Monday, August 13, 2007

Como contar los muertos

One innovation on the roads this summer has been to put up multilingual messages on the Variable Message Panels above the road. Here in Andalucía they are in Spanish and English! The thrust of the summer campaign is to try and reduce the road death toll by policing speed in particular, although the message used is by having the road death toll from 1 January updated daily - it makes sobering reading:

Day 1 (Aug 10): 1658 dead

Day 2 (Aug 11): 1668 dead

Day 3 (Aug 12): 1682 dead

Day 4 (Aug 13): 1699 dead

Of course, speed in itself does not cause accidents, it's the nut behind the wheel that does, but also by driving too close behind, drink/drugs driving, suicidal overtaking manoevres. All of these can be seen several times a day here, and these go unpunished.

y las hermanas mayores

Susana's big sisters made this lovely painting whilst we're waiting for her to come home.

She's picked up a slight infection so probably won't be home this week. The hospital is allowing Carole to stay on even though she is fit to come home.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Hermanita nuestra

Finally Susana gets to meet her brother and sisters. The doctor on the neonatal ward waived the normal visiting rules and let them all in at once.

It looks as though Susana will be in the neonatal ward for most of the next week as she still has breathing difficulties after swallowing amniotic fluid.

At least she is feeding more or less normally now from Carole and is getting slowly stronger. Carole tells me that she has blue eyes just like the others. Another coinicidence is that although we did not conciously choose Susana as a name, she shares it with her great-grandmother.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Sigue mejorando

Little Susana continues to improve and is now out from the sun bed. She's still staying in the neonatal ward as the doctors want to monitor her breathing more.
She's on oxygen and is being fed through a shunt. She took a little milk by syringe today but wasn't able to suckle.
She opened her eyes today, but too briefly for us to gauge what colour they are.
Carole is improving too, but is plainly still in great discomfort. She can get to Susana only in a wheelchair as her bed is the other end of the building from the neonatal ward.
The children will have to wait until Susana leaves neonatal before they can see her.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Susana Isabel

The latest addition to the family arrived this morning at the 12th minute past the 11 hour on the 10th August.
At the time of the photo she was 15 minutes old.
The whole process took SO much less time than in the UK. 20 minutes from going into theatre to holding the little darling in my arms.
She was then whisked off to the neonatal ward and put on a sun bed (warming lamp). A great way to start your life in Spain.
Both mother and daughter are doing well (in separate wards), though I don't know when they'll be home. In the meantime I have three older kids to wrangle. They can't wait to meet their kid sister.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Nuevas vistas

One of the advantages I've found of having the Santana is that views like this are available without having to drag the family on foot through a hot and dry landscape.

At 1,479m even with the haze you can make out Gibraltar and Djebel Musa.

I'll be doing some more off-road exploration asap.