(The title? My friend Gus writes the blog http://3amwithgus.blogspot.com – Occasionally I throw him a shoutout)
I donít generally do this much anymore, but this is kind of a personal blog post.
Itís 19 degrees outside and the clock is nearing Midnight here in Illinois. About 20 minutes ago I was snuggled up with my beautiful wife in bed trying to get some sleep before I have to get up at 3am to drive to Milwaukee to catch a flight at 6am. Tomorrow brings something that Iíve been looking forward to for what seems like forever, but really has only been a month or two. Tomorrow Iím heading to Baltimore, MD to attend the JEMS conference, EMS Today 2010.
This is going to be my first big, national conference. Really, Iíve never had the incentive to go before. Iíve always wanted to, but they have always seemed to be too much of an expense and have always seemed far away from what Iíve been doing in the field. Tomorrow I get to see for myself just what the hubbub is about.
But that all seems pretty far away right now as I sit here in my fire station covering the ambulance. 25min ago (now) I was snuggled up all comfy like just in the twilight stage of my sleepy-time cycle when Mama Juggs, the night dispatcher tonight set off the vile tones a few times and sent all of the on-duty paramedics out to the various hospitals, leaving the district uncovered. She toned out for any available paramedic to come in to cover andÖ
Yes, the above was a horrible way to end a paragraph, (and Greg Friese recently told me I use the elipse (the ďÖĒ) too much) but I have to make this statement. Both my wife and I are firefighters and EMS people on the same volunteer/POP/POC/Takes-up-all-of-your-free-time department. Weíre both dedicated as the next guy too, and sheís in paramedic school right now. So when the tones went out, I got ďthe elbowĒ. No, I didnít go on the other calls but we had an ambulance crew at all 3 stations with an engine crew on-duty backing them up. There wasnít a need for me to head in for the EMS calls, until they took all the medics off of the street handling them. They needed a medic to come in for the next call, and I have a Gina at home elbowing me in the ribs to head out into the 19 degree weather to go cover the district. Yes itís now Midnight, and yes I have to be up at 3am to catch my flight.
Iíve spoken before about the responsibility I feel when Iím the only paramedic available to cover the emergency medical needs of a jurisdiction. Right now, thereís 30k people (roughly) whom for if they have an emergency medical need, Iím now the first person they want to see. If that happens (and now, one of the trucks is returning so the chances are lessening) I better be on my game when I get there.
Anyways, Iím sitting next to Mama Juggs (The Dispatcher, remember?) blogging away, and I should probably be a good conversationalist and talk to her because I havenít gotten much of a chance to chat with her lately. So, in parting, if you are at EMS Today, come up and say Howdy! to me. If youíre not, be sure to follow me on Twitter and Facebook (the links are over there on the Right. I accept all friend requests that seem like fans.) and Iíll be sure to try and give you a first-hand look at what itís like at a Big National Conference.
Oh, and the Biggest meetup of EMS and Fire Bloggers is happening Friday night at a pizzeria. BE THERE. If you need info, tweet me and Iíll getcha there. (Connections? I has them)