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Sat. March 15 to Friday March 22- Van Nuys CA

Saturday- Bob had a pretty miserable night. His shoulder was bothering him from working on the tire yesterday, he had indigestion from the calamari for dinner last evening and his A-fib kicked in. So he was up most of the night. He wanted to go grocery shopping with me, so off we went.  He was very tired and had trouble concentrating. He also became hypoglycemic, so I got some sugar into him. We returned to the motor home, put away the groceries and we took a nap.

At around 1 PM, we left and went to Buca di Beppo for lunch in Encino. This is the first time we have been to Encino, which is just on the other side of the 101 from where we are staying. Lunch was good, but it ticked us off that we had to pay $3 for parking, self park or valet.

From there we went to Total Wine, for some beer. Bob wanted to stock up for Arizona, since we will be staying in Casa Grande, and there are not a lot of stores in Casa Grande.

He ran out of steam, so we headed back home, but first we stopped at Cold Stone for some ice cream. I had a gift certificate that we wanted to use up; it was half  used, so with the high California tax, we ended up paying 77 cents. Not bad when you consider how expensive Cold Stone is!

We returned home and took another nap! I had been very tired due to the schedule this past week, one day off, work 3, one day off, work 5. By Friday afternoon I was making mistakes and my typing was awful. Bob needed to rest, due to the A-fib. Fortunately, when we woke up, the A-fib episode had ended. Unfortunately, the A-fib seems to be occurring every 6-9  days.  When he has it the episodes last a long time; this time was 15 hours.

We ate left overs for dinner and watched Stolen with Nicholas Cage. It was okay.

Sunday- We did our usual bill paying and budget update. Bob was having a problem with his phone, so he spent some time with Verizon trying to get it working correctly. It was just a wrongly clicked box in the software.

Our plan had been to go to Venice Beach/Santa Monica to ride our bikes again, but the LA Marathon is today. They run 26.2 miles from Dodger Stadium to the Santa Monica Pier, right through Beverly Hills and Hollywood, all the way down Santa Monica Blvd. to the pier. The roads we would be using are all closed.

Our second choice was to return to Ventura and ride on the beach there, but the weather is not cooperating. It is nice and sunny in Van Nuys, but Ventura is cold, windy and cloudy. Just about 40 minutes to the north. The weather difference has something to do with the curve of the bay.

So we decided on the Hansen Dam in Burbank. We easily found the dam, it is just off the 110 freeway. We found a place to park and started on the bike trail. There was a doozy of a hill to get to the top of the dam. We both made it, but it was the first time that I have ever used the 1/1 setting on my bike. When we reached the top, there was a parking lot.  We wished we had known about that sooner! 

The ride across the dam was billed as having a wonderful view of the San Fernando Valley. Well, it would have if the smog had not been so bad. We could not see very far into the valley. Oh well. It was a nice ride of almost 5 miles total.


View from atop Hansen Dam -Burbank

We expected a lake behind the dam, but there was only a trickle of water. and a golf course. Golf course

People were climbing down the rocks on the side of the dam. That looked really stupid to us, as it would be easy to fall and really injure yourself.

Horseback riders, below the dam.

There were horseback riding trails all around the park. 

All of the parks around here are very busy. One reason is that a lot of people live in apartments. There are a lot of parties in the parks. People rent the bouncy tents for the kids and have parties. According to Rosa, who works at West Hills, the women throw the parties at the parks because there is no alcohol allowed and the men can’t get drunk there. Interesting…

We retuned home and ate dinner. Since it was St. Patrick’s Day, we had put corned beef and cabbage into the crock pot. It came out very tender! We will definitely do that again, only with less potatoes and carrots, as we filled the crock pot to the brim.

Monday-  back to work again. I was still doing the first reviews for the private insurance again today. Bob finally spoke with the gal at  Dometic, again. She checked the numbers on the door handle part, and they were the correct ones. They just had to be installed differently, so she instructed Bob on how to do that. They are softer than the previous ones, so we are hoping that they work correctly.

Bob had been working on getting the motor home ready to leave doing a lot of miscellaneous chores. He also cleaned the bugs off the front of the motor home.

Bob had stopped at the Red Box and they already had Zero Dark Thirty, so he picked that up. It was okay, but not as good as Argo.

Tuesday- I was typing along and Valerie called me to ask if I would take the IDT book down to Laura our boss. (IDT is Interdisciplinary Team ). Her rounds were at 9:30 and she did not feel well. So I went over to the office and picked it up. She looked terrible. So I went to the ICU to give Laura the book, as the team was waiting for Valerie to start rounds.

I whispered to Laura that Val was sick and looked pretty awful. I went back up in the elevator, and turned left out the doors to see Jackie and Jessica walking./ and half carrying Val down the hall towards me. I called out, are you headed for the ER, and they said no, to Employee Health. I was in front of the door at this point, and walked in to interrupt a small meeting that was going on.  The look on the folks face was priceless. They were panicky. The employee health nurse had called in sick, and none of them were nurses. They were just using the office.

We got Val sitting down and someone found a blood pressure cuff. Her BP was high. Meanwhile, Jessica got the orientation nurse, and she and I wheeled Val to the ER. Since it was an employee, and we were entering through the back, there was no waiting! We whipped her into a bed and the doc’s immediately showed up while we were placing the EKG leads.

I asked her what needed to be done, and returned to take up her assignment. About an hour later, Laura showed up to ask me to take Val’s assignment. She found me on the phone with one of the catastrophic case managers, and rapidly figured out I already had taken over. 

I have never done Val’s assignment, which is the upper ICU numbers,  Labor, NICU, Burn floor and Burn ICU. In the past, at PG, I had assisted with the NICU, so that was no big deal. I have also done ICU, so again not an issue.I had to quickly learn Labor, which wasn’t too difficult.  WH has the internationally known Grossman Burn Center. I have never done burns. So it was a quick learn on the go situation.

First, there was a 10:30 family,insurance CM and social worker meeting. I hunted down our SW, Lisa and gave that to her. Then I started trying to figure out what I needed to do. For the reviews, I just copied Val’s previous reviews, making the necessary changes. I finished my assignment, and also completed hers. It was a very busy day.  Add that to my resume!  To night we watched season three, disc one of Big Love.

Wednesday-  I had Val’s assignment again. The Catastrophic CM that I had been speaking to yesterday was supposed to visit at 11:30, we had a staff meeting at 11:30 also. Fortunately, the CM called and said that she would arrive at 2PM. That is when I had the IDT rounds for burn. I went to the rounds, and my phone did not ring to let me know she had arrived, so Laura took the CM. The rounds were different than the regular IDT, as they were not run by the CM, but by the Burn PA. Fine by me, since I did not know what I was doing anyway!

I had to get more of Val’s work done and ready for Thursday IDT on her ICU patients.

We watched season three, disc 2 and part of 3 of Big Love.

Thursday- Val was out again. Her BP is down, but the high BP may have set off a migraine. Anyway, she still has a bad headache. I had to run IDT for the ICU. I can honestly say, I did a pretty lousy job at that, since I did not know what I was doing! We muddled through. So it was another busy day.  We watched season  three, disc 4 and part of disc 1 of season 4 of Big Love. Blockbuster has changed their rental policy. The 99 cent DVD’s are now good for 5 nights, at 99 cents. So we had picked up as many as we though we would watch in 5 days.

Friday-  Val stopped by, as she had to have a brain scan done. The doc cannot figure out why she still has the bad headache. Hopefully she will be back next week. At least I had figured out the IDT and did a good job at that today. ( IDT is Tues, Thurs, Fri)

The Catastrophic CM arrived again today. I would not want her job. She works for the insurance company, this is workman’s comp. Workman’s Comp CM is completely different from what I have done both in the hospital and with my own company, case managing in the field.  The Burn ICU patient’s are kept sedated, on ventilators,  but the CM has to do a lot of work with the families. She not only does these burns, but other catastrophic injuries. 

I have had to learn a lot about burns, very quickly. Burn patients have different treatments, surgeries are staged and done every few days, and the patients are placed in hyperbaric chambers several times a day to minimize the swelling and injury. They also have hydrotherapy treatments.  Burn has its own set of terminology and abbreviations, which I had to learn on the go.

Bob picked me up after work and we went to Red Lobster for dinner, since we had a coupon for $4 off. Dinner was good.  We watched the second DVD of season 4 of Big Love.

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