Thoughts on Denver so far:
It's a lot colder than Texas. It snowed here on Wednesday, and I was so unprepared for it. I walked outside in my sanuks and was like, oh, well, okay. Six inches of snow. Guess I should go put some boots on. But everything was still packed in my car and I couldn't get to my shoes, so instead I just went back into my hotel room and watched a terrible movie.
It warms up really quickly here. About four hours after I was unprepared for snow and admitted defeat, I went back outside and all the snow was melted. Seriously, six inches just gone. And it was almost warm enough for a tee shirt. I've been told that's what to expect in the springtime here.
The hospital is small. There's a 28 bed ER, but it feels waaaay smaller than that. They saw 97 patients the other day and were like "good job on a crazy day, folks!" From what I'm used to, that's nothing.
But they have a terrible, terrible layout and a pretty bad triage & communication system so it actually somehow feels busier than it is. There's two little sections of three beds each that you have to walk THROUGH the nursing station to get to. So when XR comes to get that patient, they push the stretcher right between all the residents and clerks and extra chairs. It's the most ridiculous layout I've ever seen. And instead of having one big supply room, they have four small ones. FOUR. Why? Because a kindergartner designed this place. There are three pyxis machines, and each one has different meds. Because of course. But the worst part? Instead of carrying phones that ring and the patient can be aware that you're talking to someone else, we all wear these headsets that make me feel like I'm working at McDonald's. So when someone starts talking, I have to divert half my attention to the earpiece while still trying to talk to patients or staff. And it's either too quiet or blasting my eardrum. No happy medium. If I can get away with stealing one of these headsets at the end of my contract, I'm going to light it on fire in the parking lot.
The people are pretty nice. They're polite and helpful, but seem distant and not all that willing to take in a stranger. I don't see myself getting to know a lot of these people, at least not anytime soon. There's also the downside of this being a smaller ER so I don't have a lot of staff to meet anyway. I'm hopeful this could change - I do seem to remember hating my Texas assignment for the first month, and then loving it. There is one coworker who is friends with a good friend from Texas, so I'm hoping I can maybe get in with them.
Denver itself is really nice though. I have a friend who lives in Boulder, and he was in town today so I met up with him and got the chance to walk around downtown a bit. There are a ton of places to eat and drink, and I'm optimistic about the exploring I'm going to do. I also looked up an observatory near where I live, and they have public open house nights. And mountains! I can see them from my bedroom window. My god they're gorgeous. I missed them so much. Actually, I missed any sort of topography. It's so different from flat brown Texas, and I love it.
That being said, I miss Texas. Mostly I miss the people there, specifically one certain person who I have yet to come up with a catchy nickname for on this blog. But he's there, and so are friends, and I am super glad I came to Denver in the name of adventure but I'm looking forward to going back in a couple of months.
I'll have some fun stories from the ER soon, because damn have there been such ridiculous things already. For reals. Consider this my cliffhanger ending!