The Lavender Garden

The temperatures in the UK reached around 38 degrees centigrade this week, that’s 100 Fahrenheit for anyone who’s old school or American. Temperatures like this can be dangerous for many reasons and not just for humans but for animals too. Please make sure you do all the sensible things in high temperatures like drinking water and staying in the shade.

Or treat yourself to an ice lolly!

Funnily, everyone expects the mortuary to be cold. Generally, it’s a fairly ambient temperature meaning working in scrubs, which are not particularly thick, is absolutely fine. If anything, it’s warmer in the mortuary than most realise because we get quite a lot of heat come back from the fridges. Your fridge at home is cool inside but have you ever felt the back? It’s pretty warm! Think of that upscaled for 5 large fridges and a large freezer and you can imagine the toastiness in our plant room which powers them all.

However, our mortuary is also located in a basement which in the heat is the coolest part of the whole hospital. Currently the mortuary is a lot nicer and better than anywhere else. In fact every day when we leave, reaching the ground floor is akin to that stepping off a plane on holiday feeling when the warm air hits you. So in the heatwave I am much better off than most throughout the day, but I also felt like we were missing out slightly.

Lovely, pretty corridor. I wish they all looked like this!

One lunchtime the other trainee and myself headed out of our normal confines of the basement and went to the Lavender Garden. Although I was pushed to find any actual lavender in the garden, it’s a beautiful place in the hospital where you will find all sorts on a hot summer’s day. We sat down on the grass and watched people come and go, from other staff members to patients it’s a really lovely place to spend some time. I felt for the poor doctor who had only just sat down when his phone started ringing loudly, he stood straight back up with a deep sigh. I also really felt for the poor heavily pregnant lady walking about in the heat, we figured trying to get things going with a bit of exercise.

Regretting the black uniform on a day like that

It’s hugely important for places like hospitals to have spaces such as this for people to go to. A little bit of peace within the clinical and crazy. The volunteer gardener was all smiles and it felt like a lovely place to get away from it all. On top of that, it’s a place for wildlife and for nature to have a little part in the hospital. I’ve started walking over the park outside my house again recently and I cannot encourage you more to get out if you can and enjoy the outdoors. We all spend far too much time cooped up in offices or mortuaries that sometimes we need to just go outside to feel refreshed. Maybe just avoid the thunderstorms.

MG x

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