Sunday, December 01, 2002

Watty's been to the L&D:

Which is to say, the Luton and Dunstable Hospital. Although I don't generally recommend visiting Accident & Emergency on a Saturday night, I have to say we were seen quickly and efficiently, and it was early enough for there not to be any unpleasant scenes...
I'd better explain. Yesterday, we went to visit our friends Helen and Ross and their three children. There was much playing and fun, and the children had a good time, too. We had a long walk/scooter/cycle/pushchair ride round the neighbouing cemetery, and a marvellous dinner. And then, when it came time to get organised to go home, our boys suddenly find very important things they have to do now. In Cameron's case, this involves frantic bouncing on the indoor trampoline - there may even have been an element of showing off. Suddenly, from the kitchen, I hear a thud followed immediately by an "I've really hurt myself" kind of crying. I rush through and pick him up. Nothing is immediately apparent, but I can see blood from somewhere. Then he opens his mouth. It's full, literally full, of blood. We manage to work out that he's come down on the handle of the trampoline chin first, and that he's therefore bitten into his tongue. Everyone winces in sympathy, Cameron is still inconsolable. We manage to get some water into his mouth, so that we can see what the damage is, and it looks bad enough for the decision to take him to A&E to be an easy one. Conor is persuaded that staying behind will be fun (which it is), and two jittery parents and one sore boy pile into the car, and head for the hospital.

And, considering all that you hear about the state of the UK hospital service, it's relatively smooth and easy - not counting the charge to park our car, of course. The A&E is virtually deserted, thankfully, and we'r processed quickly. We wait for no more than 10 minutes to see a triage nurse (No matter how long I live, I will never be able to hear the word triage without thinking of M*A*S*H); we wre then allowed to wait in the children's waiting room, where there are brightly coloured plastic objects to take our minds off things, and we're ushered through very quickly afterwards. Cameron hasn't bitten all the way through - in fact he hasn't damaged the underside at all, and aside from a warning against salty food (just think about that for a minute...) we are free to go. All over in under 45 minutes.
So, hats off to the L&D, and if I thought there was any point, a warning to Cameron to be a bit more careful in future.... I'll tell you about the cemetery, if I get time later.

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