Over the years I've met some very stroppy receptionists in doctors surgeries. Sometimes the power quite clearly goes to their heads and can transform some gentle women into Attila the Hun with terrifying consequences.
Here in Cornwall it is not like that at all! The receptionists are all people I know and love....and who know both me and David well.
However this same delusion of power has managed to spread to the pharmacy.
I have now had two unfortunate brushes with authority in the last couple of weeks and can see the next one looming.
Right at the start of David's illness the doctor prescribed steroids for him...they had to be picked up in the neighbouring village. The receptionist said on our way out.
"Don't worry, I've rung the pharmacy. The pills are made up all you have to do is collect them."
I rushed over, to be told the pills were not ready, were indeed in a queue and to take a seat in the waiting room. I waited almost three quarters of an hour before they were pronounced ready!
Last week after seeing the doctor more tablets were prescribed. I asked the receptionist to ring up the other pharmacy because I could no longer leave David on his own. She rang up whilst we were there and told them it was urgent and they had to be ready. I heard every word.
We then went to pick up some essential shopping and drove over to the next village.
I asked for the pills please. The receptionist smiled and said they should be ready. David, unable to sit in the car on his own had come with me...
The pharmacist was standing talking to another member of staff. They were slagging off a patient. The conversation could be heard clearly. I coughed to get their attention. The lady arrived with ill grace to tell me the tablets were not ready and to take a seat!
I stood my ground. I explained that the lady from the other surgery had rung up to make sure they were ready.
It was downhill all the way from there. Clearly piqued she retreated into the hallowed ground behind reception and resumed her conversation about dreadful patients!
I waited, got David sitting and waited....and waited.
Eventually she emerged with the pills saying
"For your information I've only just had that phone call" the look she gave me was pure hate.
I picked up the package, collected David and went, reflecting that a pharmacist willing to tell bare faced lies could be dangerous. The phone call with the first receptionist was about three quarter of an earlier!