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I’d like to tell you how beautiful Corfu is — but I can’t. I’d like to tell you about the sparkling waters — but I can’t.

I can tell you, however, that they’ve been very attentive at the clinic where my little Bookworm is having her appendix removed. She’s in surgery as I write this, so I’m keeping the chair warm in the waiting room, while Mr. Bookworm and my other little Bookworm grab some food.

For those of us accustomed to big shiny, urban American hospitals, the clinic is a little small and unsophisticated.  Nevertheless, the surgeon has done many appendectomies, and the hospital is clearly au courant with sterile procedures.

For important practical reasons, the ambulatory little Bookworm and I will continue our journey while Mr. Bookworm remains at the clinic. I’ll keep sending DQ emails, although Corfu won’t be on the list of places included in my travelogue.

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  • Michael Adams

    Although I can’t say many good things about Italian hospitals, I can assure you  that the more old-fashioned places do pay more attention to good sterile surgical technique.  What you’ll need to do, I suspect, is get her up and walking sooner than the hospital personnel will want to do. It’s not uncommon in America to have an appi patient walk back from the OR. Twelve hours post-op is plenty of time t o wait, really too long. She’ll heal faster, with lower possibility for adhesions, and less total pain.  Get her medicated thirty  minutes before you try to get her up.  Stand very close by, in case either a vasal-vagal response or the narcotics cause her to fall, and walk her inside the room or cubicle in the ward. They will also be less attentive to making her cough. Use folded sheets, not a pillow, to splint the abdomen for the coughing.  Sixteen-year-olds don’t often get post-op pneumonia, but with studied inattention, it is possible to achieve even that.
    I’ve worked with a wide international assortment of nurses, from French to Filipina.  The Filipina ones will drive you crazy with their activity, giving the patient no rest, nor taking any for themselves. The Europeans have a sort of internal quota of what work and how much of it they’ll do that day.  The Filipina ones are the ones who wave a cheery good bye to their patients as they leave the hospital, who can wave back.
    I hate hospitals, because there are too many nurses there who are less fanatical than I am. However, I love post-op nursing, and my patients’ doctors came to see, over a few months, that my patients averaged one day less in the hospital.  My wife says I enjoy tormenting the sick.  Absolutely not.  I just enjoy the aforementioned good bye wave.
    Get well soon, little Book.


    Poor baby girl and poor mommy and daddy. I wish all of you a speedy recovery.

  • Ymarsakar

    This sounds like you picked a great time to visit Europe, Book. What with appendixes getting infected, bombs blowing up, and you know.

  • Old Buckeye

    This may become an interesting highlight of your vacation in the retelling years from now. For the present, surely hope the recovery is quick and that everyone fares well.

  • Charles Martel

    What Old Buckeye said, Book. Plus your Booklet will have a great “There I was” story she can tell for years to come. Best of luck and kisses to the kid.

  • FunkyPhD

    What an adventure! All the best wishes for a speedy recovery for little Bookworm. It sounds like your story will be somewhat different from Victor Davis Hanson’s appendectomy in Libya:

  • 11B40


    Tony Bennett says:

    I left my pendix on isle of Corfu,
    High on a hill
    Over a sparkling bay 

  • Caped Crusader

    My prayers for a safe and uneventful recovery for little Book and the entire family.

  • Bookworm

    Thanks for your wishes. My daughter is doing well, but the clinic is holding her hostage, e.g. not giving her travel certificates, so that it gets more American dollars. That’s not me being paranoid. That’s what everyone says. Socialized medicine funded by unwitting, unwary and unfortunate American travelers.