Friday, January 24, 2014

more winter sunsets/ice/moose

 starting my 6 day stretch off.  the warming trend has continued causing our beautiful snow to melt into oblivion and asphalt to become ice rinks.  also the moose are opting to join us in anchorage as our roads/trails and sidewalks are much easier to deal with than postholing through the deep snow.
 this mama and baby calf were dining at the parking structure as i pulled in to go to work the other night.  only had my iphone on me and had to get in to work obviously.  fun to stop and watch them for a few anyway.  never tire of the moose population here in town.
 this is what pretty much every side street in anchorage looks like.  slip sliding away.
 have cleats will walk.  had to make a drive to the vets to pick up  antibiotics for rio.  i arrived home the other day to find she had broken up her cyst thing.  what a lovely way to come home.  blood and cyst bits all over.  i'm pretty tough but i will admit it was grossing me out.  she's scheduled for surgery on monday, i have to have her there at 7 am!!  yikes...i am so not a morning person and i will also have to convince her to come willingly outside sans breakfast.  so not looking forward to it.  hoping this doesn't interfere with the monday walk.  i have attempted many ways of dressing this mess to keep it from draining all over and it's just too far back on her neck but not far enough back on her neck.  the mess continues!!!  to boot i came home this morning and my sweet blossom had gotten poop trapped in her fur and that needed to be cleaned out....needless to say the dogs were running for the hills in fear of my vicious cleaning!!  it's those little moments in life that have you wondering " why do i have these pets?".
 of course, i know i adore the critters and they give me far more than i ever give them.  i shall put up with these gross little messes and continue to be a happy dog person.
 rio opted out of the run to the vets yesterday so it was just blossom and i.  after the vets i took her to the homestead trailhead, we took a walk out there and caught the side trail that leads to rovers/moose meadow trails over on the campbell airstrip side. it was grey out but we had a lovely walk.  ran into a few co-workers.  one was out jogging and another was skate skiing.  that sure looks easy and fun, at least until you are in the boots and ski's yourself attempting it.  i can get a good skate ski going for 20-30 strokes and then i lose my rhythm.
 blossom happy to be out and about.
 this loaded sideways, but as i was walking i noticed a lone mosquito flying around me.  i think there are over 20 breeds of mosquitos in alaska and there are a few that survive the winter months...or it could be with this warm spell this guy got confused.  bears will also wake up and wander about during warm spells.  no sightings for me thankfully.  my bear fence has arrived.  will have to practice setting it up in my yard before actually taking it camping. hopefully, i don't shock myself too much.
 my past 3 nights were in the adult icu.  kept myself pretty busy those nights.  that whole unit is some kind of crazy right now!!  the place is packed!!
 i'm always willing to stop and make some sort of silliness happen along the trail route.
 the one day i got no walk in as i was dealing with rio and her open wound.
 lots of moose tracks out there.  ran into a few newbies out there today.  new to anchorage that is.  gave some moose advice out.
 was looking up a few other trails to check out.  may wander that ruth arcand park or head out to ship creek and see what that trail is like.  snow is crap i may as well explore a bit.  hatchers is always possible as well.  i love gold mint trail.  not sure of the condition though.  may be worth a drive out.
 mystery be explained later.  looks a bit like the aurora borealis...what say you?
 this is from today.  i slept really well and it was after 2 when i woke up so i just headed over to gasline to powerline to tank with both dogs.
 wasn't sure how the melt would impact some parts.  it was a wee bit punchy snow and some slushy bits, but overall quite walkable.  below is overflow, ice jams up water, eventually the pressure builds and the water floods then re-freezes.
 you will see this on many trees about now.  moose subsist on the bark of trees...i'm sure it's quite tasty. they are ruminants.  must have to eat a lot of bark to get the calories they need
 the parking lot is all ice.
 lovely reflective surface though.
 after my walk at North Bivouac i headed to Basher trails, below is the view behind me as i drove home.  nice sunset.  i could have stayed there a bit longer i suppose, but things to do. the wind had picked up a bit up there as well.
 cute little bird on todays walk.  not sure what it is, but it had a lovely and sweet call.
 young moose chilling on powerline.  it was a ways off.  not too concerned with us and i wasn't concerned about this guy either.  the few moose i saw today were behind quite a bit of brush so no great photo's...sorry. i wasn't going to post hole to get a photo of a moose.
 i always love the sunset through the winter branches.
 this moose was down a small hill but very close to the trail at Basher...also through a lot of twigs and branches.  ears show she is aware of us, but never seemed too concerned either.
 the rest are sunset shots  from Basher.  mt redoubt was visible all day.  this is a local volcano.  when she blows we do get ash here in anchorage from it.  no smoke seen today
 did look pretty in the light i thought though.
 rio is snoring behind me and running.  there is a cute dog commercial where they show the dogs dream and then back to the dog asleep in the couch doing that running thing dogs do when they dream..or i presume they are dreaming.  not sure how one would actually prove dogs dream or have any idea what dogs dream about, it is fun to guess though.
 i like to think they are happy dreams and there are times my dogs wag in their dreams as well so i'm sure that is a sign of happy dogs.  above is anchorage with  Sleeping Lady in the background
 not the best shot, but that is the top of Denali mountain peeking out as seen from Basher trails.
 more anchorage
 views looking out towards cook inlet i guess.
 brush and trees with the sunset
 all in all a really pretty day.  always happy to wake up in time to enjoy it.
 back to redoubt.
 it is funny at work to me.  i am often surrounded by young, newer icu nurses.  when did i become the elder, seasoned icu nurse.  they come to me with questions/concerns...
 i have been doing this for many years i guess now. often you just work on your gut, your instincts.  i can't pass that knowledge along.  i don't even always know how i'm doing it all so smoothly, you just do.  like anything i guess, over time it just becomes second nature to you.  working all those drips is a dance. you find your rhythm and you work your icu magic.  i remember a parent asking me what numbers i was aiming for when titrating all the drips on their kid.  i remember looking at him and saying i didn't know yet, but i would know when i got there. everyone is a little different as is every situation.  a patient can have like 6-15 different medications infusing and you work them all.  i do always joke that i am basically lazy so i will make my patient stable so that i don't have to work too hard.
 i do the best i can anyway.  some patients take a lot of work to get to that stable place and one event can make them unstable all over again.  in the end, it's the icu, some patients will never be stable.  in the icu you get better or you die.  those are your options.  in the other units you have an extra option.  they get better, they die or you get to send them to the icu.  we can't send them anywhere else.
 denali in the distance..
 you learn to accept death more, working in the icu.  you see it a lot.  it's still a challenge.  can't say as you get totally used to being around death.  you just begin to understand that it is what it is, we are born, we live our lives and then we die.  how that happens is anyones guess.  why some live long and healthy lives while others seem tortured with one ailment after another and yet another simply suddenly gets sick and dies.  i've seen death in all ages and in all ways.  each one is unique.  there are many deaths that i remember vividly, good and bad reasons.
 there are also many cases where death seemed inevitable and then recovery happened.  if it's your time, it's your time, if not then not.  i still think personally we will be judged somewhat by how we handle these lives in the time of death.  are we selfish? are we respectful?  i also think our bodies are a gift and some care should be taken. it's just sad to watch people who seem bent on destroying the bodies they have.  so many years wasted in destructive habits.  not going to say i'm perfect, but the stuff i see.

 redoubt above, iliamna below...i think below way to the left you can see what is possibly augustine, another volcano.

enough pictures and ramblings for one day.  just watched "Brave".  may turn in early in hopes of getting a good start on tomorrow.

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