Girls In Uniform
I knew that using this title would get someone’s attention…….. 😉
I was back at the hospital yesterday. With my ears. Well, that might be kind of obvious – I guess I should have said, “for my ears” – and the ongoing attempts to get them right following my operation last February and various different infections since then.
I am very appreciative of the service I receive from the NHS – America wake up and listen to Obama! – but I did not appreciate the hour and ten minutes wait in the pharmacy. The reception at the pharmacy was staffed by two ladies of a certain age. I promise you, they were like something straight out of a Les Dawson sketch. They WERE Cissie Braithwaite and Ada Shufflebotham personified. But without the headscarves….
They did make the time pass somewhat more amusingly. Normally I wait patiently (how apt) trying to spot one of the several attractive young pharmacists that work in the department as they busy themselves collecting potions, lotions, pills and bandages in the background. I think it is back to that thing I have for women in uniform – air stewardesses, dental nurses, Avon ladies and the like. I am not sure why I have a thing about ladies in uniform. It certainly pre-dates the policewoman stripogram that my petrol station dealers gave me as a leaving present. It may have had something to do with Miss Diane in the original Crossroads I suppose……..but I digress.
Clearly Cissie and Ada were volunteering. I cannot imagine that they were being paid to receive their customers. They were having far too much fun. They were there for the “company” and to entertain the various people waiting for their drugs – fat people, old people, people with damaged limbs, people with hacking coughs, and, kids in school uniform who looked like the Cheshire Cat having been allowed to skip class on the first day back at school. And me, myself and I.
Cissie and Ada talked loudly. They must have done. Even through my infected ears, my perforated ear drum, my ointment plug and wads of cotton wool, I managed to catch every word of their conversation. They were doing the crossword. They were doing it badly. “Helicopter moving part, four letters”, says Cissie. “Blade” says Ada. “A thread, six letters ending in d” says Ada. “Cotton” says Cissie. This went on for a good forty-five minutes or so until one waiting patient volunteered the answers “rota” and “strand”. “Oh, we’ve done it. We’ve finished. We’re cleverer than we look.” exclaimed Ada to Cissie, ignoring the fact that they had been helped somewhat.
Cissie and Ada greeted every patient with the same message. It could have been a script from Little Britain. “Do you want to get a coffee? Computer is down. It’ll be a good fifteen minutes to wait.” Regulars would take their advice. They would go for a coffee in the cafe run by the Friends of Leighton. Or they would go to get their blood test done. Or, mostly, they would go to have a “quick fag”. Anyone over 60 would be invited to share Cissie and Ada’s thoughts on how we are “too dependent upon computers these days” and how “young people today wouldn’t know how to run a reception without a computer to rely on”. And, neither did they.
Cissie and Ada decided that they needed to share their mobile phone numbers with each other, producing brick-shaped objects that would not have been out of place on the set of “Wall Street”. Cissie, who wouldn’t know how to turn a computer on, didn’t know how to program a number into her phone. Ada, walked her through the process in excruciating detail, making several errors on the way and oblivious to the growing queue of infirm people clutching prescriptions and desperate to escape for another cigarette.
My stay was a little longer than fifteen minutes. This was due to the fact that the pharmacist had to check with the consultant that he really meant me to put an unlicensed lotion normally prescribed for bad knees into my right ear, and, because they needed to go back to the ward I had just left to get some of the ointment that I needed for my left ear. Apparently, the hospital pharmacy didn’t stock it because it only comes from Australia. As you can see, we are at the experimental stage in the treatment of my ears……
But, my drugs were finally dispensed and by a very attractive brunette with an East European accent and a nice white uniform. So, it was worth the wait. 😉
Ear, Ear – the operation
The Avon Lady
The Air Hostess
Entry filed under: Health, humour, middleman, poor service. Tags: Ada Shufflebotham, air stewardess, avon lady, Cissie Braithwaite, crewe, Crossroads, dental nurse, ear, girls in uniform, hospital, Leighton, les dawson, little britain, miss diane, pharmacy, school uniform, uniform.