Blood Bank :D
We had gone to the childrens hospital one evening and watched a performance/presentation about a swiss doctor who has lived in Cambodia since the 60's, but having to leave during the Khmer Rouge take over in 1974-1979. He has devoted his life to building hospitals for Cambodian children and providing free treatment for all children and women in childbirth. During his presentation he had mentioned that blood donations were welcomed greater than financial donations.
2 days later we arranged for our guesthouse tuk tuk to take us to the hospital so that i could give blood. Unfortunately Fay had glandular fever a few years ago and so cannot give blood as the disease stay in her blood system forever (any excuse!) But she was there to support me and with the nerves going on our way there it was very much needed!
The hospital is only a few years old and so it is in v.good condition and they have an excellent level of hygiene standards. Led by a security guard at the main entrance we were led through the waiting room which may have contained 40 children or so sitting on brightly coloured matts with their parents.
Entering the room in which i was to give blood my nostrils we bombarded with that classic clinical and typical smell. My stomach began to do flips. I filled out a quick form for details and safety and was asked to lie down on the leather GP like bed. Making sure not to watch anything the nurses were doing so i didn't know when the pinch was coming I talked to Fay.Then it came, it was just a little nip and it surprised me that it didn't hurt more. Still I didn't look because I knew the minute I saw the blood running down the tube or the needle in the arm I would go drastically downhill. I was given a bar to hold and squeeze onto to help the blood flow faster. However, with each squeeze I could feel the blood bubbling down the tube which was leaning over my arm. This unfortunately drew my attention to it, thinking about the whole process of what it looks like even though I had not looked! My stomach started turning, my breath quickening and my head spinning. I started to go into a panic and without being able to control it my legs were moving around, I guess to try and make myself feel more confortable. In a blunt outburst I told Fay to get a bucket... NOW! With the bucket in place I leaned over thinking I was going to spew, only to wrench and nothing came out. By this point the nurses have pulled out the needle for safety incase it breaks in my arm while I'm moving around.
I soon managed to steady my breath and get my body back in control again. Thankfully the bag had been filled but I estimated it has only been half filled and could have puffed out a bit more full of blood. As i was reminded by Fay though, even the smallest drop helps :D
I walked away with a can of coke, T-shirt, crackers, sticker, iron and vitamin tablets all in return for my blood. Not sure I'll be in much of a rush to do that again soon thought.. definately inherited the BORG gene...
Oh, by the way I'm A+ :P