Bear with me, this starts off as an NHS story. I finally decided to do something about my ankle. It's been 8 weeks and the recovery seems to have plateaued. First I had to register with a doctor, as being a bloke, I haven't been for about 3 years and have since moved. Then I had to make an appointment which meant waiting 3 days for my details to go on line and then phoning up at 8.30 in the morning with all the other hopefuls.
Job done. My GP diagnosed a classic ruptured or torn Achilles tendon and gave me a letter to take to the fracture unit at my local hospital at 8.30 this morning to have an X ray and ultrasound. Perhaps I should have been a little wary when the letter started off ''Dear Doctor at fracture unit'
I tipped up at the fracture unit at 8.30 am having paid the 4 quid parking fee, only to be told by the doctor there to basically piss off he was busy and make an appointment. I went to the desk to make an appointment to be told that I couldn't make one there as I had never been to that hospital before.
I was directed to make an appointment through Central appointments, which was located at a hospital 10 miles away. I phoned the place to be told that I would have to get a letter from my Doctor, which 5 days later would go to a consultant who within the next week or so after that would fix an appointment.
So it could be another 2 weeks before I got an x-ray? Yup. As I'm on the limit for surgical intervention as it is I thought 'bollocks to this' and went to casualty instead. They diagnosed a ruptured Achilles tendon and made an appointment for me at the fracture unit tomorrow. A complete waste of time today for me and hard-pressed casualty and another 4 quid parking tomorrow. However I gave my unexpired day parking ticket to an old dear on the way out so perhaps karma will operate and someone will do the same for me tomorrow.
Anyhoooooooooo, during the interminable wait in casualty an old guy came in and plonked himself down beside a young guy.
Old guy then launched into a moaning diatribe about the weather, the government, immigrants, and being old. He finished off with -
''They don't care about old people, when we reach 70 they should just take us out and shoot us''
The young guy replied ' Give me a gun and I'll do it now.'
Ears open all the time. You never know when you might hear a bit of dialogue gold.
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5 years ago