It struck me today, just how close I was to death the day I went to hospital…
I was in the waiting room of my doctor on my own when a woman came in. We bonjoured each other and she went to sit down, instead falling face forward towards the coffee table in front of her. A slight move to the right and she landed on me and slide to the ground. She attempted to get up and collapsed onto the floor again. Somewhat alarmed I went to get help and the nurse came with me, helping the lady to her seat. ‘Are you okay?’ she obviously asked, to which the woman replied ‘Bon, bon’. I felt like saying, ‘Excuse me, you are so not bon, you are tres tres unbon’. But there was a protocol here. There was a queue, this lady was not at the top of it, she would wait her turn, the mere fact that I have nothing much wrong with me and didn’t want to sit so close to a woman who probably had the bubonic plague counted not one whit.
So, a few weeks ago I was in hospital, I’d been admitted but sat in a waiting room to be seen by a doctor. Eventually things got really bad inside me and I managed to get to the desk nearby and say I’m sorry, but I think I need to see a doctor now. The nurse said she was sorry, but the girl who spoke English had gone away. Then she did a reassessment and I think she figured she didn’t need any language in common to see that I was in terrible trouble. She bustled me off to a room, soon half a dozen doctors came in and started asking me odd questions like how much I weighed and there it was. An emergency in progress.
In retrospect I now realise that the fact that I’d jumped the queue in a country that places such great weight on them means that my situation was as bad as bad could be.
I’m alive. Things could be so much worse.