Thursday, March 09, 2017

Happiness and health do not correlate

Nothing brings out intense punnery and sarcasm in me more than sitting at a doctor's office and listening to the breakdown of the bill that I have to pay out of my pocket even after insurance. I mean, I live in a country where you are sent a bill for holding your newborn (Google it if you don't believe me). Naturally, discussions around medical bills always make me edgy.

I listen to the detailed explanation at the dentist's and blurt, "Wow, that's a lot to chew on." The person is not amused and continues to explain what I would be paying. I see the final amount and cannot hold back anymore. I wonder if they also do kidney transplants on the side there. How does one even justify this kind of bill?

"Looks like I'll have to sell a kidney to pay for the teeth," I laugh out nervously.

I get very dirty looks, but it doesn't matter. Healthcare costs in this country make me wish I am dead before I get old or ill. If tooth implants cost this much, I don't know what other implants cost. I just started my job, and I don't have a bunch of sugar daddies waiting on me, not even one. I always walk out of the dentist's office in a state of shock and depression.

I look at the bus timings. At this rate, I will be using the bus for the next five years. There is still 20 minutes to kill, and it's freezing cold outside. So I aimlessly walk into the nearest store where I see light and humans. It turns out to be an overcrowded dollar store with people buying junk that they are better off not using. A minimalist here is a misfit, a pariah. I walk down the aisles, more for seeking heat than staring at mile-long aisles covered in colorful wrappers. It's amazing how the human civilization got eventually convinced that life is meaningless without material stuff (read Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind for some interesting perspectives). I walk up to the frozen aisle and see all kinds of junk food at dirt cheap prices proudly on display. A bunch of people are excitedly stocking up on such inexpensive, calorie-laden, nutrient-deprived food for the holiday season, talking and giggling. Who knew happiness comes so cheap when the price I'm paying to stay healthy is throwing me into perennial depression? Happiness and health do not necessarily correlate, and the irony of the situation is not lost on me. Thankfully, my bus arrives and I extricate myself from the womb of one dollar consumerism.


No comments: