Yesterday afternoon I drove a friend (who for the purposes of anonymity I shall call Dr X) to a day care clinic. I volunteered my chauffeuring services as he was scheduled to undergo a minor medical procedure which would render him unable to drive.
The clinic is a relatively new building providing a clean, light, fresh and light environment, apart from a guy who looked like a vagabond sat adjacent to me in the waiting room…….. I know I wrote light twice above, which wasn’t a typo I’m just trying to convey it was very light!
Irritatingly the vagabond like character kept badgering me, as well as others, for £1 for a cup of tea. He eventually ceased his begging when I told him “Dr X, it’s probably worth waiting until you’ve had your minor op before drinking tea.”
My friend also caused unnecessary confusion by not responding to his name when he was called by the theatre nurse. Despite me nudging him, he sat seemingly oblivious to his name being called out. Eventually I cottoned on why and wandered over to explain the issue to the nurse.
As I sat back down in my chair, the nurse loudly called “Dr X! Is there a Dr X please?” My friend stood up and walked towards the nurse, who led him to the operating theatre.
After the theatre door closed an elderly woman sat nearby raised her eyebrows and rolled her eyes in disapproval. She was a feisty lady who wore a woollen coat she claimed had been knitted by ex-England rugby captain Martin Johnson,
Martin Johnson – He knitting is exemplary, although the button spacing was a touch haphazard!
“He’s a scruffy bugger for a doctor isn’t he!” she told me of Dr X. As I smiled back she added “I just hope he’s not carrying out the procedure to remove my piles!”
Although, blind sided I refused to be side tracked by that revelation, telling the old woman, “He’s not really a doctor. Dr X is his alias.”
“In that case I definitely hope he isn’t the person removing my Ashley Giles then!” she countered looking a little disturbed.
“No. He isn’t a doctor. He doesn’t practise medicine, he is undergoing minor surgery himself!” I attemped to explain, with the naïve expectation it would draw a line under this off the wall conversation with the old woman.
“Well I hope it’s bloody painful for him, that’s all I can say!” she countered firmly. Before adding “After all pretending to be a doctor is very irresponsible, not to mention illegal!”
The woman, who I’d guess was in her late 70’s, was on a roll now and continued “My grandson pretended to be a doctor and he’s in prison now!”
“Blimey, did he kill a patient through malpractice?!” I inquired, for once showing genuine interest in the conversation with this septuagenarian.
“No, my grandson only pretended to be a doctor when he was a toddler, after I bought him a doctor’s outfit! He’s in prison for refusal to pay his council tax!” the quirky lady responded.
Not wishing to pursue the path of surrealism we were journeying on, I quickly changed the subject by asking her to tell me more about Martin Johnson knitting her coat!
After finishing the tale, she provided me with Martin Johnson’s phone number in case I ever wanted a coat knitting! I smiled, put it in my pocket (to bin later) and picked up the leaflet perched in isolation on the coffee table in front of me.
It was a leaflet advertising cheap life insurance for the over 50’s for a well known financial institution. I don’t know about you, but reading a leaflet trying to sell me life insurance immediately prior to a medical procedure would concern me!
As I sat waiting for Dr X my mind wandered, imagining a man in his 50’s sat in the waiting area on his phone, hurriedly attempted to secure immediate life insurance prior to him undergoing the removal of a skin tag.
At that point I noticed Dr X exiting the surgery theatre. To my surprise, he was grinning as he gingerly limped towards me with his rucksack over his shoulders.
Without going into too much detail, he’d undergone a minor procedure for birth control purposes. As he reached me I asked him if his testicles were in the rucksack, to which he laughed. He countered that he wasn’t sure if his gonads were in the bag, but by the weight of it he wouldn’t be surprised if the surgeon had substituted them with an anvil !
I questioned if he was going to put them under his pillow, like kids do with their teeth, and see if the ‘testicle fairy’ leaves him some money! Despite my insensitivity, he laughed again and we headed towards the door.
As we passed the old woman in the Martin Johnson coat, she berated Dr X, telling him he was a charlatan and wantonly reckless!
“What’s she on about?!” Dr X asked me, looking perplexed.
“Ignore her! …… Whatever you do, though, make sure you get your council tax paid!” I replied.
We then walked through the automatic door and headed towards the car. As I pressed my key fob to centrally unlock the car Dr X stopped me in my tracks, held out his hand and asked.
“Can I have a £1 for a cup of tea now, Gary?”