Thursday, December 8

Misadventures in Health Care & Sam's Club

I swear I need to start a new blog just for health lack-of-care experiences.

Anyway. The Kid woke up with a very deep, dry, hacking cough today. We moved to the area recently (old ped is 30 miles away) so I called the local ped a friend recommended. They didn't have an appointment available until tomorrow, and suggested I take her to Urgent Care.

At Urgent Care, Aurora was diagnosed with-- ready for this?-- a cold! Okay, fine. I'm glad her lungs sound good and the cough isn't anything major. Doctor said, "Give her some Triaminic." I explained about her food allergies (unable to give her OTC meds because of the additives) and asked if she would call the compounding pharmacy for me to have a safe version made up. She said, "Can't you ask her allergist?"

I told her last time I went that route it took 8 hours, because the allergist is VERY busy (considered one of the top allergists in the U.S.) She said, "I'm not comfortable doing that."

I said, "You don't write prescriptions here?"

She said, "I do, but I don't know about her allergies."

I explained that Aurora's allergies are on file with this pharmacy, they made up some Tylenol for me last week, I just need her to call (even though it's an OTC dosage/active ingredient, they need an Rx for special formulation.)

She said, "_I_ don't call, the nurses do." Whatever. "Well, could they, please?" Sigh. "Oh fine." Gee, SO sorry to put you out. What a pushy witch I am, asking a doctor to call in a prescription for my sick toddler!


Then I made the mistake of running over to Sam's Club, which happens to be across the street from Urgent Care. We buy giant packs of Hormel pre-cooked bacon there, which is fast and easy for breakfast, portable for snacks, and safe for Aurora to eat. Because I was just running in for one item, I decided not to bother with a cart (since Her Highness protests them anyway.)

I rushed Rora inside (I do not understand 34° in broad daylight) and rummaged in my wallet for my membership card. Not in its usual slot. I went through every card there-- Safeway, Giant, Petco, the Metro, debit, credit, expired library, my social security, Aurora's social security, health insurance, car insurance. Drat. (That's the G-rated version of what I said.) Still shivering as the automatic doors kept opening and closing behind us, I asked if I could have a temporary card issued.

Yes-- I just needed to stand in that line. That line stretching halfway through the store.

So I stood in it. Rory asked to "awk," so I put her down. At first she was content to hold my hand, but then began pushing it away and announcing loudly, "Stop, Mama!" "Hold my hand," I told her. She screeched. I picked her up. She kicked and screamed. Oh. One of those days.

I held her, kicking and screaming, snot streaming down her face (did I mention the doctor advised me not to aggravate her and worsen her cough?) Heads turned. Finally it was my turn, the woman looked up my card (there are 4 local Megan Clarkes, apparently, and it took awhile to find me specifically) and then took my picture again (in it, I am telling Aurora sternly, "Stop screaming." I was not ready for the photo.) She handed me my new card, I stuck it in my pocket, and we proceded to the DVD aisle (looking at Key, Goopy, Donald, and Puto on the Disney DVD's cheered her right up.)

Once we got to the bacon, she wanted to be held. I grabbed 2 packs (might as well avoid a repeat of this trip in the near future) and carried her to the checkout.

Naturally, when it came my turn, the cashier was ready to go off-duty and I had to wait for them to close out the cash drawer, enter the employee's code into the computer or whatever they do, etc. The new one swiped my bacon, scanned my membership card, and . . .

"Did you just get this card?" she asked. I said suspiciously, "Yeees?"

"It wasn't activated properly," she said.

Before I had a chance to properly snarl, a man returned to demand his receipt, which the previous cashier had failed to give him. Now the Sam's Club Exit Guards were refusing to let him exit with his cartful. And before he could be helped, the woman behind me suddenly discovered her cornish game hen had been opened, and was requesting that someone go get her a new one.

A manager was called. They sent me back to the membership desk to reactivate the card. Don't worry, they can ring up your bacon there, since it's only 2 items, I was assured.

I trudged back across the store, heavy toddler on my hip (now refusing to get DOWN), heavy diaper bag on my shoulder, juggling 2 packages of bacon. The irate membership desk employee activated the card, but refused to ring up the bacon. I marched back to the original cashier, cut in her line, and had her ring me up.

All that for $16 worth of bacon.

And a cold.

Thursday, December 1

Verizon Part II

The repairman showed up awhile back. A day early. He was kind of weird, too. By the time he asked if I had an alarm system in my apartment (???) I called my sister and put on a big show about having company coming over VERY SOON. Just in case he had a hatchet in his bag of tricks. (My sister lives 2700 miles away, but HE didn't know that.)

Once the line was repaired (at no charge! Imagine) he called his boss, in my presence, to say the line was fixed and to credit us, because the problem was on THEIR end.

3 days ago I got a bill for $160+, most of which was marked "past due." Then came the nasty phone message threatening to cut off our service if we didn't pay. 'Cause of course they didn't credit us.

When I called to rant, however, Mrs. Lind kindly noted that we HAD been credited . . . $1.92. (Don't EVEN ask.)

Supposedly it's taken care of now. I'll probably update when the phone line explodes or similar.