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By Katherine Kiang
KaTsZoNe Newsletters > KaTsZoNe - Issue 36 - Time to Fly

1 Dec 2007

Hi everyone,

Hope all of you are keeping well!

Is it not astounding that we are now approaching another year's end?  As the saying goes, "time flies"!  However, this month's episode is not about how time flies, it's called, "Time to Fly".

For my aunt, it literally is "time to fly".  As you will recall from last month's episode of KaTsZoNe, my aunt came from Malaysia for a visit but she experienced a mild stroke just a few days after she landed.  It was an unfortunate experience, but, fortunately, she has recovered nicely and she flies home this evening. 

I have learned a lot about dealing with her travel insurer and tried to give all of you some tips which I thought might be helpful for those of you who travel.  After my aunt came home from the hospital, there were other things to look into, such as physiotherapy, ensuring new medication is taken properly (and dealing with side effects, etc. from taking new medication), following up with doctors. 

One of the most stressful situations was trying to get a doctor to sign off on the airline's medical form.  I was told that any doctor could do it, however, as we have discovered, even after an initial check-up, not every doctor is willing to sign off on a medical form which informs the airline of his/her advice whether a passenger is fit to fly. 

I was so stressed out when I thought no doctor would or could sign off on the medical form which meant that the airline would not allow my aunt to fly home.  When I came to the realization that I did not have to get her on the November 25th flight, I was calmer.  There are other flights.  My aunt had an open ticket.  I was also under the impression that her travel visa would expire very shortly, but, when I checked her passport, it revealed that it would not expire until mid-January, 2008.  Well...sigh of relief!  And, even if she could not leave until after her travel visa expired, Canada Immigration advised that I can download a form and request for an extension.

In the end, fortunately, I was able to reach the secretaries of my aunt's attending doctor from the hospital, but then, I was told that he was working only one more day at his clinic before he leaves for a conference and vacation and he would not be returning until January, 2008!  My aunt was originally planning to return home on November 25th.  Her appointment with the good doctor could only be scheduled on November 26th.

Last week was too crazy!  But, when I realized that none of the problems was without a solution, there was no reason to continue on in 'panic mode'.  What appeared to be one road block or problem after another had resolutions.

I think one of my other concerns was that my mom was also sick on and off.  I was quite certain that she caught some kind of bug which will not leave and then, on top of the stress of looking after my aunt and everything else at home while I was at work, it was taking a toll on her.  I spent a year trying to make sure my mom would recover almost to her 'normal' self and even better, after her surgeries last year, I just did not want to see her run down.  It was just another reason for me to be concerned. 

This experience with my aunt and mom is another of life's lessons which I am grateful for.  I know I have to deal with issues and emotions, but, I continue to appreciate all of you who have oftentimes asked how I was coping, how my aunt and mom were doing, etc.  You are all just so AWESOME!!!  Thank you for your kindness, thoughtfulness and support in every shape and form (including the form of a Starbucks peppermint mocha -- woohoo!!!).

Thank God for music, as well, for keeping me in better spirits.  iPod and I have been pretty tight just about every day!  In particular, singers/songwriters such as Justin Lanning, James Blunt, and Josh Groban helped me through this past month -- wow...must be a "J" kind of month!

I'm looking forward to sharing another year of KaTsZoNe with you!  Who knows what is ahead but if you are on my mailing list or visit my website from time to time, you won't miss a beat!  In the upcoming year, perhaps for some of you and for me, it will be "time to fly" - whether it's taking a vacation, to visit family, new jobs/careers, new goals, or marriage (congrats to Dani & Mina!!!).  Indeed, maybe it is TIME TO FLY!!!

I now have another way email address where KaTsZoNe readers can reach me, which is also posted on my homepage:  katherine@katszone.com. 

I wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah, Happy Holidays!


Katherine (KK)

P.S.  This past month, I've enjoyed adding more friends as Facebook friends!  If you are on Facebook and have not added me yet, hope you will add me!