Tuesday, March 26, 2013

twas a bridge that was nearly our undoing

Just when you think it is safe to go home...yet another doctor is added to our list of been there done that's.  This bucket list from hell is beginning to get on my last nerve, but we trudge on like the troopers we have become.  Our latest arrow in the quiver is Dr Wharton of MUSC in Charleston.  Dr Grainger had managed to get us in to see him in an amazingly short time.  The waiting list is usually over six months. We're told that  Dr Wharton is the best there is where the procedure known as an Ablation is concerned, in fact teaching the procedure to surgeons all over the East Coast.  Mac's problem with AFib (or Atrial Fibrillation) is no better than it has ever been, indeed it is worse.  He has been in AFib for nearly 97% of the time since January 8th (this according to the recently implanted Pace Maker).  So off we headed to Charleston last week. 

I had taken the address provided by MUSC and put it into the Tom Tom as soon as I had the information.  Since we planned to leave at 5 am, I left nothing to chance.  The letter from MUSC giving directions and appointment time had rested in the bottom of my purse for over a week, a small bag which held his medicine was hanging on the front door so we couldn't miss it and the phones were charged, ready to go.

Tuesday morning we managed to get out the door by 6 am, just an hour later than planned, but according to Tom Tom it would only take 2 hours and 28 minutes to get there, so we were confident that we would arrive in plenty of time for the 10:30 am appointment.  I listened to Nell (Tom Tom's voice avatar) as she guided us confidently down the highways and for the first time did not lead us off onto the unbeaten path we would discover was the wrong way a few miles down the road.   While part of me wonders how any of us ever managed to get from point A to point B without these GPS systems, I was still suspicious of their actual  intentions.  I did not trust Nell to get us there without some complication.  Call it my natural skepticism, call it what you may, but I just did not trust her.  I have a suspicion that she drinks.

We were amazed when we hit the Charleston area at how homesick we felt.  The signs for the Naval Weapons Station, Remount Road, Goose Creek...it was like coming home.  But as we got closer to Charleston proper it was like a nightmare.  The interstate lanes  twined in and out and around and over and by now Nell was beginning to sound harried.  And that is when it happened.  I looked ahead of us and saw this monstrosity of a bridge looming ahead of us. Oh Dear God, (I was praying aloud) please don't LET THAT BE THE WAY!  And that's when it happened.  The little harpy living in the GPS said "stay left" and the next thing I knew we were headed into the jaws of hell and ascending rapidly towards what I was afraid would seal our doom.  Nell immediately tried to correct her mistake with shouts of "GO RIGHT GO RIGHT" and I was threatening to throw her little booty out the side window without further adieu.  Mac told me to calm down we would turn around after crossing the Arthur Ravenel Bridge...I guess I was shouting at Nell and at one point Mac said it sounded like Nell was shouting back.  It was a scenario Stephen King would have been proud of.  We finally got turned around and Nell took a long beat before getting us back on track.  We pulled onto Courtney Drive at exactly 8:45...I thought about the harrowing trip over that suspension bridge (both ways) and shuddered.  "There's a restaurant, pull in, " I told Mac..."I need a cup of coffee."  Glaring at Nell, I unplugged her and put her into her little carrying bag.  I'm sure she was glad to be back in its soft confines.  I'll bet the first thing she did was get roaring drunk. 

19 comments:

ancient one said...

We haven't named our lady yet, but she sure has saved us plenty of times. Haven't been to Charleston in a long time. That bridge looks fasinating... course the old bridges set our hearts raising first time we went.. Hope the doctor visit was good.

Pondside said...

Ours is named Sheila. She gets very annoyed when we don't listen to her - I can hear it in her voice.

Merisi said...

You make me almost feel glad I have no crazy drunk in my car yet! ;-)

Charleston is one of those places that tug at my heartstrings too. This beautiful city by the sea was on top of my list to visit during my road trip last fall. Have you noticed how many great coffee places there are now?

Vee said...

Hahahahaha... I never made it to the bridge, but then our little "Nell" has never made it back out of the bag either. Great writing, Sandi!

(Keep us posted please. What did the doc say?)

Lee said...

I think I'm glad I don't have one of those to deal with. Although I have it on my cell phone. Does the TomTom use Google maps and GPS? If so you can email Google if you find that their map is wrong. They will work hard to fix it.

Glad you made the appt on time. :-)

Love,
Lee

Donna said...

Hahahaaaa...I KNOW it's not funny but the Way you tell it IS!
And I also think Nell could do with an intervention!! Wow!
Hope they get Hubby's health problem under Control!Geeez!
hughugs

Helen Devries said...

I do hope the treatment works...I know the relief of my husband improving after years of being at death's door.

But that navigation device would have driven me to drink...never mind it...

Kathy's Klothesline said...

He who tows relies on those gadgets to go everywhere! I always warn campers not to put our address into theirs, we are located on Hwy TT, but they always end up about 12 miles away on County Road B .......

NitWit1 said...

HA HA HA. my husband says the same thing. He renames his GPS every trip depending on his exasperation. I love mine and I keep the maps updated every time new additions come out. His updates are free; I have to pay for mine. Updating is a partial solution. But governmental agencies that don't update road construction, completions or renumbering of roads, the poor thing is stupid as it cannot read their minds.

However some of the voices which see to all me female. I named mine Jezebel because she nagged me to make u-turns and make recalculations if my chose path does not please her.

If you want to know anything about ablations. I just had one, called pulmonary vein ablation--so far, so good, but I have not had open heart surgery. I don't have a pacemaker which was not an option apparently, but may be some days.

Here is what the electrophysiologist cardiologist told me: We first try medications; then depending on the cause (if determined) we try cardio conversion, ablation, pacemakers, defibrillators, more or less in that order.
And HOPE something works, at least for awhile. Everything can fade. Ablations are considered the only 'cure' but mine is rated 70% cure, but otherwise they can 'fade' too.

My whole social calendar is filled with medical appointments and cardio exercise at hospital.

I don't know every one in my cardio/respiratory exercise class nor their problems. But 2 men last week were having cardio conversions. One guy had been in class 10 years. A 40 year old man at my church had an ablation and now discharged as cured. I am nearly twice his age.

Will keep you both in my prayers and hope it all goes well with you.

And believe me my husband sympathizes about all the trips. Ours were to Little Rock. The kind I needed only one in the state to do the procedure. You can have more than one, but this doctor will only do two of my particular one.

SandyCarlson said...

The indifferent GPS can be a nightmare. My guy reroutes me at all the worst times.

Hang in there with all those doctors.

Jeni said...

First and foremost here, Sandi, I hope things went well for Mac -and you -at his appointment. Now as to the trip -it's a good thing I wasn't the one making that trip over a bridge like that or I would have been a mess -really, really a mess of a terrible kind with a substance all over the seat of the car because, just for openers, one of the things I have always had a huge phobia about is bridges, especially high bridges, over huge bodies of water or even not very big rivers too for that matter. I'd still be hunting for toilet paper for sure!

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Sally Crowe said...

I sure hope they get Mac fixed up so he can be healthy again.

Nope, don't want one of those "things" after riding with my brother; that voice was obnoxious. :)

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Suldog said...

I absolutely HATE driving over big bridges. I will plot out routes to specifically avoid them.

lailani said...

lol! Hiya Sandy! This is funny and I can so relate. My husband and I have a pretty much argue free marriage, Garmin has screwed that up several times (as well as almost been chuncked out a car window). Glad your trip was safe!!

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