For those who know, I have a very temperamental nose. With my sinus problems and allergies I have been sneezing up to 15 times in a row. I decided to go to the doctor to see if I could find some remedy, but alas so much paperwork and my Japanese is not as good as I want it to be. Luckily my friend who I had made on the bus last month was available. This kind old gentlemen "S" picked me up in front of my apartment complex and drove me to the Nishioka Hospital. He translated for me, while I filled out paperwork. Then my name was submitted and we waited.
The Japanese hospital visit was quite the experience. While we were waiting, a nurse stopped by my chair and handed me a thermometer. While "S" was conversing with the nurse. I almost put it in my mouth, how embarrassing would that have been... it turns out I needed to put it in my arm pit. I am hard of hearing anyway, so when "S" was trying to explain this to me, the nurse just started unbuttoning my shirt and stuck the thermometer in my armpit. The nurses were all business here.
The Hospital layout was very strange to me. Connected to the waiting room were the patient rooms that were numbered in Huge Print "1, 2, 3, and 4" on the Doors. It was like a game show, what was behind door number 3? Apparently my doctor was, in a tiny little room. I just had to hope and pray that "S" was accurately translating what I was describing. When the doctor asked me to lift up my shirt to take my pulse, my half second hesitation was obviously too long, and him and the nurse started pulling up my shirt for me. Now that's service!
I was prescribed some medicine for I hope the symptoms I told the doctor and I was out the door. On the way back, I invited "S" to join me and my wife for dinner at my apartment. He gladly accepted. At 6 o'clock we served chicken soup and garlic bread, which "S" was a big fan of. We talked about our experiences in Japan, and "S" shared with us about the Chinese writing system and how Japan adopted it. We were able to teach him the card game "Go Fish" which went over very well. He had some surprising moments when he was asked for the card he had been asking for, and was at first reluctant to give over his card. Lots of laughs.
He stayed over until about 11:00pm. The night had gone very well, with lots of laughter and sharing. Usually Japanese people are very time conscious, I think he did not want the night to end. "S" is a very kind man, and he was very helpful to me, I hope as I get to know him better that we can speak of spiritual things over the dinner table. Pray that God would open that door.