Soon, there was a long queue in front of Ling Ran's chair.
Most of them were young nurses and doctors who did not have much to do.
Treatment during health inspections could not be given immediately. Most of the time, doctors could only make diagnoses based on earlier clinical reports and on-the-spot physical examinations.
Even though resident doctors sometimes participated in surgeries, only experienced attending physicians could make a serious diagnosis.
Those who were diagnosed with serious illnesses would usually be admitted right then and there. Other than prescribing medication, even the simplest tasks such as intravenous infusions were carried out in the sanatorium infirmary.
Intramuscular injections—commonly known as buttock injections—had long since been abandoned by large hospitals like Yun Hua Hospital. It was only used in very rare cases, and it was impossible to carry out on senior citizens in the sanatorium.
This was why the young nurses who had nothing to do, and the young doctors that no one cared about naturally crowded at the back.
"Hm… ooouch, ouch, ah!"
"Oh, oh, oh."
Different types of screams rang out one after another, and it was as if they ignited the quiet air, heating up the atmosphere of the sanatorium.
The director of the sanatorium had only just settled down in his office. He heard the strange noises the moment he turned his computer on. After checking that they were not coming from his computer's speakers, he quickly ran towards the source of the noises.
Immediately afterwards, the panting director saw that an extremely handsome young doctor who looked like he came out of a hospital drama was grabbing at the necks of doctors and nurses one after another, massaging them to the point that they were moaning. Some were even whimpering. When he looked more closely, there were even staff members of the sanatorium among them.
From their expressions, all the male doctors who were grabbed were convulsing all over like tortoises grabbed by eagles.
As for the female doctors and nurses who were grabbed, they looked more like white cranes whose necks were held in the mouth of a ferocious beast. They screamed as they convulsed. At most, they kicked their legs as though they were on the brink of death. The director even had suspicions that one of the young nurses was rolling her eyes, but it was obvious that she was not rolling her eyes at him.
"What… what is going on?" The director of the sanatorium was a gaunt, forty-something-year-old man with a pure heart and few desires.
The director also held Laozi's teachings in high regard, and strongly advocated the management idea of 'governing without interfering with the natural laws or with any other external force' in the sanatorium. The leaders of the Health Department greatly appreciated him.
However, the scene before his eyes totally went against the spirit of the sanatorium. A young staff member who had just received two minutes' worth of massaging felt good on the inside and the outside, and did not remember the sanatorium's motto.
He smiled sheepishly and said, "Doctor Ling gives really good massages. Go and give it a try, director."
"What is this foolery? If you want a massage, then go ahead. Why scream for no reason?"
"Because it was comfortable!"
"Comfortable? How comfortable can it be? I think that all of you are deliberately causing a disturbance." With a straight face, the director quickly went towards Ling Ran and sat in front of him before a staff of the sanatorium had a chance to. It was like he wanted to prove his judgement right.
The staff of the sanatorium did not dare to say anything even though he was furious. Ling Ran only gave the director a strange look before handing him a bottle of alcohol-based hand sanitizer. "Rub this on your neck."
The director turned and glanced at him. "Aren't you using the towel as a cushion?"
"Disinfection is still necessary," Ling Ran answered resolutely. He took the opportunity to exercise his wrist and rest a while.
The director pumped out some alcohol-based hand sanitizer and simply rubbed it on his neck.
Ling Ran waited for the alcohol-based sanitizer to dry before placing the towel on his hand and getting a hold of the director's neck. The director was sneering, but his gaze immediately froze.
This was the sky... the earth... The air here was fresh, the sunlight brilliant. The trees and grass here were emerald, the water clear, and the sands white.
He recalled the most beautiful threshing floor from his memories. He remembered the resounding clucks of hens after they laid their eggs.
"I'm done, there's bone hyperplasia on the cervical vertebrae. Nothing major." Ling Ran tapped the director's shoulder and asked him to get up.
The director rose in a daze, and saw that a few people were crowded around him with their mobile phones and laughing.
He went over, and could clearly hear a series of moans that were simultaneously familiar and unfamiliar coming from the mobile phones.
"I… screamed?" the director asked them with a falter.
They raised their heads and said boldly with a smile, "You screamed. Do you want to take a look?"
"Nevermind, forget it." The director covered his face and left, not daring to say any more.
"Doctor, what illnesses can this massaging of yours cure?" After walking back and forth for a while, an old man finally went in front of Ling Ran.
"I only know how to perform chiropractic manipulation for the cervical spine," Ling Ran said. "You can sit down and give it a try."
"It won't destroy my neck, right?"
Senior citizens were still quite wary when it came to chiropractic manipulation since their bones were already porous; they were no longer flexible like young people.
Although Ling Ran's Master Level in the Chiropractic Manipulation for the Cervical Spine was only limited to the cervical spine, it was applicable to a wide range of ages, from babies only a few months old, to senior citizens almost a hundred years old.
There were a few doctors Ling Ran had performed chiropractic manipulation on just now who had already hit sixty years of age. At this moment, he confidently said, "Take a seat, I'll press lightly. What illnesses do you have?"
"Everything; high blood pressure, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, vasculitis, varicose veins, bone hyperplasia, spinal disc herniation…" the old man recited skillfully. He did not sound like a senior citizen at all.
Ling Ran nodded and took another thin towel. He placed his hand on the old man's neck and slowly felt around.
The old man's skin was relatively flabby and his muscles were no longer muscular. Ling Ran was only able to touch his vertebrae by exerting slight force with his fingers. He could even get a rough picture in his mind of the vertebrae's shape.
Ling Ran moved his wrists gently once, then twice.
He skipped the massaging step and straightaway began pushing at the pressure points.
"I…" The old man was about to say something, but he swallowed it back because he felt so comfortable from Ling Ran pressing him. The old man could not help but close his eyes. His entire body trembled slightly.
Many senile diseases came with body aches; rheumatoid arthritis, varicose veins, and bone hyperplasia all cause body aches. And although most aches could be relieved using painkillers, most senior citizens in China refuse to take them. They would rather wait for the pain to subside by itself.
After Ling Ran loosened the muscles on the old man's neck, the old man's headache immediately receded by a great margin.
"Oh… it's really not bad," the old man praised Ling Ran as he spoke.
"Don't move." Ling Ran smiled, took hold of the old man's lower jaw bone, and gently twisted it to another angle.
After producing a soft, almost inaudible sound, Ling Ran removed his hand and said with a smile, "Try moving your head."
The old man moved his head slowly and said in surprise, "It's not painful anymore..."
"Was it painful before this?" Ling Ran was just as surprised as the old man. He was not an expert in senile diseases, and did not know the conditions of senior citizens well.
The old man said with a soft sigh, "Life goes on whether it's painful or not. Haih, it's good that my neck is not sore anymore, it's good."
Ling Ran gently helped the old man up. The elimination of pain would always be a doctor's ultimate aim. It was a wish that was only sometimes fulfilled.
The old man was still very happy. He pinched his neck with his hand in slow, gentle motions and smilingly said, "Hey, my neck really isn't in pain anymore."
"It really doesn't hurt anymore?" The senior citizens who arrived with the old man came forward one by one to inquire.
"It's as if my neck became ten years younger. My neck doesn't feel heavy anymore, and there's no more pain."
"Only ten years younger?"
"It's already good enough that it's not painful anymore. What more do you want?"
"That's true." An old woman sat down in front of Ling Ran with a plop, occupying the space before she said, "Why don't you give me a massage too?"
When the medical staff who were queueing up saw that a large group of senior citizens who claimed to be afflicted with various illnesses were coming forward in high spirits, they looked at one another and exited the queue quietly with their heads lowered…
When one of the senior citizens saw this, he was immediately displeased. He tapped the floor with his walking stick. "All of you, stay where you are. Whoever's already queueing, continue. Whoever wants a massage, queue at the back of the line. Whoever just wants to watch, stand aside. And whoever wants a massage go queue up."
The medical staff who were called back laughed. "What if all of you get tired standing in line and fall down? It's better for all you elderly to go first."
The old man with the walking stick started contemplating the first question as he spoke. "We should go according to order."
"Use the plates. The plates we use to queue up for the mahjong table." An old woman immediately thought of a solution, and everyone agreed with her.
After a while, a box of wooden plates was sent over. The senior citizens skilfully took them and tied them around their waists. That was how they queued up. They chatted as they stood in line, and the atmosphere was very lively.
"The doctor who carries out the massage is really handsome," an old man commented after watching for a while.
"He has great strength, too. His body looks very muscular, just like how I was when I was young," another bald old man said, pleased with how he looked in the past.
"He's just like my husband who died a long time ago. He was also this handsome when he was young." A trendy old woman whose hair was styled into large white curls smiled, revealing two neat rows of dentures as she recalled her glorious years in the past.