Thursday, December 23, 2010

It Was a Very Long Line

Today at the pharmacy I was about to get in line at the counter when I saw an older man with a cane hobbling along.  I said for him to go ahead and get in front of me. It was very busy and I figured we would be waiting a while.  He said I didn’t have to let him go in front.  Of cores I don’t, but some day some one will do the same for me I say.  We stood in line and chatted.  He asked about my Bluetooth earpiece and whether I could just listen or whether people could hear me when I talked into it.  I told him that they could and that I walk around all day looking like a crazy bag lady talking to myself, minus the shopping cart.  That is, unless I am shopping and then I just look like a crazy lady shopping.  I laughed.  He didn’t

It was a long line.

He wondered what technology is going to be like when you are my age he says.  Wow, I don’t know I said, I can’t even imagine.  For one thing I bet we will just have the Bluetooth installed in our heads.  I smiled.  He said he had cut out and saved an article many years ago about what technology would be like in the future, and he hadn’t looked at it since.  He said when he got home he would dig it up, because now he was curious about how accurate they were.  I should have given him my digits, because now I am curious too.   I told him about my grandpa and how he loved new technology and some things he never thought he’d live to see...some, he didn't.

It was a very long line.

He got up to the counter and gives the pharmacist his name and says he has 6 prescriptions to pick up.  He was old you know.  And she went to get them; she rings them up and says "$933.00 that is very expensive".  I don’t hear what he says and I can’t see his face, but I turn away, because suddenly my eyes are filled with tears, I don’t want my new friend to turn around and see them.  Were you expecting it to be that much? She asks, this one cost $300 and this is $150 and that one is… 

And the line is longer.

He pays for is insulin and syringes and whatever else it was he needed to keep him alive.  He thanks the lady and wishes her a nice day.  He turns around and thanks me for my place in line and for chatting with him.  He said he enjoyed the company. I did too, I tell him, now go home and find that article; I bet you’ll get a kick out of it.  And I wondered what it said about the cost of prescription drugs in the future.  I wondered about the cost of prescription drugs in my future.  And I wondered how on earth our elderly retirees on fixed incomes can afford to stay alive.  And I wondered…

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