We were here last year with our cat, Dudley. He developed a limp that wouldn’t go away. At first our regular vet, Dr. Dean thought it was tendonitis and treated him for it. It got better and then came back. At one point he could barely put any weight on his right front paw. After some expensive X-rays, Dr. D noticed an anomaly at the top of Dudley’s humerus, the upper arm bone. His preliminary diagnosis – bone cancer. It had turned the top of his bone where it meets the shoulder into a spongy looking mass with a chip of bone floating in the joint. He recommended us to the VCG for a more detailed opinion.
Sure enough, Dr. Pierro confirmed the diagnosis. The treatment? Amputation of the entire arm. Drastic, sure, but there wasn’t a choice. Expensive? You bet. We started a You Caring fundraiser for him, and sure were overwhelmed by the generosity and compassion of friends, family, and surprisingly total strangers who contributed to his surgery. (If you want to donate, just click the You Caring link. It’s still active.) It was traumatic for all of us, but Dudley pulled through, and amazingly, doesn’t seem the worse for it. He still leaps onto the roof of our house, jumps onto the 6-foot high wall, and roams the neighborhood just as before.
It was traumatic for all of us, but Dudley pulled through, and amazingly, doesn’t seem the worse for it. He still leaps onto the roof of our house, jumps onto the 6-foot high wall, and roams the neighborhood just as before. The one thing he can’t do is climb trees, or scoop his food out of his bowl with his paw as he used to do. But for a tri-pawd, he gets around pretty darn well.
The VCG is a wonderful place. All the folks who work there are caring and compassionate. The waiting room is spacious, clean, and modern. I don’t know what the person and her companion in the photo were waiting for but I’m sure they were well taken care of.
The Waiting Room Project adds another contributor. This guest post is from a friend who takes the Los Angeles Expo line from her home in Santa Monica to work downtown. She has been posting wonderful pictures of her journeys, and today, sent me this one. I love it. It embodies everything of what the Project is about. Excellent photography taken with a smartphone (in this instance a Galaxy III), the variety of waiting areas, the feeling of a nearly abandoned space, and there, in the distance, a lonely soul or two waiting for the train. Perfect.
I am excited that the WRP is gaining a little traction with other people. Please send me your waiting room photos to share. As you can see, it doesn’t have to be a room. I will be posting them as they come in, and want to thank all the contributors past and future, in advance, for taking this project to another level.
I have been wearing glasses since the 5th grade, and have been through the developing technology of contact lenses for the past 50 years. I now have extended wear disposable contacts which I love. Contrary to Dr. Chen’s recommendation and in line with the manufacturer’s, I often sleep with them in place. Dr. C wants me to take them out every night, something I did for years and years. It is a mild inconvenience which I don’t wish to impose upon myself. We have reached a compromise in that I do remove them a couple of times a week to give my eyes a little more oxygen, and have switched to a very aggressive hydrogen peroxide cleaner that bubbles and fizzes away the gunk.
I usually visit her once a year in September for my annual check up. That’s when I snapped the first photo. Clearly, this woman has had her fill of waiting for the day.
In February of this year, I developed a strange bump on one of my eyes, and off to Dr. Chen I went. It was sun damage caused by years of outdoor exposure. After some antibiotic drops and a break from my contact lenses, it subsided. While I was waiting for her, I took the second picture of a new patient filling out the first visit paperwork.
In our last installment, we found ourselves roaming the hallways of Justice in Inglewood. On the way out of the building, in which cell phone cameras are not allowed, I managed to snap this surreptitious shot of the main lobby just inside the front door. This is where you come for minor traffic citations, and this morning, as it was early, there were few people. You can see the metal detectors and x-ray conveyor on the left side. I was initially disappointed when I had a chance to review the photo on my phone once I had left the building, but after seeing it full size on the computer screen, it began to grow on me. What do you think?
Tower Imaging is a service that provides a variety of imaging services: X-ray, CT scan, PET scan, MRI, etc. They have millions of dollars of machines under one roof, and doctors from across the city send their patients there for diagnostic testing. A few days after visiting the unknown doctor in the previous post, I waited in this room for a test of some kind. Probably an X-ray, but honestly, I don’t really know. The room is done up in blond wood and light carpet. This view is from the stairwell leading to the second floor. How they get those huge, heavy machines up to the second floor and why they don’t put them on the first floor baffles me. I guess they have their reasons.
Usually, the tests go smoothly with a minimum of waiting and inconvenience. The waiting room is never full, and they provide free Wi-fi along with the obligatory three-month-old Time, Newsweek, People, and Golfer’s Digest magazines. You have to bring your own newspaper.
While we’re on the subject of airport car rental centers, the award for the most massive goes to Fort Lauderdale. This multi-story monster houses thousands of cars and every major (and minor) car rental agency in the country. It is “off-site” in that you need to ride a bus from the terminal to get there, and there are two floors of waiting areas bordered by a huge open atrium. It just goes on and on and on. All the cars sleep quietly in the garage behind the endlessly curving waiting area with its gleaming terrazzo floors and chrome stanchions. You pick your car and go.
We traveled recently to visit T’s mom and sisters to celebrate her birthday and arrived at night. The whole building is a bit disorienting, especially after a 5-hour flight.Fortunately, it was largely deserted, adding to the surreality. An enormous space with maybe half a dozen people. I hate to think what this place must be like when it’s busy. We found the perfect vehicle, fired it up and wound our way down the spiral ramp that connects the 5 or so floors of the parking garage. Out to the highway and the half-hour drive into Miami Beach. Easy peasy.
Last year I travelled to North Carolina for my niece’s wedding. I flew into Charlotte and picked up a car at the airport. The cavernous waiting area serves all the rental car companies in the common building directly across from the terminal. I think I went with Dollar. I had my car and was on my way to Boone, NC in a matter of a few minutes. The recent trend of having all the car rental companies under one roof produces giant structures that house the waiting areas as well as the garages for all the cars. I guess it is more efficient than having each company have its one lot and service center, but these gigantic rooms can be a bit disorienting at times. Like when you get off your plane after a 5-hour flight and still don’t really know what time zone you are in.
Luckily, it wasn’t too bad, the drive north was through beautiful country and I arrived safely. The wedding was lovely, I had a chance to sample some of the local barbecue on my way back to the airport, and I found myself returning my car to this very same building in a couple of days. All in all, a whirlwind trip to the North Carolina mountain country.
Waiting is a transitory activity. While you are in the waiting room, you look for things to help pass the time. Magazines, your iPhone, conversation, meditation. Whatever you find to do, it isn’t really why you are there. Wouldn’t you rather be sitting on your couch reading National Geographic? Sitting at your desk checking your emails? But no, you are here filling the minutes, trying to turn that non-time into something vaguely productive. How long you will remain is a fluid interval. It might be five minutes. It might be half an hour. I once waited for a doctor for more than an hour. And that was before the iPhone.
Finally, your name is called and you leave the limbo of waiting for whatever it is you have been waiting for. Here, one lucky soul has escaped and is on his way to fulfillment. Others here aren’t so fortunate.
The Disney Hall in Downtown LA is an architectural marvel. Designed by Frank Gehry, the building has become an icon of public architecture. The exterior, with its sweeps of gleaming metal, has its inspiration in Gehry’s love of sailing. The interior is no less dramatic, and the auditorium is an intimate space where the audience surrounds the orchestra. We were there to see a rehearsal compliments of my mother, who is a patron of several arts. Part of her support of the L.A. Philharmonic includes an invitation to attend selected rehearsals of the orchestra. She was unable to attend this one, so we went in her stead.
If you come late for a concert, you have to wait in one of these lounges scattered throughout the hall and wait for a suitable break in the performance before you can be seated. The TV is actually a closed circuit monitor so you can watch the show while you wait. This guy wasn’t waiting for that, he just needed a place to sit to check his laptop.
I love lumber yards and hardware stores. As an inveterate tool user, they are storehouses of the most wonderful inventions. Vice grips. Zip ties. Socket sets. Power tools. Bins full of nuts and bolts and screws and washers. The smell of a lumber yard, that resin-y pine-y aroma of freshly cut plywood, always makes me want to build something. Long ago, I was a woodworker, and the sight of a clear Douglas fir 1 x 12, or a nice piece of oak molding, brings back mostly fond memories.
I usually find myself in a hardware store about once a month, lumber yards less frequently now. Any home improvement project I undertake, be it a simple faucet repair, replacing a screen door roller, or anything more ambitious, always starts with a trip to Lincoln Hardware, Stock Lumber or the dreaded Home Depot. Most projects aren’t complete without at least three trips. One before and two during to secure a forgotten tool, part, or the correct size of whatever. It’s just one of those immutable laws of life.
I took a few pictures of this waiting line before the gentleman in the background pulled his pickup into the doorway. He is waiting for one of the yard rats to bring his purchase around. I was there shopping for windows, and I think I bought some small tool or other just because I can’t resist. I probably have 6 of those 4-way screwdrivers, one for every tool box I own. Can’t have too many tools. I didn’t buy any windows.