Back in late July, I visited my doctor for a check-up, and while I was there, a couple nurses' aides came in and jabbed me with a pair of vaccines I needed, one in each shoulder. (This had nothing to do with either covid or the flu, both of which were handled separately at other times.)
One of those was for shingles, and I was told that this would require a second shot in 3-4 months. The aide sat at the exam room computer to make an appointment for my second shot, stopped, made a phone call, then told me it was not possible to make an appointment that far in the future. That's 3-4 months. I thought I'd had appointments longer out than that in the past, but that's what they said. So I made a note in my calendar to contact them in October about this.
Before I could contact them, they called me. This is mid-October now. Ah, yes, you need your second shingles shot. Let's see, our earliest available appointment is ... in March.
March? That's in five months! Back in July, you couldn't make an appointment as far off as 3 months. And quite unsuitable for the shingles shot, being 8 months after my previous one when it should be 3-4.
So they offered to look up others of their locations and found a medical office building some ten miles away where I could get one in a few weeks. Much less of a backup.
So thither I drove yesterday and had no trouble, beyond discovering that afternoon commuter traffic was already heavy at 3 pm - I don't often go that way in the afternoon - so I ducked off the freeway and took obscure back roads that I knew about offhand because I've been absorbed by street maps of the area since I was four years old.
The vocational nurse who gave me this one told me that I'd definitely suffer some cold- or flu-like side effects from this jab by the evening, but so far I haven't, just the usual sore arm.
Bizarre as the scheduling process here has been, it's much less complex than the saga of replacing our garage door opener's battery, which is approaching three weeks and still ongoing.