I finally received word from the state EMS office that I am now eligible to take the state EMT-I exam. Of course, I am an I-tech in the eyes of both the National Registry and New Hampshire. Vermont has to be special. Speaking of special, there are no Vermont ‘I’ exams scheduled… So I’m in limbo. It’s been six months since I finished my class; five months since I finished the clinical requirements. Three months since I took the National Registry exam. Over a month since I was certified in New Hampshire. Garsh knows how long before I can use these skills in my own backward state.

My paid department works both sides of the river. If the call originates over there, I work as an ‘I’. Hasn’t happened yet, but that’s what is expected of me. Over here, I’m still a basic. Before my first non-ride-along shift, my boss told me that if the call is in Vermont and I need to save a life then to go ahead and apply the ‘I’ protocols. Then he said, “But if you [mess] it up, we never had this conversation.” Great. I’m guessing my malpractice insurance wouldn’t apply if I were exceeding my legal scope of care.

I covered the paid department for an hour and a half today while the scheduled I-tech was delayed coming in. Nothing happened, though another firefighter had a CD with a bunch of pictures taken by local state troopers that he knows who escorted a relief convoy to Mississippi right after Katrina hit. Some of the images of the devastation were worse than what is shown on TV.

During the drive down, the troopers passed the time by drawing signs and flashing them at each other. Some of the pictures from the drive were completely hysterical though woe betide the troopers if the CD falls into the wrong hands. Let’s just say that ‘Supertroopers’ might be based on reality.

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