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5.03.2011

LINE WAITING

It's 6:50 a.m. and I pull into the lab facility to have blood drawn for a doctor's appointment tomorrow.  This is the make-up lab from last week when there was a 3 hour wait in line for the lab. It is not Lynn-possible to wait 3 hours for most anything!!  I determine I am getting there before the doors open today.  As I roll fastly and crookedly into a parking space I see there are 3 people already in line crammed in the space between the two sets of doors where you are relegated to wait till they unlock the inside one.  The herd movement has begun.  I release my seat belt as I put the car in park and find myself practically running to be 4th in line slightly beating out an old man in a walking cast and another senior citizen aged woman.  Should I be proud of that?  Waiting in a line is much akin to being in a elevator when the doors shut - everyone facing forward, no one speaking or making eye contact.  We stand shoulder to shoulder in that space staring at the clock willing the minutes to move to 7:00 a.m.  I cannot take the silence so I declare out loud as though I am a comedian working the room, "Who desperately wishes they had a cup of coffee and that they didn't have to wait here?"  They all relax and start to giggle and comment.  The tension of line waiting has been broken.  We all share how we love coffee and if anyone further down the line happens to have a cup of coffee they should fear for their life.  One by one we comment on our worst lab experiences of waiting.  I hear one man say something like, "I never had blood tests till I hit 55.  I hate age!"  I find myself touching the older woman in front of me gently on the shoulder when she tells me this is her first time in this lab.  She is cute.  Somehow I get through registration and back to the lab now 2nd in line there.  I must have talked fast:)  They call my name and I converse with "Sue" about the mob of people forming that may rush the lab and take the phlebotomists hostage!  She laughs at my stupid humor and says April was a horrible month due to all the snow birds heading home and needing lab work done after a winter in Florida.  I am used to needles daily, and blood work is old hat to me.  She pulls out this huge shank and in it goes.  Nothing comes out.  I comment to her that I have horrible veins which are extremely small and usually they use a pediatric needle to not blow through them.  She manages to get the blood out one drop at a time telling me that I do have bad veins and that the size of the needle she used will cause me some problems later today.  As I walk out of the lab draw room I have to inch my way past the huge line that has now formed.  I smile at those in line and can see conversation bubbles forming above some of their heads, "I can't stand to wait!".  I feel their pain as I exit to freedom and finally a cup of coffee:)

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