The Japanese are known to be courteous and extremely polite. They say sumimasen when they cut in front of you. They say sumimasen when they accidentally brush against you. They say sumimasen even when they thank you because you took the trouble.
But when they're sick, the Japanese express their sumimasen by covering their mouth.
I'm one step to becoming more Japanised now that I also do what the Japanese do when they fall ill. They're so considerate of others that they wear a face mask so that their germs will not spread and infect those around them.
I was asked to put on this mask when I visited the doctor yesterday. Felt so strange breathing my own hot air and not being able to take a gulp of fresher air. But all the nurses had this on, and sick people wear this when they're outside too.
I could've just stayed at home and rested more but I wanted to make sure it wasn't influenza or anything serious. Test results came back negative, thank God. So the doctor prescribed some medicine for the "viral upper respiratory infection".
I hate taking medicine especially pills. But I don't mind, in fact I welcome traditional Chinese herbal concoction. I think they work better and do less harm to the body. I try as much as possible to rely on my body's immune system, but after looking at the bill, I think I have to take at least one of this white capsule to justify the cost.
Doctor Consultation : JPY 10,000
Lab Test : JPY 4,000
Prescription : JPY 3,200 (30caps)
Total (+5% tax) : JPY 18,060
I know, not cheap. But I'm not tied to the National Health Insurance system and this is after all an English-speaking private hospital catered to the expats. Ya, I thought I was considered expat even though my salary doesn't reflect that.
The cost of 1 capsule could have allowed me to have a very decent meal in Malaysia. But then again, if I take just 1 capsule, I will be able to get well faster and enjoy all the food I've missed throughout this 1 year when I'm better.
Excuse me while I take my JPY112 white pill and go to sleep...