Nov 9, 2013

Dr. Urknall

The Dutch CVB, or whatever the alphabet soup, sends us a new European Insurance Card. Because we had discovered belatedly in the ER of the Spital Visp, CH, that the old card had expired. ER? Yes, as in emergency room. Because we had gone deaf.


 (If you continue reading, there's a payoff) 

We use ear plugs when we can't sleep. The wax from the plugs talks to the organic ear wax, canals get clogged, hearing gets impaired. We attempt to clean the ears but push the wax deeper into the canals until we go completely deaf. Which is quite something. You step into the street and get killed. You say good-by to Mozart and Lady Gaga and the telephone and to the relationship with your lover beyond anything but the soundless exchange of bodily fluids.

 (If you continue reading, there's a payoff) 

I had hoped that some natural process would provide relief and foster a recovery of my hearing. I wait one day, two days, three days. Nada. So I give up and flee to the ER of the Spital Visp, a place I know well. Dr. Ursprung is not around, unfortunately (follow the link). I explain my case. People listen patiently. I listen patiently. It's like you're listening to the Urknall (the Urknall was silent, there was no atmosphere to carry sound).

 (If you continue reading, there's a payoff) 

They ask me to rest on the emergency bed (gestures, folded hands put to your (their) left ear). I lie down. Wait. "Wait!" Where is your European Insurance Card? I don't understand. Somebody gets a piece of paper and writes "Europäische Versicherungskarte." Aha. I find my wallet and flash the card. There's a picture of Obama on the card (just kidding). Everything is fine. Somebody will take my blood pressure. The nurse looks quite concerned.

 (If you continue reading, there's a payoff) 

They try all sorts of things. Liquids dripped into my ear, compassionate facial expressions, electrodes applied to my testes, prayers, Alpine cleansing rituals, shaking heads. Shaking heads. It's my fault because the European Insurance Card has expired. The healing hands are raised in despair and I am sent to the local Hals-Nasen-Ohren doctor who cleans my ears with a nanoistic vacuum-cleaner and ask for 108 CHF in cash. I can hear him loud and clear and pay and call the Dutch alphabet soup and ask for a new, valid, European Insurance Card. Which arrived today, the card. I'm not making this up.

If you are still there, here's the payoff: