Musings of a Dinosaur

A Family Doctor in solo private practice; I may be going the way of the dinosaur, but I'm not dead yet.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

An Oasis in Time

Due to the ice storm here in the northeast, I'm taking a Snow Day.

School was canceled for my kid, and I decided it was the better part of valor not to risk life and limb (not to mention fenders and side panels) trying to get in to the office just to be there to receive a return call from a medical director who received word that I was now an (illegal) boutique practice ("charging a sliding scale from $20 to $100"), a ridiculous misinterpretation of the letter I sent out regarding my new Administrative Fee. But that headache will still be there tomorrow.

So here I sit: laptop charged up (because the kid has commandeered the main computer) with the manuscript of my latest work in progress open; hours of long-canceled, beloved series showing on cable (JAG; Judging Amy; all the Star Treks -- original, DS9, TNG and Voyager); heater at my feet and surrounded by cats and dog on the comfy couch; and a book (The Kite Runner) to savor during commercials (when I'm not writing.) Thanks to the marvels of technology, I remotely forwarded the office phone to my home. Other than having answered calls from my spouse twice with the "office" greeting, it's fine. The phone has rung less than a dozen times, and virtually all calls were to cancel appointments today.

It's a lovely thing, this oasis in time. Due to circumstances entirely beyond my control, I have been granted a day off.

My son took the opportunity to talk with me. Really talk. "Important conversations" (his words.) About his summer job: he's been invited to apply as a camp counselor for four weeks. Should he do it, or should he get a job around home and hang with his friends for his last summer before college? What did I think? What did *I* think? It's entirely up to him. But he really wanted my opinion. So I gave it to him, and was rewarded with the comment, "That's probably one of the more useful conversations we've ever had."

This has been an intense year for him. Once in a while, he's asked me for a "mental health" day off of school. He works hard, is very conscientious, and has superb grades, so I have no problem with it.

But today is a mental health day for me. It feels good.


At Wed Feb 14, 08:20:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very cool--and now it's time for you to put your feet up and have a glass of wine.

At Wed Feb 14, 09:39:00 PM, Blogger Bo... said...

That sounds like a lovely day. Mental health days are good medicine...

At Thu Feb 15, 02:42:00 AM, Blogger Dr. K said...

Mental health days are very important. I'm glad that your awful weather allowed you to enjoy one. And what a coincidence: I am also currently reading The Kite Runner and am thoroughly enjoying it.

At Thu Feb 15, 09:02:00 AM, Blogger Richard A Schoor MD FACS said...

Well deserved.

At Thu Feb 15, 01:49:00 PM, Blogger Lynn Price said...

"beloved series showing on cable (JAG; Judging Amy; all the Star Treks -- original, DS9, TNG and Voyager)"

Can I come to your house? You have all my favorites.

Love that you had an "important conversation" with your son. Those opportunities are made all the more precious due to their infrequency.

At Fri Feb 16, 05:51:00 PM, Blogger jmb said...

What a wonderful thing to happen. Well not the ice storm and ghastly weather but a totally unexpected "free" day. Did you feel guilty at all?
And a "real" conversation with your teenager! It could hardly get better. But it did.
A good book, in fact a great book. One of the best books written in the past 20 yrs, IMHO. Actually, an important book which I think all North Americans should read. Yes, we Canadians have armed forces in Afghanistan, too.
Hope the weather improves soon

At Sat Feb 17, 12:26:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, _The Kite Runner_ is a very good book. It was written by a doctor!

BUT... non-fiction book that I actually enjoyed more was _The Twelve Little Cakes_ by Dominika Dery. It is her memories of growing up in Soviet controlled Czechoslovakia. Since her parents were former dissidents they have lots of fun with men who were sent to watch them, but her father makes them do hard labor on the funky bit of property they live on. It is very funny. A great antidote after the much of the blunt force nastiness near the end of _The Kite Runner_.

Enjoy the snow day... we had several earlier, plus a WIND day (where a 50 year old oak tree fell across the driveway of my daughter's school). The big problem is that those days need to be made up. Make sure your summer travel plans do not start too early.

At Sat Feb 17, 10:22:00 PM, Blogger Sara said...

Ok, now I'm curious, what was supposedly illegal about the fee?


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