Thursday, January 25, 2007

Entering the Uni: Pt II (The Clinic)

Ok, things were definitely starting to look up. One problem, with two more days till the official holiday leave from MPS how was I going to take off to go get this physical done. Granted we weren’t doing a single bit of work in that place. Only person actually working was the cursed Mother Supreme. I suspected she doesn’t like to be the only person having to come into work so she drags the whole staff in to make herself feel better. “If I can’t stay home and relax NO ONE WILL!” I honestly believe that’s what goes through her mind. Anywayz, I decided fine I’ll tell her it’s a doc’s appointment. I haven’t asked to leave early in awhile and certainly she shouldn’t have a prob after I came in the day before and sat in the MC’s office for 6 of the 7 hours we have to stay there doing absolutely NOTHING! I had already finished grading all the exams and stuff so I legitimately had nothing to do. So I told mother to come back and get me at 9. She had told me to ask the school nurse at MPS where to get the physical done since the uni gave me a form like medical paper that they wanted the clinic/hospital to fill out so mother assumed it must be a specific place. I asked the nurse (who surprisingly was really a nice person hahahaha all that time of working in MPS and I never knew that.. ah well at least I never offended her or anything.) she told me it was done in a clinic designated for schools.

I was nervous about this physical. I had given the form a glance over. It was in formal Arabic. I know physicals can be pretty disgusting so I wanted to know what this was going to be like at least to know what to expect. I saw places to fill in the results for chest x-ray, eye test, blood test (I wasn’t surprised they were after my blood that just seems to be the norm these days, everyone so darn blood thirsty!) and finally what I was dreading and most hoping I wouldn’t see: a urine test.

I mean really, the person who thought that up must have been the sickest of the sick. That is just down right GROSS. I’d rather anywhere from 4- 10 needles if it meant foregoing that test. (and that from someone who used to have a needle phobia!)

Anywayz, we got to the school clinic (didn’t even seem like a clinic. It was more like a file keeping place, too clean to be a clinic) and they told me the X-ray, blood test and that gross test were done in another clinic about a 10 min drive away. Once the tests are done over there I was supposed to bring the results back to them and they’d stamp everything before I could take it to the uni.

Dammit I thought, this lady definitely mentioned that gross test. I was dreading the thought all the way to the second clinic. How in the hell does a person do that (and of course though I’d never done it before I knew those container things u do it in are clear SUPER GROSS) and then go and hand that to another person, Dr. or not who the hell cares?! It’s still another person.

Get to the clinic and mother informs me I’m on my own. She had to go pick up my sis. *sighs* This is for the uni…I can do this…

I get to the reception and the lady takes a look at the paper from the uni. She writes a number on a pink little card thing that the lady in the first place stapled to my paper. She then takes out 2 hard plastic tubes and a bigger plastic container (yes the thing I was dreading to see) and writes the same number that she wrote on my paper on each of those 3 things. Before she hands them to me she pulls out this roll of toilet paper. I’m like what the…?? She tears off a long sheet wads it and hands the plastic things and paper to me.

I think I just saw something traumatizing….

Lucky me I was carrying the dumb tote bag I had been carrying to MPS, I shoved all of those things in and proceeded to the first area:


Ha ha. There were a bunch of chairs set up cinema style facing a desk that was piled high with needles in plastic packaging, a tube holder and a hazardous waste disposer. Behind the desk sat a lady covered from head to toe (she wore a nurses white uniform with lab jacket and white scarf.) on her face she wore a white mask the kind doctors wear during surgery. So technically only her eyes showed. Her emotionless eyes seemed to be the same color as her uniform. Drained of all color by the robotic routine of her position. There were about 10 people ahead of me. I watched from the audience chairs as each scene took no less then 10 secs max from the time the lady in white called “Next” and the next victim of this mass-sticking session (like mass-production, this lady was going through ppl like a timed machine) scampered up to the empty chair beside the lady’s desk as they rolled up their sleeve and put on a brave face. The lady would then collect the dark maroon liquid delicacy, toss the victim a wet cotton ball (I assume the cotton ball was soaking in alcohol) discard the needle and empty the syringe into the tube the victim handed her while seemingly simultaneously opening the next syringe and needle and calling “next”.

I tried to look away. The deep maroon color of the blood she was collecting was enthralling yet disturbing. She finally got to me. *I am not afraid of needles. Nope not me, ha ha being afraid of those little pricks is a thing of the ancient past… I am so over needle phobia…*

I had turned my head before she stuck me. I waited and waited. Then came this sting I turned and realized the stinging was the cotton swab. I waited for her to give me a band aid. She gave me a look. I was still there and she had already finished disposing the needle and syringe. “Um, could u give me a band aid?” That just came out before I realized that she wasn’t exactly offering any (I figured she had forgotten to give one.) She gave me a look. Darn Americans…all coonies. (she didn’t say anything close to that – but I bet she was thinking it LOL) she searched around in the desk drawers and finally turned up a band aid. Handed it to me. Wow, lady’s not even going to put it on for me ::sniffles::

Yeah, that for sure has to go on the traumatizing list….

That area should have been renamed: The Lab Arena

Next stop: X-Ray Department.

There wasn’t anything too traumatizing about the X-ray area of the clinic. Sure the whole area was small, crusty and smelled like a clinic. Mostly poor people where there but there were also well off looking people there as well. As I sat in the waiting area I took in all around (it’s a habit I have. I find it easier to take in my surroundings than make small talk with whoever is nearby.) The ceiling looked like it wanted to collapse at any given moment. Cracks also ran through the walls that looked like they were crying for a new paint job. Grime stained and crusty looking like something you’d see in a documentary about a dilapidated neighborhood health center looking for a kind-hearted philanthropist to throw some thousands its way for needed renovations. My God, why do all clinics look the same? Or at least a good majority? I felt sorry for the really sick people who had no place else to go except for that clinic for treatment. A place for health care should never be in that state. Sick people feel badly enough and having to go to a place like that must depress them and depression on top of whatever is already afflicting them can’t possibly be doing them any good. In fact it might even make them worse. I’m sure of it.

Anywayz as my mind ran off in that train of thought the X-ray lady comes out. White lab jacket just like the other lady before her in the Lab Arena. This lady had a broken neck though, it was in a neck brace. She looked around. Told the ladies ahead of me they all had to strip in the row of cubby holes with a piece of material up at the front of each serving as a door. O_O No way am I stripping in something as devoid of privacy as that thing. Hell no!

The lady then looked my way as the other ladies were somewhat carrying out her orders. She threw me a hospital gown and told me I just had to take off my shirt since I wasn’t wearing a wired bra (praise the Lord above a million times over I was wearing a sports bra). X-ray took a second and it was over. Lady directed me to another area a little better enclosed than those cubbies and told me I could put back on my shirt and things there while she got the other ladies. I was racing even though I only had off my shirt, who in the hell wants to be seen in their bra?! Lucky for me the other ladies seemed to be all Chinese and hadn’t done what the lady asked. That gave me time. They didn’t seem to speak much English or Arabic and the X-ray lady was one of those short testy Filipinos that don’t like ppl fooling around. She got out there and started a yelling match. It was kinda funny in a way cuz both her and the Chinese ladies had heavy English accents and she was asking the Chinese how come if they said they understood English didn’t they do as they were told which was to strip (they had on jeans and things containing metal).

X-ray over nothing too traumatizing there except for the grime and cramped waiting area- which basically described the whole clinic.

I looked around. Nobody is actually “asking” for this last thingie. Wonder if I could just walk out and forget about it. Hell, watch that be the one reason they turn my uni application down. Grrrrrrr. I am so not going to let that happen.

I went back to the reception desk at the lab were I had gotten the thing to ask where might that be done. There was a different lady there trying to drink her tea. I think I may have grossed her out a bit. Honestly I don’t understand how anyone could open their mouth to consume anything edible in a place like that. She frowned and told me the place to do that was beside room 16 and once I was finished there I was supposed to bring it back there to the department behind her desk.

I walked up and down that place about a thousand and two times looking for room 16. Somehow during the course of that time “beside” disappeared from my mind and I was just looking for room 16 cuz that was the lab where that was to be done. To make a long story short I found “Room 16” and didn’t remember what she had said till I spotted a bathroom beside it. Super Gross. She meant the ladies room.
I pushed open the door and was immediately hit by a truckload of stink. There were three stalls in there. Each looked like they could have been their own standalone horror story. Great. Ha ha, and I’m supposed to actually go inside one of those things. PHAT CHANCE!

This is for the uni, this is for the uni…Dammit if this is the case I guess I just won’t be going to the uni!

In the end I somehow lived through that. I also figured out why the hell that lady had given that wad of toilet paper. (Not only could I not look at that but I would never have subjected the people outside to see such a horror – the paper was brilliant)

It should suffice u guys to know that I went from there directly to the store and hunted down the biggest bottle of anti-bacterial soap I could find before going straight home and drowning myself several times from head to toe in the stuff. I had to think twice before finally deciding that it’d be enough to just wash my clothes from that day a couple of times -not burning them.

That day I was most definitely TRAUMATIZED


Bookworm said...

NOW I know why it was traumatizing :P

LOL, you can laugh now can't ya?

When I went to do that physical (lemme tell u in person how I managed to escape the 'beside room 16 trauma'), anyway, I was in line and a little accident happened to a girl 3 girls infront of me. Her bottle..uh..slipped and everything spilt on her. :: Shudders :: Thank Allah, I wasn't within the danger zone...

El Hazard said...

GOD! That poor girl.

They should rename that physical "University Entrance Rite".