Notes in July July 11, 2007Posted by Aella in Bahrain, Beirut, Culture, Karlskrona, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Saudi culture, Sweden.
I really don’t understand how Swedish people have patience with the health care system in this country. There are only a few private alternatives (usually overbooked) and most people use the public system. It is unbelievable how long you have to wait even if you book an appointment. Not to mention when you call to book an appointment. In the local clinic you will be greeted by an answering machine telling you that you should leave your number and they will get back to you. Then they tell you about what time you can expect a call. This happened to me the other day as I called to book an appointment since my little 5 months old daughter had spots all over her body.
W hen they finally called the lady goes. Uh so what do you want? I explained to her and she goes – Aha so do you want someone to call you back? Eh? Call me back? I thought that’s what you’re doing no? She told me they don’t let children into the clinic if it is believed to be a case of chicken pox. Aha ok. So she asked a nurse to call med back.
She called a few hours later. And asked me. -What do you think it is? Eh? Since when am I qualified to make my own diagnosis on skin rash problems? I told her that perhaps it is chicken pox. She goes -Why do you think so? I replied, -Hm well cus my mum thinks it might be and I seen some pictures online and they look pretty much the same. -Aha, she goes, Then it must be chicken pox.
Just like that….
Is that what our tax money goes to? Us having to make our own diagnosis at home? Well, if you ever hear a Swede (like me 😉 ) praising Swedish health care then know for sure that they haven’t been at home for a long time. Sure we have good staff and most of them know their thing (not this nurse though it seemed) but the system sucks for sure. Anyway. It wasn’t chicken pox but erythema multimforme minor…something completely different. Hamdulilla it is gone now because it looked pretty bad for a day.
What else? Public toilets here are creepy. I am not used to that from Lebanon nor Saudi Arabia (nor Bahrain). If I know people here right the toilets are icky because no one thinks they should have to clean them. They are all too good for that. You pay to use most of them so I think you could expect a good standard but hell no.
I must say it is weird to be back. At first I didn’t feel that I had left at all. Did I really live in Saudi for eight months? Physically perhaps but mentally I feel I have been elsewhere the whole time. My mind was either in Beirut, Sweden or in Bahrain (or in other places). I don’t feel I have seen much in Saudi nor experienced much to be honest. Only seen what it is on the surface but that is what can be expected after such a short time in a country I assume.
The feeling that it is weird to be back stems from that I can’t understand my own culture and people quite often. I can’t understand the things they say and how they act. It’s like coming from an episode of Star Wars only to land in Mars. It’s not the first time I am living outside Sweden so it’s not news to me but this time I feel it more than before.