Snakebite Thoughts

By Rona

I should have been more careful. I knew that. Hector had really plowed a trail for us and the snakes would have been looking for somewhere else to hide and the crashed car was perfect. Everything had just settled down nicely, and there I was, blundering around. Small wonder the snake got annoyed.

Still, it hurts like hell. Cap sounded really alarmed over the HT. Hector doesnít look too happy either. Guess whoever comes down to my rescue wonít be very pleased either and I canít blame them. I was careless. Guess Iíd better get started trying to do something about the bite. I am the only paramedic on the scene. I wish Roy was still here.

Uh-oh, itís swelling. Already. Thatís not good. The snake must have had a full venom sack. Lucky me, huh? Miles from anywhere, the air ambulance has just left and I go and get bitten by a rattler. Boy, Iím glad to see Chet and Marco arriving.

Iím really not feeling too good when we get back up to the top. Thank goodness Hector still had the tractor down there. I donít think I want to drive a tractor. Those slopes are seriously scary. A couple of times I didnít think weíd make it. Iím not mad keen on the guys carrying me to the engine like this. Itís pretty uncomfortable, but I know I shouldnít be walking around. In fact, I should probably be sitting somewhere letting my heart rate slow down Ė Ďcos yeah, Iím gonna be calm after being bitten by a venomous snake! Which idiot writes these guidelines? Have they ever been bitten by a snake?

For a horrible minute, I thought I was gonna lose my lunch all over the guys as they lifted me onto the engine. Awkward simply wasnít the word for it. I donít know who brought the trauma box over, but Iím kind of glad they did, even if Brackett does want me to give myself an IV. Is he kidding? I hate needles! I donít mind them going into others, but I hate them going into me, and not only do I have to watch this time, but I have to do it, too. I hope they donít want regular updates because itís always hell patching through dispatch.

My BPís not so good. Donít think Iíll tell them that. Oh, they want to know anyway. Suppose I didnít really think Iíd get away without telling them. Thank goodness I got the stick first time, because Iím so nauseated that thereís no way I could try it again. Cap put a hose behind my head for me to lean on. Iím glad he thought of it and it is better than banging my head off the rail around the top, thatís for sure. I wish Chet would leave my leg alone. I know heís only trying to help, but the suction clearly isnít working and it hurts!

Oh no, the hospital wants updates? I canít keep my eyes open and my mouth is numb. I donít think this is good. Oh great, they didnít understand what I said -Ė am I slurring already? Couldnít have been that bad, Cap understood. Hope Roy isnít hearing all this. Heíll feel really guilty Ďcos he wasnít here to help. Suppose it wouldíve been nice to have someone else to start my IV...

Iím drifting. The engine seems to be moving more smoothly. Maybe weíre on the road now. I canít open my eyes to look, Iím just too tired....


Iím told it was pretty close. I was unconscious when I reached the ER so I donít really know what happened. Next thing I knew, I was in bed, my body propped upright so that my leg was below the level of my heart in case I had a further reaction to the bite. I didnít remember that bit from my training. I was pretty sick for a couple of days Ė- something to do with a reaction to the antivenin. Seems itís pretty common, although that was something else I didnít remember from my training. Hey! Maybe we never covered that in training.

And let me tell you, snakebites swell! The bite on my leg was huge Ė-and disgustingly colored with bruising! Boy! I didnít even mind when Brackett said I couldnít go home till the swelling was all gone. Gives me more chances to chat up the nurses. Thatís my excuse. I donít want to tell anyone that I felt pretty bad for the first couple of days. At least Iím on the mend now and can eat.

Poor Chet was quite hurt when Mrs. Petersen didnít remember him. Heís a good guy, Chet, even if he is a pest with his lousy jokes and his porn-star moustache. But Iíd never tell him that heís a good guy. We donít have that kind of friendship. I donít know what kind of friendship we do have, but Roy tells me we definitely have one and Royís smart. I believe him.



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