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Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Mmm... minims.Ah, that familiar red and white box can mean only one thing. Raspberry Ripple. Tropicamide eye drops. I may have spent fourteen months putting them on pharmacy shelves, taking them off again, and sending them out to wards, but I didn't expect to be sticking them into the eyes of a pensioner on day two of my new job. This learning curve is dangerously close to vertical.

SteepAdmittedly I only had to do the one patient, which was an eye drop in the ocean compared to the number my supervisor did, but having spent all afternoon in the diabetes clinic, dealing with patients aged from 20 to 83, I feel like I've seen more photography than a paparazzo. I've also learnt to carry out visual acuity tests on people who don't speak English, and had a chance to brush up my touch-typing skills by inputting results in the dark.

Naturally I can't practice everything on members of the public though (well, not without getting arrested), so when it came to taking photos, I was given the chance to snap a few shots of one of my colleagues. Operating the retinal screening camera is a bit like using the grabbing machine in an amusement arcade, only slightly more difficult, and with less chance of success. But having waggled the joystick, twiddled the knobs and pressed a few buttons, I eventually got the hang of it, and produced a set of photos to be proud of.

It was shortly after that that I found myself squirting tropicamide into the face of an old lady. Which is not something I thought I'd be doing when I got up this morning. At this rate I'll be carrying out surgery by the end of the week.

But anyhoo, having faced my fears and looked complete strangers in the eye all day, it's time for a bit of a break. So four days after our five year anniversary, Lisa's finally getting her gift. We're off to see the Manic Street Preachers at the Brighton Dome. Their new album's called 'Journal for Plague Lovers', which is appropriate as I've spent most of the day rubbing in alcohol hand gel to prevent the spread of infection.