Well, that was an adventure!
After sitting in silent suffering for the first couple hours at the office yesterday, I decided to bite the bullet and just find my way to see a doctor. When talking to the emergency medical service that my company offers to travelers, the on-call doctor suggested that I go to the Teddington Memorial Hospital and see a physician to get something for my allergies.
After wrapping-up a few loose ends at the office, I hopped my bicycle and found my way over the hospital. It is an old, red brick building that sits back a bit from the road. A feeling of foreboding should have come over me in that the facade of the hospital was the type one is most likely (in the states, at least) to see in a horror film. In these films, this building would be seen only in a medium-wide shot taken on a cold and rainy day with lightening breaking over it.
The main entry hall was dark and it made me wonder what horrible things might be taking place in other parts of the building. (Nurse, give him more electricity he will live! Live! LIVE!!!) Once through to the reception area for the walk-in clinic, however, it took on a totally different atmosphere. It was, if not actually pleasant, at least brighter.
The feeling of foreboding, which ebbed when I walked into the room, returned when I noticed that there were lots of people sitting around reading old magazines and looking generally bored with it all. I checked in and was asked to join the disinterested throng. Three hours later, my name was called.
I explained to the woman, who introduced herself only as "a nurse" what the problem was. I was told I would have to wait for "the doctor" as there was nothing she could do for me. I returned to the waiting room and waited for my name to be called a second time.
The doctor then proceeded to ask me all the same questions the nurse had previously. The nearest I can gather, the nurse' only job was to actually relieve (no matter how minimally) the boredom of the wait by giving me the false hope that I would be out of there before noon.
All was not in vein however! (Actually none of it was in vein! I was given two pills, an eye drop, and a nasal spray to take. This morning I am feeling a bit better... I'm just waiting for all these things to reach their full potential.
I hope wherever you are today, you are having an excitingly productive day!
Don Bergquist - 09th June 2006 - Thames Ditton, Surrey, United Kingdom