Sunday, June 5, 2016


The word "hospital" spells panic in many minds. The institution which is to in reality mean a welcome place in times of need such as ailments has over the time turned into a lucrative business which are run by non medical personnel, with management jargons which many management gurus would vie to inscribe in their next profound thought and the irony of the patient who would display impatience. The present scenario sometimes makes one think that probably Florence Nightingale or Dr Kotnis or Dr Roy are mythical characters with legends spun by imaginative minds.

Cutting from this labyrinth of words, one must shift to the scene outside an Operation Theatre which is the much revered place of our movie moguls and megaserial makers for whom it is the place for all hysterics and the venue which can legitimise any twist in the tale. Unlike any of those portrayals, a security guard in starched uniform clearly dictates the terms of who can cross the yellow line. There are no nurses who rush in  and out for us to mouth those dialogues of concern as they have their separate exits and entrances which legitimise the earlier day kings having a royal passage through tunnels. The patient who is spirited away from the wards or the casualty to the acronymised OT through a secret passage with a dismissing wave of the hand to the attendant to appear instantaneously before the OT for the sordid wait may sound ominous after the exposure to this "critical twist in the tale arena".

Moving over one finds comfortable seats placed with a water container with which children are playing with abandon. A strategically located cafeteria which also empathetically serves the attendants snacks and beverages with a "service tax" catches the eye making one more comfortable than in a mall having a multiplex. The day there would make one wonder why the movie moguls are unable to make a better representation of this area. Musing thus yours truly makes a sample representation of the events that unfold there.

As the children are toying with the mineral water can to make an optimum mix of hot and cold water while intermittently spraying some of the precious liquid on each other, a man's name is called out and a woman rushes in while the other acquaintances await her return with bated breath. She comes out weeping inconsolably and a sympathetic bystander helpfully offers emotional support by enquiring the status. Between sobs, she says, "Oh! he is fine. The surgery is successful." Mystically one of the women around remarks must be a tyrannical husband. The affected soul nods and then says, " The doctor says he has to be in hospital for at least a week. The insurance will run out and additional money has to be arranged. The man just did not listen to my advice of not having fatty foods and look at the 'price' I have to pay". 

Even as one marvels at the public display of emotions, another set of men sitting around console her by saying, "Madam, this is only a case of cardiac problem. Look at our plight the father and son unnecessarily picked a quarrel with the neighbours and there was a fight which was egged on by some bystanders. Now all of them are in the hospital. Which hero is going to come to our aid? We have to now sell the land to foot this bill".

Hardly, the word ends another chimes in by inquiring with concern, " Where is the land? What is the extent and what price do you expect? My son has met with an accident and he is not the kind who will make a living. If I buy this land may be the money out of it can fetch him some moolah for the living. Please give me a missed call so that we can negotiate at leisure."

This is followed by the stern sentry listlessly announcing the name of a woman for which a man responds while another elderly woman follows him. They reach the door but only one is permitted. After some discussion, it is explained one is the husband and the other is the mother. The all powerful sentry invokes his celestial powers to grant permission to both. Meanwhile, the others continued to engage each other in conversations. Soon the duo emerged and the milling crowd gathered around them and caused enquiries. The result of the investigation was that the duo had been promoted to the rank of father and grandmother respectively. Immediately, one of them said, righteously, " It is not proper to announce the birth of a child without sweets. By the way, is it a boy or a girl?" Another enquired of his relationship only to understand that he was only an acquaintance outside the pristine "OT". Even as this was happening one of the children told crisply, " I do not want toffees. I want a bar chocolate." The mood changed as a box of sweets was procured and distributed amongst total strangers.

This is the world the print and electronic media wants us to believe is unconcerned about the welfare of any other soul. Will these persons who hallucinate take the trouble of checking the ground reality? If only one can trust yours truly, a stressful day can be busted outside an OT even if none of your near or dear ones are in that "critical zone of twist in the tale".