Friday, June 29, 2012

Mannon Bay, Bowen Island -Journal

Praise the Lord. Jesus is born.  I just read the opening chapters of Bill Johnson's, When Heaven Invades Earth.  Mark who worked with me a couple of years was enamoured by Rev. Johnson's writings.  Now I can't remember who the other person was who spoke so highly of him.  Yet the book has sat a year on my shelf at least waiting to be read.
It talks of miracles.  Living a supernatural life in Jesus' name.
I plod mostly.  I struggle from day to day.  I carry the burdens of world upon my shoulders and my body aches with pains I imagine Job knew well.  I am chronically frustrated by the Herod's of authority.  I fear at times Caligula is reincarnated in Washington. I long for Marcus Aurelius instead.
Yet here I am enriched by every day of living sitting in a sailboat in a little bouncy bay off Howe Sound. This is the sailboat I've winter sailed solo to Hawaii in.  It's restored since my extrarordinary friend, Tom and I sailed back from Hawaii breaking the mast  at night, a thousand miles from shore,  when we feared we'd not be able to continue under our own steam yet did so by jury rigging a Spanish turnkey.
I'd asked for help that time. Using a satellite phone to Eric I got advise from all the resources of Vancouver and beyond.  Life's like a space ship at times.  All I have to remember to do is call home.  Earth this is me, help.
That's been the story of this last month. Moments of panic followed by prayer followed by asking for help.  I had the lump on my face that didn't respond to the normal doctor self help like squeezing, picking, self prescribing antibiotic cream and hydrocortisone.  My friend George, better known as 'the poet", otherwise named Dr. Chalmers thought I should let Dr. McAlistair look at it. Now that the dermatologist, this wise and kind gentleman with endless years of experience wrestling with just such wiley demons of vanity as unknown fascial lumps. I felt 'safe' again.  The mounting fear had been halved just talking with George about it.
The unexpected tax bill, shocking and disturbing as it was, once would have thrown me into a paroxysms of paranoid conspiracy theories, but this month did no such thing. I spoke with my accountant, a fine gentleman indeed, and then with my bank manager. Scotia bank has been as helpful to me as Bank of Montreal was so helpful to my parents for many years.  They want to make money by ensuring that you're making money.  So suddenly there was an easy solution.
I'd just bought a car, a lovely little Mazda miata, because I've been riding motorcycle year round mostly to save money, a bit to be macho, and partly because the traffic of Vancouver is so horrible with bike lanes and lack of parking that my truck is no longer an option for that increasingly effete city of lulu yoga lotus butts.  I ride an off road motorcycle in winter and a Harley in summer. I'd skidded on wet leaves and road oil evading psychotic BC Budd smoking drivers to crash. So I had stopped riding my Harley in winter. I'd limped most of a year after that event so was riding a Ural Sidecar Motorcycle with knobby tires but it  was killing my back this winter since I rolled my ATV hunting last fall.  Come to think of it I when I couldn't get the ATV off me and cougars were following my blood trail and my rifle was broken in the roll, I'd felt less confident about life then.
This last year of constant rain and cold was trying my patience so I opted for the sports car.  But I hadn't sold the Ural yet.  Partly because I hate to part with it. It's an amazing Russian machine based on the German war machine that BMW created years past. A classic that has never yet been improved on.
That's why the tax bill caught me by surprise.  That and my penchant for studying things that are relevant to psychiatry and health care rather than studying money and stocks.  I always believe God wants me to be the best doctor I can be and that if I want to make money I could focus my attention on that and save fewer lives but be a whole lot richer.  It's an either /or calculation for me because to date other than my brother I've found that people who promise to look after a doctor's finances are more likely to take the money and run.  Money managers as we learned in the latest of too many diabolical corruptions of the world financial situation don't take a Hippocratic Oath.   The impression we are left with by the media of Goldman Sacs is that the whole upper management was on cocaine with whores cleverly convinced that the hard working citizens of America would bail these banksters out with old age pension funds and whatever was left of once proud and strong America before the dirty got downright despicable.
If Jesus reighed on earth all would be rich beyond on our wildest dreams.
Now the fact is I am. I just forget it. I've been poor so that I went with out food and was hungry and without an apartment. I've been punished for marriage while all those who didn't marry but did break up took no financial or moral hits.  Collectively the girls are celebrated for divorce more than they are for marriage while I've had my share of the state and courts in my bedroom and heart. I nonetheless am blessed to have a kind and beautiful female friend who remains with me despite my antipathy to the rape of the courts of marriages and family.
Oh I am such a self pitying resentful nihilist if I don't keep my lizard brain in check.  I pray most days all day just to block out the fear and anger. Whenever I look at the media I hear the rant of incompetence in every authority structure yet personally I find most people are doing their best bumbling along. Especially the folk I know in church. They're good people.  There are lawyers and bankers and doctors and car sales men there and they'll doing their best like me to be less sinners and more saints.
I've had pneumonia this month.  I did the antibiotics. I have this chronic sinusitis which just waits for the Vancouver weather to give us one day of sunshine then ten days of rain.  I wonder all the time if I wouldn't be better back in the freezing world of Winterpeg where I grew up and the annual winter temperatures killed off all bugs and the occasional human as well.  I know I love Arizona and would be glad to be in a dessert where breathing is best for my nose and lungs but that said I've so many friends here I have grown to love and cherish.
I don't think ever before have I so appreciated the people in my life.  I simply love my friends. They are people I so admire men and women whose lifetime of accomplishments amazes me. They have such great senses of humor too and whenever I am with them I feel enriched to the depth of my being.  I suspect I might make others elsewhere but I really don't want to leave them here only because I can't breath and keep getting colds.   A small price to pay.
I 'm overworked and over stressed.  I haven't had a year of work without having to address the micromanagement of an administration that personally destroys more than it creates while doing everything in it's power to serve it's own interest.Yet, don't I sound like the media when I think like this.  Yes, they have been more wrong than I am and I have been more sinned against than sinning as Lear might say but I don't have their jobs, as fat assed and cushy as they are are, so I really don't know if they are doing cocaine with hookers as their decisions appear.  I'm rather narrowly focussed and over react to the heavy weight of excessive parasites living off the work of others.
But this year, this last month, faced with a criminal who wanted to kill women in the womb, a veritable Chinese government type, suing me,  I just carried on.  I know I'm doing God's work healing .I know I work 12 hours a day for the betterment of my fellow man. I see the proof of my work in the successes where success is impossible. I know how hard my work is and yet I go and if I don't think about the future and worry about my declining healh and aging body and fear of no pension and the rape of pensions and the abuse of the elderly I'm okay.
I'm okay if I focus on today.  I'm okay if I forgive the authorities which demonic at times are probably simply reflections of my own unhealed aspects of self.  I am in heaven when I can love hell.  I loved the play in which Jesus visitted Hell and the devil and his friends simply didn't want heaven. That's my impression.  I want the joy of love over the delight of lust but then that like most things of civilization it's an acquired taste.
 My animal brain is always at the door. The wolf howls when I least expect it. I pray each day to keep the lizard and the wolf at bay. I loved the imagery of Ghost Rider with Nicholas Cage. It spoke to my inner struggles and made me want to get back on the Harley and lose some anxiety at high speeds on the open highway.
Here I am in my sailboat. I had the fuel system fixed this winter so I wasn't certain if I'd have any problems when I filled up. I wasn't certain I'd have enough fuel on board to get to the fuel dock. I wasn't certain how the engine would run. There's a need for new seals on the stuffingless stuffing box.  I rely on pumps to keep the water levels down in the bilge when I 'm driving along. Jim does good work but so often I've had work down and only found out that there was a mistake when I'm in high seas. The new exhaust sheared off twice with vibrations once in the strait at night with storm warnings and another time just leaving dock.  Black smoke coated the whole of my interior cabin so that it took thousands of dollars to clean up the resulting mess to what is really my downtown apartment home.
I understand my friend leasing a car and renting a house and never getting involved in the maintenance or concerns of ownership. My empathy for patients difficulties with second hand cars, roofers, cable repair men and mechanics is solidly based in experience.  The more I live life the more I've been able to encourage the suicidal to carry on inspite of the hardships and frustratons.
I want to know God more and more. I want to be with God all the time but right now a person who I helped by lending a whole lot of money too when they were in a desperate crisis has turned out to be  a party boy, and it's months of broken promises while I know they've never yet been weaned from their mother's tit and would shame a father by their lack of industry and responsibility.  I hate myself when I  help others and err in generosity.  Like giving those two women who were recovering alcoholics a job only to have them steal from me and try to destroy my patients and the ministry of medicine.  I have personally lent tens of thousands of dollars to those in need and never been repaid by them. I thought that over time these 'takers' would 'give back' but I see now that they with  decades  past haven't given back to me and haven't given back to others either .I live in a country with a whole lot of people still living in diapers expecting the adults to care for them while they party or 'do their own thing' claiming any excuse to simply care for themselves.  I am appalled to realize the abuses of Greece and realize they're like Quebec and so many others around me who simply don't believe they should 'work' while they clearly want the product of others labours. Some even consider their 'vibes' are worth more than others 'vibes' and yet won't care for others in a material way.
I remember the musician who took so much money from me.  There's a joke that goes what's a musician without a girlfirend, homeless.  Art is like a two year old giving poop to its parents.  These infants insist on seeing their poop as priceless but boy if you ask them for money it's a whole different equation. Of course there's good art and bad art.  There's a whole lot of good in all of us in fact.
I feel badly because I've sewed seeds repeatedly in barren ground. I am the eternal optimist. I'm a spiritual chieerleader. I take in strangers and give them a home and they steal from me. I give people work and they steal from me. I work three jobs and find that the other person is playing at the computer claiming that 'surfing' the internet is really important.  I'm a bloody accredited researcher and I don't have time to do this because I'm working to pay the rent.
That said I take for granted all the great things that people do for me. I've worked with the best and right now am truly blessed with the people I'm working with. How come I focus on a hurt rather than celebrating the kind things that go on all the time. Last night I was stung by a mosquito and thought of that rather than focussing on the warmth in the cabin, the good company, the great NetFlix series Jericho and the wonders of being in outdoors BC at anchor in this incredible creation of centuries of engineering and design.
When I say pay the rent I'm really talking about office overhead and  this glorious boat that's got me here .
I lost the rpm meter crossing Howe Sound last night.  I watched it begin to bounce about then slowly die.  I thought the engine was cooked.  Because the bottom is full of crap and I paid the tax man and the little shit didn't pay me back the money I lent him I haven't pulled  the boat up on land to fix the shaft leaks or scrape the bottom and put new zinks and antifowling paint on. I'm only making 3.5 knots rather than 5 knots.  The engine is working hard just to get me going that fast. There was a wind coming out of the sound.  It was night and I'd put on the steaming lights.
Laura gets anxious. We talked about all the other women in my life and the extraordinary near death experiences that they had coming along for the ride. Tom and I've talked about this.  He's lost girlfriends after they've been out flying with him. He told me he'd found out last year in flight that his air speed indicater was wrong wired. He was having trouble flying an antique plane through the mountains against a head wind and thought the only saving grace was that he was alone and there'd be no witnesses or complaints if he crashed in the mountains.
I think all the women I've know,  except Laura whose still game,  are home somewhere on a couch in the suburbs watching tv and recovering from the trauma of knowing me.
I explained to Laura that the Coast Guard were 5 minutes away.  Further, I'm a member of CTow the marine equivalent of BCAA. One of those great guys would tow me into port if I called.I"ve a half dozen means of seeking help, radios, flares and cell phones.  Help is right here. It's a whole lot different than when I was alone in the Pacific or even off the coast of Mexico or up by Alaska.    I don't at all think an engine problem in protected waters is a major concern. I've been knocked down in 40 foot seas at the outset of a hurricane scurying for safety with my tail between my legs.
I told Laura about Sherry and I surviving Devils Hole north of Desolation Sound when the dope smoking diesel mechanic left a screw out of the oil pan after the overhaul. A whirl pool suddenly began to open behind us like someone pulled the bathtub drain plug . At the same time freak high winds coursed down the channel ahead of us impeding our forward mothion. Poor Sherry was at the helm with the Yanmar engine running full open throttle while I was pouring oil in the overheated diesel one step ahead of the growing leak. If the engine had stopped we would have had gone under to our deaths in minutes.   Now those were  desperate times.  But not this night. This was just a nuisance.
It turned out it was just the RPM meter and not the throttle or the engine.  I checked the gps and we were making headway at a constant rate even though the rpms were fluctuating on the meter but not by the sound of the engine.  I obviously have sails and I could have put those up and sailed on to the harbour.  I even have a dinghy and motor so could have hopped ship with Laura and Gilbert, cursed my beloved bitch ship one last time, left it to it's fate in the sea, gone ashore to never set foot on a boat again.
But it was just an RPM guage that was done in.  The speedometer was clogged with undergrowth so I didn't have that to help.  The prop shaft is producing a veritable hose of water too so I became worried with low rpm guage I'd picked up something on the prop. The mind goes into overdrive thinking of all the possibilities.
It's never perfect.  My boat becomes perfect into the second third week of steady cruising but these weekend jaunts and holiday exercusions are always full of surprises.
At least the anchor worked when we finally got into the Bowen Island bay. A whole lot of crab traps made that simple task difficult. Nowhere to anchor either because of the welfare scows that are floating Safeway shopping carts.
I'm actually fairly happy in the rain taking two tries to set the anchor.  I realized that only moments before I thought my engine was going to die.  Of course such a thought is coupled with thousand dollar repair bill and having days of workmen on the boat and life disrupted with 12 hour days of patients and no where to escape the chaos. I moved into my RV for a couple of months while repairs took that long this winter.  I was so thankful when the work was finally done and I could return to my boat.  Only one major curse. The refrigerator was turned off yet again. This has happened with workers on the boat a dozen times. This time I only lost a pound or two of venison from the deer I shot in the fall. It's a million dollars an ounce but how do you explain that to a person who is doing their best keeping you afloat.  Years back I had a worker forget to close the through hull so returned to boat filled with water the pumps not turned on  toilet leaking.  These same people who charge more than I make complain if surgeons leave pipe wrenches and hammers  in their brains and forget to suture wounds closed. The gall!
I've known thousands of miracles on this boat.  This boat has been Gods' way of trying to convince me it's okay. Don't panic.  This too will pass. Jesus loves you.  Every fear and trouble I could imagine has come and gone on this boat.
It's still here and I'm still here.  Gilbert my dog is sleeping in my bed.  The ferry comes by early and I was woken by the tossing about with the big waves that come into the harbour.  The door to the head flung open and I saw that I've had a half dozen 'fixes' to address the problem of it flying open. There's evidence of such 'fixes' everywhere.
The Mazda was second hand. The only new things I've had in years is a computer and an ATV.  New things break as often as things already worn in.  I know all the trouble spots on this boat.
I remembered that the rpm guage once went out before because there was a short on the ground. I'll look at the wiring today. But it's 30 years old so maybe it's the guage itself.  We're all getting old.  There's wear and tear.
In my heaven the wear and tear isn't happening. Everything that is supposed to be lubricated is.  Especially joints.
Last night my back was in spasm.  The ATV roll took it's toll.  I feel a whole lot better now after at night at anchor. Every molucule is massageed by the motion.
I have this great new propane stove. There's a thing of celebration.  I got this installed last year and it's a marvel.  Yet in my self pity and worry I so quickly forget about the glory of this or the new wind generator I put in to replace the old one that hadn't done much good for years giving me only a watt or two or power when it was supposed to be putting out a whole lot of energy. The old solar panels have been a joy doing double duty for years.
I worry about the wiring.  Jim re wired the batteries for the new wind genny and I'm not sure if I've got the switches the way they should be.  It's not an issue for today since I have the diesel engine as generator but given the shaft leak I can't afford to be without battery to the pumps. I'm watching the battery indicator jump which means that something is siphoning power. I'll get up and look to see what that may be eventually.
Everything on a boat is conservation and ecological. I get tired of the 'activist's and all the talkers who go on and on about the enviromment but refuse to accept it's the city dwelling activists with all their hot air that are a principle cause of global warming. I'm out here self sufficient and using wind, solar power and diesel as needed with my own sewage dispoasl unit and all mamer of environmentally friendly 'stuff'. It's 'work'.  It's expensive and it's not just ranting and raving and sounding good. It's actual living in that world.  Talk is cheap.  My friend gave me a button that said of beware of stupid people in large crowds.
I forgot to ask Laura to bring some elk I store in the little freezer I bought and have at her place. I've deer in the freezer at work. This weekend I hope to catch a salmon.  It's not been snce I was out last August that I've caught fresh fish.
I miss country living. I 'd like to garden again. They say you can have chickens in Vancouver. Now that my cat Angel died this month, mavbe I could consider chickens on the boat. I can just hear Angel in heaven say, now that I'm gone you have such an idea!
I dream of working in the country again and maybe commuting part time to the city.
I applied to work in Chilliwack and Abbotsford but the administration said they didn't need pscyhiatrists or addiction doctors.  I think that means they don't need me. I gained a really bad reputation as a whistelblower stopping the unnecessary killing of patients by administration a decade or so back.  The patients were glad to be alive but they don't count.  Health care administrators never forget and never forgive. They're putting all doctors on gag orders, their solutions to all problems, lie, deny and cover up.   The one thing that's guaranteed is that administration sticks together.  There I go again. The political animal lizard brain just jumped in.
God wants me where I am doing what I'm doing. The fact is I'm enjoying it immensely just working too hard. I've no health care or benefits and if I get sick I've no compensation.  All day long I see people who are off work with insurance companies paying for them and I think of my own insurance package I pay for myself which barely pays the overhead if I'm not working.  In Canada with over 50% of the country government employed in some way and the rest working for companies no one really understands the small abused private businessmen. The governemnt in it's act of hostility against doctors put our gross incomes on the front page. My colleague has a half dozen doctors and a dozen staff working for him so he was shown has earning millions and the media never took the time to clarify that Mr. Smith , this surgeon made less than the hospital administrator or that I as a doctor make less money than a nurse by the end of my career given the loss of income that 12 years of education did.
See how quickly the poor me brain steps in.  Suddenly out of nowhere the gratitude and celebration of God and good memories of battles won and days lived are high jacked by this monkey mind that wants to self pity and feel vengeance.
There 's a 'child within for sure but ones a really bad little kid and the other is the good kid. Bad kids are loud and obnoxious and it's a lot of discipline and work and maturity and wisdom to get to hearing and keep hearing the wee small voice inside.
God is that wee small voice.
God is everyday I've been alive getting me through that day I might otherwise have died. I am alive today only because God is 100%.  My higher power is what gives me life and years.  I've got to shake off and ignore all the problem thinking and catastrophising and awfulizing.
I've got to remember  the Third Day song "There's a light at the end of the tunnel."  I was listening to Third Day when Tom and I were limping along through storms in the Pacific and just this spring I got to see them in concert in Langly. Isn't that a miracle.  God be praised it is.
The very breath we breathe is a mystery and a miracle.
I'm going to have another cup of coffee and try to keep the glass half filled at least. IMG 1170IMG 1179IMG 1171IMG 1173Thank you JesIMG 1169IMG 1181us.

No comments: