Monday, September 20, 2010

When it rains, it pours.

So today I'm sitting at home in the office getting some work done (i.e. chatting on Facebook and listening to music) when I get a call from Kelly - he's at the doctor and he needs me to come there NOW. So I bust ass down the escalator to Queens Road, run up to the doctor, and find Kelly moaning and writhing in pain - they think he has kidney stones and needs to go to the hospital. He's in too much pain to walk, so the ambulance comes and they load him into a stretcher and off we go (I got to ride in the back of the ambulance! And not as the patient! A first!).*

At the hospital, they won't even let him out of the lobby until I shell out 6,000 HKD. While I'm dealing with that, I hear Kelly say that he's going to vomit. I have never seen people move so fast. Immediately, the three EMTs scatter in different directions yelling LEI YAO MO DOYA?!!!! (do you have a bag?). Kelly vomits from the pain just as I finish the transaction, and he's wheeled into an extremely beige ward housing seven other men in varying stages of, well, death.

Kelly continues to writhe and sweat and moan and beg for painkillers, repeatedly pushing the nurse call button, until someone finally comes and says, "painness?" After several emphatic yesses he gets a shot in the ass and calms down. The doctor comes to see him and says he'll have to stay overnight, but he's not allowed any food because "you'll just vomit from the pain when you pass the stone." Spreading cheer all around, these Hong Kong doctors.

I get kicked out at 9 p.m., but not before I realize that I've left my umbrella in the ambulance. And it's a typhoon signal three. That means it's raining really, really, REALLY hard. So I walk. And get wet. Very, very wet. Wet in my soul. So wet, in fact, (and this is the saddest part of the story) that when I stop to buy beer the store owner won't let me in his shop. Effing Shakespeare couldn't write tragedy like this.**

* The best part - the ambulance driver's cell went off on the way to the hospital. The ring tone? "Had a Bad Day."

** Of course I just came home, dried off, and went back to the store. Because there's no way I'm NOT drinking after that.

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