Tuesday, December 14, 2010
An American Girlfriend In London, Pt 6: The New London Eye?
After about four days I was up walking on the high street near here and saw a Boots eyewear shop. I figured there'd be an eye Dr. in there since people need to get prescriptions for glasses, right? They had to have some equipment that could see past the obvious, right? Wrong. Other than wasting about £40 to be told to put a warm washcloth over my eyes for 10 minutes a day, I got nothin'. NO answers.
A week later, after being told by the BF that I should just go to the local hospital down the road and not bother with the "private practice" people… I went. Though I should say "I spent"… not money… but 5 hours. Yes, FIVE FUCKING HOURS in the waiting room. Well. more like 4 hrs. 15 minutes since the first 45 min were spent going from desk to desk to desk at the hospital since no one seemed to know much of anything.
One office: They ask me if I am diabetic, I tell them no, they then tell me they can't see me since they only deal with diabetics. In my frustration I offer to head back to the high street and eat a couple dozen cupcakes to give myself diabetes. While the other patients in the waiting room found this hysterical, the receptionist did not… and sent me to yet another office.
(insert 3 other offices/desks here, none of them helpful AT ALL)
Another office: Since I didn't have a primary care physician, nor did I have any obvious medical emergencies (i.e an axe sticking out of my cranium), I was told I needed to go to the ER section and see someone there…
ER: they took my info, told me to have a seat… and for 4 hours and 45 minutes my ass sat there in silence. Wish the same could be said for the family with two small children that didn't shut up for more than 10 seconds during those 4 hours and 45 minutes. They weren't speaking english, so I have no idea what was so important that the husband and wife couldn't shut up. They weren't even fighting… just non-stop (VERY LOUD) jibber jab. It was getting on my every last nerve.. but still I sat… waiting, quietly, hands in my lap, in silence… for 4 HOURS AND 45 MINUTES!
When a Dr. finally came out and called my name I almost cried tears of joy… but held back for fear of screwing up whatever tests they were hopefully about to run. Know what they did? The very nice (& decidedly hot) Dr looked in my eyes with a small light, put some iodine drops in my eyes, looked at them again, flushed the iodine out... and said "what would you like first? The good news, or the bad news?" … I gotta admit, I was actually excited for the bad news at this point because in my head it meant he knew what was wrong.
"Both, in one sentence" I told him. So he says "well, good news is that I didn't see anything wrong, because the bad news is that the equipment here is not any good for this sort of thing and you'll have to go see a private care physician." He gave me a print out of the place he recommended, oddly enough it was the place I had originally wanted to go that the BF told me not to bother with. So… the next day I emailed them, and asked for info about an appointment. When I finally heard back two or three days later the email told me that a consultation, not even a fucking exam, would be £200 to £250… yeah, that's almost $400… so guess whose eye miraculously cleared up a day later? (It totally didn't, I'm just faking it till I get back to the states and can go see a Dr that won't cost me an arm and a leg… almost $400 is downright retarded)
So, yeah, I'm walking around these days with a really cloudy eye that makes seeing things at night a royal pain in the ass. On sunny days I am stupid enough to put my contacts in because I can not see in bright sunlight without sunglasses on, and wearing my glasses makes wearing sunglasses impossible (…or just plain awkward, 'cause I don't think glasses of any sort were meant to be layered- even in the 80'.) Yeah, wearing my glasses sucks- especially in the winter when they fog up every time I walk through a door where the temperature changes. Makes me want to invent a wee wiper blade that swishes across the lenses, how cool would THAT be?!