For the past three days I’ve had one of those nagging coughs. And by ‘nagging’ I mean it won’t let me finish a sentence without butting in. (My wife has one too, and we’ve developed a whole new way of communicating: *cough* means “Yes”, *hack* means “No” and *angry look * means “Where are the damn throat lozenges?”)
Well, today I bit the bullet and went to the doctor. Our regular GP doesn’t work on weekends, but there’s another clinic open where you just rock up and see whoever’s on duty. (While I haven’t seen it written anywhere, I’m guessing their motto is, “Never the same doctor twice”.)
No-one was in the waiting area, which meant I’d only have time to read a few pages of my book. But I hadn’t counted on the woman at the counter arguing about why she couldn’t get the refund put straight back on her credit card. The receptionist kept on explaining she could only do that with an EFTPOS card, and the woman kept on handing over her credit card. (This is what Australia’s public health system refers to as “the gap”—the empty space between this woman’s ears.)
I’m glad I brought my book.
Fortunately the receptionist took pity on me, and interrupted the conversation to book me in for an appointment. And a few minutes later I actually got to see the doctor. (I’m predicting this will one of those Halley’s Comet situations that won’t happen again for another 76 years.)
Apparently my tonsils are swollen and slightly ulcerated, which means I’m not on antibiotics as I thought I’d be, but penicillin. That’s right: I could have saved a fortune by letting something go bad in the fridge. And I have to take “ONE capsule FOUR times daily before food”, which means I now have to invent an extra meal somewhere (best suggestion so far: dessert).
The good news is I have a medical certificate, which means I won’t have to spend tomorrow coughing my way through the “What I did on the holidays” stories on my first day back at work.
Because my first day back at work will be painful enough as it is.