Tuesday, June 15, 2004

a long way from my next vacation

Post-call now from my first day back on the wards. The pedometer read at the end of the day is 17,287 steps, or just about 8 miles. (I have a small stride.) I'm kind of disappointed--I thought it would be more. I guess that is a lot of running back and forth, though, when you consider that the entire distance traversed was almost entirely inside one building. 8 miles is about 160 city blocks.

Joe laughs at me, by the way, because I completely lack the ability to have any sense of distance without the context of Manhattan geography. (4 blocks = 1 avenue = 1/5th of a mile, roughly, though this depends on the neighborhood.) But it's the only unit of distance--aside from, you know, inches and feet--that has any real-life applicability for me. When people talk about massive things and say, "it was as wide as three football fields!" I have no clue how big the thing actually is. I think I've only been in a football field once, when I was visiting U. Penn on a college scouting trip. (As an aside, I found it very strange that U. Penn's mascot was "The Quaker," because aren't mascots supposed to be tough and aggressive? "The Fighting Quakers! They'll kick your ass in quilt-making!" Oh well, what do I know, I think my college mascot was a color.)

Anyway, I decided I actually don't mind being on call my first day back, because at least now, I know my team pretty well. Still, the turnover on the wards is so high that it'll just be a whole new crop of kids to learn about when I get back tomorrow. I'm like Sisyphus over here. There are stories to tell, of course, but they'll have to wait until after I get some sleep. I'm beat.

Currently reading: The New Yorker fiction double issue. Mmmm, fictional.

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