I didn’t go to visit Andy today, but this was good news. Gill sent me a text mid-morning to say that he was going to be taken to the local cottage hospital this afternoon. I haven’t heard more since, but I presume all has gone as planned, and it will be lovely for both of them. It’s a more relaxed, less hospital-like atmosphere and only a couple of miles from their house, so she can pop in and out much more easily. No car parking charges and more relaxed visiting times. The physiotherapy department is excellent, I went there a couple of years ago and had several ultrasound treatments and massages, and was given exercises to do (I must get those out again, I suspect they would do me good. I remember several of them, but not all).
Now I have a box of jelly babies in the car, which call to me. It only now occurs to me that I could have dropped them in at the hospital as a little welcome present to him.
I was out early this morning – not early by the standards of many of you, but it was unusual for me – because I had an appointment for a haircut at 8.30. I thought I’d be the first customer, but my friend Carol was just being finished when I arrived. “I’ll show you the back,” said Jo. “No, don’t bother, it’ll be fine,” said Carol. I asked if Jo had ever been told it wasn’t fine, and she acknowledged that once, when she was a trainee, the customer had spoken out. It was awful, she (Jo) had cried. I didn’t probe. Because that’s a pretty horrid word (in its Latin sense, yay!) and I didn’t want to pile on the remembered agony. Anyway, my hair was fine, and I was told I looked particularly smart and attractive (by the lady of the shop, not her husband) when I went into the sweet shop afterwards to buy the jelly babies.
A friend is on holiday with her family, all of them having had a really difficult few months. Their difficult time (a bereavement) is more recent than the death of my mother, and other horrible things, that had happened when Weeza and I went to India for the wedding of her friend Kavitha seven years ago – almost exactly seven years, I think we left at the end of January. I hope that they are finding it as healing a process as I did. After an enjoyable, but very busy week of wedding parties, Weeza and I flew to Kerala for a second week, of relaxation and calm. We spent as much per night in the hotels as we’d spent in a week in Madras (that is, £60 per night for two instead of £60 per week) and pottered around seeing sights and having a wonderful time. We rode elephants, bareback (elephants’ backs) and fed them bananas, we had a wonderful trip on the backwaters and pottered about and sunbathed. It was the only holiday in my whole life when I did nothing that wasn’t relaxing. I’m not a sunbathing person (actually, I never moved out from the shade of an umbrella, come to think of it, I sunshadebathed). I told Weeza, that week healed me.
Not quite actually, it took another two and a half years, but it certainly started the process. It was the most deliberately relaxing week of my life, and was a revelation. I’ve been able to wind down more quickly and completely ever since. All down to Weeza. She’s brilliant.