This morning I woke up with a sore throat, still. It's been sore for 5 days and I keep thinking maybe it's just drainage? Maybe it will go away? But this morning, as soon as I finished teaching English to my friend, I loaded up the 2 little 'uns and headed to the doctor. It's just not going away and I really do need to be able to swallow again at some point.
We went into the clinic and were seated in the hallway. Eva pointed to the room behind us and announced, "That's where Papa took me to get the blue thing out of my nose!" (It was a bead.) Then a young doctor came and showed me into the treatment room. For those of you from Memphis and in the FEC-realm, he could have been Kevin Elliot's long-lost twin brother.
At this point, I had a choice. Do I bring Eva and Benaiah (in his stroller) in with me? Lots of wires, bottles of brown stuff, thermometers. She does love to pretend-play doctor. This could become stressful with an already very sore throat and a serious language barrier between me and my medical care-giver. So, I told her just sit in the hallway and look after Benaiah. Next thing I knew, 2 businessmen in suits sat down next to her, goo-goo'ed and ga-gaa'd at Benaiah and gave Eva a lollipop. I made the right decision.
So, back to the treatment room....the Young Kevin Elliot Look Alike took one look at me and said, in English, "What's your problem?" in EXACTLY the same tone that I might say it to one of the girls who woke up on the wrong side of the bed, barking at her sisters. I stifled my smile and said, in Turkish..."throat sore." Hmmmm? How many days? (He now lapsed into Turkish because I uttered my answer in Turkish, he assumes I will understand the rest of the medical jargon.) I answered, "5." Then I got a reprimand-ish type look. "Yes, I should have come sooner, I agreed with him. What can I do? I'm a mother." In Turkey, this pretty much excuses anything you do. Forgot your purse in the store? I'm a mother. Double parked? I'm a mother. I once was in a car accident here, completely innocent of the accident, but was told by all my friends, I'd be charged because I was the foreigner. The result? 100% innocence, not because I was turning left and a guy tried to pass me illegally, but because I'm a mother. The policeman said, "How could you hit a mother with her children in the car?" Anyway, I digress. So, I used the motherhood card with the doctor and he seemed satisfied.
He took one look at my throat, ran no culture, but said I had step throat. He then began writing me a prescription. Now the men outside began taking Benaiah out of his stroller. I tried to explain to the doctor that I was nursing (I have since learned the best way to say this in Turkish. The story on how I learned it is not blog-able, but ask me sometime, it is oh, so funny.) and if the antibiotic would be ok to take since I am nursing. He then had his nurse go get me a face mask. I am not sure we were communicating well at that point. So, I took the mask, the prescription, gave them a thank you and a smile, picked up my kids from the free babysitting service outside the door, and came home.
Just another day in a different culture.