8.05am – rang lab – ring back in five minutes.
8.15am – rang lab – ring back in twenty minutes.
8.45am – rang lab – no answer.
8.50am – rang lab – yeehah! Results ready, collect them and see a doctor in A&E.
We set off straight away. The cool start to the day had developed into a baking hot mid-morning as we climbed the hill to the hospital. We had seen a sign for the lab from the road and entering a narrow passageway up steps we were lucky the door to the lab was open as there was little indication of where to go. An assortment of folk sat in a waiting room. I queued behind two others at the window labelled ‘Collect blood results here’. Others entered and took a numbered ticket from deli type machine, going through the door labelled ‘No Admittance’ when their number buzzed. We waited some more. Si grabbed me a ticket just in case. Still we waited until eventually a young girl materialised and I finally came face to smudgy glass to face with her. “You need to take this ticket and go to the cashier”, she muttered without looking up. We set off for the cashier’s office which eagle eyed Si had spotted on our way in. This procedure was a piece of cake and back at the blood lab I swapped my receipt for my results from the jolly young lady who didn’t even look up from her chocolate bar never mind utter a word. Next stop A&E.
Today was obviously fracture clinic as the waiting room was heaving with plastered limbs. I queued an age for the triage nurse who after much debate with other staff told me to take a seat in the waiting room. If only Si had brought his book too, and perhaps some lunch and a sleeping bag! He eventually went for a walk missing lunch time in the waiting room where one after another feasts were pulled from bags and take-aways brought in. One lady disappeared only to return with a casserole dish covered with foil which she shovelled down with a large spoon. An argument then commenced between her and a lady with plastered child; perhaps they were hungry? All the while sour faced staff came and went, faces changed around me and still I waited. Three weeks later or so it felt, I eventually saw a doctor who told me to see a surgeon. Briefly explaining I was half way through an adventure year and enquiring as to how urgently I had to see a surgeon, I was told to eat a fat free diet and I should be ok. She prescribed more painkillers in case of another flare up and I left feeling somewhat anxious about the ‘should be’ part of ok.
At 4.30pm we dropped our anchor in Prickly Bay on the southern coast of the island after a pleasant short sail round the corner. I scanned the anchorage through the bins for Liberty who were last heard of here but they were nowhere to be seen today. The atmosphere on board needed cheering up I thought and I suggested we go ashore for a sundowner. We quickly locked up not wanting to miss happy hour. As we approached the dinghy dock who should we see hidden between two boats in the dinky marina, but Liberty. “I should have known they’d be as near to the bar as possible!” said Si and grabbing our beers we went to call for them. There followed another lovely evening of beer, pizza (or green salad!), chatting and laughter; just what we needed after a dreadful morning. If only I had remembered the bug spray!!!!