Scooter Wreck! Bloodshed! Carnage! Explosions! (Part III)
But I made it and followed the officer into the emergency room area, to the bed where the woman was lying. He spoke to her a bit in Chinese and then asked if I wanted to say anything to her. Again, I just said, “I’m very, very sorry, and I hope you can accept my apology.” Again, her icy stare went right through me. Then the cop said we could go, and so we left.
Outside the hospital, the cop and I waved goodbye to each other, I climbed onto my deathcycle and rode to the Watson’s a couple blocks from my house. Watson’s is the closest thing they have over here to a Walgreen’s or CVS, and so I figured I’d be able to find ointments and bandages galore. Ahh, no.
I walked upstairs (to the non-cosmetics floor), my fresh wounds stinging a bit in the air conditioning. I found a worker and showed her my wounds, then pointed around, as if to say, “Where can I find something to help me with this?” She led me over to a section that said First Aid and pointed at a box of small band-aids. I laughed a little and then realized she was serious. And then I realized that that was the only box of band-aids they had. And then I looked for a bit and saw that 80% percent of this “First Aid” section was foot fungus cream. This perplexed me a bit. But after about five minutes of looking between and behind 14 different kinds of foot fungus ointments, I was able to find one package of cheap gauze bandages, one thin roll of surgical tape, and one giant bottle of wound-cleaning solution that actually smelled more like kitchen-cleaning solution. There was no ointment, no hydrogen peroxide or rubbing alcohol, and no trace of relief on my face. Shoulders slumped, I walked downstairs and bought my third-world medical supplies.
I came home, patched myself up as best I could, and went downstairs. Right next to the entrance to our building, there’s a fantastic little tea shop that Adam and I have been frequenting for it’s wonderful food and free wifi. So I was down there, getting ready to go into work, when my boss called. He said he’d heard I’d been in an accident (I’d called Fenny from the hospital to let my school know), and he and the big boss (a Taiwanese man who runs the four branches) both thought it would be best if I did go to the hospital. Their reasoning was three-fold: 1) They knew I was low on cash, so I could borrow money from the school and just have it taken it out of my pay the next day; 2) It’s still not that expensive, and it would probably be well worth it in the long run if I got examined by a professional; 3) They both know how things work down here, and they thought it would be best to have a record of me going to the hospital with official records of my injuries, just in case the woman tried to go after me in court.
As an aside here, let me tell you a couple of things to provide a little background here without going into too much detail. First, I have heard time and time again (and even noticed myself to a small degree) that the Taiwanese are notorious for looking for and pouncing on any and every opportunity to get money. They’re wonderfully nice, happy people, but when money gets involved, they apparently turn bloodthirsty and will exercise any and all methods to obtain said money. And maybe my friends are paranoid, but they’ve told me that this is true especially when the Taiwanese think they can get money from a white person, because they assume we’re all rich saps (I guess they think we all live in The Hills). Again, most of this is just what I’ve heard from other Westerners that have been here for years, and I haven’t yet experienced anything on this level, but I’ve decided it’s always wise to cover yourself and watch your back.
So anyway, after talking to my boss, I told him I agreed. I walked to work (another wonderful thing about the apartment – it’s only a five minute walk to my school), and Fenny immediately informed me that she would take me to the hospital and act as my translator.
After the jump, read how splendid Taiwanese ER’s are, and see real live photos and descriptions of my battle wounds and hospital experience!
You know how in America, a trip to the waiting room takes a minimum of 4 hours, and about 3:45 of that is spent waiting in that dank, depressing lobby with 50 other injured, pissed-off people? Yeah, the Taiwanese emergency room experience is sooo much better than that.
We didn’t have to wait at all, and we were done in an hour. And the entire time, we were being helped in some capacity.The doctor spoke English, the nurses were helpful and friendly, and the whole experience cost about $60 US. And that’s without having my Health Insurance card yet. Anyway, it turns out my leg is burned pretty badly. He gave me some actual ointment and real bandages to dress my owies and sent us on our way.
The elbow and hand scrapes are healing just fine, but I’m not so sure about the burn. There’s a photo in the gallery of how it looks now, so maybe you more knowledgeable doctor-types that read this and see the pictures can give me your thoughts. I should have my Health Insurance card by early next week, and at that point, I plan on going back and making sure my leg isn’t about to fall off.
Pray for me.
And now, please witness the carnage:
And there it is. The longest damn scooter accident story in history. We now return to our regular programming.
Oh. I did eventually get gas and return those sheets.