Blog Entries With Tag: cruise

Posted: Feb 29, 2012

Please note – since writing up this blog below last week – a new chapter to this story will be revealed in Part 2. Keep your eyes posted for it shortly. For those of you who follow me in Twitter / Facebook – don’t reveal any sneak peeks here!

Thank goodness for a vacation loaner pump!  Again, Animas came through for me in making my holiday a peaceful time.  I was into day 6 of my floating city holiday – full of white haired / wheelchair bound passengers (I think they made up 85% of the passenger head count – and a few of us “youngsters” were thinking we were in an old age home).  I was already starting to regret booking a 10 day cruise instead of our usual 7 – and starting to clink my tin cup on the bars of my cell – when Salvador Dali decided to pipe up and tell me something was up with him.  This hard working artist as I like to think of my insulin pump needed some attention. 

Out at sea it’s $25/minute for phone use – sorry – but since my last episode with my original pump (Antonio Banderas) had  problems (again on a cruise – am I cursed or what?).  I knew that a phone call like that would last at least 30 minutes while they had me test things out.   The policy is that you cannot use the vacation loaner pump until you call up Animas Technical Support. 

So, off I went to self-diagnosis Salvador Dali the best way I knew how along with my manual by my side.   He was constantly saying “Not primed.  No delivery”.  I was close to doing an infusion change at the time – which always corresponds with a refill of my insulin cartridge to keep me going for another 3.   In the end, after following through all the steps for loading up a new fully filled cartridge and new infusion set all primed, while Salvador keep on saying “Not primed. No delivery” every 3 minutes – we did a few other steps to try to stop the warning (e.g. remove battery, reload cartridge, etc. – but with no success).  My DH luckily was with me during the fun process of having to get my vacation loaner all set up with the programming since I didn’t have the hardware or software program in my netbook to do a direct transfer of the set-up of Salvador to the vacation loaner pump.  Let’s just say it was not a fun process (it reminded me of what a Mum goes through when her child is screaming in agony and you can’t figure out what is wrong).  So, in the end it was done within an hour.

When I got back to dry land in Florida, I contacted Animas USA to tell them what had occurred and I learned something that was a new thing for me.  The cartridge area in the pump is VERY sensitive – and the screw inside that controls the plunger system of the cartridge in the pump, when it senses too much movement OR change in temperature (extreme hot/cold) this will often cause the NO PRIME error to occur.  At this point, Terry at Animas Technical Support told me to test out Salvador with a new cartridge when I got back home to Montreal and  continue using the vacation loaner pump – aka George Michael (thanks Elaine for that suggestion for my pink pump name – I just couldn’t name it Lady Gaga as I’m so used to having male names for my pumps that are by my side 24/7 and pink just seemed to suit George to perfection).

So, over a week later since getting back from holidays and chummy with Michael (or GM) – I’m back home in cold Montreal (it's not really that bad) – and booted up Salvador again for his test.  Amazingly enough, he passed with flying colours – and I reported back to Animas USA speaking with Madeleine this time.   She looked over what Terry had posted from my call the week before – and told me that on average the pump will have this warning 3 times in a month BUT if what had occurred to me occurs more then 3 times in ONE day (for myself it was 5 times within a few hours that day in question) – then it’s trouble shooting time.  Either it’s the insulin cartridge OR the pump is malfunctioning.  So, here’s hoping that if anything occurs to Salvador again – it’s all done within the warranty period which ends April 1st.

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Posted: Dec 1, 2010

Well, this morning my mind is whirling.  I can’t sleep.  This is probably due to heading off on our yearly cruise holiday tomorrow at the ungodly hour of 3:00 A.M. for a 6:00 A.M. flight.  As usual, with the latest airport security change, I’m trying to make sure I’m prepared for not only myself with all my diabetic “stuff” (see previous blog here), but also for my hubby Mike, who since he applied for a NEXUS card earlier this year, and was refused, entry into the United States for himself is now abit of a stomach wrenching experience.  Therefore we haven’t been going to the United States as often as we used to.  Tomorrow, when we go thruugh the US Customs/Immigration at Trudeau International Airport, armed with everything that the US Department of Homeland Security has told us to bring to ensure Mike has less problems with gaining entry into their country and we are hoping things go smoothly.  So far, when we’ve entered into the United States by land / sea – it has sometimes been a wait of 3 hours.  It’s not very pleasant, and is all due to an overzealous officer who entered information into their data system that should NEVER have gone in there in the first place.  I’m prepared to write a letter to President Obama, but my husband says … “I will take care of it”.  I am not a patient woman as you can see.  Tap, tap, tap.

Anyway, we take a floating city cruise every December, after the American Thanksgiving, when prices drop down pre-Christmas period.  It’s the only way we can afford this little yearly “treat”.  We started doing a yearly cruise about 10 years ago, after I had been given the news that I was cancer free after numerous lumpectomies.  It was hard for me to go out the door of our house on that first cruise adventure (this was all pre-sailboat ownership) as I tried to fight the way I was brought up to not be extravagant and spend money without due cause.  It’s hard to break out of how you were brought up, and not beat yourself for spending something on yourself.  With maturity, I’m getting better, and pushing away the guilt thoughts that used to come like a vengeance.

The one thing I am now realising is that this yearly cruise in a way is what other diabetics do for celebrating their anniversary of their diabetic diagnosis.  It only dawned on me this morning (the reason why I’m here at my net book and typing this out – sipping away on my Americano - fuel for my brain).  Taking a sip of the brew here – ahhhh.  Since joining up to diabetic groups online only a few years ago, I never heard of a "diabetic anniversary".  I mean, why celebrate something that you didn’t ask to be loaded down with for the rest of your life? 

This morning, since this is my last blog/forum post until I come back on the 15th December if I can’t find free Wi-Fi (darn that upbringing again – I’m so cheap).   I realised that this yearly cruise that we take every year is when we tend to celebrate our birthday, ball ‘n chain anniversary (we are bringing my in-laws with us this time – as they celebrate their 50th anniversary), and now I’m realising that for myself, as I’m not sure about Mike, for me, it’s a celebration of life.  Besides diabetes, I’ve had some other health problems over the years, and I have booted them in the head, and I’m here to tell you this.  I AM ALIVE!!! Whoo! Whoo!  I don’t really count the years (I’ll be Forever Young
) I am just happy to be alive, and yes, not all years have been happy, there have been hardships, but I am still here on our big blue marble.  Having another sip of coffee here – ahhhh – now this is another reward of life!  

So, on that note, as I may get mushier in my writing I would like to thank those guest bloggers who will fill in while I’m gone; this was all a last minute.  For those that didn’t see my request for guest bloggers, you aren’t too late, come and join in and hopefully you’ll continue for many years as we share the sandbox here at!

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