Mar. 6th, 2009

ladyfalcon: (Default)
Finally broke down and went to the doctor today.

It was kind of an adventure. Really, when I asked my school's receptionist Željka what sort of decongestant medicine is good here, I meant like, What's Czech for NyQuil? But apparently they don't have such a big over-the-counter culture here, so she found me a doctor. It was a precious gift, this referral, because I have not yet turned in my visa application and thus am not yet covered by Czech healthcare. My American healthcare is disaster-only, and a headcold, no matter how bad, is not a disaster.

Then there was the excitement of actually finding the guy. His office is all the way over on the end of the green line, and oh, by the way, I only had an hour to get there before he closed for the week. And Željka didn't give me any directions on how to get there past telling me what metro stop to go to.

But, I got there. I even found the street. There was a little confusion before I learned that while Prague streets, like in America, have the odd numbers on one side of the streets and the evens on the other, in Prague, the even numbers go down the street while the odds go up the other side. So if, for example, you are looking for Jugoslavských partizánu 15, and you are directly across the street from Jugoslavských partizánu 16, you are not actually in front of 15, but 3. 15 is further down.

I would be a lot more annoyed about this if it weren't for the fact that entering the wrong building gave me the chance to hold the door for the most unspeakably adorable little old woman ever. On hearing that I was an American, she wanted to tell me all about her son who lives in Chicago teaching physical education, and how she wishes she wasn't waiting for a heart operation so that she could visit America again, because she loves America. For serious, I like America just fine, but I will never be able to muster the sheer delighted enthusiasm this lady had for the whole country. I loved her and wanted to stay and talk but at this point I had 10 minutes to get to the doctor.

I did finally find it, and it was flat-out the most decrepit doctor's office I've ever been in. Also, he spoke no English, which is fine because it gave me another chance to utilize my fool-proof Sharing Vital Information with Non-English Speakers method, which is to call one of my Czech friends, explain the situation to them, and then pass the phone off to the N-E S. Željka had been expecting this maneuver, so all was accomplished in good time. I got a prescription for a decongestant and one for an antibiotic, and had my first experience with Czech pharmacies getting them filled. And spent all but my last 200 crowns on filling them, but this is fine as I expect to get at least part of my pay packet on Monday.

I wasn't going to actually take the antibiotics, as a cold is a virus, and I know the effects of too-heavy antibiotics use, especially in Europe, but it occurred to me that with the amount of time I've had this cold, I'm probably cruising for a sinus infection, which would be... double-plus ungood. I'm already likely to be broke for the next two months with all the time I've taken off work, and if the cold laid me up I can't imagine soldiering through with sinusitis.

Really, what I wish is that other cultures would adopt the Japanese style of wearing surgical masks when sick. I know it's crazy, but lookit: On the one hand, it reduces the spread of illness, which is very important when you ride the crowded metro every day, f'rinstance. Secondly, for me at least, the single worst thing about being sick is that my nose gets beet-red from repeated tissue use, and I would actually rather walk around looking like a naughty nurse from a porno than like some sort of alcohol-soaked lush with the sniffles. Maybe that's just me. Still, spread the word: Surgical masks - the wave of the future.

Now I've just taken my pills like a good patient and am hoping fervently that the decongestant knocks me the fuck out for at least the next 12 hours.



ladyfalcon: (Default)

October 2011


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