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Repatriation Day

I woke up at 4:40am.  Got ready, and was waiting for the flight nurse (Nurse Jane) at 5:30am.  Ma Yan went onto the balcony, and looked for the car.  It was in front of building B.  The Diamond Court security turned up, and a few seconds later Nurse Jane called to confirm the room number.  She was at A1307, so I told her to come to A1105.  She arrived, and then gave me a quick check over of blood pressure, O2 saturation, heart rate.  All were normal.  She then gave me an injection to help prevent DVT whilst on the plane.  I asked her to tell me when she was going to do it, but she had already jabbed me and finished!

We then set off for the airport.  Once there, Nurse Jane went and checked in, and then came back to the car with a wheelchair and a wheelman.  We then went back to the check-in desk, and then went to go through security.  Ma Yan could not go any further, so we said goodbye there.  She was going to go back to her apartment straight from the airport.  No problems through security, and no problems through immigration either. We then went to the Virgin Lounge, which is a shared lounge with various other airlines. It is not fantastic, but it keeps you away from the riff-raff. I read some more, and Nurse Jane filled in forms and made out reports.

At 8:20am, the wheelman returned, and wheeled me to the toilet for my pre-flight p*ss. We made our way to the gate, and I was the first one there. I had to wait a few minutes for them to finish getting the cabin ready, and then I was on. They had a very small wheelchair on the aircraft that fitted (only just) down the aisles. I got to my seat and then zimmered a bit to sit down. I got settled, and prepared for the flight. About 10 minutes before we were due to depart, Richard Branson got the plane! He sat in Upper Class (of course) and chatted with the crew a bit. I then fell asleep, and was woken up when we took off. I then fell asleep again, and woke up when the seatbelt sign was turned off. I put my iPod on, and went to sleep again. I woke up every 2-3 hours, and when I did, Nurse Jane leapt into action and took my pulse and O2 saturation. Always between 75-80 and 96-98%. I missed all of the food, and we landed without drama at Heathrow. Richard Branson got on the intercom and said that the flight we had been on was the 10th Anniversary of flights to Shanghai by Virgin. We all gave the cabin crew a round of applause.

I was the last one off the plane, with the tiny wheelchair to get me out. I was taken through a separate passport check with only one person in front of me. Then we collected my case, and went out to the arrivals hall. We could not see the ambulance crew, so Nurse Jane wandered around and called to see where they were. A guy wearing an ambulance uniform came over to me and asked if I was going to Warwick, and once I confirmed that, Nurse Jane appeared and we went to the ambulance. I was asked if I wanted to lie on the stretcher, or sit in one of the seats. I chose the seat, as 2 ½ hours on a stretcher would not have been fun. The driver then asked Nurse Jane to sign a form that would allow them to use the lights and siren to ease the traffic. She signed that, and off we went.

The journey was very rapid. They used the lights and siren when the traffic was bad, and occasionally were on the hard shoulder. In the end, from Heathrow Terminal 3 to Warwick Hospital A&E was done in 1 hour and 15 minutes. Nurse Jane handed over to the staff nurse, and Mum arrived. So then it was just a case of waiting. We got moved to an examination room, and I was taken for x-rays. The Chief Radiologist did not want me to have x-rays done, so she tore up the request and I went back to the examination room. A doctor then arrived, and said I needed the x-rays. Eventually, I had 5 x-rays done, and the doctor said that they looked the same as the ones I had brought from Shanghai. Pretty much what I thought. He said that I was ok to go, so I asked for crutches. After lingering around in the doorway on the zimmer for a while, a nurse asked me my height, and then went off again. A few minutes later, she came back with a pair of crutches. One was missing the head, so she had to go off again and get a replacement. She then sized up the crutches, and gave me a card with details of how to use them. Then we were free to go. I had arrived at the hospital at 5:00pm, and we left at 9:00pm.

I sticked my way to the car, and after Mum paid the parking fee, we set off for home. I nearly fell outside the house as it was raining now, and one of the steps had some slime on it. I managed to prevent a return journey to the hospital using my cat like reflexes… Once inside, I sat down and gave out Dad and Gina’s presents. Danny arrived after being out since 12:30pm on the razzle dazzle, and was very much out of it. I had some scrambled egg with cheese and ham, and then went to bed. I had been on the go (albeit with 11 hours restless sleep on the plane) for 24 hours. I used the preferred technique for getting up stairs from the how to use crutches card. Basically on my arse. I got ready for bed, and when I got into bed, I fell asleep quite quickly.

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  1. Gina
    June 6th, 2009 at 09:57 | #1

    Plenty of “bumming” around on your @rse to come then Nik!

  2. Kevin (Wingit)
    June 6th, 2009 at 10:39 | #2

    Welcome back Killban

  3. Nige
    June 6th, 2009 at 12:02 | #3

    Can’t believe you got Dick in upper class?

  4. Bob Benjamin
    June 8th, 2009 at 11:03 | #4

    Glad to hear that you are back in the UK. Really hope you have a speedy recovery so that you can get back out to shanghai. Don’t know what I will do on my next visit if you are not there because I will need a chaparon just in case I get caught short again hee hee

    Cheers Mate.

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