they will show up, if discombobulated.]

Diagramatic Approach Then

Insomnia = no sleep = loss of sanity = more loss of sanity = why the bloody hell was I born and why the bloody hell can everyone but me fall asleep and hallo, the sofas have started talking to me = maybe I'll just obsessively write posts bcs the amount of things I find to occupy myself with at 3/4/5/6 am is surprisingly small and if I have to read yet another book or two per night I absolutely will barf my brains all over myself ==== insomnia sucks rock majorly but by God is it inspirational, if often void of quality.

Remember how it is when your father borrows your car and returns it having forgotten to fully close a window in the middle of a much needed monsoon and the much needed rain finds its way into your car seats and the very expensive vet book lovingly forgotten on it, so that the next morning you find a partially rain-munched book w the pages all glued together in the most unflattering manner, but of course you cannot tell your father that he has just comdemned several beloved Woofies and Meows to a completely avoidable death bcs he is a darling really and is always buying stock and insurance in your name and trying to give you money and offering to take your car for some industrial hoovering, even though this last one could be construed as an insult were it not for the fact that when your father exits your car he in fact sports whiskers*? Do you? That is exactly how I feel these days.

I have tried replying to comments but when you open your own comment box and all your fingers can come up with is, STILL, Lioness Was Here, while your brain screeches NOOOOO, YOU KNOW WHAT YOU WANT TO SAY, GO ON, JUST GIVE IT ANOTHER TRY, THERE'S A GOOD GIRL, OH BUCK UP FOR FUCK'S SAKE, well, some of the magic is ruined. Also, if you've emailed me, see paragraph above. These are not happy times.

*The Bright Side

Some families have curses, others have cursetesis, which is the anthitesis of a curse, ours materialises in car parking, no matter how busy and impossible the area is we always find parking very near the place we need to go to. I mean, ALWAYS. People scoff in beginning, then they're aggravated as we invariably find the cosmically appointed parking place. A lesson in humility, they should all be this elegant.

The How The Hell Have I Missed This For So Long??
Have fallen hopelessly in love w Grey's Anatomy. And ADORE Christina, Sandra Oh-Oh indeed! What episode do you have now? (Didn't care much for The Constant Gardener though. Or at all. Yeah, yeah, see if I care. My Name Is Earl is great, as is House - as in Dr. House. And Veronica Mars DEFINITELY jumped the shark. A Port-Jackson one, my favourites, but there you go, jumping was done.)

The Unbelievable

I mentioned I wrote a paper for Bioethics abt schechitah, the ritual slaughtering of animals for kosher meat. One day, when I'm in the mood for a) some flaming; and b) revisiting of sad said subject, I will write a post abt it. Now, this was a subject that was divided into two, Bioethics and Deontology, so I wrote that individual essay and did a group presentation - loads of work, loads of fun, we did cartoons, got a miser 15/20 for it bcs blahblahblah, deontology is too serious for there to be any humour in it blahblahbla, anyway, bcs there were two teachers involved w different evaluation methods a Statistical Correction was applied to the grades (this is how you must think of it, capitalised, bcs it is that serious) with the result that some were given 2 extra points and 2 had 2 points taken out of their final grade. Guess now. Oh go on, I'm making it so easy! Yes, well, both works fell into the latter category, so we received a 15/20 when we in fact had a 17, and for my Bioethics essay, the one in which I seriously kicked buttock? I received an 18/20. Believe me, an 18 is the sort of grade that, should you accomplish it in my vet school, leads you to prostrate yourself on the ground and praise the holy scalpel. But. BUT. The teacher that gave us 15 told me, he actually told me this, that it was a shame that things turned out that way, next year it will be done differently but yes, shame, bcs my actual grade was 19.67. I repeat, boldified: 19.67. Do you know what this means?? I could have gotten a 20. Out of 20. In vet school. In a country where teachers so often tell us that a 20 is only for God. Me. Those of you who know abt jugulars feel free to avail yourselves to mine in the most goreish manner.

The Intermission
Cat, it's not enough that you flew down a 6th storey window and nearly killed me with fright, it's not enough that your lost leg has added a never bfr dreamt of
scatological dimension to our lives, or that you wake me up regularly at all hours of the night by jumping three-leggedly onto the bedstand and pawing out every movable object, inluding lamps, oh no, you need to add trying to devour every stupid plastic wrapper that crosses your determined path to your repertoire. Cat, you're a cat. Cats have furballs, it's one of your most endearing qualities. They will come out eventually, as you well know, on the freshly- cleaned rug, ocasionally on the duvet on special occasions. In the meantime, please do your best to not have your bowels surgically re-organised. Also, chewing the phone chord as I type these very words does not much benefit this relationship. Nor does aiming for your owner's testicles in general, though any man who decides to play with a cat while naked clearly has some learning to do, and those dangly bits, well Cat, I can see your point. And it's not like he has only one so he can afford to be generous.

The Seriousness

Have tackled translation job for the first time since exams ended. Or started, that works as well. The sheer dimension of the job has me squealing with joy, positively squealing with joy. Like this: hee-heeeeeeeeeeeeeee! HEE-HEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!

The Maybe Cheating

I've been on holiday from school after a particularly gruesome 7 weeks of non-stop impending dementia and we all know what to do when on holiday from school, BUY BOOKS IN ENGLISH. So I went back a few days ago and got two more. And read them. And thought they were alright, but not quite a bit of alright. So I went back there and exchanged them for two new English books. Loverboy thinks this is cheating. Books were returned in pristine condition. I suffer from a book affliction, my bones ache and turn into dust when I cannot read. it's a medical thing really. I have not read, properly read, in over 7 weeks. I deserve the new books, they're mine. MINE! BOOKS! STAY OUT OF THIS! Cause enough for separation, I shouldn't wonder.

The Irony

Went to bed early. Yet, here I am, performing typing of sorts. Do you have insomnia again?, you migth ask. What, YOU THINK? Classes in 7 hours.

Here, please.


[Hey, wasn't that URLhysterical? Did you notice it? I KNOW!]