Tuesday, July 29, 2008

And the Journey Begins...

In the last post I was talking about being exhausted by the first week of the clinical school. I felt rather exhausted both psychologically and physically.

Let me first talk about the psychology part. Last week, all of us fresh clinical students were treated to a buffet of information in a one-week orientation, and it was quite tedious having to digest all the information at once. The "intimidated first-year-first-week medical student syndrome" suddenly started showing up in everyone, including myself. The symptoms included overwhelming sense of smallness, cerebral drowning, time deficiency, and the ominous feeling of "OMG is this what my life is going to be like from now onwards".

So that's the psychology exhaustion. I guess at one point or another, all students are bound to have at least a good dose of "first-year-first-week syndrome". Meanwhile, this post is about the physical part. I mentioned earlier that my travel time is either 40 minutes or 60 minutes, depending on the weeks. This week, I am doing the 60-minute travel to the Northern Hospital. While a 60-minute journey might seem insignificant for people who are used to travelling to work in major cities, it is quite a challenge when you need to catch the bus at 6.45, you return home at 5 or 6, and study until late at night.

I will let pictures do the storytelling.

My daily journey began at this bus stop. It's just a convenient three minutes' walk away from my house. Time: 6:50am.

As the first rays of light shone through, the canopy above was painted with an indescribably beautiful soft, diffused blue-purplish tint. It's not that often I observe the sky with such an intense interest. I guess in the future I will have all the time in the world to do that as I wait and wait and wait.

Part of the waiting process involves constant checking on the timetable at the bus stop, especially when the bus doesn't turn up at the time it's supposed to. Any delay for this bus is disastrous for me, as the next leg of the journey from the train station allows only four minutes from this bus' arrival to the departure of the train. And once I miss the train, I will be 15 minutes late for the hospital.

The bus arrived just before it's TOO late, and it sent me safely to the train station which is seven minutes down the road.

After saying thanks to the bus driver, I came to face what I would call a typical image of a typical Melbourne train station. A ramp going up towards the waiting area. People wheeling their bicycles (yes it's allowed in the train). Some boring tungsten lights in the waiting area. People who look bored.

The train is more punctual than the bus - here it was.

And it went.

The train journey lasts for 30 minutes, stopping by about 16 stations before reaching my destination. I was amused by this particular place's name.

As the sun rose, the colour of the sunlight changed from dark blue to golden.

From the inside of the train, you feel a sense of remote detachment as you observe people go about their daily routines. People getting on the same train everyday, "living life" as usual.

It kind of makes you suddenly realise, jeez, I am now one of them.

As I was getting bored from taking shots of train stations, the train slowed its pace and the PA gracefully announced, "Now arriving at Epping station. This train will be terminating at Epping station."

So the train stopped. I took a bus, and it got me to the front entrance of Northern Hospital five minutes later. I was five minutes early.

And the journey begins...


景耀 said...

and endless journey indeed.

Capablanca said...

Why don't you try finding a place somewhere closer to the hospital or the train station at least. Beats having for the bus.

nice9 said...

Thanks for ur good photo...
u might as well enjoy taking photo during the journey..haha

nhang said...

Great picture representation of the whole journey. Just some random thought - people should make more Power Point presentations in this form, minimizing the use of words on slides and hence keeping the audience interested. Hah..anyway, let's just hope your clinical experience is rewarding so that your long travel is paid off.

(previously sophisticatedsoul) :P

bluez said...

Come on, you're still not beating my daily 1.5 hour journey! :P

btw buses have a higher punctual-ity rate than trains - for the greater part of the day, at least. But then your direction of travel is the reverse of most commuters.

Connex's sneakiness:

changyang1230 said...


capablanca: I need to travel to different hospitals for different rotations, so if I move nearer to one particular hospital, I actually need to spend more time when I go to another hospital.

nice9: Haha if only I can find a place to keep my little camera. :D

nhang: Agreed! Pictures, pictures. Kennysia does that all the time too. :P

bluez: Haha Connex is seldom unpunctual for me - they cancel the service instead. :P