Expensive taste…

I was making small talk for a very good reason. The phlebotomy tray contained not just the usual, if overly large collection of neatly labelled vials, but an IV cannula and a couple of rather-larger-than-I-liked bottles too. The bottles were half filled with what he assured me was not the whisky it looked like (and for which I would have been grateful about then) but the stuff to prepare all the blood he was after for cultures.

He inserted the cannula and began drawing blood, swiftly filling the receptacles.

“It’s more like wine than whisky,” he said, watching the crimson stream. His speech was lightly accented… I asked where he was from. He deftly changed from vial to bottle and the blood flowed…

“Transylvania,” said the man with the firm grip on my flowing arm.

I bit my tongue. There was nothing I could say…

Bela Lugosi

Bela Lugosi

The foot had been getting worse all morning and, by the time I arrived at the village surgery-cum-pharmacy, the top of it was scarlet and covered in blisters, the joints  all swollen and walking increasingly difficult. I asked the pharmacist’s advice on how to stop the itching. She cringed asked the receptionist what she thought… who sent me in to the nurse… who took advice from higher up and packed me off to Accident and Emergency.

“Take a seat over there,” said the receptionist who had taken my name and address, asked me what the problem was, cringed and packed me off to wait outside the Minor Injuries unit with the nosebleeds and splinters. I took a seat, waiting an uncomfortable two hours to be called while the swelling moved up the foot.

“Never mind,” texted my friend by way of comfort. “If it was an Australian spider, you’d already be dead.”

“Oh, thank you,” said the charge nurse, calling in his Transylvanian colleague to have a look. “This will be much more interesting than the usual Minors…” I was glad to be of service.

Now, I have to say that both Dracula and the Charge Nurse were absolutely excellent, both professionally and personally. They even attempted, albeit unsuccessfully, to find me somewhere more comfortable than Minors, a unit designed for a quick turnover, even though the staffing levels and funding prevent any such thing. Considering their evident relish of the challenge my foot was presenting, I cannot but be grateful for their efforts to dispose of me more suitably. “This isn’t a Minors. Fascinating…”

Four consultants, an uneccessarily large amount of blood, super-rapid (and red-flagged) bloodwork results and an interesting phone call with the Edinburgh Poisons Unit all the way up in Scotland… and they eventually let me go home, armed with strict instructions on how to treat the foot, enough pills to make me rattle, ominous instructions on what should make me come straight back to A&E… and a reminder that it would get worse before it got better. Nice.

After a 3 am waking and a dry day in hospital, I was dying for a coffee as I collected my prescription and headed for the car, realising as I did so, that with all the pills and the parking, the £50 I’d had with me was now all gone and coffee would have to wait.

At a tenner a bite, that bloody spider had expensive taste…

Thank you to everyone who has messaged me good wishes! Normal service will be resumed after sufficient sleep and/or lots of coffee.

About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire-born writer and one of the Directors of The Silent Eye, a modern Mystery School. She writes alone and with Stuart France, exploring ancient myths, the mysterious landscape of Albion and the inner journey of the soul. Find out more at France and Vincent. She is owned by a small dog who also blogs. Follow her at scvincent.com and on Twitter @SCVincent. Find her books on Goodreads and follow her on Amazon worldwide to find out about new releases and offers. Email: findme@scvincent.com.
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89 Responses to Expensive taste…

  1. Ritu says:

    Even more ouch than this morning! Hope it calms for you soon Sue!!!


  2. Yikes! Not good. Wishing you a speedy recovery with no complications.


  3. Blimey Sue what the heck kind of spider did that?


  4. Green Embers says:

    Gosh, that is scary, I hate spiders. Well, only when I see them. If they stay out of sight and do their thing eating other bugs they are okay. But biting humans, that one gots to burn in a fire.


  5. stevetanham says:

    Rest well, Sue x


  6. Erica Herd says:

    Ouch! Hope you start to heal soon. My cat bit into my thumb a few weeks ago (long story) – had to get a tetanus shot and was on antibiotics for 7 days. Hand swelled up like a grapefruit.


  7. Re the last comment and cat bites, have you tried aloe vera? Works a treat for me for most bites, although not been eaten by a spider yet.


  8. I didn’t know at the beginning whether I was reading fact of fiction! Sometimes life is like that,huh? Another experience for the writer’s treasure chest. I hope your foot is already doing better. That was some spider bite!


  9. alienorajt says:

    Bloody hell, Sue, I’ve only just seen this. How absolutely ghastly. Poor you. Sounds vile (even though you made it funny in your inimitable way). Do hope the vicious little bastard’s bite has now subsided. Thinking of you. Virtual hugs coming your way. xxxx


  10. I told you, 😦 on another post of yours featuring a b-i-g spider… I DON’T like spiders at all..!

    Take care, Sue… follow the instructions strictly…


  11. Mary Smith says:

    I hope things get better soon, Sue. What’s happened to the spider? I hope someone has despatched it to the great cobweb in the sky?


  12. Éilis Niamh says:

    I’m so sorry about that, sue. Heal quickly! Spiders…nasty creatures if you ask me. They build terrifying webs and then go bite my friends. Not cool. I hope your house is spider free at least so you can recover in peace. Sending light to you…


  13. So sorry for all this, Sue. Feel better and heal soon. You must have been quite the tasty dish for that spider. Maybe your son was right to be afraid of them ???? And seriously…Transylvania ? ☺


  14. ghostmmnc says:

    Hope all is better soon. I’m sure it’s very scary to have a reaction like that.


  15. kirizar says:

    Loved the imagery of “Enough pills to make me rattle” it just tickled my fancy. I pictured you swallowing the lot and sounding a death rattle as you walked. (Or limped.) I have to ask, true story or just truly funny?


  16. Garry’s spider bite last year by the spider that doesn’t officially live in this part of the world (except everyone knows it does) was quite the siege. It was more than a month before he could walk without limping and it took two runs of high octane antibiotics and he still has an ugly scar. They always get you on the foot or legs. I have finally given up bare feet and gone strictly to at least socks, usually something with an actual sole. And I’m terrified of spiders. Feel better, but take your medicine! Be good!


    • Sue Vincent says:

      I remember. I can quite understand the cancelling of the holiday with it ( she says at 1am, being driven nuts…). If it would just stop with ithe itch/burn….


  17. Eliza Waters says:

    What a horror, Sue. You must be going insane. And I read in the comments that the villain is still at large in your car? Yikes, not something you can avoid or ignore. I’d be tempted to smoke bomb the interior, residual toxins be damned! I hope you find some relief soon.


  18. Sue, so sorry to hear how the foot has got worse. What a nightmare. Toby and I are sending you lots of virtual hugs and hope that you had an itch free night and that you are now over the worse.
    Take care.


  19. jenanita01 says:

    Reblogged this on Anita Dawes & Jaye Marie and commented:
    not many people would have a spider like that in her car… I do hope it gets better quickly…


  20. Did the doctor tell you to elevate your leg/ankle or use ice, to help with the swelling? Hope you feel better soon!


  21. Widdershins says:

    Your friend was right … those Aussie spiders put all others to shame! 😀 … hope it’s all better soon.


  22. adeleulnais says:

    Bloody spider. Wishes for you to get well very soon without uncomfortable side effects.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Jane Risdon says:

    Can’t look 😦


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