Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Health update, mystery bird, and kites

My operation was a resounding anticlimax. On Saturday I went back to the doctor to get the dressing changed, which I had anticipated being a gruesome affair involving pus and blood and so on. But it turned out to mean taking off the big taped bandage thingy that made me look importantly operated-upon and replacing it with something quite a lot smaller than a Band Aid. Apparently nothing exciting had happened under there, so the bandage thing wasn't necessary any more.

Actually that was the first time I'd seen the result of the operation, and contrary to my expectations (and I suppose proving that I chose the right doctor for the job) it looks nothing like an operation. Instead it looks like I've been unwisely picking at a pimple.

This makes me feel a bit pathetic about all the fuss I've made, but really, the procedure took half an hour, so I expected there to be something more to show for it. (Especially since when he said he'd 'whip it off' I'd expected it to take a couple of minutes.) I suppose the half hour was the doctor carefully covering up the evidence. Most of that time was spent putting in seven or eight tiny stitches, only one of which is now visible. Sometimes the thread went 'ping' as he was doing this stitching operation, which made me wonder if he was inserting a tiny violin, of a size suitable for the kind of angel that dances on the head of a pin.

I suppose I should not be disappointed that it looks so undramatic. I guess the doctor assumed that I did not want to frighten my students. And after all, it is my face.

So I'm not really ungrateful. I'm just disappointed at the lack of evidence of my fortitude. I'll be meeting a friend tomorrow and had been hoping to impress her. Having to point it out first will be a little deflating.


Today I went to the big river to play with my new camera. I did not have much luck, as I left it too late and was on the wrong side of the river, facing the sun, which was going down already. Also, there were too many people (today was a public holiday) so the birds were keeping well away from the riverbanks. However, I did get some very bad shots of a mystery bird (some kind of small heron?) which flew overhead, stopped briefly, and then wisely flew away again. If it had stayed around it would have risked getting tangled in some fishing line.

I get annoyed when people fish where the birds congregate, and especially where cormorants are diving. It worries me. There was one cormorant diving today right where a guy was fishing. Often he was throwing his line right where the bird had just gone down, and I found it incredibly stressful to watch. He was on the other side of the river, otherwise I might have said something.

I'd been playing with the camera settings when the mystery bird appeared and disappeared suddenly, and was not quick enough to get ready. These are the best shots I got. The first one is particularly unfocused, but at least it shows the markings on the wings.

Also on the other side of the river, a couple of people were flying kites. (I kept hoping the kite strings would snag the fisherman.) Kites are hard to photograph, I discovered. When these were lower they were right in front of the sun, and when they were high they were VERY high. So these aren't great pictures, either.

Maybe I'll do better next time.


akikana said...

You got yourself there a juvenile Nycticorax nycticorax - otherwise known as a Black-crowned night heron or goi sagi.

Badaunt said...

Thank you!

I looked it up, and discovered that the young "are aggressive and will throw up on intruders." I will take special care not to intrude if I ever see any chicks, especially since they are also carriers of Japanese Encephalitis.

That was the first one I'd seen, at least that I've noticed. I guess they aren't very common around here.

Lia said...

Sorry about the lack of scar, but I think that once the thrill of "victim" has worn off, you'll be glad if people don't notice. I mean, isn't that the whole point of mole removal?