So before she went to church, my mom stopped at my brother’s house to drop off a kitten calendar that was a gift from my sister. My brother has five cats, three of which are black siblings and one of which is named Mr. Blue.
My mom reached down to say hi to Mr. Blue and for whatever reason he clawed at my mom and tore open her left forearm. My mother, being of an advanced age, has very thin and brittle skin so even a slight bump or scratch can do some serious damage. Her wound bled badly enough that my brother advised her not to go to church but to go back home to take care of it. She instead went to church.
Some events happened after the service that included a trip to a local CVS Pharmacy Minute Clinic and also at an ironically closed neighborhood after-hours urgent care clinic, but suffice it to say that when she got home and I saw the wound I took her straight to the ER at Thornton Hospital up at UCSD.
We arrived around 7:00pm, registered with reception and sat on comfortable chairs in the waiting room. I ended up watching most of a two-hour special documentary on the TV about Lance Armstrong while we waited. The sound was turned down so I had to read the closed captions for the entire episode. We waited for almost an hour and a half.
Among a room full of people waiting to be seen were two loud couples talking and laughing about wine country trips and how to correctly use smartphone apps, a younger visitor who occasionally would take off his glasses and bury his head in his arm while he cried for someone in one of the inside rooms, a younger girl and her girlfriend who was there because of a sprained ankle, a group of younger kids who were there for an non-obvious reason but who kept going in and out of the waiting room getting drinks or food, a husband and wife (who wore a mask the whole time) and their two young daughters, and one guy in his late twenties who could hardly breath or stand up straight because of kidney stone pain. He showed up last but rightly went in first. I did my best to Dr. House all the conditions that everyone was presenting with.
After we were finally escorted back to room 17 we ended up waiting another half an hour for a nurse to come by. She told us who the doctor was who would eventually see my mom and I saw from the computer monitor that he had seven other patients to take care of. This was going to take a while.
The nurse eventually returned and gave my mom a tetanus shot with a whooping cough booster. Then we waited some more. After two and a half hours the doctor finally could come by and take care of my mom. He rinsed her wound, cleaned and disinfected it, and finally wrapped it up in non-sticky dressing.
The nurse returned with one amoxycillin tablet to take immediately, instructions on how to care for the wound, and a prescription for six more days of antibiotics.
Everyone we dealt with was extremely professional, friendly and polite. We just happened to go there on a busy night and after a little more than three long hours we were finally able to go home.
My mom never did leave that kitten calendar at my brother’s house.