I went to see an otolaryngologist today. They're on the ninth floor of a building on the outskirts of Bellevue. This is the view from one of the waiting areas. If you look just above the far trees on the right, you can barely make out Seattle in the distance. Air quality is really poor due to the wildfires burning in British Columbia.
Since we arrived in Issaquah, I've had some shooting pain in my ear with the perforated ear drum, and my hearing has been noticeably worse. As you no doubt recall, in November 2009 I had surgery to close a hole in my ear drum, which failed. It would seem that the perforation is getting larger. I think I've had some infection since we've arrived, and apparently this can cause the hole to enlarge. The PA is fairly concerned about how much hearing loss I'm exhibiting. There will be ear drops for 10 days, and then a follow up visit to another ear guy. Getting it fixed, unfortunately, is not a no-brainer.
The surgery is not without risk. In addition to failure, there can be this:
So, while I realize that it's not world hunger, it's a fairly depressing turn of events. I think I have had enough anesthesia to last a lifetime.
- damage to the facial nerve or the nerve controlling the sense of taste
- damage to the bones of the middle ear, causing hearing loss
- dizziness and vertigo
- incomplete healing of the hole in the eardrum (I had this complication)
- moderate or severe hearing loss
- cholesteatoma (an abnormal skin growth behind the eardrum)
Of late, there has been much discussion in the press about people leaving Seattle. Generally speaking, it's too expensive, there are too many male tech workers skewing the dating scene, there are too many homeless people, it's becoming a place of haves and have nots. I saw this picture on The Tiny House blog, which illustrates the income disparities. The building in the background used to be the headquarters of Amazon. It's overlooking a homeless encampment. The green house is a tiny house built by high school kids. They sided it with old street signs. Apparently Bellingham will be the next big thing.
So that's what's new from the GPNW, where it is still hot.
Update to post. Here is a current picture of the encampment. It's very visible and rather large. It surprises me that they're being allowed to stay here. This is seen from the I5 NB on ramp from I90.