Wednesday, May 6, 2009

This is why I do not hunt!

or fish, or camp or anything remotely like fishing, hunting or camping!

My husband went out to the Duck Club to finish up some clean up and spray some weeds yesterday. He is not working right now so he has all this spare time to do whatever he wants. I support that, he has worked hard for 40 years. He came by the office to show me this little rattle type thing in a bag. I said where was the snake? He said right by me!!! Yuck. Snakes creep me out, and for the records so do bugs and wiggly teeth. He whipped out his 357 Magnum and ended its existence. Too close for my comfort. It reminded me of a story few know.

I have worked for Tommy Lee for 18 years. During the early years I also worked at the hospital and every weekend I was a flight nurse working rescue from a helicopter. I loved doing it, however both my husband and Tommy were not too thrilled. However work was slow for Richard and that time and we were just starting up the solo practice so I had to work extra to support my family. One night I had just walked into the hanger for the weekends work and we got a call to rescue a park ranger that had wrecked his motorcycle. We took off and once we arrived on scene realized he was down in a canyon and would require China Lake navel to come extract him as it would be getting dark and the canyons prevented us from getting close enough. Because China lake would take a while, The sheriff's helicopter was smaller and would drop my partner Lisa in a clearing that was a mile or so above where the ranger was. She would hike to him and stabilized him while China Lake was in route. I was to be dropped of second to assist her as we could not fit together with the pilot in the Sheriffs helicopter. China Lake would be there in about 40 mins. Well as the pilot drops be off he hands me a flashlight and a jacket. I said what are these for I will only be here an hour. He said, you never know. So as I hike down the mountain (wondering where the hell I was the entire time) I catch up with Lisa. A mile down we find the ranger, hanging off a cliff. We had to go up the trail a 1/4 mile and climb down a ledge of rocks to get to him. I know you must be laughing now, me with my manicured nails and aversion to dirt climbing down the side of a mountain. But we do what we have do. As Lisa and I were climbing down, she slips and I grab her by her backpack. Unfortunately our radio fell into the river. Great I say. Right before we lost the radio we found out that China Lake aborted and was not coming till morning when it was light. It was dusk right now. So to make the drama short, we climbed across the rock ledge. Pulled his 375 lbs up to a ledge, treated his fractured femur and punctured lung in the dark with what equipment and meds I had and sat crouched all night freezing waiting for china Lake.

To top it off, we were suppose to get winched up with the patient, but instead they winched him up and took off so we had to HIKE out. Okay at that point I was up for 24 hours, tired, dirty, hungry and just sat in the middle of the trail hoping our pilot would fly by and pick us up. No such luck. We got back finally and looked like we had been rolling around in the dirt. Richard came by to bring me food and a clean flight suit. I looked at him and said boy I did not know there are birds that fly above you at night. He started laughing and said those were not birds they were bats silly. I said ugh. Plus we were both covered with bug bites all over. Richard really started laughing and said, I bed all the snakes in the rocks loved your warm body all night! I said okay that's it, no more hiking or camping for me! Just thinking about it gives me the willys. In the end a month later I was convinced by both the men in my life to stop flying. While I miss it from time to time, I can just imagine doing that now with my jacked up shoulder, crunching knees and hurt hand. I can laugh at it now. Its funny what triggers a memory. Hopefully I will not have to relive this one. It also shows me while I am annoyed that Richard has and carries all this stuff when we go somewhere, its all for a reason. He had the gun today for this purpose to kill any rattlesnakes he comes across. He is better prepared than any boyscout i know. You need something, he has it. Next time I will tell him where I am going, so I know atleast he will come save me.!!


candra said...

I love not camping. I'm coming to see you today;)

Nancy said...

I will join you at the Hilton anyday! That's the best kind of camping! And you have the best kind of hubby - ready for any kinda action.