I have approximately two weeks under my belt here at Driscoll Children’s. I have many observations, but first and foremost is I’m not very patient. Despite knowing that I need to listen and learn and have to allow myself time to do so, I am vexed by the desire to get going and do meaningful work. It’s funny, Lurie taught me that I like to build new things and learn a bunch, but that’s looking at the virtues of the learning in retrospect. When in the middle of it, I just want to get going. Pam (my much wiser sister) is going through something similar in her job as she recently got a promotion and is creating her new to the organization role. My advice to her about enjoying the process and the learning and give herself time to get up to speed makes perfect sense when I say it to her. I just wish I was as good at hearing this advice as I am at offering it.
So, living in Texas… The area is beautiful. The bay is beautiful. The people are super nice. The weather is much warmer (no snow this week). People were complaining about the cold wave. We dipped into the high 40’s for about a minute (it took everything I have to not roll my eyes at the people complaining about how cold it had gotten). Things move more slowly here. I have always thought of myself as friendly and able to talk to anyone (I once had a 15-minute conversation with a chair!), yet I find myself wanting to say, “How about you stop talking and give me my dinner that you are standing there holding?” to the waiter at one of our fine establishments. Speaking of which, Chicago is not being threatened with being overtaken by Corpus from a culinary standpoint (no surprise).
The hospital has been incredibly welcoming to me. I have only had my initial impressions about their commitment to serving needy children and raising the bar in that care validated. There are many opportunities for improvement already identified by the people here. Like any institution with bright, strong-minded people, there is a lot of agreement on the issues, but less so on the solutions. But, that means I have work to do! I’m not worried about running out of opportunities! I have found some things confusing. I am surprised there are no medical staff dues (this might make it harder for me to successfully get the medical staff officers (at least the chief of staff) compensated for the work, but that’s something to be figured out). They don’t have department heads from the traditional academic institution view point (these are rotating 2-year terms) which makes it more “democratic”, but less commitment or effort to go in a particular direction. While there are people who want to do more research, the infrastructure is not fully developed. I don’t get the feeling that Driscoll should emulate traditional academic institutions, but we can take from them what is useful and ignore that which isn’t.
Amy is down for the weekend. We wen to the King Ranch yesterday. It has over 800,000 acres of land and is bigger than Rhode Island (and is 10 lots away from where we are building our home). They grow crops (cotton), raise steer, manufacture leather goods, host hunting parties (I’m not sure that’s the right term), bird watching and conservation efforts. It was very interesting, but I wasn’t very pleased by one of the signs that welcomed us.
We did see one rattle snake on the tour. Thankfully, it was on the road and we were in the bus! I will confess, my respect for rattle snakes might border on being a phobia, but I’m trying to keep that in check.
“He is a “little one”, only about 4 feet long.”
Here are some pictures of the cows (they don’t give me the heebie-jeebies (sp?).
More updates later…