My room decided to hop on a roller coaster without me last week. I was dizzy. It was weird. I slept. In the morning I felt like the ass end of an ass.
“Go to the doctor,” N tells me.
“We’re going to the doctor,” Y adds.
“You’ll make sure he goes?” N asks.
Y nods. I sigh.
“Fine, you know we don’t often go to the doctor in America.”
N shakes his head, “you’re not in America, and you haven’t been for years. You’ve had plenty of time to learn.”
“It’s conditioning,” I mumble.
N ignores me, turning to Y, “and make sure they check out his lungs.”
“I’ll make sure they check out his lungs,” Y assures him.
“Cause he’s been coughing.”
Y glares at me, sleepy-eyed, “I know,” she grumbles.
It takes forty-five minutes to get to the clinic. I wait.
“They don’t have an x-ray,” Y says, grabbing me and pulling me out.
We walk on, Y finds another office on her phone. I’ve barely sat down in the waiting room before Y is leading me to the door.
“The doctor is only in on Sundays.”
We finally find ourselves passing a clinic randomly on our way back home, defeated.
“Might as well ask,” I say.
So, Y does. The door is down a back alley. I stand with one of the nurses outside, smoking, waiting. Y comes out, surprised.
“Seems like they have everything we need.”
So, I go in. The wait isn’t long. There is paperwork that Y fills out for me. The babushkas behind the counter look over, dangerously judgmental. I suddenly get the urge to suck my thumb. I refrain.
The doctor’s office is small, the doctor, young. Her and Y chat for a bit. Then the doctor turns to me. She tells me to take off my shirt. I do. She holds out a thermometer. I open my mouth. The doctor gives me a disturbed look. I turn to Y. She rolls her eyes.
“It goes in your armpit.”
I frown, “what, gross.”
“Where did you think it would go?”
I shrug, “my mouth.”
“It’s where it goes in America, or, you know,” I add, sheepish, “your butt.”
“Idiots,” Y whispers as the doctor shoves the thermometer under my armpit. Taking my blood pressure is business as usual. Half way through the doctor stops. She is frowning at my chest. She looks at Y, then at me. She picks up two of those ‘say-ahh’ sticks and spreads away some hair. I look down. The doctor begins nodding. She taps my chest with a stick. I look where she taps and notice a thin silver line.
The doctor picks up her stethoscope and starts pressing it to different points around the left side of my chest, nodding, her face becoming more and more certain.
“What?” I ask, in Russian. The doctor puts her stethoscope away and gives Y a serious look. She begins speaking very fast in Russian. I catch nothing. At the end, she motions for Y to translate.
“Okay,” Y takes a breath, “so it seems someone has replaced your heart.”
Y nods, “yes.”
“Replaced it with what?”
Y sighs. “A lama’s heart.”
I look at the doctor, she nods, I look back at Y.
“A lama’s heart. Someone used an aspen branch–they’re supposed to be illegal, but someone used one to replace your heart with a lama’s heart and that’s why you’re dizzy.”
I sit back, scratching the line on my chest.
“Are,” I frown, “are lamas particularly dizzy animals?”
At this, the doctor nods.
“Well, what can I do?”
Y asks the doctor, the doctor, again, speaks too quickly.
“She says she has a rabbit heart, a donkey, and a dolphin.”
“Uh-huh. And are any of those better?”
“What about the donkey?” I ask.
Y asks in Russian. The doctor looks apprehensive. She says something.
“She says you won’t be dizzy anymore, but you will lose partial control of your bowels.”
I stare at her, then the doctor.
“Well screw that,” I say, standing up a bit too fast and falling on my ass.
**This was something of a sequel to ‘A Dizzy, Old, Pregnant Baby’ so if you liked this story, check out the prequel HERE.