Sunday, July 22, 2012

Job Satisfaction

James Alfred Wight’s (James Herriot) animal stories,  named “All things bright and beautiful” “All things wise and wonderful”  “All creatures great and small” and “The lord god made them all” are one of my all time favourites. Even though they are known as animal stories, they are more about the owners of the animals and other human characters that the author came in contact with and are endearingly written about.  The stories in
general give a beautiful picture of life in early 20th century in Yorkshire, always making me feel “oh, I should have been there, then”.

There is a vast difference between his time, society and patients and those of mine but I come across many things that I can relate to his work as a person providing and living on providing health care. A few decades into the profession, many a times he mentions about the new techniques, materials and medicines available to him, which were not there when he began his work and wonders about the huge difference that they made to his life as a veterinarian.

Thirty years after beginning work, I can count a few such things in my life as a dentist, one of which is the availability of the composite resin or the light cured acrylic for dental fillings which I had never heard when I began my work.

The broken tooth in the picture would have required placement of a crown or ‘cap’ involving considerable amount of work spread over a few days and the support of a very good lab technician to get the result which I managed to obtain in an hour by rebuilding the broken part over the stump using the composite material.

Fee received - Not worth mentioning.

Job satisfaction - priceless.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Mysore Zoo And The Slide

During my school days Mysore was our permanent holiday destination and a trip to Mysore was never complete without a visit to the Zoo. Even though we continued to visit Mysore at least once a year, visits to the Zoo were less frequent after I crossed primary school. It once again appeared on the ‘must do’ list when my children were young. I had not been to the Zoo after my children grew up (may be last fifteen years).

I went there last week during my recent visit to Mysore and was happy to find many changes for the better. Better enclosures for the animals and better toilets for the visitors to name just two of the most important. Also, I noticed that two things have remained unchanged.  One was the behavior of the animals and visitors - animals behaving as gentlemanly as they used to be and the visitors behaving like animals shouting and gesticulating in front of the enclosures.

The other was this slide.

 I had completely forgotten about it till I saw it next to the aviary. It stood as it did decades ago, the very sight now bringing a flood of child hood memories. It is the tallest and the smoothest slide that I have ever slid down and I remember that we used to immensely enjoy the slides. We used to slide on our bottoms, stomachs and backs and return home happy with sand and mud in our hair and pockets. I had an urge to climb up and slide down at least once but better sense prevailed and I just stood there happy with my memories and seeing children enjoying themselves.

It has been there for more than four decades and I don’t think that it has required any repairs or resurfacing. I hope it stays so forever, a source of pleasure for the young and an object bringing back pleasurable memories for the old.