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the best laid plans…

January 29, 2013

blood testsWell, I thought it was kinda brilliant. Last week I realised that I had to get my chemo port flushed out soon and that I also had to get blood work done for my upcoming oncology appointment in February. So hey, why not get it all done at once? Especially because when I go to my neighbourhood clinic for the blood test they huff and puff and simply cannot find my veins. At leat at the hospital they can usually find veins and anyhow, they can just use the chemo port! I mean, that is in part what it’s good for.

So last week I got in touch with Dr. Ana and told her about my cunning plan. She said “no problem!” and that she would be there on Tuesday morning so I could pick up the blood test form. Of course one small glitch in the plan was that they only do chemo port cleaning between 12.00 – 1.00 pm, so I’d have to go all morning without eating or drinking (though the hardest bit for me was having NO COFFEE). No matter, it was worth saving a trip to the hospital and I planned to meet up with my friend Fourat for a nice tapas lunch after the whole ordeal.

So I was there at Oncology just before noon, foolishly thinking my blood test form would be there ready to be picked up. HA! Of course it wasn’t. I had to speak to three different nurses who got in touch with Dr. Ana, who then said I’d have to wait for her to squeeze me in between appointments. Huh? Well, after a fretful 45 minute wait I got in to see Dr. Ana, got my form, raced over to The Lab and said I was there to get my port cleaned and blood drawn for these tests. The receptionist told me I couldn’t get blood work done without a special appointment. I told her it was fine, that I’d had it all cleared over in Oncology (lies, lies…). Then when I showed the port-cleaning nurse my blood test form she said “I can’t do that now, it’s too late!” while she started taking out the vials needed to store my blood. You see, the bureaucracy here works in mysterious ways. Sometimes “you can’t do that” means that the person who can make it happen simply can’t be bothered, and other times it means that you just need to be gently chastised but of course it’s going to get done.

bacalaoTurned out the lunch was more of an ordeal than the whole hospital visit. Both Fourat and I were appalled by the rude service, mediocre food and crazy high prices. Afterwards she had to go home as she’s fighting an infection, so I popped over to Bodeguita Romero to see if Peter was still there with his walking tour couple. And they were. So I had a proper glass of wine there and a fabulous tapa of grilled bacalao, which was a wonderful antidote to all the gastrobar bullshit. And later the icing on today’s cake was that I met with my landlords and they were willing to renegotiate my contract – so it looks like I may not have to move after all!

I honestly hadn’t expected so much to happen today. Really love it when days turn out like that. How was your Tuesday?

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. January 29, 2013 10:26 pm

    Oh, yech, sorry to hear the “first pass” at lunch was a bomb!!

    Bureaucracies drive me crazy. Are you sure they won’t let you clean the port with a little water-pik or something? (Only kidding. I know how they have to flush it.)

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    • January 30, 2013 9:40 am

      I got a bit concerned that the nurse was having trouble getting the damn thing to work. At first I thought it was blocked (!!!) because nothing would come out, but after a few tries eventually they (slowly) got the blood samples and I was assured that the port was fine. But this was the first time in four years that things haven’t gone smoothly and I am always slightly uneasy about having this apparatus stuck in my chest that goes directly into a major artery. Heigh ho. Guess we’ll see what happens next month.

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  2. January 30, 2013 8:42 am

    Nice to hear the day turned out alright after all despite a no-coffee, no-breakfast start. I remember coffee and tostada, purr purr :D
    It is quite entertaining when you visit tapas bars you don’t like. Maybe the waiter is running for a Basil Fawlty award?

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    • January 30, 2013 9:42 am

      There were two of them vying for the award. If Fourat hadn’t been with me I might have thought I was over-reacting (who, me?) but she was absolutely appalled. We didn’t leave a tip…

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  3. bigbadjohnnyp permalink
    January 30, 2013 9:45 am

    Tuesdays? Pheurgh.

    At least Wednesday is over the hump day.

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  4. January 31, 2013 12:28 am

    Mostly spent in bed. I have some sort of sinus thing which feels not unlike the same as my pre Face-Shingles so I have been taking it REALLY easy. So far, though, it hasn’t developed into anything but the sinus thing. But every time I sneeze, cough, pick something off the floor, laugh, strain at anything, stand up… I get a pain in my sinus. But at least it isn’t Shingles and, more to the point, it isn’t Face-Shingles

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    • February 1, 2013 10:11 am

      Ooooh, not good at all! Hope you’re feeling better soon. xx

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