Back in 2003, an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) working for the London Ambulance Service began writing a blog. It turned into this book.
Hold tight and get ready for fast-paced, graphic accounts of the daily life of an EMT on the busy streets of London. It's funny and heartwarming yet tragic and profound in parts, reflecting the realities of providing emergency services in an inner-city environment.
The story of the first baby I delivered - I can still remember it now. I can also remember my feeling of relief when it all went smoothly. Yet still managed to turn it into a rant about Midwifery.
Just in from my late-shift and feeling more upbeat than normal. Tonight I delivered my first baby... and yet I can still turn this happy event into a rant.
Picture the scene, you are a midwife (this means you have a chip on your shoulder the size of the African debt), and a lady comes in to your maternity department in the second stage of labour. Do you...
(a) Say hello, take a room and we'll have that baby out as soon as we can, or...
(b) Tell them to go home and come back when the pain gets worse.
Guess which answer results in your baby being delivered by an ambulance bloke who has 1days' training in maternity (and who, to be honest, slept through most of it)?
Then when I take mother and baby into the same maternity department are you...
(a) Vaguely apologetic, or...
(b) Snotty towards the ambulance crew who did your work for you.
Can you guess that tonight I got (b) for both questions?
Otherwise it was a nice simple delivery, with dad shooting pictures on his mobile phone sending them to all and sundry while his wife was lying, bloodstained and naked on a leather sofa. Blood went all over that sofa, which come summer will start to smell just a little rank. Blood also went all over me (note to self - must remember to pack Wellington boots next time) and my acting skills ('Don't worry mum, all normal, I've done hundreds of deliveries') were tested to the limit.
...and I didn't have to pick up any alcoholics.