Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Big Red, the Silver Lining of my Very Cloudy Day

A few days ago I was on my 4th day of being sick with a very sore throat, fever, and an irritating cough that would not let me get any sleep, and it wasn't getting any better.  Then my ears began to ache and feel like I was wearing ear muffs so I decided it was time to see a doctor.   Of course I didn't reach this decision until late Sunday afternoon.  If I was going to get any relief I need to go to Phoenix to and urgent care clinic because I didn't think I could handle one more night of this illness.  I searched online for and urgent care clinic that was open late on Sunday nights.  I found one that also allowed pre-registering online.  Since I had a 1-1/2 hour drive ahead of me to get to the clinic, pre-registering could help me get in and out quickly and hopefully we could be back home by dinner time.  Besides, I didn't want to spend one minute longer than absolutely necessary sitting in a waiting room with other sick people, passing around our germs to one another.

Good thing I pre-registered because there weren't even enough seats for the hubby and I to sit down when we arrived.  I was called back within 10 minutes of arriving, ahead of people who had been waiting there for over an hour (wishing they had pre-registered I bet).  I know I probably ticked off more than a few people who had been waiting there for awhile.  Once in the back, they gagged me with a giant q-tip to get a culture to test for strep.  (It was negative thank goodness).  Then the doctor examined me and said I had an upper respiratory infection and prescribed antibiotics and some other over the counter stuff that was suppose to to relieve the symptoms.

At approximately 6:30 pm the doctor gave me my walking papers and told me he sent my prescription to a CVS Pharmacy in the valley ('the valley' means one of the many cities within the large metropolitan area known generally as Phoenix) that was a 24 hour store.  It was approximately a 35 minute drive to the pharmacy.  When we arrived, we discovered that the store was in fact a 24 store...but not the pharmacy!  That department had closed before I even left the urgent care clinic.  I was now in a panic!  I needed to get the antibiotics in my system asap so they could start working and maybe I would start feeling better by tomorrow evening, if I was lucky.  I just knew I was not going to be able to wait until tomorrow to come back to the valley to pick up the medication and get one day sicker before starting the antibiotics.

In a panic I called the urgent care clinic and told them what happened.  They said to just give them the name and address of another pharmacy and they would call it in there.  Well I don't live in the valley so I don't know which pharmacy is closest to our location or which ones are open late on Sunday night.   My husband asked the clerk for a list of close CVS Pharmacies that have a pharmacist on duty at that hour.  He didn't know.  Apparently they don't keep a list of 24 hour pharmacy departments in case of this kind of situation.  He guessed about one not too far away but wasn't 100% sure they were open, and he didn't have their number!?   I had to google the store to get the number then called them myself.  They said the pharmacy was in fact open 24 hours.  I called urgent care back and told them of the new location.  They said they would have the doctor send the script there.  We drove 20 minutes away to the second pharmacy.  The time is now shortly after 9:00 pm.

I go inside and head all the way back to the pharmacy department. (Why do they make sick people walk all the way to the back of the big building for their medication?)  They look up my name...nothing!  What?!?  I called the urgent care clinic back and after several minutes on hold, she tells me they had an emergency patient that the doctors are working with, as soon as they are free they will call it in.  Ok, I can understand this, "be patient" I tell myself.   The urgent care said they would call me when the script is called in.   I am sitting in the pharmacy waiting area, 10 minutes pass, then 15, then 20, and finally my phone rings!  It is urgent care, but they said they couldn't call it in because there are more than one CVS Pharmacies on this same street, which one am I at?  "Well the hell if I know!" I wanted to shout, but instead I ask the clerk.   I pass on the street address to the urgent care receptionist.  She locates the appropriate store and tells me the doctors are again with patients, and she will have them call it in as soon as they get out.

It is now about 9:45pm, my throat is hurting like hell, my emotions are just frazzled, and I start crying right there in the waiting area.  When the prescription is finally called in, everyone is already aware of me so they start working on it right away.  Within minutes the wonderful pharmacy staff at the Dobson & Warner CVS Pharmacy call my name.  I pay for the antibiotics and over the counter medicines and head to the car where my husband is patiently waiting with a chicken in the back seat in a plastic tub with holes drilled in it so the chicken doesn't die of heat exhaustion in the nighttime temperature of 100 degrees

...Wait a minute!  A Chicken?!  Where did that come from?! 

Lets back up a little bit and I will tell you...

Earlier in the day I was reading posts on my favorite online forum, Backyard Chickens, when one of the folks from the Arizona group posted that she had a laying hen she needed to find a home for -Free to a good home, just PM her.  I had been wanting a laying hen so we could start enjoying fresh eggs now, since our chicks are not going to be laying for a few months.  I I sent her a message that I was interested, just visit my blog to learn more about the new home her hen would have and contact me if she approved.  I explained that we lived a few hours north of the valley and made the drive at least once a week so I could come get her on our next time in town.

While I was in urgent care, waiting in my room to see the doctor, she emailed me to say she wanted to find 'Red' (the hens name) a new home as quick as possible so when might I be coming to the valley again.  I said, "I am here right now, waiting in the urgent care to see a doctor.  But I could meet her somewhere after I was done."   So when I was done we arranged to meet near where the pharmacy was.  It would only take a few minutes out of our time to pick up the chicken, get my prescription and be back home in two hours.  But as you know already, it didn't work out that simple.

Big Red in her makeshift Travel Tub

So during this pharmacy fiasco we had a 5 month old hen in plastic box with holes drilled in it to keep her from melting, in the back seat of my car in the 100 degree temperatures.  It was so hot that I had to lift the lid a little on the tub to get enough air in to her.  She was figgity and kept turning around in the tub.  I was afraid she might just jump out of the tub and probably scare the bajeezes out of my husband who has zero experience with chickens.   I worried about this every time I had to go inside the pharmacy(s) and leave them alone.  Thankfully that didn't happen.

We finally arrive back home at just after midnight, both of us dog-tired, me feeling like total crapola from my infection, and feeling horrible about the nasty fast-food that we were forced to eat because we were starving and couldn't leave the hen in the car in this heat. I have not eaten at anything like a 'McDonald's (just for example) in over 20 years, but this was a desperate situation that I hope we never have to repeat.  I took the hen out to the chicken run and moved her from the plastic tub to a dog crate and placed the crate into the coop, put in a fresh water bottle with a chicken nipple, then went to bed.

The next morning I got to see that there was a Silver Lining to this dark cloud of a was "Red", now called "Big Red" because we already have a "Red" in the flock.

I'll tell you about this 'New Chick in the Coop' in tomorrows post...I need a nap now.

Keeper of 1 husband, 2 grandkids, 3 dogs,
3 cats, and 17 Chickens!
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Did this post stir something inside of you? If so, Please leave me a comment, I would love to know what you're thinking!!!