tues news

Things are moving along today.  Dr. Pai (I finally asked how to spell his name) came by to announce that he will bridge from heparin to warfarin.  Then it’s a 24 – 48 hour window for warfarin to become therapeutic before discharge.

As we know, toilet’s tell stories, and the “brown in the bottom” is a big improvement from the “black is back” scenario we had last wkd.

We are ever so grateful to the team of Docs and Nurses at the Jube, they are great to talk to and extremely competent and professional.  Not only that, but Hershey has had three left handed nurses in a row (it’s a new club – who knew).  Delightfully the right handed nurses are just as smart, and one speaks French!!

The diet is back to regular from clear fluids and Hershey is eating everything in sight. He was a hungry man.IMG_5999 (2)

Sideways Sally has finished the pillow project and sewed a cover for our stern tie out of sunbrella.  Now it’s time to go home cause she’s out of sewing projects she can do by hand.

Hopefully by the wkd we’ll be back on OMOO taking our time to get strength back in the Skipper.  We’re so thankful this happened at the beginning of summer, not in the middle and not out beyond the safety of home port.

Thank you for the visits, calls and messages.   We appreciate everyone’s support!!


Monday at the “Jube”




Still in Victoria, still getting great care, still experimenting.

Things are up and down.  Blood count is stable, now on heparin which got clotting count too low but getting sorted out today.  Pulse has been down to 50 which is normal for Hershey but alarms the Nurses.

Doctor Pi was in to chat and states the staple they put in will eventually be pushed along and pooped out once the scar tissue shoves them out of the way.   Hershey says no one can tell him what metal they are made of.  He also learned the french word for “stool” from his French speaking nurse.  It’s “caca” if you’re a kid or “sal” if you’re an adult.

He’s on a clear fluid diet and starving.   Hopefully only for another day so he can enjoy his oatmeal raisin cookies.  I’m sure he’s missing his hodge podge oatmeal.

For the first time Sideways Sally felt comfortable on OMOO without the Skipper.  It has been very strange coming here without him.  Last night it felt warm, relaxing and inviting .  I fell asleep watching a netflix movie, so I guess I was tired.

Sunday was a great family day!!  We had a nice time visiting with Anna and face timing with James and Catherine (Hershey’s son and wife) and grans Annie and Julia.  The girls are loving bike riding and reading.  They are soooo cute!!




3 times lucky

I love that old saying today better than ever!!!

Three scopes later and Dr. Pi found the bleed and put two staples in it.  He also informed Hershey that “it turns out this type of bleeding is not that uncommon for people who have been on pacemakers for a length of time and are using anticoagulants.”

It’s so relieving to know!  Now all of our worst imaginings are banished.  Like late last night we wondered if Marfans causes the intestines to deteriorate or if the chicken bone Hershey (maybe) swallowed could be ripping him apart.  Whew, not even the fall on the dock when his lawn chair went into a crack in the boards a couple of weeks ago is allowed to rattle around in our minds any longer as a possible cause for this nightmare.

It’s so nice when life gets simple again.  We still have to make sure the bleed is stopped before going back on Warfarin but hemoglobin levels climbed a little today from yesterday, so that’s a good sign.

Here at the “Jube” the scope was much longer than the one in Cowichan District Hospital so the Doctor was able to reach a part of the intestine they couldn’t previously.


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This lovely lady is Anna, Hershey’s niece.  She has been living in Victoria recently so she came for a visit this afternoon and brought oatmeal raisin cookies and kambucha.  Both were a big hit on the treat list.  Anna also has Marfans and so understands many of the complications and has survived a few of her own medical emergencies.

Talk about “two great minds think alike.”  The conversation between these two blows me away, from every topic like the benefits of kambucha to the history of Ireland and alot in between.    Of note, there was some “mind expansion” drugs on board so we really covered a wide range of information.   Kind of like when more wine goes in more information comes out, but on a whole new level.   Too bad the Skipper is not likely to remember it all tomorrow.

It was  adorable when he first returned from the procedure and his nurse asked him how that went and his reply was, “I sure missed you.”  She is pretty cute.

Skipper is stuck to land…

The Skipper is stuck to laaand (said in a New Brunswick accent) and is now trying to impersonate a psych patient, this suits Sideways Sally just fine!!  He’s threatening to take all his clothes off except for his non-skid socks and run down the hall.   This I can deal with…


He’s back!!  The part of him that is the nutbar is alive and well, and he thinks he knows what happened.  He swallowed the anchor!!  It’s the pillow paws socks that have changed his life.  SS always tells her patients those socks are magical.


Wendy, the Skipper’s sister suggested we need to stage something more dramatic to boost our blogger views.  This is a very obvious solution.   Thanks for that Wendy!!

Humor is our best friend.

There’s a very good explanation to why the Skipper is feeling so good,  the bloodwork today showed his hemoglobin is only down from 92 to 91, which is great news.  The bleeding has slowed down without his warfarin on board.    He’s being closely monitored for the next few days, and may need more tests before restarting his warfarin.

This week the surgeon is on top of things, and anounced that Hershey is going to be transferred to the Royal Jubilee in Victoria to find the bleed before going back on warfarin.

“I’m is going to be used as a teaching aid and could have to describe my issues a couple of times.  Maybe I’ll be the Marfan posture boy.  Should be an interesting stay.”

We will keep updates going via the blog.  Thanks so much for all of your encouragement, calls, and support.

Love and respect,

Harold and Ruth


Friday in Victoria, British Columbia


Here we are at Royal Jubilee Hospital in the Clinical Teaching Unit  It’s like coming home.  In 2011 the Doctors at the “Jube” saved Harold’s life.  He had contracted listeria and it had formed a pocket in his aorta that went undetected by blood samples.   This caused extreme pain which led to investigations and a CT scan that showed an aortic dissection that was bleeding into his back.

Today when he arrived by ambulance Harold went from a room which was a shared space  with curtains separating several patients, and sharing a bathroom, to a private room with a view over Victoria to Mount Baker.  The quiet was very welcoming.

A Teaching unit, it wasn’t long until a young resident sat down for an hour and gathered Harold’s medical history, while scanning through the many reports already on his electronic chart from his Cardiologist, his pace maker Doctor, and his infectious disease Doctor.  Harold is very articulate when it comes to describing his medical conditions, the resident responded with, “You are complicated.”

Then came a large amount of blood work of every sort, and the last meal before fasting after midnight for whichever tests come tomorrow.

Of course he quickly bonded with his nurse who is in the “left handed club.”   It’s really nice to watch how easily Harold endears himself to his medical team, as he is a pleasant and intriguing person wherever he goes.

We are so grateful for the medical system in which we receive the “cutting edge” of medical care.   We are also so happy that we were close to home when medical attention was crucial.

This is a different adventure than planned for the summer, but an adventure none the less into the medical world of Marfan’s.

Have a read to learn more:





Pillow Talk

IMG_5942I apologize in advance that this is not going to be a sexy story.


Sideways is a busy lady, so far 3 out of 6 pillows have been recovered.  Now in the boating world one would automatically assume that something went overboard and needed to be retrieved out of the water.   This is a more “sewing related” matter.

While sitting and waiting for Hershey to be transferred to Victoria to get more medical tests and treatment,  SS is in project mode getting the cabin spiffy.    One can never have too many pillows around a boat to prop yourself up in a comfy corner.   Unless your the Skipper of OMOO.   When SS first came aboard OMOO there were too many really fancy over sized pillows which we removed.   These were replaced with a smaller version when the right size and price came up at Superstore.   Now SS is thinking they need a facelift.


In other news on G-Dock…  Teddy is missing his treats so get home soon Uncle Harold!!

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Vic brings Teddy by for treats and a visit most mornings.

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Toilet Gods


The toilet world is very important place.  It tells us all kinds of things.  The toilet was telling us that things weren’t staying where they were supposed to inside the skipper, soooo…

Sideways sent Hershey back to the hospital yesterday so she could get on with boat slaving and let some Real Nurses (RN’s) look after him.  I’m a Psychiatric Nurse, today he needs the other kind  😦

Yup, the glue came off his bleed and he needed an transfusion of 3 bags of blood last night,  another scope today and he’s staying put in hospital till he’s fixed.    While he’s getting the plumbing scoped again Sideways is doing some boat plumbing.

Joker and flapper valves are replaced in the main head and the toilet gods were with me today!!  Why is it called joker valve??  Cause the toilet gods think it’s a big joke whenever somebody has to touch it!!  Taking it all apart is easy, just gross and smelly.   That’s after flushing the head with vinegar for 5 days and not using it for anything else.  It’s a shitty job but somebody has to do it.  Putting it back together can be fiddly cause all the bolts are in a tight space but everything went just as it should and the first flush test was successful, NO LEAKS!!

Sideways lives by the no nonsense approach,  just DO IT.   (scroll over pics to see captions)

We’re using a new joker valve from Raritan which has one slit which is meant to be installed horizontally which makes it tougher for stuff to slide back out.  That’s a big poopy deal in the boat world.  Jim from Linstrom Marine suggested it so we’ll get back to ya Jim!!

Well, that’s all my excitement for today…