We go to a big practice with a number of doctors. Although I am not a frequent visitor I know most of them and they know me. The reception staff know me too.
I am sure the other patients must think I am a very regular visitor.
While I was waiting yesterday I was chatting to a very worried mother. One of her children has multiple medical problems and she needs a lot of support. Her anxiety levels that morning were obviously at an all time high. Her child had been rushed to hospital earlier in the week and she was there to discuss the options for his future - none of them likely to be good. The reception staff had actually asked me to engage her in conversation to try and calm her down a bit.
As we were talking several of the doctors came into the big waiting area to call their patients in.
"Good one Cat."
"Good one Cat."
"Right on Cat."
I assumed it was just another letter to the editor. It had been in support of doctors and I guessed someone had read it out at their early morning meeting a few days previously.
My appointment time came and went. The doctor was running late.
And then the mother was called in and her doctor said to me, "Good one Cat. Thanks."
He usually manages a cheerful smile but his eyes were sombre.
After a moment the doctor I was seeing escorted an elderly patient back to the reception desk.
I waited and she said, "Come on through."
We went in and she shut the door.
"I have to apologise. I saw you talking to A... so I called Mrs L.... through before you. I hope you didn't mind waiting."
My test results were good. I left as a taxi was leaving with a weeping A...
No, I didn't mind waiting.