B accused me on Friday whilst sitting in the WRVS coffee shop at the hospital of being a bit distracted and not listening to his riveting tale of Pepsi now being in 600ml bottles (look I think it was Pepsi, so okay I wasn’t exactly paying complete attention but let’s face it he was talking about pop* I may have been slightly distracted, in part by the strange array of people walking past, and possibly by something else, some holiday or something, it escapes me just at the moment). Yes Sandy, he works for a company that distributes soft drinks (and alcoholic beverages), I’m hanging my head in shame but it could be worse he could be an arms dealer – I think I’ll look into that there’s probably more money in it and doesn’t affect as many people!
So we’d arrived at the hospital with nearly five litres of suitably camouflaged wee which B transported up to the 10th floor and whilst I’d sauntered over to my have ECG and lung test. Highlights of these two experiences were:
B: ‘You mean we’re taking it (wee) with us on the train?’
Me: ‘Well how did you think it was going to get there?’ Damn, I should have added ‘by PHL’
At cardio/respiratory reception:
Me: ‘Hi, I’m Paula Kilgallon and I’m coming in for my SCT on Monday, I had an ultrasound on my heart two weeks ago but apparently I also need the ECG and lung test.’
Receptionist, who was so lacking in that Friday feeling I dread to think what she looked like on a Monday morning: ‘Well you should have had all three last time but because you only had one’ (somehow making it sound like it was my fault) ‘you’ll need to go back to your doctor and get another referral.’
Me: ‘Oh, okay I’ll just do that then’. Well okay not really I politely explained that I’d been told if I just turned up they’d fit me in – and didn’t point out that since I was the only person other than her in the whole reception area I didn’t think they were exactly swamped.
Anyway I was ECGed and breathalysed very quickly (yes, Ruth, the pads on my lower legs and forearms as well as obviously my chest, we live and learn, fortunately).
B was waiting for me and said I had to go for a blood test, he’d said we’d go back up to 10Z as the queue in phlebotomy is always huge.
Faux pas by my darling husband to the nurse after she asked if I had good veins…
B: ‘You’ll be lucky to find anything!’
Nurse: ‘Oh, are your veins not good? Maybe you should have gone to phlebotomy!’
Me: ‘No, they’re fine. He was just trying to be funny!’ (Note to self – explain to B relevance of good/bad vein homour) ‘Do they have better aim? Apparently they do.
So after the second attempt to get blood as the first one missed, the nice nurse said that since Monday is a Bank Holiday she’d see if I could be clerked in then and I would only need to come in about 20:00 on Monday, yay!
B had been to the toilet and when he got back we nearly had a domestic over the word clerked!
B: ‘So, what’s happening now?’
Me: ‘The nurse is going to see if a doctor can get me clerked in today.’
B: ‘What?’ Me: ‘The nurse is going to see if a doctor can get me clerked in today.’
B: ‘What? See I told you you were distracted, what are you saying, clocked?’
This taking place in front of the nurse who was trying to look busy labelling the blood sample.
Me: ‘Clerked!’ B: ‘Clocked?’
Me: ‘Clerked in!’
B: ‘Clocked on?’ Me: ‘No, that’s what you do at work, CLERKED IN!’
B: ‘I still can’t understand what you’re saying!’
Me: ‘C-L-E-R-K-E-D I-N!’
Me: ‘Booked in!’ Why on earth didn’t I think of that sooner?
B: ‘Why didn’t you say that in the first place who’s heard of the other thing?’
Me to the nurse: ‘Clerked in is the right expression isn’t it?’
Nurse (in a nooooo, don’t involve me kind of way): ‘Well, that’s the one we use.’
Me to B: ‘It means I can come in later on Monday and you can push me out of the car at the main entrance on your way to work like last time!’
B: ‘You’ve no thought for me going to work!’
Now this took place in effectively a store room where the other patient was all of four feet away on the other side of a curtain – it’s no wonder he waved and smiled on his way out the door. When I pointed out that B was maybe not in the best of moods he was apparently fine and dandy and it was me that hadn’t listened to the intriguing tale of pop and that I was the problem.
After finding that the doc had gone on his lunch we went for a coffee/hot chocolate and came back later.
We sat on the little settee on the ‘landing’ facing the key coded entrance to the ward where there was an additional notice, which shortly becomes relevant, saying that due to vomiting and diarrhoea in other parts of the hospital and local community only one visitor per room is being allowed at the comment. Whilst there the ward registrar came back from lunch and stopped to say that the Hickman line would go in 11:30 Tuesday
B: ‘It is worth me coming visiting on Tuesday then, will she be out of it?’ Any excuse!
Doc: ‘No, it’s local anaesthetic. Then on Wednesday the melphalan and then …’
And then B asks: ‘That sign on the door about one visitor at a time surely there must be some flexibility…’
After the doc had run for cover I pointed out to B that these powerful insights along with his patience and understanding personality were the very reasons I brought him with me. B pointed out that the reason I brought him was that no-one else could carry five litres of wee from the station!
* Beth – That’s what we call er… soda – you know I struggled for a translation I kept thinking pop and then corporation pop** and finally arrived at soda
** Any guesses on that one?