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Tests, Dentist and Finishing the Odds and Ends from the First Half of September

Something felt wrong with my left leg’s muscles, above and below the back of the knee, on September 9, but I still went out at 2:15 PM, first going to Auchan… And realizing on the way that I had forgotten dad’s store card. But I was mainly going to get bread for him and the card offered no direct benefits for that, so I kept going… Only to see just two of those breads when I got there, and the bags they were placed in were torn, which often happens, since they’re so flimsy. But another man asked about that bread and was told that they were just bringing more, and another employee indeed came with a full cart and filled that area, so I got six. Then, after wandering around and just grabbing another liquid soap, I spotted an actual self-checkout that was free and used it without problems, bypassing the long lines from the few other open checkouts.
After having a look in that Penny, putting the purchases in a cabinet and then just retrieving them again and walking away, having decided against getting what I had been thinking of, I continued to Supeco, where I just walked in with everything and bought a few things, even though I still didn’t find any of those candles with the number one. I even asked an employee about them, but she said that she had no idea when they’ll order more.
After spending some time arranging the purchases in my backpack, both inside and after walking out of Supeco, I also went to a Mega Image on the way back, putting the backpack in a cabinet but walking in with the bag with the bread. And I got more of that zacusca for dad, and at the checkout I retrieved the coin from the cabinet in order to have the needed amount, at which point the guard commented that they’re useful for something. I meant to say that it’d be useful if the coins wouldn’t be needed, but didn’t want to start a conversation… Only for the guard to do so anyway, asking what did I get that was so cheap, and then whether it was good and how did I eat it, so I just told him that it was mainly for my dad and got out of there.
I got back a couple of minutes before 6 PM, ate watermelon and lunch, and left again at 7:40 PM, taking the watermelon peel and throwing it in a bin. The traffic I saw on these streets was surprising, but it was explained when I reached the boulevard and saw that traffic was stopped on it, apparently because of clashes with the fans, since a football match was taking place there that evening. And, as I was about to get to Kaufland, a guy picked on me because I was wearing a mask, asking whether I had COVID and then saying that I must have it and cursing my bones to rot. But I just ignored him, checked some prices in Kaufland, hunted around for a few fallen or discarded onions that were better, since the few that were left in the crate were bad, and also picked what ended up being just over one kilogram of grapes. None were left on the shelves, and even the label had been taken away, but I found crates of grapes and plums in the spot where they tend to place them in that location after they take them away from the shelves, used the scales to check the price, telling an employee that I was only doing that when she asked what wasn’t I able to find, saw that they were discounted and went back to the crates to pick some of those that were still good. However, since I meant to get back later and thought that the discount might increase, I then hid the grapes and the onions, just buying a few other things at that moment and leaving them in a cabinet.
After grabbing one more thing for dad and pairs of bakery products from Carrefour, just managing to get what I wanted before the employees who had already started to clean that area took away what was left and entering each of those pairs as a single product at the self-checkout in order to get the evening discount without needing to call an employee, I returned to Kaufland, added those purchases in the cabinet, peed and washed my hands even though it was already 9:45 PM, rushed back in… And saw that the pretzels had an evening discount there as well. That hadn’t been the case when I had first looked, so I had grabbed two for my mother from Carrefour, at a price that was almost 50% higher, but under those circumstances I got four from there as well, plus the last piece of a sweet pastry. A woman picked up that one as I was getting a paper bag to put it in, but then she put it back down and I decided to take it anyway. Then I retrieved what I had hidden, added a Pepsi for dad, and went to the self-checkout, my turn coming when it was announced that the store had closed and the problem being that an employee came and stood next to me, so I was trying to rush and my brain wasn’t really functioning anymore, which led to fumbling while trying to pick everything back up. But I eventually managed it, then took some time to put what I could in the backpack before going to the cabinet, retrieving the other things, taking even more time to arrange everything but the grapes in the backpack, and walking out at 10:10 PM.
I got back at 10:40 PM, added some jam to a pastry purchased from Carrefour and ate that, and rushed to the toilet and to shower, relieved that there was no more blood. On the other hand, I was feeling bloated, and it got worse at night. And I had things to do after the shower, plus that I was occasionally talking to dad as well, so I ended up eating dinner between 3:10 AM and 3:50 AM. And the following night I cheated a little in order to be able to say that I started eating before 3 AM, but then only finished what I had in my room by 3:40 AM, actually finishing dinner when it was past 3:45 AM, since I went back to the kitchen to put jam on the last slices of bread.

On the morning of September 12, I got in bed at 5:20 AM, after being determined to also add the section about August 17 in the post about those odds and ends. And that day marked the first time when I read from The Steel Remains without just “using” it while I was unable to sleep or waiting at the family doctor’s office, though I still didn’t actually set time aside for reading, since I did that while backing up the system on the external HDD. Otherwise, I had to eat dinner earlier, since I was going to have the blood tests done in the morning, so I started a little after 12:15 AM and finished at 12:55 AM. Then I also shaved, and got in bed at 4 AM.

With the blood tests scheduled for September 13, I got up when the alarm rang, at 7 AM, did the day’s squats right away, peed in the container, took that, the book and the plastic and metal and a cardboard box, and left at 8:15 AM, dropping off the recyclables in a bin. However, I somehow ended up looking for that clinic on the wrong floor at first, so I lost a little time and I finally reached the correct floor a little after 8:40 AM. And it’s not like being on the wrong floor wasn’t perfectly obvious, since the one that clinic’s on is the only one from that building where the door to the hallway is locked, people needing to wait in front of it, in the small area between the stairs and the elevators, until someone from one of the clinics comes to invite the next person in. So I waited and read a little, until the guy from that clinic came to invite the next person, who was the woman who was ahead of me, at which point he said that I could go in as well and wait there, which I did. It seemed that others also walked in at that point, but I didn’t really pay attention, just reading a little more until I was called, just before 9 AM… At which point I noticed that the guy had quite a cold. But he did his part, drawing two vials of blood and also taking a vial from the urine, and I was done at 9:05 AM.
That left me with plenty of time to kill before the protest that I was going to attend that day, so I went to Carrefour Unirii and found the pack of Pepsi which I hadn’t found on September 9, so I got one of those as well for dad, even though it meant carrying that weight around for the rest of the day. Also found one bag of spoiling apples that were still more expensive than that kind was at Kaufland those days, but which were Romanian, while those from Kaufland were Polish, so I took it, along with a couple of other things… Only for that bag of apples to not scan at the checkout, so the cashier weighed it again, scanned that new label normally and applied the 50% discount manually, and she also didn’t charge me for the bag. Then, after taking some time to arrange everything in the backpack and a bag, I was walking away a little before 10:40 AM, though I stopped one more time on my way to the protest, to take off the mask and headphones, and also the cap, since I was wearing the torn one and there were going to be reporters there.
I reached the site of the protest right when it was supposed to begin, at 11 AM, though I had to wait for the light to turn green before being able to cross and actually join the others. But the protest actually started at 11:15 AM anyway, with about 15 regular participants plus some members of the organizing NGO, including some actors, making for a total of at most 30, or maybe around 30, since I’m not sure whether a couple of the reporters shouldn’t also be counted as participants. Either way, the chanting lasted less than 15 minutes, then some pictures were taken and we went to file a document at the Constitutional Court, each of us doing so individually and needing to use another entrance, which was some distance away, since that one was blocked due to work being done on the access road. And that generated some discussions, and confusion, because at first we were supposed to go in groups of three, then the gendarmes were saying that just one person will be allowed at a time, then the organizers managed to get them to agree to return to the original plan, but those from the first group said, when they returned, that the lady who was receiving those documents had asked all of us to come at once. However, the gendarmes refused to allow that, stressing that they were in charge of security… Yet when I finally made my way to that entrance, as part of the last group, I found some of the others still waiting, seven of us being there when the gendarmes called the next group, which at that point they said meant six. Since they weren’t willing to allow one more, that meant that just one person was left out, and one woman was on the phone at that moment, so she was that one. Either way, we filed that document, after we walked out a reporter took a picture of the group on those stairs, and that was the end of it.
The moment I returned to the original site of the protest, an organizer asked whether I had forgotten something there, but I hadn’t forgotten anything, I had intentionally left my backpack and bag next to their things. So I picked them back up and walked away at 12:10 PM, only putting the cap and the headphones back on a little later, when I stopped to do so. And I stopped one more time after entering Izvor Park, on a bench, to move two of the four Pepsi bottles to the backpack. Then I walked all the way to Kaufland Basarab, getting there around 1:15 PM and having a look at that confectionery, seeing that they still had those meringue cakes, before putting my things in a cabinet, peeing and washing my hands and face, finally putting the mask back on and entering the store.
After grabbing one thing while I was looking around, I saw that the price of the garlic was even lower than what was listed in the catalog, and it was also listed as being from Romania, so even though I had my doubts about that, I took my time to search through all the crates and got some that looked good and closer to how I’d expect Romanian garlic to look. Then, after seeing an unannounced discount for red cabbage and grabbing one even though it looked rather bad, I got the other things that I had gone there for, wandered around for a while, used the self-checkout without problems, and then also bought one of those cakes from that confectionery… Only for the person who was there to just put it on the glass at first. So I stared in surprise and she asked whether it was to go, finally packing it after I confirmed. I wonder what had made her think that I was going to eat it there, and how, since they don’t have tables inside and she hadn’t given me spoon, plus that I didn’t see her giving unpacked products to those who had been ahead of me.
I took my time to retrieve what I had in the cabinet and arrange in the bags, moving a little when an old woman came and seemed to want to get something from a cabinet that I had been blocking, but she was saying that she couldn’t remember the second cabinet which she had used and there were more cabinets with bags that looked the same. I had actually noticed that as well, but I told her to just try her code and see where it worked, which she did. But then a foreign guy said in English that he didn’t know how the cabinets worked, so I told him… Only for the first one he tried to not work, so I also tried it and confirmed that it wasn’t locking, told him that it was probably broken, tried another, saw that it did work and then left him to it, the problem being that it was just below mine, so I was waiting for him to finish before retrieving what I still had in that cabinet. He seemed uncomfortable with me standing next to him, however, so after a little while he left, saying something about his friends, then returned while I was still there, tried another cabinet, then clapped me on the shoulder and thanked me again as I was about to finally walk away. But I still wasn’t happy with how I had arranged all of those things, so I stopped again after a few steps, trying to do a better job, and then did so one more time once I was outside, finally walking away at 2:40 PM.
I still had a long way to go, however, and also decided to once again check the central location of the Library after all, after checking how to get there from Basarab before leaving and seeing that it involved a pretty small detour. And when I got there I found the door closed but not locked, a document left open on the computer, and nobody around, so I went into the room with books in English, left the bags near the door and started searching, having also taken with me the location of that book, which I had written down before the system failed… Which system is actually yet to recover even now! But that was just a waste of time, since that book wasn’t where it seemed that it had to be, I didn’t spot it while searching that section one more time either, and while I considered grabbing American Gods, to at least get something, I decided against it and eventually just left. I heard some voices on the hallway at one point, but nobody as much as glanced into that room and I once again didn’t see anybody around when I left.
I was walking away from there at 3:40 PM, but I also wanted one of those carrot and orange cakes from that place that’s right next to the Library, having seen several on my way there… But they all seemed to be gone when I went back. So I stared for a while, then tried to work up the courage to ask, but that tray was brought back and I could just ask for one. I did still also say that I was confused, since I had seen them there and then they were all gone, and the person who was there said that she had covered them, but the tray had been wrapped in cling film before as well, so I’m not sure what she actually did. Either way, moments after I finally walked away from that area I realized that, with the books in that room of the Library being separated according to the nationality of the author, if that code is used for all literature in English, I might have been searching in the wrong section, since I had just looked for the section with that code, without even checking whether it was for British or American literature. However, I was starting to feel the lack of sleep and, even though I briefly considered turning back and looking again, I decided against it.
I was back for the first time at 5:05 PM, having carried a good 16 kg and after walking a total of what seems to have been almost exactly 20 km, not including the distance covered while wandering around in Carrefour and Kaufland. And the weight of the purchases should have been pretty equal, about 6.5 kg, or at most a few hundred grams more from Kaufland, with the clothes, shoes, bags and what was in my pockets making up the rest, so I had carried most of that weight all the way from Carrefour Unirii. I was drenched in sweat, the back of the shirt and the areas around my underarms were soaked… And another problem was that the socks which I had been wearing that day were sliding down. Most do, ever since my feet were so swollen, but some, including that pair, which I threw away since then, won’t stay up at all, so that day I used two rubber bands on each sock, to hold them in place, and they had been too tight, so I occasionally had to stop and move those bands, when it was starting to hurt. In spite of that, however, after dropping off what I had brought, I left again and ran most of the way to Penny, to get one more thing for dad. Realizing that I had time to do so, I just walked on the way back, but I nevertheless added another three kilometers to the distance covered that day.
I was finally back for good just before 5:55 PM, put some things in their place, ate the cake and some watermelon, finally starting what ended up being the last one purchased in 2022 with the side that was going soft, which was obviously wilting inside but was still edible, and later also had the apple that looked the worst out of that bag, though the problems were once again only close to the surface. Otherwise, since dad’s note stated that he was going to get back around 7 PM, I kept waiting, but it was 8:40 PM when he finally sent an SMS stating that he’ll be back in about half an hour. So I thought that I’ll have time to go to the toilet and did so… Only for him to call while I was there, and he tried again after I ignored it the first time, so I just quickly wiped the worst of it and rushed back to my room to answer… But he hung up by the time I got there, and didn’t try a third time. And it was in fact just over an hour after that SMS when he finally arrived. Then I finally showered and had lunch, with a large bag of corn puffs instead of bread, and since I was also playing Fate of the World: Tipping Point while eating, just failing one more time, and hadn’t taken a fork either, I ate particularly slowly and it was just after 1 AM when I finished… Or, more exactly, when I finished eating in my room, since there was a little left, which I finished in the kitchen. Either way, I started eating dinner at 3:05 AM, but still finished at 3:40 AM.

Though I had been told that they’ll be ready on Friday, so on September 16, it was that very morning, and early, when I got the SMS announcing that my test results were already waiting. So, in spite of all the effort made the previous day and the fact that I had a dentist appointment that afternoon, to fix the lost filling, when I woke up the second time, just before 11:50 AM, I decided to rush to get them, just eating a banana, leaving at 12:30 PM and getting there at 12:55 PM. Several people were waiting in front of that locked door at that point, commenting about that annoying policy that only applies on that floor, and I ended up standing, since someone was even sitting on the stairs, but I had once again taken the book, so I read a couple more pages until someone else called and the guy from that clinic eventually came, taking the papers from the three of us who were waiting for results from there and then bringing said results, without us going in. And I stopped on my way down to glance over my results, noticing that they were surprisingly good, before walking out at 1:15 PM.
I was back at 1:40 PM, had breakfast, thoroughly flossed and brushed, also considered using some mouthwash but decided against it, in part because it had expired long ago and in part because I didn’t have the time, and left again a little after 2:55 PM. The appointment was for 3 PM, but it took me two minutes to get to the dentist, so it was fine. I had taken the mask with me, but hadn’t put it on, in case I’ll be called in right away. On the other hand, in case I’ll end up needing to wait, I had taken the book as well, and I took it out after sitting down, but I didn’t have time to read anything, being called in almost right away.
The doctor was a new one and at first she was treating me like a child, then seemed to gradually move towards seeing me as an adult, while towards the end she switched to formal speech, actually being completely set in it after she finished working, using the “polite” plural and pronouns, which I find really annoying. And another annoying thing was that dad called while I was there, so I rejected the call, since he clearly knew where I was… Only for him to call again a little later, when they were already working on the filling and I definitely couldn’t answer, so the assistant asked whether I’ll let her answer and I agreed, so she did that and he just hung up, later telling me that he hadn’t checked the time. Either way, they ended up having quite a meeting while working on my teeth, four or five people ending up in that room, talking about some of them graduating medical school, going on vacation… And, on top of replacing that filling, the dentist also fixed a cavity in the next tooth. And she was also saying that I really needed the tartar removed, insisted to make an appointment for that, but I said that I wanted to focus on the marathon and she said that she’ll let me do that if I’ll promise to make that appointment after it. But I sort of just shrugged, not promising anything, and I’m in fact yet to go back there, that prospect being scary enough even without considering the costs.
Speaking of costs, she said that removing the tartar was going to cost 350 RON… But the bigger shock at that moment was the price of those two fillings, which was 500 RON, and that was supposedly after she had given me a discount of 100 RON because she had done both in a single sitting. I pointed out that their site was listing 150-200 RON for fillings at that point, but she said that those were old prices and they hadn’t updated them, showing me the printed list that they had there. So I had quite a problem, only having 200 RON with me, but they accepted that amount at that moment and I said that I’ll bring the rest the next day. But I didn’t need to do that, since I told dad about it and he went there and paid the difference when he got back.
Either way, after a quick look in the nearby Mega Image, I got back at 4:05 PM and left again at 7:25 PM, deciding to first go to Auchan, just putting on the mask when I got there, finding a few things to get and using a self-checkout without problems. I had meant to go straight to that newer Kaufland after that, but I hadn’t checked that route again before leaving and the lack of sleep was really getting to me, so I decided to play it safe and first go to Park Lake, having a look in Carrefour but not finding anything to get. And then I ended up not going to Kaufland at all, starting to walk in that direction but deciding after a little while that I no longer wanted to risk it based just on the fact that the site still listed the closing time for that location as 11 PM, since there was a chance that it had actually changed back to 10 PM and they hadn’t updated it yet on the site, plus that I had also decided to make myself another mamaliga that night, so I turned around and got back just before 10:15 PM. Then I ate something sweet which dad had brought from mother and a couple of the plums which she had added in that box, went to the toilet and showered, and then made that mamaliga and cleaned everything that dad had left in the kitchen after cooking.


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