I HATE Mondays

This has been a gawdawful day–I got through it only with HWMBO’s help, so thanks and hugs go to him.

I woke up at 6:30 to get ready to go to the Chinese embassy to apply for my visa for Shanghai. I got showered, dressed, and then went to the kitchen to eat a bit and take my pills, which I had prepared last night. As I took the pills, I counted, and realised that there was one missing. I went back into the room and, sure enough, I had neglected to pack my beta-blocker. I blame a couple of things. First, the size, shape, and colour of the packages change every time I get a new batch of pills, due to the NHS buying its pills from the lowest bidder. So I may have mistaken them for another pill which I did pack. Second, I take so many pills now it’s easy to forget one if you’re not careful. Third, there were so many pills in the bag that it would be difficult to discern that this particular box of pills wasn’t in the bag.

So, what to do? I went over to Bishan to meet HWMBO, whom I immediately told of my plight. He was sympathetic, but we needed to get to the embassy pronto, so we did that, I all the time wondering when my heart would suddenly conk out.

The embassy is not terribly forbidding; there was little or no security presence to speak of, set against the vehicle barrier and the several guards stationed at the British High Commission next door. We waited for 45 minutes on the steps until they opened the doors. We then “took a number”, filled out the form, and waited a couple of minutes. Called to the window, the clerk took the papers and told me to come back tomorrow. I’ll be paying the equivalent of GBP 25 for this, whereas in London I would have paid GBP 75.

After this, HWMBO and I went to breakfast, and tried to find a pharmacy, only to discover that bisoprolol is only given under a doctor’s prescription so I’d have to visit a doctor. Back to Bishan we went, me in a real state. Our host took me to a clinic (they have 24-hour clinics here!) where the doctor took my blood pressure, sympathised with me about all the pills I have to take, and gave me 30 atenolol pills, which are functionally equivalent. All for the equivalent of GBP 8. We went to the local food stall for lunch, where I popped my pill with a Diet Coke.

Then back to the flat for a few hours of shut-eye and letting my diuretic pass out of my system before I moved away from the bathroom. We then took a bus downtown, on which I was embarrassed because my farecard was out of cash and the driver called me back to pay. I had to use coins to pay for the ride, and when we got to Chinatown, put Sg$50 on the card. That should keep me for a while. We wandered around Chinatown for a while, enjoying the ambiance…”You want to come for a massage?” “You want a suit made while you wait?”, that kind of thing. HWMBO had some dumpling soup, and we then walked over to the new Temple of the Tooth, mentioned in a previous entry. Very nice and new, but I couldn’t go in as I was wearing shorts. We walked down to Clarke Quay to find a restaurant, and after a lot of walking through a new shopping centre (they have so many shopping centres here it’s not funny; why do they need a new one?? Tell me again??) finally found a restaurant. I decided on a burger (silly me, but I have a lot of hawker-style food at other times so occasionally I want something else). Back home, read email, and now to bed.

Other random observations:

  • The MRT is more and more crowded, it seems. I was standing holding on to a pillar this evening and a young gentleman who was holding onto an overhead bar with both hands then leaned on my hand clutching the pillar, with his armpit sticking right into my fingers. I resisted the temptation to tickle his armpit, but also realised that perhaps he didn’t wash his shirt as often as he ought.
  • It’s very nice to see Singapore overland by bus. The one we took today went right past the first place I stayed when I came here in 1995 to visit my ex. I now have a better idea of where everything is.
  • The old Singapore is fast disappearing. The stalls where people try to pull you in used to be ubiquitous. Now you really only see them in Chinatown. The shophouses of Chinatown are falling to the developers very very quickly indeed, as well. If you do like Old Asia, and are coming to Singapore, you won’t see much of it in a few years’ time. So hurry!

I do hope that the rest of the trip goes better than it has so far. Good thoughts and sympathetic murmurs would be most appreciated.

5 Responses to “I HATE Mondays”

  1. vasilatos says:

    There there, sweetie bun. Everything will be fine, I’m sure.

  2. dangtri says:

    Poor one. I’m glad you got the meds in the end without too much extraordinary hassle. Enjoy the rest of your stay!

    BTW, I went to Kaisu Saturday with a *cough* date (or something; not sure). It was lovely!

  3. spwebdesign says:

    Good thoughts on their way!

  4. ruth_lawrence says:

    So not fun, the pill thing.

    :::many good thoughts winging their way to you:::

  5. porcinea says:

    Oh, man! I take atenolol, too, so I know how it feels without it. Ick. Panicky and irritable as my heart pounds harder and harder.

    Glad you got a stash to tide you over.