welcome to Lumberton

July 27, 2004

so my medical school sent me to lumberton, nc to do a pediatrics rotation.  i didn’t want to go.  i don’t want to be here.  i am lonely and just generally fed up with being a medical student in general, and i’m tired.  not sleepy tired, just tired tired. 

i drove here yesterday, and it took 2 1/4 hours.  it would have taken only 1 and 3/4 hours, but i got sort of lost near the end as is my usual custom and ended up driving around the lumberton area for at least 20 minutes.  what i learned:

1. big box retail has taken over the world (or at least north carolina)

2. people here must eat a lot of fast food, because it seems to be the only option available

3. pretty much all rural small towns in north carolina look the same (comparing this one to the one out in coastal nc, anyway)

i’m not kidding about the fast food.  there was mcdonalds, pizza hut, dairy queen, wendy’s, jack in the box, waffle house, bojangle’s, hardee’s, and burger king as far as the eye could see, but no starbucks.  NO STARBUCKS.  i didn’t realize that there were places left on earth without a starbucks.  apparently, i found one.

the most important question is, where will i get coffee tomorrow morning?  maybe mcdonald’s will have to do.   what is my life coming to?

tomorrow i start an outpatient pediatrics rotation at a rural health center out here.  i really do like working with children, and i’m thinking about it for a career, but probably not primary care.  partly because i find it overwhelming.  i would much rather have a small field to be expert in, and that way i can be like, “oh, well i’m an endocrinologist, why would you expect me to know anything about x or y?” and it will be acceptable. 

so i’m going to start studying while i’m out here, because what else am i going to do?  i am going to try to:

– not watch lots of TV, because that’s sad

– work out every day, because i need to whip myself into better shape

– do work so that i finish my Blueprints and Appleton & Lange review books before the clerkship is over

i tried to join a gym today, but it was so hot and crappy and the treadmill didn’t even hardly work, and i am hoping to find a better one tomorrow.

by the way: i am starting this blog not because i really have anything to say, but because i don’t have much better to do and i think it would be interesting to document this lonely month in lumberton.  i have a feeling it is going to be one of those mundane blogs, like “today i had a bowl of cereal for breakfast.  then i took a shower . . .” rather than a very exciting one.  however, for those people who think being a medical student sounds glamorous and fun, i suppose this thing would at least be educational.  not that anyone is going to read it. 


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