I was just about to arrange to have ear moulds taken by ACS and to purchase a set of their Pro 26 Communicator ear pieces when early last week I was again to talking to the same audiological scientist that had mentioned them to me in the first place. She mentioned she’d been talking about my requirement to a few companies and that before I made a decision there was one she felt I really should talk to. A company called Puretone who just happen to be head quartered in Rochester, Kent, just 10 miles or so from me. At the same time, she also made some ear moulds for me so that whichever company I decide to go with, I already have them made and will not be charged extra – a very lovely gesture, thank you Liz.
I called them the next day and late last week went to their office to sit down with their sales manager and discuss their options. After some discussion we came to the same conclusion I reached a few weeks ago in that in order to keep all my current comms capabilities the best option would be to replace the helmet speakers with ear pieces.
Enter the Puretone MotoSOUND. These ear pieces have been designed by Puretone specifically for racing drivers and motorcyclists who have to wear helmets. They are designed to sit more in the ear than normal plugs or moulded ear pieces and so there is much less chance of them being pulled out or dislodged by putting the helmet on or taking it off etc.
This was a problem I experienced when I tried to mould my own ear plugs. While I got a pretty good fit with them as soon I tried to put my helmet on the momentary distortion of my ears dislodged them and then they were useless. Of course once the helmet is on it’s then impossible to get them back in.
After discussing and deciding on various options including the inclusion of a pass through filter to allow in sufficient background noise and the apparent industry standard colours of red for right and blue for left I placed the order. Puretone gave me an extremely generous discount from the RRP because of my connections to the hearing aid industry but also because of the charitable work I do with SERV Kent.
They kept my ear moulds obviously and will now put the ear pieces into their manufacturing schedule. I may even get them before Christmas. Of course I must now also modify my helmet to be able to plug these in although I may not do that until I actually get them as I don’t want to be without any comms at all.
My SERV duties are of course continuing and I’m being kept nicely occupied with a collection of fund raising activities, home dialysis and Demelza House runs, occasional controller duties and of course ‘normal’ blood runs. December is a particularly interesting month because of course it has Christmas and New Year holidays – days when SERV continue to provide their services and so to help out hopefully I’ve volunteered to be on call during Christmas day and to do control on New Years Eve. Plenty of other people are stepping up for the other days and SERV continues to be a truly wonderful group that I’m very honoured and proud to be a member of.
I was on duty yesterday and it was a wonderful day weather wise for the time of year. The sun was shining and the temperature was just in double digits and so you can probably imagine my disappointment when the call came in for me to collect three boxes from Tooting. There’s a possibility I could get three on the bike but it isn’t certain I could and it wasn’t the right time to start experimenting, so I had to take the car. In the end this proved to be the right decision as when I got there I was able to collect a further two boxes for a total of five but it was disappointing to be stuck in London traffic in the car and not on the bike. Having said all that though of course the primary satisfaction is being able to help the poor people that needed the blood - I hope they’re recovering well.
One of the things I have noticed with my SERV duties is the enormous, for me, rate at which the mileage on both the car and the bike is increasing. Before joining SERV I was typically doing about 3000 miles a year on the bike and just 6 or 7000 a year in the car. The TEx which I got in late March already, less than 9 months later, has over 5000 miles on it and I’ve done nearly 4000 miles in the car since I got it just a couple of months back. Of course such mileages are no problem for the vehicles and they’re not for me either at least in terms of the fuel expense and SERV contribution but it does concern me a little in terms of the running expenses and increased depreciation.
The time of year doesn’t help where the comfort and warmth of the car often make it more desirable than the bike, especially at night times when the choice of transport makes little difference to any timings. It’s also fair to say that there have a been a few times I’ve felt I had to use the car in damp conditions as I haven’t had any effective way of protecting the blood boxes on the bike although that all changed last week when SERV Kent finally took delivery of new blood box covers and I was able to get my hands on a couple. I don’t mind riding a bike in the damp or even the pouring rain for that matter but clearly the blood boxes have to be protected.
I only see this situation getting worse as I would like to be doing more with SERV. As I’ve said from the beginning I’d like to join the response team which would mean I’m available most of the time for emergency runs etc. Consequently all of this, plus some other factors such as visibility and purpose has got me thinking about obtaining a dedicated bike for my SERV duties. Just thoughts at the moment but I thought I’d mention it now so it’s no big surprise when decisions are made
Which for now all leads to me wishing everyone reading this a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year for 2014.
It seems a little early to be doing this, but Christmas is only a couple of weeks away and as I seem to be on a three week cycle with blog posts it may well arrive before I write the next one. Of course that depends on what happens but in any event, I do hope everyone has a wonderful time and that SERV are not needed.