Nearly an Armful … or, more probably, ‘Carry On Jabbing’

Despite several weeks of being ‘stoically brave’ and at least two decent attempts at ‘bucking up’ … my left hand had progressed from merely uncomfortable, to the point of being quite painful, so I decided to take myself off to the Quacks for a prodding.

A brief chat with the General Quack soon led to an afternoon to be spent with the Consultant Paw Supremo who decided the cause of my discomfort was one or more of a short list of moderately unpleasant things … but to be sure which one it was, he just had to take some blood. I was then bundled off into a separate room to be greeted by two Nurses – a diminutive Slovakian who introduced herself as Marianna, and her more robust South African colleague.

As there are other things I would rather do than have needles stuck in me, I tried to bring a bit of levity to the situation by asking Marianna if she had ever heard of the Carry On films, and instead of the expected ‘no’, delivered an almost perfect ‘Ohh Matron’ … as made famous by Kenneth Williams as ‘Dr Tickle’ in, I believe, Carry On Again Doctor…

It turned out Marianna was often in hot water for ‘sending up’ the senior staff using her near faultless Dr Tickle impersonation, and continued to amuse me as she tried, and failed, to find a vein from which to draw the necessary blood.

Marianne’s more substantial colleague now stepped forward and tried to extract the sample from less conventional places, only with even less success … and was now hampered by Marianna fussing around in the background, maintaining her Amazonian colleague had hurt me and the only way to make up for my multiple puncture wounds was a cup of tea and a biscuit…

Now, ‘squabble’ is quite a strong word … but nothing else springs to mind to describe the scene next to me as I sat there – only to see another chap glance round the curtain … a chap, it seemed, who was one of those public school types who only seemed to be able to communicate by using a series of exclamations … “ah you’re one of Magnusson’s chaps aren’t you?” … “Blood is it?” … “Should be done by now really” … “Here let me…”

Before this new arrival was allowed anywhere near me, especially waving a needle around in a rather haphazard manner, I had some questions … “Who exactly are you?” being foremost among them … the newcomer replied that he was the Consultant Urologist from down the corridor (but there’s nothing wrong in that department!)  – and coincidently the one who was the most frequent recipient of Marianna’s leg pulling…

So, needle in hand, and every word he uttered being repeated back to him as ‘Dr Tickle’, he piled into the chaos enthusiastically but couldn’t get any blood either – but it didn’t stop him trying…

So the real scene that eventually greeted the Paw Supremo was truly one to behold … a scene, quite aptly more at home in a Carry On film than reality…

The Consultant Urologist waving a needle around, barking ‘nearly got it that time!’ and ‘one more go!’ the two nurses squabbling in the background, stopping only so Marianna could do her impersonation, and me sat in the middle of it, looking more amused than annoyed and thinking maybe if I ran a hospital, it wouldn’t be entirely unlike this…

All of this, finally, gets me to the point I was going to make … sometimes; sorting out a problem does involve getting in some outside help, and what they get up to may be slightly out of your comfort zone and, like my visit to the Quacks, seem more than a little like chaos at first…

This however, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it. Often getting that extra bit of help may be exactly what you need to progress, to help you do those things that you don’t know how to do, or to open your eyes to resources you never knew existed.

I’ve continually found that the answer to a problem is usually only one email or phone call away … and it’s deciding to ask for that help is often the stumbling block…

Until Next Time … (And with all due apologies to the medical profession and in particular the consultants in question, who I sincerely hope will continue to try and mend my sore paw!)

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Tim Lowe
Publisher, Tim’s Business Lowe Down

Tim Lowe