So, I am now heading to the doctor. I am not 100% sure where this is. No roads or streets really have signs, only highways. The plazas are all kinda run down, and I am heading to Iturregui Plaza. All I know is that it is near a big mall (on the left), then on my right should be a funeral home, and then is the plaza. As always, the roads are jammed pack full of people, everyone in a HUGE hurry to get no where. I was amazed that I found it on the first try. After I was buzzed in, I walk into the very full waiting room; it is now 11:30.
The place is tiny, and full of people. No one is in the little room where the receptionist should be, so I take a seat and start waiting. After a few minutes, a woman appears at the window; I approach her and she starts talking in spanish (as most people do to me even though I am white). I smile and say "No espanol, do you speak english"? She looks at me and says "A little". Oh crap. This is all I can thing right now. Luckily, a woman in the waiting room stands up and says "Can I help"? Ah, I am saved! I tell this woman that I am in Puerto Rico for work from the states, and that I work at Lilly, and that they send people here who are sick. She translates to the receptionist, and the translator speaks back to me "Put your name on the sheet". Thats it. No long forms, insurance, no nothing. Ok, let the waiting begin. Oh, I am also informed that the doctor DOES speak english. If I had gotten the response back that he didn't, I was outta there and hopeless.
There are a lot of people in the room, but I am optimistic (mostly because I am sick and I must remain optimistic). And, if I were a better writer I could create suspense and entertainment by writing out my agony of the wait, but I am too tired and not creative enough.
I waited 2 and a half hours.
It is now 2. I haven't eaten since breakfast, and haven't had any water since 11. Luckily my runny nose hasn't been much of a problem during this wait as I had no more tissues on me. Now right before I am called in, the receptionist hands me a notepad and a pen and says in broken english "Name, address, phone number".
When I head back to the doctor, he warmly greets me and tells me I am welcome in his office (of course, its broken english). He asks me the standard health questions, to which I respond. He says "So you were a healthy boy before Monday". I say "Yes Sir". He asks me what hurts and I reply. We quickly move into his checkup room. He has me take off my shirt and check all the stuff doctors check. He says "Put on clothes, how you say?" I reply "You are correct, put on your clothes". We go back to his office and he says he is giving me 3 prescriptions. Cough medicine (which I really don't have one), clarinex (for my head/sinuses), and Zithromax (anti-biotic, which is all I really wanted). I say thank you very much, he says my pleasure, and please come back if you don't feel better by Tuesday.
I then return to the receptionist and she says "Insurance". Well, I don't figure my card works here, but I hand it to her anyway. She stares at it for about 30 seconds, then shrugs her shoulders and hands it back to me. I say ok. She says "Twenty" and I hand her a credit card. Again, she stares and me and says something in spanish. I stare at her because I do not understand. She says something in spanish again, I continue to stare at her. My guess is she doesn't take credit cards. Luckily, a couple other people waiting say cash. I, unfortunately, do not have cash. I have no reason for cash on this trip. Again, the people waiting tell me "Go to the Walgreens down the road and get cash". I say ok. If I were a less moral man, they would never have seen me again, but I am grateful for the doctor, so I go for cash.
As I pull out of the lot, I see the Walgreens. I go to the ATM and figure "I will get $40 while I am here". Good thinking Chris. I return to the doctor and hand the receptionist a $20. She looks at me and says "No, $40". Now, I recall my team leader here and the lilly doctor saying it will be $20, and I could have sworn she said $20 the first time. Although I am sure she just stole $20 from me, I give her the $40 because I don't know how to argue with a woman who doesn't speak english, and I really wanna get my prescription filled.
Ok, enough for now, I have worn myself out again. Don't worry, more to come.
Oh, and by the way, my throat has been swollen since Friday afternoon. Which means I can barely swallow water. The only foods I have attempted are grapes and a banana. Thats all I have had since Friday morning, and its now Sunday morning. Also, all I have done is lay in bed and sweat, so my sheets and room smell horrible right now.