Pham Thi Lan will probably think twice before she decides to take a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) test again, given the weird experience she recently had at a hospital in HCM City.
Estimates suggest that as many as one in six patients suffers from claustrophobia in the tightly enclosed, tubular machines and can't go through with it, but poor Lan ended up being trapped in one for four-and-a-half hours.
Lan had a pain in her leg and was sent to take an MRI by a doctor at the hospital at about 8am on February 27. She was placed in the machine with her legs strapped down, and left there.
Lan couldn't move, and she could do nothing, and then she suddenly realised she was on her own. The two technicians who had placed her in the machine had disappeared and no one heard her calls.
There was nothing to do but pray as the machine went through its whirring and clicking motions. Feeling something was wrong, her husband and her daughter went to the hospital to look for her.
Seeing her motorbike was still in the hospital parking lot, her husband tried to find her, calling out her name loudly. At about 12.30pm, another technician found Lan was still in the MRI machine when he went to check the room.
It turned out that the two technicians who put her in the machine thought the other was in charge and had taken her out, so neither of them went to check the machine again.
Although doctors assured Lan and her family that the exposure wouldn't affect her health, the experience is not one the poor lady is going to forget in a hurry.
When friends fall out
It's good to be able to joke about things as long as it's all in good fun. However, there is obviously a limit just how far a bit of ribbing can go.
A young man called Tran had an accident on his mortorbike, but he survived relatively unharmed. But his friend, another man called Tran, kept joking about the accident and kept asking him why he was so lucky.
But the joke obviously went on for loo long, and although Tran No.1. had warned Tran No.2 not to mention the subject again, his so-called friend would not stop.
The ribbing went on for days until Tran No.1 finally erupted in a rage and stabbed his namesake many times, leaving him seriously injured. Later in court, the aggrieved-turned-aggressor received a four-year jail sentence for what he did, and had to pay a compensation of VND80 million (US$3,700) to his former friend.
Swan song for love
Tran Dien Th. and Le Phuong X., from Nghe An Prov-ince were madly in love for two years before they were both arrested for the reprehensible crime of human trafficking. This means abducting women and children and selling them to brothels or future husbands, usually in neighbouring countries. No thought is given to the emotional damage this causes to the abducted and their families.
Nevertheless, Th. wanted to surprise his partner-in-crime when they met in court for the hearing. He received permission to bring a present with him. In court, Th. opened his present, showed it to his loved one and then proposed marriage.
The gift was a pair of swans carved from soap with the letters "Love you" underneath - and two candies. Kind of romantic, but the court ordered that rules must still be obeyed: X. was not allowed to take the present with her to her cell.
The court ruled that the two should spend five-years' each behind bars, which should certainly dampen their romantic enthusiasm. — VNS