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Year View| Summary| Highlights| July 2002 (Month View)

01.07.2002Monday 1 July

I didn’t wake up (because I didn’t go to bed). By about midday I was totally tired and went to sleep for a few hours, walking out to Home Rule to see Joneses in the evening and coming back just on dark. It is overcast with a very, very slight almost-drizzle hanging in the air. Almost a mist, just enough to make it cold and damp. I went to bed just after 1 o’clock.

02.07.2002Tuesday 2 July

Hardly surprisingly, I slept in. Not long after sleeping in, I woke up. Apart from that, I know not what happened, nor when.

03.07.2002Wednesday 3 July

I went to bed at 6:30 AM and caught a few hours of much-needed sleep. Mum came and woke me at 10 o’clock and we drove into town. I went to the police station and renewed my driver’s licence, which would have expired this coming Monday. I went on the ’net at the library for an hour while waiting for Mum to do shopping, and then drove back home again, where I went to sleep. My times are a bit messed up at the moment. Sarah rang in the late evening and talked to Mum for ages while I was online, using up my megabytes. I’m writing this at 5 AM, having spent another night awake.

04.07.2002Thursday 4 July – US Independence Day

I walked over to Joneses in the evening, and took some photos of Shan’s snapped shaft in his motorbike gearbox. I then stayed up until 5 AM as seems is usual these days.

05.07.2002Friday 5 July

There’s nothing very exciting to report today, just another depressing day amongst the quilt of others. I went for a walk in the afternoon and took some photos to make panoramas with. I made a QuickTime VR movie of the back yard, and another of the market place.
Wow, I went to bed nice and early, only a few minutes past midnight!

06.07.2002Saturday 6 July

After the early night last night, I fortunately managed to get up before nine. Silas and Gus turned up around 9:30 after having been down the markets. We went back down to the ever-exciting (sarcasm) markets and then up to Melanie’s (a friend of Silas’) place for a while, where we had a nice semi-Indian style lunch. We then drove up the mountain to Georgina’s and stayed there until it was time for Silas and Gus to head back down to Bloomfield.
  After Silas went home I walked out to Home Rule. I met Jenna riding her motorbike; she told me Shan was down at the resort so I went down there and wandered around for a little while until we walked back up to the homestead, where I stayed for a while until walking back here in the gathering dusk. I went to sleep nice and early, 6:30. It’s a shame it was six thirty in the morning.

07.07.2002Sunday 7 July

I slept in. I also did very little else, or is that, I didn’t do anything else?
  Shan came up in the evening and sleep came shortly after 1 AM.

08.07.2002Monday 8 July

I phoned Quarantine to find out the details of obtaining an import permit. Shan MSN’d me that they were coming up to the shop so I rushed down there and got a lift back out to Home Rule with them. Ricki is also there. I walked back as it was getting dark, and that about sums up today.

09.07.2002Tuesday 9 July

I slept in and awoke late. I didn’t do anything even remotely interesting today.
  Another normal day, but I have vowed to write this journal so I shall continue grimly on *grin*.
Sleep came at 4 AM.

10.07.2002Wednesday 10 July

Awakening at 10 o’clock, and sleeping at 4 AM – not good. I walked out to Home Rule this evening to see Joneses and take a CD over, but no one was home. I took some photos of the Home Rule dams and the hydropower set-up, the dam photos I made into panoramas when I got back home. And... Umm... then I went on chat until 4 AM.

11.07.2002Thursday 11 July

Sarah phoned up, waking me, to say that she wanted a lift back out here. Mum (who had planned to leave for town at 9 o’clock) left at 10:30 instead. I went, checking my mail and spending some time on the Internet at the library. After school Mum went to pick up Sarah but she had decided not to come out until tomorrow now (typical). We arrived back just after 4:30, and I walked straight out to Joneses to take the new songs I’d downloaded out to Shan. I came back just on dusk, getting quite dark in the rainforest. I met Annette running her dog along the Home Rule road in the near dark.

12.07.2002Friday 12 July

After an uneventful day doing all the normal things I do most days, I walked over to Joneses around 5 o’clock. I ended up spending the night there, and we stayed up until the wee hours of the morning, talking and messing about.

13.07.2002Saturday 13 July

Jade, Shan, Ella, Ricki and I all walked up to the small waterfall, then up the creek a bit more to a natural “spa” formed in the creek. Shan and Ella also did some jumps of a reasonably high rock into the water and I took some photos. The water is very cold; I didn’t go for a swim. I left Joneses and walked back here in the late afternoon, after which I didn’t do very much at all – I chatted and “surfed” on the “net” staying up quite late – until 4:40 AM.

14.07.2002Sunday 14 July – National Day, France

I woke up about the same time Vince got back from work – I think nearly lunchtime.
  Apparently 93 motorcycles had gone past this morning, and up Honeyflow drive. It is a really tough ride up there. A few rally cars also went by in the evening. I had a quiet day wandering around doing nothing. Wayne and Reannie came over in the evening and I got a life to their driveway with them when they left, and then walked from there to Joneses, arriving as dusk fell and having to walk straight back again. I try to go for a walk once a day. Sleep befell me sometime after a quarter past three.

15.07.2002Monday 15 July

A few more rally cars went by this morning. I went on chat and had a big argument with “lulu” my best online friend, although I have no idea what the argument was about. Women, bah!

16.07.2002Tuesday 16 July – lulu drinks absinthe

The day dawned bright and early. I have yet to see a day that dawns any other time, come to think of it. I dawned somewhat less early, which I have seen a lot before.
  The day was normal; everything went as it usually does. Except for chat. It was a bit different. I went on the ’net, as I usually do, and went on Austnet, as I usually do, and lulu was there as she usually is. However she had gotten some absinthe, and got very drunk. Make that very drunk. She is normally a modest, polite woman that won’t so much as swear, let alone say anything crude. But today:
  (lulu): kiss my ass thei
  * lulu pulls down her lilpantis....... kiss it thei
  (lulu): kiss that
  (lulu): get to kissing thei, you are way behind
  I think we get the idea...
  It was quite amusing. I just hope she wakes up fine, with nothing more than a hangover. Absinthe isn’t known to be the nicest of beverages:
  “Unfortunately, [absinthe] caused terrible hallucinations, permanent neural damage... and even its own disease, known as absinthism. Absinthe could have effects ranging from euphoria through rage, to stupefaction. Physical effects of nausea, disorientation, hallucination, and seizure were also noted... and neurological disorders, stillbirths, and cases of psychosis, often coupled with abhorrent crimes.
  Not long after lulu had left, hopefully to collapse into bed, and not to perform any abhorrent crimes, Silas rang. He’s thinking of coming up and staying here the night on his way to Cooktown tomorrow.
  Silas rang again, he isn’t coming tonight; he says he’ll be here in the morning early. I guess that means I’ll have to wake up early...
  I think I’m overdoing the ice cream. This is my second bowl today. Not just plain ice cream either; I have vanilla ice cream, with cream poured over the top, then strawberry topping. But it tastes good. Ewww, but I feel bad.
1:30 AM, time to snore.
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17.07.2002Wednesday 17 July – I went to Cooktown with Silas

Silas came past in the morning on his way to Cooktown. I got a lift in with him. We went and visited the Cabrall’s and some others, and then I went down to Ricki’s where I stayed the night. I walked up Grassy Hill around 11 PM and took some photos of Cooktown in the dark, and a few of the moon.

18.07.2002Thursday 18 July

I met Silas at the supermarket. He had some more stuff he needed to do, so I went to the library and went on chat. We drove home around three o’clock. I got a DVD, “Patriot”, which Dad, Mum and I watched.

19.07.2002Friday 19 July

Dad, Mum and I drove into town to drop Dad at the airport on his way to Perth. His flight to Cairns left on time with no problems, and Mum and I went and did some shopping and dropped the DVD back. They are still only available for hire overnight and for $7.
I’m not so sure if I remember this rightly, but I think I phoned Joneses after I got back from Town, and Shan came up and watched the Patriot DVD, which I had ripped onto the hard drive.

20.07.2002Saturday 20 July – I drove to Silas’s place

I drove from here to Bloomfield, leaving at 8:30 AM. The road is quite good now, as good as the road is from here to Cooktown, so it only took a half hour. I met Silas at the Bloomfield wharf. Apparently I was supposed to pick Melanie up from Rossville on my way down, but that wasn’t made clear to me so I didn’t. We went to the Bloomfield shop, and then boated out to Silas’s parent’s place. It was coming on low tide and blowing a bit, so we had to go out to sea a little where there was a swell and the boat got quite wet. We spent the rest of the day at Silas’s place messing about.

21.07.2002Sunday 21 July – I stayed at Silas’s place

I wandered around Silas’s place, not really doing all that much. We took
  some photos and generally just messed about.

22.07.2002Monday 22 July – I drove home from Silas’s place

Silas’s Dad and Mum boated me back to the Bloomfield wharf around 9:30, from where I drove back home. The road is good and it only took a half hour of driving. I took a few photos of the road and a panoramic photo of the Bloomfield wharf. I spent the rest of the evening resting, feeling mildly unwell.

23.07.2002Tuesday 23 July

I walked out to Home Rule to see Joneses. The pipeline for their hydropower was broken and is only half fixed, so Harold is using the generator. I stayed a little late; it was quite dark when I walked back.

24.07.2002Wednesday 24 July

I woke up very tired, and had to lie down to rest again.

25.07.2002Thursday 25 July – Reoccurrence of Pneumothorax

I went for a walk out to Joneses, leaving around 3:30. I was late so I was jogging up the hills and walking down them. When I was about halfway, as I was jogging up a hill, I cleared my throat. It was then that my lung either began to hurt, or possibly I just noticed it for the first time then. It’s not unusual for my lung to hurt; it has done so ever since my first pneumothorax. I wasn’t too worried, waiting for it to get better.
  It didn’t. Shan rode Ella’s motorbike out and I met him when I was about ¾ of the way out to Home Rule. My lung was hurting a fair bit by now, and I was getting pretty worried. I walked slowly, with a few rests, out to Joneses with Shan pushing Ella’s motorbike. I then sat down in Shan’s room for an hour or two, hoping against hope that my lung would get better, but all the time realising that it felt just the same as last time it collapsed. After a while I got Shan to drive me back up to home in Jade’s car. It was in the car, when going over bumps and it still felt just the same as last time, when I remembered how it felt being driven into hospital last time, that I realised I did indeed have yet another collapsed.
  I went on the ’net and sent an email to my teachers and another to Becky, and then Mum drove me into hospital. After a short wait, Dr Michael came and Clay took my x-ray. It is a 10 to 15% pneumothorax. It is basically the same as last time. We had a little chat with the doctor and then drove home again. Silas and Gus are here. I am going to get a lift to Cairns with them and try to see the doctors at the thoracic clinic, and have the pleurodesis operation. Basically a hole cut into my lung, fill the cavity with talc, roll me about so it gets evenly distributed, and suck the air out and sew the hole up. Sounds easy. It has to be done in Townsville apparently.
  I phoned Dad, who is at Lois’s in Perth, and arranged to meet him tomorrow in Cairns as he is flying back. I then went on the ’net and am planning to stay up late and hopefully get so tired that I can actually sleep, as I am scared to sleep. I am pretty scared of the whole ordeal actually. When I had my chest drain fitted for one of my prior collapses, they cut a hole through my ribs and into my lung cavity, without anaesthetic. Painful isn’t the right word. It was agony. It wasn’t too bad the first time because I didn’t realise what was going to happen, but I don’t know how I could put up with that again. Just thinking about it gives me the willies.
  Everything gets more complicated now. This will probably mean I have no hope of studying enough to sit my exams this year, and they can’t be put off. I will have to sit them the same time next year. This means that I may have to stay here another year and not leave for Brisbane or whatever I had planned to do. This means that I might wish to get the satellite Internet installed, which means that I need to decide that before the second of August, however I will probably be in some hospital then. Then there’s my beetabs in quarantine, which needed some phone calls and soon.
  And no doubt there are more things that I haven’t yet thought of.
  I am very touched. Mum phoned Sarah, who cried and told Mum to tell me she loves me very much. Then Becky cried. I am really touched. Everyone is more upset than I am. It is nice to feel cared for and loved.

26.07.2002Friday 26 July – Cairns X-Ray

Silas, Gus and I left here not long after 8 o’clock and drove down the inland road to Cairns. It took the usual 4 hours, except we ran out of fuel near Mareeba, which used up a bit of time. We got to Cairns shortly after 1 o’clock, and I found Dad near the BellView. Silas then dropped me off at the hospital, where I spent an uninteresting few hours doing not much. I saw a few doctors, had an x-ray, and finally ended up getting a definite answer as to what to do. Basically – there is no reason to either keep me in hospital or rush me for a pleurodesis, or to put that another way, I don’t classify as an emergency because I am asymptomatic – I can breath and I haven’t gone blue. So I get put on the waiting list, or as they said “I will write an urgent letter to Townsville” requesting an operation for me. Expected wait is around a month. It could take anywhere from five days to four weeks (or longer with complications) for my pneumothorax to resolve.
  After finishing at the hospital, I rang the BellView and booked a dorm. A short taxi ride and I had payed $22 and a $10 key deposit for a bed in a five-bed dorm at the BellView Guest House on the Esplanade. I then walked, slowly and painfully, the four or so blocks up to Cairns Central and watched Men in Black II. It is not only as silly as its predecessor, it is worse. But I enjoyed it. Silas, Dale and Gus turned up at the cinemas and we had a quick chat before they headed off to the Fox and Furkin or some other watering hole, while I went and watched the Aussie movie “Dirty Deeds”. It was a little too silly to be believable, but otherwise quite good. After the movie, I spent $2 in an Internet terminal in Cairns Central. I used the java chat at which opened a new java window, which when the $2 ran out, still worked. I chatted for a while there until the pain got too much for me, then I walked to the front door of Cairns Central and... it was locked. I had to escape out an emergency exit door. I’m very glad a loud alarm didn’t go off when I opened it. A slow and painful walk back to the BellView and I collapsed (also slow and painfully) into bed – after asking the night watchman to give me a wake up call at 7 AM.

27.07.2002Saturday 27 July – Cairns

I got woken up at 7 o’clock as requested. I managed to get myself out of bed and down to the Internet café with enough time to spend a half hour online, before phoning Silas sometime past 8 o’clock.
  They arranged to meet me outside the BellView at 9:30. I bought a falafel roll, which really filled me up, and then Silas came and picked me up. They have a hired Toyota Ute. We drove up to Eric’s place, then down to a bulk butchery, then to a pet supply store, leaving Cairns some time around one o’clock. A winding drive up the Kuranda range, and through Mareeba brought us to a café in Mount Molloy, which makes the best hamburgers in Australia, officially (some food group did a test or something...) Angie bought a hamburger, Gus and Harry had pies, and Silas had fish and chips. I nibbled a few of his chips. We then drove on to Lakeland roadhouse where we refuelled, and then onto the gravel and home. It sounds easy, but that was probably 400 km’s, and over 40 km’s of gravel, with all the undulations and bumps sending shockwaves of pain through my lung. Maybe that was a bit melodramatic, but some of the bumps sure hurt. I’ve just eaten dinner, sitting here in front of my PC pretending my lung doesn’t hurt. It actually works, when I think of something else the pain is less, and when I remember it, it begins to hurt more again.
  I’m all perplexed and unsure what to do now. This could be the end of my studying for this year... I simply don’t know. I’ve heard it’s possible to get into easy uni courses with a stats test, and then once in, I will be able to change to any course. Once again, I just don’t know, and I don’t know whom to ask. Sigh. Then there is the matter of my Austudy; if I stop studying, I stop getting paid. So I’d have to look for work, but I’m in no health to look for work... I really don’t know what to do. Sometimes I just wish life was easy and simple, or at least that I was rich. I know money doesn’t equate to happiness, but it would sure help. So would a good lung, this pain is getting to me. That’s one good thing about being tired and sleeping. The pain stops, even if it does hurt more to lie down. Sleeping is good for thinking too, I go to bed with a problem, and as often as not, wake up with a solution. I shall ponder over what to do and how.
  There are two types of operation that might be performed on me. The bedside procedure involves the insertion of a chest tube under a local anaesthetic. I have had this one already. A sedative may be also given, either by mouth or through an intravenous catheter, although it wasn’t in my case. The chest tube is usually placed in the lower part of the chest, near your underarm. A dressing is applied to around the chest tube and is taped in place. The fluid or air drains through the chest tube into a collection container called a Pleur-e-vac. This container is usually connected to suction to allow adequate drainage of the fluid.
  Once the fluid or air has been adequately drained through the chest tube, a solution of talc (or other agent, depending on the preference of the surgeon) is inserted. The chest tube is then clamped, to keep the talc solution from draining out immediately. You will be asked to change positions in order for the talc to be well distributed throughout the chest. The chest tube is connected to the Pleur-e-vac and the lung re-inflated. I never received the talc solution when I had this done to me, just the drainage and suction.
  The second option is performed in the operating room, under video-assisted thoracoscopy (VATS) surgery. This requires a general anaesthetic, which is given by an anaesthesiologist. After you are asleep, the thoracic surgeon inserts the thoracoscope through a small incision in your chest. The pleural fluid is removed. If necessary, pleural biopsies can be obtained. A talc solution is then insufflated (blown in) over the lung and pleural surfaces. A chest tube is then inserted and connected to a collection container, which is connected to suction. The chest tube remains in place (with a dressing over it) until the doctor determines the fluid output to be significantly decreased. This chemical pleurodesis is hopefully the option that will be chosen, talc being the most common irritant.
Comment by J.Kuritz – Thursday 7 October 2004, 7:32 AM
  Where can I find more information about the "Pleur-e-vac"? My Father, age 77, has been diagnosed with Ascites and the use of the Pleur-e-vac has been suggested. Currently he is admitted every 16-18 days for removal of 20 liters of fluid. He is considering the Pleur-e-vac but would like more information. Any information you can offer would be greatly appreciated.
  J. Kuritz

28.07.2002Sunday 28 July

After going to bed at a quarter past three last night and sleeping for a solid eight hours, I woke up. Seeing as I can only walk with difficulty and pain, I didn’t do much walking. From the caravan inside, and from inside back out to here a few times about sums up my mobile adventures for today. The rest of the day was spent here in my chair; with the majority of that time spent online chatting to people when anyone was on to talk to (which wasn’t as much as I had hoped – I don’t know why people go on “chat” and then don’t chat) and making a dialog for my new iLog Viewer 2. Not a very exciting day, but then what can I expect when I can’t even walk? I went to bed before half past seven, which is amazingly early for me. Changes of position hurt, and it takes a while for the pain to subside. Lying down is a major change of position, so it is quite painful and takes quite some time before the pain goes away enough for me to sleep.

29.07.2002Monday 29 July

I didn’t get up until nine. A huge thirteen and a half hours sleep. Today was very similar to yesterday. Nothing much bright or exciting tends to happen when I’m confined to my caravan. Shan rode over on his recently fixed motorbike in the evening and stayed talking for a while. I had a shower. I did a bit more work on my silly mIRC script, iLog Viewer version 2.
Then I went to bed. Exciting stuff.

30.07.2002Tuesday 30 July – X-Ray

Dad, Mum and I drove to town. It wasn’t too bumpy and painful, not really as bad as I had been expecting, so that was a thankful surprise. I had an x-ray at the hospital and saw Dr. Michael. Nothing much appears to have changed. I loaned “American Outlaws” on DVD from the video store. Shan came over just after we arrived home and we watched it together, after which I continued resting. Watching a DVD, especially with a friend here, is enough to stress my lung and make it sore.
I got quite breathless and somewhat worried, so went to bed early. I think I may have been hyperventilating.

31.07.2002Wednesday 31 July

Today was the epitome of a "common or garden" type of day. I did nothing all day, and did that slowly.

Year View| Summary| Highlights| July 2002 (Month View)

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