It’s that time of year again when all us old farts are invited by the National Health Service to get our free flu ’shot’ for the winter, except that this year “that time of year” seems very different, for although it is now October the weather seems more like August with the temperature reaching around 80 degrees.
Usually when I turn up at the local health centre for my autumn ’jab’ all my fellow old gits are crowding into the waiting room dressed as if for an assault on the north face of the Eiger, but this year they all looked more like they were heading for the ‘Costas’, as many old girls were wearing sleeveless summer tops which displayed their ‘bingo wings’ in all their splendour. Bald heads were covered by an assortment of straw hats, skinny blue veined legs protruded from too short shorts and socks with sandals were, of course, ”de rigueur“.
I arrived a few minutes early for my appointment on Saturday, and just managed to squeeze my car into the only empty space in the health centre’s car park. I headed for the reception area, avoiding, as best I could, all the Zimmer frames (‘walkers’), wheelchairs, walking sticks and disability scooters.
My appointment was for 12 o’clock, but it turned out that I was part of a ‘block booking’ of about a dozen people. I was asked to take a seat and told that I would be called “by time” and not by name. I sat down and shortly after a lady emerged from a corridor and announced … “All those with appointments for 11.45 please go to rooms number 4 and 5″. About six people stood up and several, who were still sitting, looked puzzled. “What did she say ?” enquired the white haired old lady sitting next to me. I told her and a few minutes later the same confusion was caused when my little group was called. The old lady tagged along this time. I think that she may have fancied me.
Now let me remind you that this ‘assembly line’ flu jab session is only for oldies who are over sixtyfive, but it would seem that no one who organized it had given any thought to all those old codgers who were ‘hard of hearing’ or who are not quite as ‘sharp’ as they used to be. I wonder how many poor old buggers gave up waiting and went home ?
Now I must not get too excited as today is another highlight in my calender, so .. Yipeee ! .. I’m off to ‘Specsavers’…
… for my free eye test.