The French medical system is very reluctant to let go of their patients. It appears that, as they go through a lot of effort to fix said patient, they are going to be damn certain that said patient stays fixed.
No backsliding allowed.
One is not merely discharged on one's own recognizance.
As we left the hospital on Friday, the nurse came with the stack of ordonnance (prescriptions), including one for the home nurse to make certain that mon mari followed all the rest.
We stopped at the pharmacy and left, 45 minutes later, with three shopping bags. There would have been a fourth… Mon mari was supposed to wear a brace on his entire leg to keep him from bending his toe….
They didn't have the right size, and, after much worry trying to make another work, I convinced the pharmacist that it would be a waste because he would never use it.
The nurse duly showed up the next morning to check the toe.
Now, you should know that there were 2 tiny stitches on the very tip of his second toe.
When she was through with her treatment he had a bandage going half way up his calf.
Monday we called the local GP to have the stitches removed (as required on an ordonnance). He said to come in at 5.
We didn't realize that Monday's from 5:00pm are his 'office' hours.
Most doctors here have 'office' hours, when they take walk-in traffic.
Lovely idea: one gets to sit in a room full of sick people for hours waiting your turn. Ever so much better than calling for an appointment for one of the other 4 days. I mean, if you did that, there might not be anyone in the waiting room to gossip with! That would be a shame, now, wouldn't it?
Three hours later the stitches were removed. The ordonnance also allowed him to download mon mari's medical history…. Which then allowed him to give mon mari the ordonnance to use the ambulance service.
Real ambulances, the kind with para-medics and equipment, are run by the fire department or SAMU. The other ones, that one sees everywhere, are really medical taxis. Mon mari can now take a medical taxi to any of his doctor appointments, free of charge.
Which means that I no longer have to drive him to Bordeaux.
Well, it would mean that if he were willing to go without me.
It's not so much that he cherishes my company; more that he needs the translator.
Yesterday morning the hospital called. One of the doctor's decided that an MRI would be helpful before his appointment on Monday. Can't believe no one thought of this before. Whilst in hospital he spent many days doing absolutely nothing. Anyway… Could we come at 5:00pm?
I said no.
That was unacceptable.
We were there at 5:00.
We were home by 9:00 – he didn't have to wait.
Then the GP called. Someone, somewhere, thought of something else mon mari desperately needed… A kit to do some other sort of blood test… Can we come in Friday to pick up, yet another, ordonnance.
And, as long as they had my attention, they gave me his appointment schedule for the next 2 weeks…. Just check-ups to make sure their work wasn't going to come all undone.
Fortunately, asparagus is not a thing of the past. Mon mari would have been most cross if his hospital stay had caused him to miss asparagus season.
Since it's Thursday, and I have a free minute, I'm going to submit this to Presto Pasta Nights, founded by Ruth of Once Upon a Feast, and hosted this week by Hillary of Chew on That Visit her blog on Friday for all the wonderful pasta dishes from around the world.
Like tomatoes and basil, lemon and mint, smoked salmon and champagne, foie gras and Sauternes… Oops, drifting off topic here.
Ham and asparagus, for me, is another perfect pairing.
Pasta with Ham and Asparagus
1 1/4 cup bite size pasta
10oz (300gr) baked or deli ham
10oz (300gr) asparagus
3 green garlic (2oz, 60gr)
1/2 cup (4oz, 125ml) chicken stock
1/2 cup (4oz, 125ml) Greek or plain yogurt
1/2 cup (4oz,(120gr) Gruyère cheese, shredded
2 tsp olive oil
Cook pasta according to package directions.
Snap off asparagus ends. Peel if using white. Cut asparagus into 1 1/2" (4cm) lengths. Bring a medium saucepan half full of water to a boil over medium high heat. Add asparagus and blanch for 2 minutes (3 for white). Remove, drain, rinse thoroughly with cold water and drain again.
Cut ham into large, bite-size pieces. Trim and thickly slice green garlic.
Heat oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add green garlic, ham, asparagus and sauté until hot and lightly browned. Add chicken stock and heat through. Stir in yogurt.
When pasta is done drain and add to skillet; heat through. Sprinkle with cheese, stir to combine and melt cheese slightly and serve.
If mon mari behaves I might even share!