Expats and the elusive Doctors

Photo Hosted at Buzznet.com Check out my doctor’s office! Not Impressed? It’s part of the former hospital that was squatted decades ago. Still not impressed? Well I am.

See I realize many of my readers have lived or do live abroad. Others of you have never lived abroad but you’ve pondered it in your head. Whatever the case, one of the issues that comes up with being an expat is, of course, medical care.

Now right away you start with a strike against you. No matter what work permit or European Union agreement you might have going for you, very often you simply don’t quite get into the system like a regular citizen. Maybe you haven’t filled out the right forms. Maybe you can’t read the right forms to begin with. Medical words are scarey, even in your native tongue, nevermind Dutch. – All this to tell you that despite my almost four years in the Netherlands, I’ve never had a proper doctor.

Until last week.

Using my best friend, the internet, I located my local health centre and noted what documents were necessary. I mentally prepared for any questions they would ask me, cause one of my long running phobias is that I won’t understand and then instead of switching to english, Ill stubbornly pretend I understand, and end up agreeing to an enema or a spinal tap or something.

Since you may be wondering, what’s the big deal – why wait so long to get an MD bm? It’s hard to explain. Mostly it’s this feeling that comes back whenever I have to handle something official, that I’m doing something wrong or committing some crime.

Back to the story–
I walked into the super cool doctors office located in my favorite legalized squat-hospital, and the cutest girl wearing a head scarf greeted me with a smile. After enjoying practicing the pronounciation of my name for a minute, she put me in the computer and voila – I had a doctor and even an appointment to boot. It took four years, but I was going to speak with my very own doctor.

Or so I thought….
(to be continued… insert cliffhanger music and that voiceover guy from Dukes of Hazard)

Oh look.. a blog from South Africa.. or the Netherlands.. or something.