Ok, maybe the title is a bit strange and maybe different from what I wrote before but in the last few month I’ve been a lot in hospitals in another country which language i didn’t speak. First problem!
Being in a different country, having different experiences is just awesome and i think everybody should live in another country at least 6 month because it will literally change the way u think and how u see life. But while u are there i hope you will not get sick and have to visit regularly “The Hospital”.
Visiting the big “H”
From the first step I had the feeling something will not be ok, it was like watching a horror movie when u know something really scary and bad will happen but u just don’t know the exact moment. U passed that chilly feeling and go to the information point, where, surprise surprise nobody speaks english and after a few minutes of non verbal conversation they just start to yell at u and say really mean words ( i was able to recognize that because let’s face it, bad words are the first thing u learn when u live in another country). If the yelling continues and you are just staying there unable to do anything and wishing u had more friends who can speak the language, don’t worry, everything will be ok after a few minutes when u wake up in a white, yellowish room without your T-shirt and with some strange guys near you. Second problem!
Like a normal person, i think, my first reaction was to start yelling too and trying to cover myself, but then English!! from nowhere that sweet words just calmed me down explaining that i wasn’t being raped or kidnapped by aliens like my crazy imagination was already making some Oscar-winning scripts, but just collapsed for a moment or two. After some good minutes of conversation, i got the clue of what just happened and i was grateful that i could speak in English with a doctor. Next explain what u have, bla bla bla analyses, bla bla bla more analyses and the results. Iuhuuu, get the prescription and go home and rest! Sick leave, even better!
“I’m afraid we don’t have good news”
I think this is one phrase nobody would like to hear, especially from a doctor and one that can’t really explain what u have. I would like to recommend google translate, it really helps or maybe just take that language course u thought about one year ago when u moved to a different country! Third problem! Don’t expect that everybody will speak english and yes, you have to make that extra effort and learn their language, after all u are the stranger.
What happens after this, yeap a lot of other visits to the “H”. After a while people star to recognize you, u receive the nickname ” the english speaking girl” and somehow everybody will be afraid of u because they cannot speak to you. Sometimes, if u are really unlucky like me, the “english speaking doctors” will not be at the hospital so you will have to wait some good hours until they will arrive even though u had an appointment, but that is a good chance to sit in that brown, cold, unfriendly chair and just look at the people around you.
In the good days, you will only see the cleaning lady passing around in her blue outfit, with her big cart, full of many little things: blue and black garbage bags, some grey towels, mops and other cleaning supplies. She will always stay a minute with the department assistant, for a “girls talk”, laugh a bit or talk in a very intense and serious way, then change the little garbage ban in the corner and disappear after a wall. Like a ghost, she will come at nearly the same time, do the same things and then just dissolve somewhere in that building. I was actually curious if she has like a time schedule for every day so for a week i went there at the same time, she was always there with 5 or 10 minutes delay. Only on Friday, she didn’t say hi, in another language to the strange girl sitting in the same chair over and over again.
But the most awful part of staying in the hospital’s hallway for a longer time is that u get to see a lot of sick people, some of them are smiling and they enter in the doctor’s room only with hope, Sometimes the smile is still there when they get out, but the saddest part is when they get out crying and u can see that they are trying to hide it, but their eyes are all read and colorless. It’s even sadder when u see an old lady going in and in her way out she will just sit on a chair in front of you and look somewhere beyond everyone and cry. Not really cry, with sounds and tissues, but just stare in some unknown point and drop from time to time little wet balls from her unusual green eyes. I wish I could answer her when she finally whispered something looking at me and not be force to say that i don’t speak her language. I think that felling was worse that being cursed by some receptionist, or not being able to understand or make yourself understood in an hospital.
I can say that i hate hospitals, i have always hated them, the hospitals from my country, the ones from other countries, they are just awful. I hate that strange, indescribable smell, that funeral faces, that white-yellow outfits, that cold metals, everything. But, in the same time, i respect the people that work there and I am grateful that they can be there every day and can put a smile on the faces of that sad people. I hate the big, scary “H” monster, but I love the people that are every day there.