Good Morning Coffee Drinkers and everyone else.
This is a story about the coldest I’ve ever been in my life, so bundle up, snuggle up, and put another log on the fire.
I was born and reared in Florida. - I had never really seen it snow until I was an adult. Needless to say, living in Germany where the snow can be on the ground from Thanksgiving until Easter was quite a “climate” shock. Some places out in the field, were everyone else played Army while I patched up their boo-boos, temperatures even dipped as low as the sub-zero range. Imagine that - never seen snow and here I was with .5m (20 in) of it outside and the thermometer reading a ridiculous -19ºC ( -2ºF). It took some getting use to.
For about half of the time I was in Germany we used an old Vietnam War Marine type vehicle for an ambulance. They were called Gammagoats and they were monsters, with six wheel drive - articulated steering (back wheels turned opposite direction of front) - three cylinder diesel engine and loud as the devil. They could go almost anywhere.
Since we were allowed separate heaters in the back insulated patient transport area, the medic's gammagoat was also a place for the fellas to get out of the cold, warm up, and keep from getting frostbite or hypothermia. But, you couldn’t run the heater all the time - especially when we were on Alert. Usually, however, the time that we could run the heater, along with the insulation and the body heat of 10 men crammed in the back was enough to keep you warm. - Usually.
On this one particularly cold night I had just gotten off duty and crawled into the back of the Gamma to catch a few hours sleep. There wasn’t enough room to stretch out and everyone was sleeping sitting up on the side benches. I didn’t care - it was toasty warm - I was dog tired.
When you walk through snow a lot of it sticks to your galoshes and pants - you try to brush it all off before you get into the back of the truck, but no one gets it all. After a while all that snow had melted and there was about 5cm (2 in) of water in the bottom of the funny looking truck. Of course the order came down to turn off all heaters. I was still dead asleep - didn’t wake up.
I didn’t wake up when the driver moved the vehicle to a spot on an incline that caused this near ice water to pool by my feet. There now was 15cm (6 in) of frigid water giving my boots a bath. While I slept, everyone left the back of the truck, leaving me alone. There went all the body heat. The liquid snow on the cold, steel, bed turned back into ice, literally freezing my feet to the floor. Of course this woke me up. I woke up with two feet firmly frozen to the floor by 15cm of rock hard ice. I could’t move. I started to cry. Here I was - a man of 21 years crying. Crying, not only because it was the coldest I had ever been but also because I was trapped and I couldn’t move anywhere to warm up. I had no idea that in 30 years that would be an regular thing. Having pd is sometimes like being the coldest you’ve ever been, with your feet frozen to the floor.
Scientist say there is no such thing as cold - only the absence of heat. I disagree, that’s like saying there is no bad - only absence of good. I disagree because that night, on that mountain in Germany, I was COLD it was very real and it was VERY VERY BAD. Yes, having pd is like being the coldest you’ve ever been, but thank God they have heaters (Sinemet in my case) heaters so I can un-freeze my feet from the floor and provide them with the absence of cold, which is very, very, not bad.
BY THE WAY...
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just say yes!
meet Andy Ward King, a professional musician and artist until a diagnosis of parkinons dsease at age 49 forced him into an early retirement., he now uses his music, his art along with the whimsical world he has created in this blog as therapy to ( as he puts it ) outsmart his brain and make the daily battles with parkinson’s a little bit easier, to give him that all important reason to get up on the morning, to make his life worth living. Andy has learned how to say NO to gving up \ NO to depression and apathy \ NO to following willingly the road of decline that stretches before him. he learned that to say no to all of these things all one has to do is say yes. Andy has learned to just say YES to life/\\