fdelano Posted October 7, 2011 Share Posted October 7, 2011 Clean and polished vinyl floors exude sharp pine as if to convince all of the sterility of VA's old hospital. My seat in the permanent waiting room made of similar material to the hard floor squares. Experience tells me the wait will have nothing to do with my appointment time. Others on standby (or sit by) are my age or mostly older. Their blank looks confirm my own. Movement, and all eyes shift to the gurney wheeled to park against the beige wall. Its prone creature moves only as his emaciated chest inhales and expires pine air. His eyes are closed against the over-bright florescent lighting directly over his head. He seems ageless, and I can only guess his war as the war to end all wars. Some talented surgeon saved his life, though removing all the man's mangled limbs. The gurney and the man wait, both immovable without even unwanted assistance. My thoughts get crazy as I imagine a parking meter meting out unending minutes. For more than an hour, I watch the man accept his forced fate while orderlies busily pass. Finally, when human empathy peaks, I quietly ask the entry clerk if someone could give the man water. "Sir, the patient is en route to tests and will be taken care of." I reply. "Get that done within five minutes." She speaks in the phone for five seconds and slams it back in its cradle. I stand there and watch. An orderly in whites arrives and pushes the gurney down the aisle to disappear. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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