Nights of Loneliness and Despair

We had a hospital photo op today in celebration of the department’s 25th anniversary, where everyone was required to be in formal wear. I haven’t worn my suit and tie since 2019. It is not my favorite ensemble, the tie compressing my neck and inflating my already puffed up face, like superior vena cava syndrome minus the plethora. Since 2007 I would always search for an online reference whenever I needed to wear a tie. Before Youtube there was Because I have low spatial and mechanical and over-all intelligence I could never get myself to memorize the process of doing the simplest knot, let alone the more complicated windsor double flipflop reverse knots. During the photo op I had a chance to interact with a friend, another oncologist, Dr. Melba. I hadn’t seen her in months, one of the reasons being that she had to be admitted for COVID. She told me that she has cancelled much of her clinic hours, because she wants to live a longer life. That is all the validation I need for having chopped up my clinic schedules so severely.

Photo by Polina Tankilevitch on

Tuesdays being relatively light in terms of work (I have happily cancelled my Tuesday clinic hours since last year), I was able to go home early. I used to spend Tuesdays with Armando Garmando before he went back to the province, then by myself in a secluded, al fresco coffee shop so I could write something, but the typhoon prevented such frivolity. I cleaned up my room, got some stuff I no longer had use for, and stashed them in a trash sack. Old age has lowered my threshold for throwing away things, space now trumping sentimentality. I feel happy whenever I get to dispose things. This time I threw away old wine paper bags, and realized that someone has recently gifted me with a bottle of wine. I opened the paper bag and the wine looked nice, not that I’m a wine expert or anything, it’s just that the bottle is green, and it looks beautiful. I used to keep those wine paper bags because I frequently give away bottles of wine as gifts. But not anymore. I intend to drink them in my days and nights of loneliness and despair.

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