The driver slams on the horn, hazard lights flashing, his high beams on. We are doing 110km down the highway in the wrong lane ! A semi trailer comes screaming towards us. AK huddled in my lap, not a seatbelt to be seen. Then seconds from collision the truck swerves into the cane fields toots us a happy horn and keep going, the driver doesn’t flinch, my bowel contents deposit themselves in my pants. He continues down the wrong side of the highway hand glued to the horn cars parting for us to continue on our way. We skid round a corner and at 110km the driver pulls into a carpark and slams on the breaks ! I need a sedative. The nurses come running out to see us. I prepare to leap out of the car not wanting to spend another minute with the mad man ! Then the doors lock.
“That will be $75 mam” he says ” what I hitch hiked ” I exclaim. My words fell on def ears and I realised my argument was a waste if time. I disgustfully empty the entire contents of my wallet on his seat and got out of the car. The man had picked me up off the side of the road in the middle of nowhere. I felt like such a Fijian rebel hitch hiking, until I realised I just got in a car with a mad man.”It’s $60 mam” he said smugly. “$60 too much and you have now left me with nothing!”
The nurse closed the door and escorte AK and I into emergency at Nadi hospital. They took AK’s temp 39.6′, we were quickly whisked into a bed where AK was wrapped in wet blankets. Wow this doesn’t seem as bad as I thought, the hospital may be runs down as shit but we seem to be gettin seen to. I had thought too soon.
For two hours I sat with AK her temp not budging and no one coming to check on us. Finally an Australian expat had had enough I AK’s deteriorating condition. She was a well known Government official. After she had spoke with a nurse she had demanded AK get blood test done and have some observations run on her. They took her temp again 39.4′ she was roasting, then wrapped her in more wet blankets. Her temp hadn’t gone below 39′ in over 48hrs. Blood was taken and finally something was happening. I took a sigh of relief, but again it was too early.
After 6hrs of waiting the doctor finally came to see us. her blood test came back normal, her white cell count was low but fine. Then the doctor did the unthinkable. He discharged AK at 2am in the morning with a high fever ,high heart rate and a low breath rate. She was in a terrible condition.
The Aus expat was furious and demanded AK be admitted. ” your risking this 2yr olds life “she screamed. The doctor looked at us turned his back and walked away. I gathered AK up and wander out of the hospital. AK had been suffering from fevers over 39′ for over 48hrs she was unwell to say the least.
Our troubles were far from over, I had not a single cent on me and my only option to get home was by taxi. The man quoted me $50, I told him I had no money that he would have to wait for my husband when we arrived at my destination. He was fine with that and off we went. This is wear it got creepy. It’s 2am and I’m alone in a taxi with a strange man who is freaking me out. I have no idea how to get back to the boat. ” where you staying man”? He asked, ” well I am not staying anywhere, I need to be dropped off in a cow paddock near the mangroves”. He looks at me funny and I try to explain the exact spot that I clambered onto the road having come from the bay. AK slept soundly in my lap while my heart raced. When he turned into a dirt road I freaked out, I demanded he turn around, that it was the wrong way.
Finally I found the opening in the long cow paddocks grass. Do I get out here and try to get through the field in the pitch black? What if the taxi drivers a murdered? I have just driven him to the ultimate deserted place at now 3am.
He made the decision for me, the car launching off the road and into the field. His bonnet seperating the long grass, till we hit the mangroves. He turned off the ignition and got out of the car. I organised AK so I was ready to run. I would not let my girl be chopped into pieces in a mangrove field. He walked around to The boot and opened it, my heart rate sored. This is it, this Is the part where he pulls out a chainsaw, I wait in the car ,the keys are still in the ignition. Plan A run him over . He then he opens my door and offers me a cigaret. I felt like a fool. He wasn’t going to murder us, my imagination went wild.
What he did was scam me for a 142km trip that should of only been 50km. $150 later I was released into slade arms. I felt sick to the stomach, he took advantage of us and our situation ! What kind of man scams a woman for $150 when she has a sick child. I was shocked to say the least and then he offered to have us for dinner one night. I was repulsed by this mans lack of heart.
I still had a very sick girl and had now been scammed over $200 in transport ! I was physically exhausted and furious at the doctors lack of responsibility. I stood in the mud of the mangroves and wept.
What do we do now? our daughter is unwell in a foreign country and the hospital doesn’t care. We have no Dr Eric on the radio or north bound fleet to rely on. We are all alone and about to live a complete nightmare. TBC ……. This story is so long I will do it in 3 or 4 parts