Greetings, stubborn hangers-on! Mel is talking to you, the poor souls missing our tales of supreme relaxation, failed attempts at being outdoorsy, and high adventures at sea. Uh-oh. This means Mel is talking to herself again.
You see, “A family of nerds gets used to living in Omaha,” and “A burned-out neurologist goes back to work and swears a lot” don’t make good blog taglines. So Mel hasn’t been up to writing much. With all of the working and getting used to things, she hasn’t consulted her muse. Oh, and she realized her muse is a gin & tonic. Interesting. Tragic.
So the “getting used to things” has been a bit overwhelming lately. Just as Mel finally got used to driving on a four-lane highway for the first time in two years, she went back to work, where she was assaulted by 1000 “News”. “News” are basically little creatures that one constantly tracks down while cruising, but once one is rooted to land, they become tedious, akin to the creatures in that classic movie Gremlins, where the cute hamstery Widget morphs into an excessively skeletal, auricularly-endowed collection of teeth. Don’t feed it after midnight! For a forty-something woman, Mel is hopefully doing an admirable job of juggling her toothy “News”: new city, new home, new highways, new job, new division of labor at home, new badge, new parking lot, new phone numbers, new addresses, new colleagues, new primary care doctors she trusts, new primary care doctors she doesn’t, new computer system, new IT people, new email addresses, new HR people, new secretaries, new nurses, new schedulers, new clinic managers, new electronic medical record system, new dictation software, new formularies, new work culture, new poems (religious this time) on elevator walls, new state Medicaid rules, and, OF COURSE, new stroke protocols. This also includes “new workflow”, which apparently involves Mel bursting out of her patient’s room 45 minutes into the visit, loudly proclaiming to a cluster of nurses that she has no idea where to send people for physical therapy and why in the world is a building that was torn down last year even an option for the Location field??? Sorry. Doctor problems.
Going from no more than 3 hours a day staring at computers to 8-plus hours a day of electronic visual stimulation consisting of three rows of menus and 20 more clicks per click has plopped Mel on the couch when she gets home, complaining that her eyes are vibrating and that she may have had some sort of absence seizure that day where she just stared straight ahead and thought of nothing for three whole minutes.
Never fear! Mel has tackled this problem with the patience and resilience that kept her working at a really crappy job for five years. She knows that she will shortly adapt to all of this new stuff, because if cruising teaches you one skill, it is that. Soon she will be able to focus less on logistics and more on the neurology patients she adores. Trust me, she’s already met some amazing people!
Here’s some good news: we continue to learn about Omaha with a mixture of bemusement and respect. We have found a Greek restaurant we like called The Greek Islands Restaurant, complete with wall murals of Santorini and loukoumades! We have also found the Alamo, a fabulous restaurant in the Mexican area of town. We still are searching for good barbeque; the last place we went to had non-spicy barbeque sauce ON THE SIDE. Travesty! Also, the picture above is of Allie totally kicking butt at her swim meet. It is blurry because she is so fast!
Greg is currently battling a cold virus, a natural consequence of being around so many people now. But the darn kids have adapted quickly, busy with activities and friends like nothing extraordinary happened to them the last couple of years. They don’t know any better. Kids.
In the meantime, Mel has begun outfitting her office with reminders of her past exploits. Soon she will grace her office with about 40 mounted photos of her trip. She is just waiting for her Shutterfly refund to be processed first. Because their photo quality was terrible. To comfort herself, she spent her birthday money on this fake tropical plant:
And this lamp, which reminds her of the ocean with pancakes in it:
The inspiration, from the Turks & Caicos 2016. You can see it, right?
And she is thinking about buying this collection of ocean pets.
Next task: Naming her shrimp babies! Fun! Here’s one: The Fabulous Jerry. The Burnetts are so good with names!