Hospitals are funny places, or at least they can be if you keep your sense of humour. I’ve seen more than my fair share in the past few years, but they still never fail to entertain me.
Every three months or so I have an appointment at 11.15 to see a consultant. Sometimes there’s a huge queue, today there wasn’t. Still I never get seen before 1pm – and then only for about five minutes. They don’t do anything, just ask how I am and check bloods (which I will have had taken a week before). I’m sure they could as easily just send me an ‘OK – See you in 3 months’ message by phone or mail.
To keep this appointment I have to get somebody to drive me, – not nice when you know this is going to be a fairly regular thing and people have their own lives to live and jobs to do - because I couldn’t walk the distance from the car park to the lobby which is where one gets a wheel-chair. I leave home at around 10.15 to be in time – not early, just in time. They won’t give you a wheel-chair without a porter, but will let your ‘minder’ take charge for the return trip, so it can’t be for safety reasons. They park the wheel-chair slap bang in the middle of the narrow corridor where everyone else has to step over it or negotiate their way around you.
Today I felt quite ill while I was waiting. I overheard a passing nurse saying ‘that person looks tired’. Stupidly, thinking she cared, I said I wasn’t tired but felt quite ill. In my innocence I had said to daughter-in-law who was my transporter, what better place to get sick. I was wrong. There was no response of any kind from any of the four uniformed women standing roughly two feet from me who carried on their conversation.
Himself, the King, getting jealous of my relationship with this hospital had taken his turn there and booked in for the past week and a half. Today I met him for the first time since he went in – but he was going in the opposite direction, being ferried home by another friend. He had to be out before 11, whereas I had to be in by 11.15. (All these arrangements had to be made by guess who? Right, first time!) Luckily grandson had volunteered to be at home when he got there in case he needed help – hubby had had surgery. Needless to day both hubby and grandson were starving and waiting for lunch by the time I returned.
In case you think I’m feeling sorry for myself, I’m not. I met a woman outside, older than me by about 10 years, who had been there since 5am. Her husband has some as yet undiagnosed illness and they had sent for her to sit with him because he was restless and needed someone to be with him. She had also spent Saturday from 7am until 10.30pm on the same errand. She lives much further away than I do, afraid to drive on the motorway, and has to get her son to get up and bring her there and collect her each time.
Ah well. I suppose if there were no hospitals it would be even worse. But it’s a much better idea to stay healthy and not get sick at all!