3:15 I step off the train, laugh at "Peter Bent Brigham" sign, find the correct building, find my way to the office.
3:20 I walk into the office, walk up to the check-in desk, notice that the woman has glasses hanging around her neck on a chain.
Her: Can I have your blue card?
Her: *looks at me as if I've committed a series of murders*
Me: *scans around to see what other weapons are within her reach*
Her: All right, I'll need your name and date of birth, and I can get you another blue card just this once. But I do want you to remember that you need to think of your blue card as your American Express to The Brigham. You need to keep it in a safe place.
My brain: It's in a safe place...the safe place just happens to be on top of my desk. Which I didn't bring.
My mouth: UmyesIwillma'amthankyousomuch
3:30 I get called into exam room, where my blood pressure is approximately 400 over 399. The doctor comes in, talks to me, gets particular points for not mentioning the blood pressure, thus requiring me to explain that, yes, I'm neurotic everywhere, but I'm only neurotic enough to risk bursting my aorta while in doctor's offices. She answers questions, explains things, is a generally helpful and thorough and considerate doctor. She writes me a prescription and a labwork slip and I'm on my way.
4:30 I stop by the reception desk to ask for directions to the lab.
American Express To The Brigham Agent: Hi, can I help you?
Me: Yes, could you tell me how I get to the lab?
AETTBA: Wait wait wait. First we need to get a few things straight here.
She grabs my lab slip from one hand, my blue card from the other, efficiently flattens the paper out, and paperclips the card to the paper. She gives me a look that doesn't seem to involve any accusations of murder this time, but rather conveys that she only helped me arrange the documents correctly out of pure compassion and understanding, because she just couldn't bear to have sent me on my way with the documents all unfastened as I had had them, which would have caused all kinds of trouble in the lab and would have prevented me from receiving any sort of healthcare. She pulls out a map of the hospital and draws an arrow showing me where the lab is.
AETTBA: There you are now.
I bolt out of there as fast as I can to the lab.
4:45 They take my blue card. I sit there with a tourniquet on my arm, worrying about the fate of My American Express To The Brigham and hoping no one is making any unauthorized charges. I think back to the canary and goldenrod papers I signed back in the appointment suite and try to remember if I decided on the optional protection plan on the--OW! Jeez.
5:15 A security guard stops me in the hall.
Him: Is there something I can help you with?
Me: No, sir. I was just leaving.
Him: See that you do.
I head out of there, realizing that it had actually been more than two years since the last time I got kicked out of somewhere.
I really accomplished quite a lot during one short visit.