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Waiting Game

A viciously hot afternoon. The hospital was airless and the staff looked exhausted. Somewhere, a patient coughed relentlessly. I was glad of my blue mask.

There were fifteen or so of us in the Emergency Blood Test corridor. My hygienic plastic chair felt spitefully hard.

We patients, from time to time, glanced at each other conspiratorially - half-smiling, not venturing small talk.

I looked around for a cold water dispenser. Nothing! There was always the WC, one supposed.

People came and went, went and came... I peered at the mobile - again. This time, it stated '7-00 pm'

Six hours of waiting already!

I rued my lack of a smart-phone, or even a notebook.. Well, the walls were not completely blank. I read, 'please observe the social distance of...' 'please use the hand sanitiser'. Yet there was no indicator to show one's place in the queue.

Would my test results be bad or worse? Panic! Panic! Think of something else...

I began imagining... poor people in Third World clinics, and pampered Westerners in private wards. Yet we were all part of that huge vacuum called 'WAITING'.

I started. Someone was calling my name, and strong hands were helping me stand. We began walking towards a consulting room.

Well, this part of the waiting game was over, it seemed...

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