The good news is that I didn't get shot. Apparently, that's quite a common occurrence in late-night downtown Baltimore. So common, in fact, that a middle-aged guy with lingering kidney stones is small potatoes, and those potatoes so small that one might have to wait five hours to be seen. The additional good news, however, was that they had the foresight to give me some pain medication when I arrived, so although I continue to be mildly tortured by the chairs they provide in the waiting area, I'm not doubly tortured by the exquisite pain of the stone itself. Instead, I'm comforted (truly) in knowing that the pain has subsided to a dull, persistent ache. That I can live with for a bit.
At this point you may be wondering, "Why is Josh telling me this?" That would be, should you be asking, an excellent question. My mom and I have been visiting my sister Susan and her family this weekend. Mom and Susan drove me down here around 11:30pm. They both fell asleep a couple of hours ago and I sent Susan home in the hope that she might have an ounce of energy when her young children spring to life at 6:30am, as per their usual schedule. Mom continues to snooze (pictured here) but I seem to have a burst of energy which I can only assume is because those pain meds are now flowing through my veins and I feel almost-but-not-quite-pain-free for the first time in a dozen hours.