Saturday, July 05, 2008
Talk to Me
Talking to my patients about their lives and what they do is actually what I love most about my job in primary care; the time constraints I work under are the most frustrating thing about it. I've been fortunate to have some interesting conversations with patients lately. A couple days ago I was seeing a (rather anxious) patient with a lot of different complaints. I sifted through as many as I could and asked her to make a follow up appointment for this coming Friday for further discussion.
"Well, I can't make it that day," she responded, looking a bit self-conscious. "I have my ukulele practice session that day."
"Yes." Before my eyes this woman began to brighten up, lighten up as she talked about her hobby. "I heard this recording of --" she named someone who's apparently pretty proficient at the instrument, but his name escapes me -- "and it just amazed me. There are so many styles of playing! I got my roommate interested, and it's just a lot of fun. I live in an apartment building and we can't have pets."
"But you can have ukuleles," I finished. "I imagine there are a fair number of people around here who play. There's a significant Hawaiian population around here, especially in the South Bay."
"Yes, but you can go on line - there are tutorials, and videos..."
I stared at her. "I've been living under a rock, haven't I?" I asked.
The conversation stayed with me for the rest of the day and I later shared it with V., who instantly broke into an imitation of Tiny Tim doing "Tiptoe Through the Tulips."
Labels: The Doctor's Life