Mrs. Hillbilly Mom went to have some blood taken today. Which is not saying she went to give some blood. At least she is back in a regular blood-drawing lab within the hospital/clinic building, and not in a fly-by-night storefront set-up that is open odd hours and located across from Arby's. Getting rid of Banishment Well-Being Concern insurance is one of the best things Newmentia ever did.
I actually had an appointment for the blood-letting, and arrived 10 minutes early. Only two ladies were there in the waiting chairs, and from what I gathered, one of them was just a companion. I signed in, foisted my paperwork (defaced by my draftsman-like block letters declaring that since the order was printed in April, my insurance had changed in July, and was now invalid in October), and sat down to wait for a window call-back to provide info.
The waiting hall on the third floor had four groupings of chairs. Six along the wall as you round the corner, an end table, five more chairs, an alcove with three along the short wall, and about eight under the windows that face down the hallway. The ladies were in the five-chair row, so I took the chair across the end table from them. I put my purse in the chair to my left, leaving four more vacant in that section. It's not like we were crowded.
Woe was me. In came a loud family. The dude was old and tall and lanky. Perhaps suffering from a debilitating disease, perhaps just a classic ectomorph. He had long hippy hair and scruffy jeans, and smelled of stale smoke. He signed up at the window as the woman, perhaps his daughter, tried to corral that boy and girl of elementary school age. Woman sat down in the chair on the other side of my purse, and directed the young 'uns to park themselves in the two chairs past her, leaving the one on the end vacant.
I picked up my purse to look for my phone and check the time. They never have a clock in the lab waiting room, you know. Smoky finished signing in and came to sit down.
RIGHT IN MY PURSE'S CHAIR!
Seriously. Was that necessary? Right on top of Mrs. Hillbilly Mom? She overflows her armrest a bit, you know. Anyone with common sense would have taken the empty chair by their family's children. But not Smoky. Maybe he was a chubby chaser. What I know for sure wis that he was a tobacco-product catcher. The waves of old nicotine and second-hand smoke almost knocked me out. My lungs were packing their steamer trunks, ready to catch a slow boat to China, or join the Merchant Marine. What a fine kettle of fish (which would have smelled better than Smoky) this was. Did I remain seated and pretend nothing was amiss? Or get up and go past the waiting ladies to fresher air?
Thank the Gummi Mary, the receptionist called me to the window for my new insurance card! I wrested myself out of that torture contraption awkwardly, because, you see, I had to hold my purse as I grabbed the armrests like parallel bars and hoisted myself up. After forking over the laminated info for perusal, I weighed my options. SCREW THAT! No way was I going back to sit next to Smoky. I went to the very end of the ladies' row, and took that chair. Placing my purse again on my left, vowing NOT to move it unless asked. People are at the lab because they are sick, you know! Except for me, and one of the ladies, who said she was giving blood to test her liver's reaction to her medicines.
I'll be ding-dang-donged! In came a man and woman. They waited at the window as the liver lady was called in. Then they sat IN HER CHAIR and the one by the end table. What is with people? They were right on top of the companion! And here came another man and woman. They looked at my purse, but since it was in the only empty chair in that group, I made no move to move it. I didn't think that gal was going to sit on her man's lap. They went to the alcove. And in came ANOTHER man and woman. It was like Noah's Ark day, two by two. They sat under the windows.
Thank the Gummi Mary, I was called in next. Some of those folks were hacking up sputum.
Mrs. Hillbilly Mom may or may not be a germaphobe. But she is certainly a person pissed off by people.