Suffer if you will please one more column about our trip to Ireland and the U.K. Only this time it’s not about the people or the beautiful sites but rather about a lesson I learned the hard way. And one I should have learned a long time ago.

Suffer if you will please one more column about our trip to Ireland and the U.K.  Only this time it’s not about the people or the beautiful sites but rather about a lesson I learned the hard way.  And one I should have learned a long time ago.
So I’m not one of those that ever had a debit card but for the trip we thought that we should get one so we could draw out cash in local currency.  That worked just great in Ireland but not so much in England.
You see, some countries have some funny rules and our local banks have to deal with those so when I went to draw out some money the ATM denied my card.  Thinking it might have just been the machine we went to another one and the same denial.  When the third machine denied the card we knew that we might just have a little problem.  
But, not to worry, we had brought some American cash so we would just exchange it for English money.  I asked a girl in a coffee shop where we might find a bank.  She informed us that there were no banks in the town and in fact the closest bank was 2 towns over from us.  In the U.K. there isn’t a bank on every corner like we are used to in this country.
No overwhelming problem because the town was actually on our planned route so off we went with our trusty GPS guiding us.  Of course the bank was downtown and took us over 30 minutes out of our way to find it.  Again no problem until I asked the lady at the counter if I could exchange some money.  
She asked if I had an account with them.  I guess my Midwestern twang didn’t give it up that I wasn’t from around there.  When I said that I did not she said that she couldn’t help me.  I expected to pay a fee but she said that she couldn’t do it at all.
Houston we may now have a problem.  We had about 6 pounds on us and American dollars that were of no use.  I asked her where I could exchange money and she said the Post Office.  Yep, you read that correct, they exchanged money at the Post Office which happened to be right around the corner.
So, remember the three ATM’s that refused my debit card in the little town that didn’t have a bank?  They basically were centered around the town’s POST OFFICE. So instead of driving over an hour out of our way, I could have walked across the street where I started and saved time and frustration.

I can’t blame the girl in the coffee shop because I didn’t ask her where I could exchange money.  I asked her where the nearest bank was located and she answered correctly.  My error was in assuming (yes assuming) that banks would be the place to exchange money.  I would never have thought to go to a Post Office for that service.

We all make assumptions on a variety of things (or at least I do) because we think we know more than we really do.  We jump into situations and don’t always ask the right questions or sometimes don’t ask any at all.  How better would the world be if we all assumed less and asked more before we acted?

Luckily this was not a major problem.  It was a pain but maybe it was worth it if I learned (or maybe better said relearned) a lesson to never assume that I know more than I really do.

This kind of transitions into another situation of making assumptions.  At my last appointment at MD Anderson the tumors were active and the doctor wanted to change my course of treatment.  I asked if we could up the dosage because my oncologist here had told me that I was on the lowest of two possible dosages.

He was not very optimistic but said we could try that approach.  We just got back last week from another round of scans in Houston and were pleasantly surprised when we were informed that the cancer was now stable.  Apparently the higher dosage was doing its job for now.  

I was pretty much assuming that we would hear that I had to do something more drastic than getting a shot once a month at the Cancer Center in Joplin.  Sure glad that my assumption and his as well were wrong.  

Four more months of shots and maybe by then the treatment that I really need will be approved by the FDA.  As they say, God is good, all the time.  Thank you for your thoughts and prayers.

Kevin Wilson writes a column for the Neosho Daily News.