Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Hospital Volunteers

I just visited someone in the hospital and had to deal with a hospital volunteer that didn't really speak English. His post was the information desk.

This was a tough one for me because I recognized that he was a volunteer which tells me to be patient no matter what, but at the same time it's hard to get 'information' from someone who does not have a mastery of the language of the general populace.

I had to spell the name several times and he never got it right. I finally wrote it down and he still couldn't find it. It was frustrating but I still thanked him genuinely for trying...really nothing else you can do.

If I was a hospital volunteer let's say in Brazil and I didn't speak Portugese...I would be probably mopping floors or emptying bed pans but not working the information desk. The man I dealt with today must have an incredible sense of self-confidence to volunteer for the task of giving information to people who speak an entirely different language.

As my grandmother used to say: God Bless his pointed little head.

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