We have just experienced our first broken bone.

Our son, 3, who has fallen off everything there is to fall off and through some miracle not broken anything before, snapped both bones in his left wrist landing badly after he fell off a stool.

Going to hospital isn't usually a good thing, especially with kids.

But what really bothered me this time was the scummy people lurking about. I've been enough times to know they are there often.


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When I waddled into Tauranga Hospital at 5am one October day five years ago, desperately trying not to give birth to my daughter in the entrance, I had to walk through the stench of a drunk man smoking a cigarette. Barely able to breathe, I doubled forward, pausing briefly during final stage contractions, and I was forced to inhale his vile, offensive smoke.

I had a similar experience in 2015, during a walk for "fresh air" on the hospital's rooftop garden as I awaited induced contractions before having our boy.

And it wasn't any better last weekend as I waited for our son, who sedated with ketamine as they reset his bones that had snapped like sticks. I wandered outside with my daughter as we waited for an update from my husband - I'm four months pregnant and wasn't up for stomaching the needle going in or watching should there be an adverse reaction.

Yet again, these scummy people lurked outside the hospital entrance, puffing away on their cigarettes.

I am calling them scum because anyone who is at a HOSPITAL, smoking beside the "No smoking on hospital grounds" signs, is scum. Even if you can't read, you can understand the symbols.

You are lazy, disrespectful and selfish. You are scum.

I decided my daughter didn't need to see such scum as they started pouring in on a Saturday evening. I don't think doctors or nurses should have to be around it either, although, of course, that is a big part of what they deal with.

I walked our girl towards the maternity ward where I figured things would be more pleasant than A&E. On the way back I ran into her former daycare teacher who was leaving hospital with his sister, who is undergoing cancer treatment.

I'm no princess - nor are my own lungs completely pure. I grew up in the 80s when people smoked in houses. I had the odd puff myself back in the day.


But you are at a hospital. People are sick. Some of them quite sick. Piss off and walk the measly 50m across the carpark, away from the entrance, where the last thing people coming into a medical facility with health concerns need is to walk through your disgusting, disrespectful presence.