Childhood prophesies

I sometimes think that before we are born, we are programmed with what we want to be.

Years ago I met an old lady and old ladies in their mid-seventies are usually chatty and remember things that happened ages ago very clearly. She told me when she was six/seven years old she used to play with a school friend, like many children they loved role playing. She preferred standing by the blackboard and hush the other kids and tell them” I am your teacher.” Her friend, on the other hand, used to parade inside the classroom and say ‘ I am the Queen of Egypt.’  The first child, the lady I met, grew up to be a teacher. The other child, the wannabe queen of Egypt, grew up to marry a lieutenant in the Egyptian army who later became the successor of President Naser. His name was Anwar El Sadat, therefore becoming the first lady of Egypt for a good number of years, for about ten years until Sadat was assassinated in 1980.

After hearing this story, I tried to remember what did I want to be when I was a kid. When I was a child I had no passion for school, I was a daydreamer and always wondered why the teachers wanted to grab our attentions so badly. I hardly had any passion for any subject especially the math class.  At some point there were timetables that we had to memorize and who didn’t got punished by standing up facing the wall, the easiest table to remember was the one anything multiplied by one equaled one.

By the time I reached the fourth grade, I had started to enjoy biology the experiments, and I was particularly fond of drawing the human heart, not the cartoon version but the real anatomy with aorta pulmonary artery and atria and ventricles. A delatialed antomy illustration was  in our biology book. But one day on a holiday when I was alone at the boarding school, I sat down cutting and pasting few paragraphs and building a story in an old copy book, something clicked inside me. I liked what I was doing.

Few weeks later I grabbed the copy book and sat down and started a discussion with my boarding school mates. Two of them were sisters, we were sort of eight years by then,  I addressed the sisters and told them I am an author and want to write their biography. Their stories were interesting; they were three sisters, the third sister was five or seven years older and staying in a different section at school.  The school grouped children based on their age. One of The two sisters was my grade, but she did sound a bit older, because she was so clever and serious, she once criticized me like an adult for wanting to play, the other girl probably one year younger than us and was in different class. The intelligent girl and the older sister were brought up together, the other girl who was grade younger was introduced into the family when she was five or six years old. They said that their parents kept her with the grandparents when they worked in Saudi Arabia for some reason. So three children including a boy who was in another boarding school, the Victoria boarding school for males were living together, and this girl was sent off to live with the grandparents. She looked different, though, she had lighter hair and skin, thinner and taller she probably might have looked after her mother.

Me the eight-year-old author wanted to write a biography about their lives. I started asking questions, they were cooperative started answering my question, but some how I don’t know how the discussion became so heated, and they began fighting together and begun attacking each other like the guests in Jeremy Kyle show. I was so surprised by the impact of my interview and questions on those invincible sisters. I was a lonely child they were a pack in this boarding school. I had no intention to turn them against each other; it just happened I was asking the right questions. The intelligent girl always tricked me but for the first time I ever tricked her, it was the first time it dawned on me that I possess some intelligence to trick people. They were fighting hard that the nanny had to interfere and had to report this to the supervisor.

This interview was not the last one; this was not the last heated discussion. But when I started asking questions aimed at one person, I was the one under attack. It seems that I had a talent for asking questions that piss people off. Therefore, I stopped. I do not need this Jeremy Kyle kind of talent in my life.

But I still think of writing all night before going to sleep. I think of all those heated discussions. I am a surgeon now. Writing is like surgery one has to train and practice to perfect their technique. Writing just like surgery you should be cut out to be a surgeon, but not everyone cut out to be a surgeon becomes a good surgeon, there is a lot of hard work and training and above all dedication to be a good one.

 

 

 

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On writing 

Hello, first of all thank you for stoping by and allowing me to chat with you and as the French say :”coser aves vous”  I doubt I would be taken seriously as a surgeon if I announce myself a writer, I guess. The reason is that surgeons are very focused people, they have to focus on what they have to do, a single procedure requires training, first they have to figure out how to learn it, then they need to create an opportunity to do it independently and when they master it they need to get on going with new ideas and techniques.

Does a surgeon have time to sit down and “coser” or pour out his thoughts to the audience? indeed not. However, this is not entirely true, because there are so many surgeons and doctors who wrote books and stories, for example sir charles Doyle, the author of Sherlock Holmes, not only was he a writer he was a surgeon as well.

Professor Alberto Pena the GOD father of anorectal anomalies and PSARP, he wrote the book monologues of Paediatric surgeon, writing down his memoirs. There is a long list of surgeons who even wrote bestellers, but somehow doctors particularly surgeons when they write they tend to keep it formal as much as possible.

There was a famous Egyptian writer, Youssif idris, who was a surgeon, however, he was no formal writer, he was a fiction writer particularly short stories, he was the de mobassan of Egypt.

Once, I heard that he was nominated for the Nobel prize, but Nagib Mahfouz got it, Nagib Mahfouz got the prize, there were rumours that Naguib was in touch with jacklene Kennedy, I don’t know how accurate is this piece of information. Naguib Mahfouz got it for his book “men of our slum”, which I accidentally read it when I was 12 years old and two years later I witnessed an attempt on his life because he wrote this book as it was thought he was defying the status quo in religion. Youssef idris as a writer, he was so good, he was also involved in politics and very vocal,  it is said that he was a good surgeon.

Now I justify, to my self that I can write and practice surgery, a pen and a scalpel what more powerful tools do I need. Yes I need something more, I need to use them.

Writing is generally good for our health, it is cathartic.

Surgeons and doctors in general nowadays are obliged to write reports about their meetings, procedures, etc. Don’t one occasionally feel tempted to elaborate and write a book on his subject.

I can, yes I will, write.

If you reached that far in reading Then I would like to thank you very much.

What will be

Dear reader, my only reader, I am writing this to you. Abstinence is defined as holding back an urge or a desire and holding back all those ideas in my mind and hampering my pen feels that way. I am thinking of writing all the time, to write to you, but what holds me back, is the supposedly more important things that I have to do in my life. Why should I write to you about “notes on a scandal” or “tales of the heart” whitest I have to sit down and finsh writing my thesis about “fecal in continence” even my thesis about fecal incontinence I would like to write to you about, in an interesting way ofcourse, If I would just allow my self.

If you are reading those lines, you need to know that I am writing to share with you my observations about this life. I am humble person, yet I know that I can be very observant at times and this helped me out much during surgical assistance. It’s  not only surgical procedures I observe, I also observe other things  and sharing with you my observations would be like having a nice chat with a friend.

I have so many stories to tell and reflect on, stories about organ transplantion and my experience and this psychopathic surgeon who told me that he would prick me and give me hep C ! Are surgeons psychopaths, interestingly there was an article in the Royal college of surgeons on this subject and surprisingly they also made some statistics about it. If you want to turn a subject into a paper do statistics.

When I write I do write like an academic, and this might be one of the reasons i don’t write that much, since I need to proof read and check the validity of the information that I wrote down. But I won’t do that this time. I just want to write.

I want to tell you about the art of breaking the rules, about me defying rules of gravity, this great surgeon defying rules of surgery and finally the poor reporter who failed to break the rules.

Or let me talk to you about my interview I have carried out few interesting interviews that I would like to write about. The Oxford, Liverpool and finally Leeds those are truly stories to tell.

What about the man who flew over the cuckow nest? And defying authority and how we need to keep a low profile at times. Such a painful price he payed for defying authority, he had a lobotomy, did you know that J.F.Kennedy sister had a lobotomy, her father forced her to have one, so I heard from a secondary source.

Do you know in Strasbourg sometime in the Middle Ages there were a bunch of people who got into a dancing frenzy and they danced until they died? A controversial story though. Starasbourg is a French city on the border with Germany, it was part of Germany in the Middle Ages and one of the few sites of preserved German architecture. I don’t know what would cause people to dance to death, may be there is particular kind of hallucinogenic plant growing somewhere in Strasbourg.

Do you know that your time is so precious, that the day on earth is different to the day in venous, I heard that the venous day is longer than its year. So I f I want to save some time I might benefit from traveling into space. Traveling at the speed of light is the only way to counteract aging otherwise the only other alternative is the scalpel and may be some rejeuvinating cremes and mesotherapy for the time being.

Do you know about hypnotism and the neglected power of subconscious.

Do you remember your dreams or does the morning snooze wipe them out.

Do you know why practice makes perfect, because the action signal is generated at the level of brain stem, with no delay at the cerebral cortex, like working on an autopilot mode. 

Do you know in order to be a good surgeon you need “some one to take you under his/her wings” and for that you really need to be ………, I am not sure what I am afraid.

Voltaire has read the Arabian nights three times and every time he read it he wished he would forget so that he enjoys reading it the same way every time. I read it as well when I was a teenager and this is exactly how I felt. I can’t find better words than Voltaire’s to say. There were few particular stories that intrigued me and stuck there in my memory; the story of shahriar’s transformation into the serial killer, his and his brother’s wife betrayal their shocking encounter with the dive’s kidnapped bride. The story of the jaundice man, the slogan and the Jewish pious man who forgot to look into the sky.

How often do you look at the sky? What do you think of people who like to take picture of swans and wandering bees? Do you think they are out of the blue?

If you managed to get that far in reading my random article/piece well then I would like to thank you and thank you for reading just as people say thank you for listening and good bye.😊

Shawshank Redemption

 

I was lying there, more accurately crashing there on a bed and my colleague,  she was one-year ahead of me in training, was sitting on the other bed. It was a double bedroom with ensuite toilet and shower a small fridge a kettle and few lockers, which I took pride in securing it just for female surgical residents.

Three years earlier I remember when our batch was assigned to surgical departments. One of my colleagues, who was so calculating and always acted wisely, warned me and he told me ” you’d better set your eyes on a department or they will just dump anywhere or worse send you to paediatric surgery in Abou El Rish.”

Me: ” paediatric surgery! Is there is even a surgical speciality for children” ” are they not operated on by general surgeons.”

him:” Hmmm so what are you up to then?”

Me:” I am interested in plastic surgery” plastic surgery was the hype at that time, was so fashionable and I was into this it, loved repairing nerves and the idea behind grafting and above all the aesthetic part of it.

Him: ” I can see you haven’t made any connections, they will dump you there in abou El Rish in paediatric surgery”

Me:” so why do you think paediatric surgery is so scary?”

Him:” there is a lot of work.”

Me:” well that’s a good thing, that means excellent training.”

Him:” Hell no, that’s so much work, residents die there of exhaustion.”

Me: ” really! That sounds scary.”

Him: ” there were a couple of registrars there, they were found dead in their beds.”

Me: ” they could have had an underlying medical problem.”

He smiles and shakes his head.

In a different scene in the lion’s lair, in the headquarters of the general surgery departments, the Chiefs   of departments meeting up, one of them was the chief of paediatric surgery department, I stepped in foolishly.

” here is the girl, would you like to take her.”

the chief of paediatric surgery department looked me up ” yes we can take her, why not?”

Me: ”Thank you for your interest but I haven’t made up my mind yet. I am interested in plastic surgery.”  Basically, one can not make up his/her mind with such a low rank. I was the 11th in this surgical batch and one of my colleagues ranked 12th we were last in the batch, a position that doesn’t leave you with so many options.

He:” no you will come along with me, you will fit well in our department, you look like a child yourself.” The office was full of commotion some professors burst into laughter at his comment. I remember one of them was nodding his head in agreement and telling me that I should listen to him, this is a good choice besides there is plastics in Abou El Rish as well, they do cleft lip and palate and bits and other pieces in plastics. He interestingly also added that it is a good place to gain the surgical skills and later I can do whatever I want to do since surgeons gain skills so quickly skills in this particular location.

The paediatric surgery department was extremely short staffed of junior residents. Because the department did not accept new residents for some time. It was also a decision to send my colleague who ranked the 12th with me to this department. He was happily nesting in one of the plastic surgery departments until they snatched him out of there. He was upset at the beginning but he adapted quickly to the place.

One of the difficulties that I encountered was that the place was not set up for female surgical residents, as residents we were supposed to live in the hospital in the first six months and there was no separate on call room for us. We were two female registrars at that time; my other colleague was part time because she was affiliated with another university and had to spend a couple of days in her hometown but she did same on-call hours as I did.

With no separate on call room and female doctors from other specialities and SHOs sharing our on-call room gossiping and chatting we were suffering sleep deprivation. The work was continuous and sleep was minimal. The male residents did have their on-call room, it was no bias, but they were there first, but I envied them.

I did manage to get us a separate room. By paying money and changing the locks, there was some resistance initially but later on, the hospital management accepted that female surgical registrars should have separate rooms especially when more females joined us.

My colleague was right, abou El Rish is a MEAN MACHINE the workload is merciless is bigger than any team can handle. To work and run this place one has to be a superhero. It has a significant catchment I would say a population not less than 15 million.  The head of my department the one who dragged me into this place said that the flow is so high in abou El Rish that a resident with IQ below average or limited skill can get trained very well.

My colleague might have been right, yet I can not imagine my life if I didn’t train there. This place has defined my life and gave meaning to it. It gave me the opportunity to train in one of the finest professions that  I wouldn’t ever dream off and come across people of all kinds I would not imagine existed. This place has enriched my life with experience something much more valuable than material or money.

I was lying there on the bed and my colleague on the other bed next to me, it was, as I said, a double bedroom. She said:” when I think of myself, I see myself as this hero in this movie that I  love so much. He was a  prisoner and dug a tunnel for fifteen years. He was extremely patient. He kept digging the tunnel until he escaped in a brilliant way. I see myself like this man digging my way out of prison.”

Me:” you mean the movie Shawshank redemption!! Seriously this is one my favourite and I do identify myself with this hero as well.”

however, I asked myself from what prison do we want to escape?

 

 

 

الأسكندرية قنبلة موقوتة .. عنوان ندوة المهندسين

www.alexphotonews.com

كتبت دعاء عز العرب :  شهدت مساء امس السبت نقابة المهندسين بالاسكندرية ندوة بعنوان الأسكندرية قنبلة موقوتة والذي تناول مناقشة مزاولة مهنة المهندسين بالاحياء والأشراف علي المباني والخروج بالعديد من التوصيات و

حضر الندوةعمر بندق رئيس لجنة حماية مزاولة المهنة و وكيل وزارة الأسكان المهندسة نوال حلمي  وسمر شلبي رئيس النقابة.

وقالت المهندسة سمر شلبي رئيس نقابة المهندسين معظم أسباب مشاكل البناء هي سوء التخطيط الذي الذي تسبب في ضياع الذوق الفني في العمارة مشرة الي أنهيار الأخلاقيات الذي كان من الأسباب الهامة في تدهور الأوضاع.

وأشارت شلبي الي أن النقابة لا تمثل جهة تنفيذية أو رقابية، وأنما تقوم بدورها المختص في القطاع الهندسي موضحة أن الهدف من الندوة هو الخروج بتوصيات من شأنها وضع حل لهذه المشكلة والتي يدفع ثمنها المجتمع الأن مشيرة الي الحاجة الملحة لوصول صوت المتخصصين للمسئولين للوصول بتوصيات محل التنفيذ.

و من ناحيته لفت عمر بندق رئيس لجنة حماية مزاولة المهنة علي أن النقابة تعمل من خلال اللجنة علي الحفاظ…

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