Monday, February 11, 2013

Run-ins with hobos and such.

Feb 4th to Feb 10th

So far, this week has been rather uneventful. On Monday, I went to the National Archives. That was pretty cool! Seeing the Constitution, Bill of Rights, Declaration of Independence, and other important national documents was a bit surreal. Other then seeing those things and the grand architecture, the National Archives was kinda boring. The Museum there wasn’t too interesting.
            Tuesday was back to the grindstone. I had to get there right at 8 in order to go to the morning briefing. Unfortunately, My second alarm did not go off, so I woke up at 7:09, nine minutes after I meant to leave. That was the fasted I have ever gotten ready and thrown a suit on in my life! I made it there around 8:05, which was fine. That day, I worked on some truthPoint surveys, which is where a staff member randomly selects patients around the hospital, 10 that are inpatient, and 10 that are outpatient, and has them fill out a survey to see how the VA is doing. That was not my cup of tea. Going up to random people and asking them to fill out a survey is quite uncomfortable, especially when they are cranky vets, which some were. That was just to gain some experience and see what TruthPoint is, which is something we will have to interpret. Luckily, we will not be doing that everyday.
            Wednesday consisted of drafting up a proposal to start an award program as well as dealing with some issues. In Patient Centered Care, we deal a lot with complaints, allegations against staff, and other negative issues that need to be resolved. It is crazy to see how much drama there can be out there in the real world! Luckily, my boss is awesome and good at resolving things like that. She says the other intern and I will deal with that somewhat in the near future, which is a bit unnerving. I feel like I have been in a sink-or-swim training program since I have gotten here. It is quite a bit of a learning curve.
            Thursday was a lot like Wednesday when it came to work; we had to deal with the same type of things. That afternoon, I went to the Union Station to grab a bite to eat before I went to class at 6:30. While I was there, this man came up to me and was like “excuse me sir, can I ask you a question? Well first off, are you today?” I seriously thought he was one of those street evangelists who approach random people and are like “DO YOU KNOW JESUS???” Instead of asking me that, he said “I am homeless and was wondering if you could buy me some food? I don’t want money, just food.” It really took me by surprise! He was dressed decently, had nice athletic shoes, a good hat, and a manicured beard; I had a bad feeling about it all, so I politely backed out as best I could. I liked that he asked for food and not money, but there are so many programs and day centers for that type of stuff; scavenging food at a train station is not the best way to do it. I used the “I’m a poor college student” excuse for backing out. After I got my food, he approached me while I was eating. I was in this hallway type of thing with no one around, so it was kinda creepy. He asked “Hey man, remember me? We talked upstairs and I asked you for food.” That added to the weird feeling, because we talked on the same level, not a level up. I was like “yeah, man, I do.” Then he asked “Can I have some of your food?” That really took me off guard! I was just like “Sorry man, but no.” Then he just sat there for five minutes and watched me eat. It was super creepy. I feel bad for not helping him, but he gave me the heebie-jeebies! When I was leaving, I passed him again, and I heard him cuss me out under his breath. It was quite the weird experience! Class was pretty interesting! We talked a lot on clinical interviews and the role of professional witnesses, mainly psychologists, in the courtroom.
            The weekend was pretty good! My friend from RSU who lives near by now came to town, and we went to Chinatown with some folks and had some great Thai food Before that, though, we went to Piratez Tavern, which was awesome! The d├ęcor is pirate, obviously, but what surprised us all and really made it awesome was the fact that all of the staff dressed and acted like pirates! On top of that, some regulars came all dressed up too, and they had a band that sang pirate medleys. It was awesome!!! The food smelled good too, so I will most certainly go back there. Saturday consisted a trip to the farmers market in downtown Silver Spring followed by a trip to the Smithsonian Air and Space museum. That place was jaw-dropping; there were so many real air and space artifacts there! I will probably have to go back again. After that, my friend and I explored some of the national mall and got some pictures of the Capitol Building. Sunday was just a relaxing day topped of with the premiere of the Walking Dead with some friends. 

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