As I said earlier, I was late to work the first day Cindy was there. When I did arrive, I found her cleaning the station. That was a sticky situation. The firefighter on the engine is the one who cleans the inside of the station, unless we have a rookie. Cindy was the Rookie. However, Cindy was also assigned to the ambulance. Both of the medics on the ambulance check it out, unless one of them is a new paramedic. Cindy was a new paramedic.
This was one of the first classes in which the rookies got hired, went to the fire academy and EMT school, and then straight to paramedic school. Then, they came out to the station.
So, Cindy was a rookie firefighter, and a rookie paramedic all at the same time.
I stop her, introduce myself and tell her to start checking out the ambulance. The other guys were a bit upset that I let her stop cleaning. But in my opinion the station and dirt would be there all day, the ambulance may have a call and be gone any minute. I'd rather be sure the box(ambulance) is stocked and ready first.
I gave her the check sheet and sent her to work, while I got dressed. That may sound mean, or callous, or lazy on my part, but there was a reason for it. She needed to know where everything was on that ambulance. She needed to put her hand on every piece of equipment. I needed to know that if we had a bad run, I could tell her to get whatever and she could find it and not look around for it for 5 minutes. This was her ambulance and she needed to know it inside and out.
And for the record, after a few shifts I helped her check it out. After she knew the checklist and could grab anything I asked for the first time.
As it happened, I was just walking back out to the ambulance sporting my lucky uniform when we got a call. (Lucky uniform my ass) I jumped in to drive because Cindy wasn't even sure where she was, much less where we were going. Our call was a chest pain in another district. That district's engine beat us to the scene and started care. We arrived and took over. The patient was borderline serious, so we took an extra man to drive us to the station. I stayed in the back with Cindy.
The engine followed us to the ER to pick up their man, and arrived just as we were coming back out from dropping of the patient.
The back of the ambulance was a mess. IV kits on the floor, blood drops from starting the IV on the floor. Trash from the drugs and just all manner of mess. Normally, the engine crew will stay and help clean up just out of kindness. Today though, was not a normal day. The engine crew stood at the back of the box as we got in to clean and one of them said "We would stay and help clean, but since it's your first day, we're not allowed." Smart ass bastards laughed as they left.
We cleaned up and went back to the station, but not before we found the engines EKG leads in our stuff. Seems when we arrived, they just pulled the cable out of there machine and plugged it into ours. Now we had two sets of cables, and they had none.
About an hour later we get a call at the station. The engine crew called to talk to me. The paramedic on the phone just happened to be the one who made the smart ass comment at the hospital. He wanted to know if we had found their cable, I told him yes. He said that his captain was a little miffed that they had let it go, and could we bring it to them at their station?
I said I'd really like to, but our captain didn't want our new paramedic to leave the station except on emergency calls since it was her first day.
Then I heard "click".
They came and got them, and their captain was pissed. I told my captain what I had done and why. He laughed and said "OK". He covered for us.