I was down in the pharmacy the other day.
I don’t remember why I was there, probably looking for drugs or something. Anyway that’s not important.
There was a rather large woman in front of me so I had to wait my turn. No sweat. The problem was that the staff didn’t know what the customer wanted but the customer did. The breakdown in communication lay in the customer’s obvious lack of the lingo. Of course! A Ukrainian refugee who hadn’t a word of English. Needless to say the staff has less than a rudimentary knowledge of Ukranian or Russian. It was stalemate.
In fairness to the staff, they did their best. They kept explaining that they couldn’t understand. She kept repeating a word that sounded like a bad Scrabble hand. They explained in words of one syllable in infant school mode but she just kept repeating the same word. One of the staff whipped out a smartphone and opened a translator. She offered it to the customer who recoiled in horror and just shouted the same unintelligible word. She was getting very irate.
I was tempted to hang around to see what the hell would happen but one of the staff took pity on me and I got served. Yer woman was still shouting the same word at the staff when I left.
Yesterday I phoned Doc’s receptionist to get an appointment. It was nothing serious – just to make a small adjustment to my meds. I was told that he wasn’t taking any appointments, nor was Missus Doc [who happens to be a Docess and has her own surgery]. I was offered an appointment with a name that sounded like Dodi Fayed. Now it’s somewhat unlikely it is the Dodi Fayed but stranger things have happened in this neck of the world. Anyway this chap had been taken on to help out in the practice as they are swamped with appointments. I declined as the new chap was unlikely to know my little idiosyncrasies [or annoying quirks, as Doc calls them].
Then it struck me. I bet the swamping is due to the influx of Ukranians. The village is actually infested with them as a hostel and a large hotel in the area have been taken over to house them. They are everywhere and I’m as likely to overhear a Ukranian/Russian conversation as I am to hear a local one. The gubmint love dumping refugees in little towns and villages around the country that just can’t cope with the sudden influx.
The gubmint don’t seem to have thought this one through [surprise, surprise]. They keep telling the world that all refugees are more than welcome here and we must take on tons more. They overlook that we are in the midst of a homeless crisis and that every available accommodation is full to capacity. They are literally telling refugee males to sleep in the streets. The country is groaning at the seams and the system is in chaos.
They should put up a huge sign at the airport –
STANDING ROOM ONLY
‘STANDING ROOM ONLY’ At peak times, use only one foot.
Or just put large “NO EXIT” sign on every door in the Arrivals area?