Thursday, November 4, 2010

Pre-Dewali Day

Today is the day before Dewali. There should be little work being done today. Everybody is looking forward to tomorrow.

In the morning I paid another visit to the Delhi Medical Council. If you remember, this is the place where I sat down in the reception area and stared at everyone, daring them to make eye-contact with me! (see blog of Day Four – Busy day) This time I walked straight up to the receptionist and interrupted whatever she was doing!

After making me wait two minutes, she took my application, looked it over, and consulted with her colleague to see if the passport photos I had brought were too large or not. Then she handed me a computer-generated receipt for the application fee of Rs. 1,000/-, and told me that my registration will take about a month. She said I could come back and pick it up or they can mail it to me. That was it. No hassle, no hint at any hanky-panky, the whole thing was not what it was supposed to be. It was an Indian Government office. They were supposed to hassle, find some problem with my application for sure and offer to expedite if I was nice to them. Nothing like that happened. I am disappointed!

Then I went over to the hospital OPD (Out Patient Department). I passed by the medical clinic; it was chaos in there. I went to the ENT clinic and walked right into the room of the senior most doctor. No one asked me why I was there. It is surprising what you can do, if you are dressed right and appear confident. The senior ENT surgeon was seeing patients and I was observing. After all the patients were finished, all the junior doctors came in for a mini-meeting. I asked them how they treated ENT patients who had nasal and sinus problems due to allergies, after there was no response to sinus surgery. The chief doctor explained that there is no cure for allergies and that allergy tests and allergy shots are useless since they do not work. He said he tells his patients to live with it since it is not going to cause any serious complications. He said sometimes he sends them to Yoga, and Yoga works much better then allergy shots. Well, well, well, all my life’s work was trashed in two minutes.

In the afternoon I went over to Suneeta and then the two of us went shopping for sweets in Chandani Chowk. This is the main bazaar in front of the Red Fort of Delhi. The bazaar has been in continuous operation for almost a thousand years. There are descriptions of the bazaar in many old books. It was wall-to-wall people,  all of them moving in some Brownian fashion. As Meenu explained, they have moving sidewalks in Chandani Chowk. Just get in the right place in the crowd and crowd propels you forward, without any effort on your part!

I bought sweets at Haldiram’s shop. When I walked out with a bag of sweets I felt what athletes must feel on winning gold medals. I had triumphed.