Monday, January 28, 2013

On one of my days off this week, I spent an afternoon stuffing envelopes for an LA-area children's literacy program. It was a nice way to talk with some other people in the area and feel like I was doing something productive with my time off. While we worked, I got recommendations for yoga studios and restaurants near my apartment. was an easy way to find a volunteer opportunity that was close to me. When I was in Seattle, I didn't really take the time to find volunteer work. I kept thinking that I would do it "soon." These contracts go fast, though! I'm glad I stopped thinking about it and just did it.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Waste in LA

The refrigerator in my apartment has malfunctioned and been repaired. I've tossed out all my of carefully assembled fridge staples and will now have to start again with only a few beers and an unopened container of low-sodium soy sauce. I bet this symbolizes something.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Work is killing me. I genuinely believe it will get a little better, as I adjust to the archaic computer systems and strange paper orders and paper MAR. Still, working the night shift while trying to double and triple check paper med orders, lab orders, and procedure orders against three different computer programs is nuts. Hopefully, when the hospital upgrades their computer charting/order entry system, which should be done during this assignment, I will feel less constantly anxious about making an error. For now, all I can do is be as thorough as possible, and ask questions when I have them.

Again, though: Los Angeles! Today, in the dead of winter, I took a pleasant walk through my neighborhood, wearing capris, flip-flops, and a short-sleeved t-shirt. The sun shone down through the leaves of the palm trees and warmed the air to 77 degrees. On the way back to my apartment, as I ate my frozen yogurt, a man sitting on his front porch smiled as he played his guitar. This is a Midwestern girl's paradise.

Work is only three days out of my week. I will give work 100% while I'm there, but life is what counts.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

What in hell have I gotten myself into?

Before I start the complaining/panicking, let me say: wow, Los Angeles. This was my view on my run this morning:

My apartment is quite lovely, and the people I've met so far have been friendly and fun (people are different all over, but head to a sports bar during a day-airing playoff game, and're going to run into my kind of people).

However, the assignment...gulp. We had one day of on-boarding yesterday, during which we signed paperwork and received scrubs and a brief tour of the hospital. And, that's it. I'll get two shifts of floor orientation, and off I go. No computer training, no policy review, no exposure to any of the equipment.

Experienced travel nurses may think, "Big deal, you knew this was a possibility." And I did, I really did. It's just that my orientation in Seattle was so comparatively hand-holding. I knew during that entire assignment that I was being spoiled, and now it's time to deal with the consequences.

So, here I go. I'll survive, but I'm not going to lie, it's going to be rough at first.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Sometimes, the "travel" part of travel nursing is a pain. Spending Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday of this week jammed into airplane seats and crammed into my car has been wearying. So, having the opportunity to frolic about in the sunshine of LA/Santa Monica today was a real delight. I walked down to the beach and touched the Pacific. I bought some grapefruit at the farmer's market. I felt grateful for health and good weather, especially after the seemingly never-ending rain of Seattle and the blizzard conditions of Indianapolis.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Landed in Sunny LA today. Well, "landed" is the incorrect term, because I drove down from Seattle. I-5 pretty much all the way, with an slight detour to Oakland and San Francisco to visit friends. This drive down the coast was all by myself, and I'm very thankful that it was only around 18 hours total, rather than the 4-day drive from Indy to Seattle.