|Subject: Reacting to disasters on our travels|
I returned two weeks ago from a 48-passenger expedition cruise to Antarctica and the Sub Antarctic Islands. The southern ocean can be relatively calm one minute and the next you can be holding on for dear life. On a good day the swells are high. When the "weather" rolls in, there is no anticipating which way the boat will pitch.
I was lying in my bunk, during a storm, waiting for my Bonnine to kick in, when the ship lurched violently. My room mate, who had just stood up, was flung across the length of the cabin. As she fell, she crashed into the bottom half of the door, which had a "kick-out" panel for emergencies. She ended up with her left shoulder, arm and side jutting out into the hallway, through the door.
Fortunately, the ship's infirmary was directly across from us and the doctor was in. He immediately rushed to her aid. It is quite possible that she broke a rib or two. He had to put her on some very potent medication for her pain. Luckily, we were on a four-day stretch with no landings, so she had a little time to heal. (She did have to take pain- killers the entire trip.)
The ship's doctor was very busy this trip. There was rampant sea- sickness. One woman became so ill, she lost part of the lining to her stomach and was vomiting blood. I think very few people got away without being seasick and being bruised. And that didn't even count flops on the ice off the ship!
Still, no matter how sick or hurt people got, including my room mate, they all said they had a good time and were glad they had come on this trip.
Carrie, Bardonia, NY