Some Inefficiency With Your Tea?

Some of you might know that I lose my voice every Winter. I thought I’d get through this one unscathed since it’s now January, but no. I’ve lost my voice. And can I just say – it’s really hard getting the kids out the door for school without yelling.

I need to see a Doctor. Now the Doctors at our local medical centre are very good. But you have to actually see them first.

Monday, 9.30am
I call the medical centre, and after an engaged signal for half an hour I get through. I ask for an appointment. Any phone conversation is annoying when all you can do is whisper, so this one was excruciating.

“This morning is all booked.”
“OK, how about this afternoon?”
“Well, you’ll have to call back at 10.30am if you want an appointment for this afternoon. We’re not taking afternoon bookings yet.”
“So we hang up now, I wait an hour and then call you back?”
“Which means you are effectively doubling the number of phone calls you get?”
“That’s just how our system works.”
“Right. How about tomorrow?”
“No, we only have a certain number of bookings available for tomorrow and they are already taken. If you want an appointment for tomorrow morning, call again at 8am.”
Riiiiight. So tomorrow is not completely booked out, but you won’t make any more appointments until the morning?”

“Sorry, can you repeat that?  I wasn’t listening.”

This happens every time I try to make a doctor’s appointment, but each time I forget just how annoying the whole process is. So I call back again this morning.

Tuesday, 8.10am
“All booked, I’m afraid. Sorry.”
“Right. And I suppose if I want an afternoon appointment I’ll have to call back at 10.30am?”
“And because everyone who wants an afternoon appointment calls at 10.30am, I won’t get through until close to midday, by which time all the appointments will be taken?”
*Audible sigh* “The afternoon schedule does not open until 10.30am. It’s just the way it is.”

If I had a voice, I would have asked who I need to root to get an appointment around here. That sounds terrible doesn’t it Muriel, but the chances of them knowing what you mean by “root” are low. So you get the satisfaction of swearing at someone, and they are more puzzled than offended.

If my throat didn’t feel like it was on fire, I’d be laughing, trust me. But think of all the things you make appointments for. It’s not hard, is it? You ring, they check their books and when there is an open spot, you get it. Sometimes this is days in advance. Goodness! And even more amazing, there are occasions when appointments are made weeks and months beforehand. Call the police! That is just too darn C-R-A-Z-Y.

So I’m sitting around, very quietly, eating lozenges with a fluffy scarf around my neck. I’ll call again in 40 minutes, and we’ll go through the whole thing again. I just cannot contain my excitement.

If anyone has a decent cure, please let me know. I don’t think I’ll be seeing a Doctor.

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