October 11, 2013

Be careful where you poke your nose

Filed under: things Rhiannon does not like — Rhiannon Lassiter @ 10:29 am

Yesterday I had a weird accident on a bus that resulting in me badly bruising (and hopefully not breaking) my nose and has now given it new character in the shape of a lightening bolt cut (perhaps future scar). Apart from my nose they only other thing harmed in the creation of this accident was a rather nice grey wool skirt that got rather a lot of blood on it. So I went to A&E with a bag of peas on my face – not for the stylishness although green is my colour – but for the frozenosity. It’s just as wel I did because I was there for four hours without any other treatment.

I am actually very lucky because in my 36 years on this planet I have never had to go to A&E before. All I knew about it is that it can take a long time so take a book. I am now a third of the way through What Lie Did I Tell by William Goldman.

Things I have learned about A&E:

  • This is not a customer service environment. The receptionists will not greet you or even acknowledge you for some time. When they do it will be unsmilingly and without any expression of sympathy. They will tell you to sit.
  • A nurse will collect you after about half an hour. Do not, due to bags of peas obscuring your vision, miss the sign saying to tell them if you are in pain because this is your only chance to get meds. When the nurse has seen you, you will be sent back to your chair.
  • When you are told the wait is an hour and a half do not be cross it is so long or pleased it is so short. That time is an estimate. You will be there for 4 hours and when you comment on this with surprise your friends will tell you your were lucky not to be there all night.
  • There is not a crack team of plastic surgeons who look like Dr Mark Sloan racing up to deal tenderly with your nose. You will go home with two small surgical strips, a expressed hope that it is not broken (but if it is, come back) and what will become an interesting Harry Potter lightening bolt scar. Your injury is minor and this is the minor injuries department. They do not care about your nose. They cannot tell if it is broken – you must look in a mirror and judge that for yourself.

At A&E they did not care about my nose. But you, oh internet, you have already proved you care with your tweets and facebook good wishes for the fate of my nose. Keep your fingers crossed for it. It has served me well in the past and I hope it has many long years of functionality ahead of it.


  1. They have a triage system in A&Es so how fast you are seen depends on how critical your injury is assessed as being. Substantial bleeding headwounds other than injuries to the nose, plus anything presenting as a heart attack or concussion would race up the waiting list (I think so do wounds which appears to threaten vision). I’ve been to A&E several times (a few on my own account, more often accompanying others) and watched while the guy who shot himself in the foot waited for hours, while my friend who had a substantial head wound was dealt with swiftly.

    I hope your nose fully recovers to its normal status soon, and that you either escape any, or suffer only nobly distinguishing scars.

    Comment by Antoina — October 11, 2013 @ 2:47 pm

  2. Hope you’re enjoying the Goldman! Not quite as good as the first one I thought, but still v entertaining.

    Comment by Mo — October 12, 2013 @ 11:22 am

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