I had warned grandson Jack, in advance, as he drove me home from his house at the end of my mini break, that I couldn’t promise his visit to ours would be exactly exciting. It might even (whisper it softly) be a
tad boring compared with those halcyon Summers Past when he and his sister, accompanied by their mother, Youngest of the Darling Daughters (who never likes to miss out on anything) spent happy days swimming, scooting, sandcastle building, theatre visiting,
go karting and braving the most thrilling of rides in the Amusement Park. We might, I suggested, manage a seafront stroll and a cup of coffee or an ice cream by way of refreshment but that might be as exciting as it would get.
Well, I got that all wrong didn’t I! I hadn’t bargained for Mr B doing a flying leap out of his chair in the early hours of the morning, landing flat on his front with his head resting
uncomfortably on the granite fireplace, oozing a small stream of the red stuff. I didn’t reckon on welcoming in a quartet of paramedics (who are way up there among my Most Favourite People) into our living room; or on a trip in an ambulance to
A & E to have the Wounded One checked over. (Incidentally I heard on TV today that our local ambulance organisation is planning to ask people to send in photographs of the situation in advance of their visits so they can be better prepared for what they
will find when they arrive. I am trying to imagine what Mr B’s reaction would have been had I whipped out my mobile phone while he was lying there in great discomfort and asked him to “Smile, please!”
I left Jack still in bed but all prepared to collect me from the hospital should I not be allowed to stay. As I might have expected, on arrival Mr B was whisked away to undergo a series of tests while
I was shown into the deserted A & E waiting room to await an update. A kind male nurse brought me a cup of coffee and a packet of three biscuits “to keep you going.” An act of random kindness which nearly brought me to tears. Eventually, after
a couple of hours, the same kind fella suggested I should go home and wait for news there, promising I would hear from him or one of his colleagues just as soon as there was anything worth the telling. I phoned Jack to say I could summon a taxi: “Oh,
no, no, no!” said my grandson decisively; he would be with me just as soon as he’d pulled some clothes on, he added.
Once home, we heard quite soon
that all was well, Mr B had survived a battery of tests and been pronounced fit enough to be discharged. There might be a long wait for Patient Transport but sooner (or, probably, later) he would be back home with us again.
At the good news, Jack assumed control. He did the shopping, collected a prescription from the chemist for his Grandad, paid my newspaper bill - then, on Mr B’s return, made us all delicious
bacon sandwiches. He kept me supplied over the course of the day with restorative mugs of coffee; entertained me with fascinating discussions about my favourite subject, Life in General; helped me pick bowls of blackberries from the garden for our delight;
and took over the cooking of our evening meal. This meant I could concentrate on the requirements of the Special Care dentist who had called to attend to Mr B’s Troublesome Teeth. I really don’t know what I would have done without my oldest grandson
but, suffice to say, I would have been an emotional mess. “You sound amazingly chirpy, considering everything,” remarked Jack’s mamma when she called for a progress report. It’s all down to Jack, I told her, fervently.
Do you ever have those days which start off really, really badly but somehow end up on a high? That was yesterday. At 5 a.m. I was fearing the worst; by 5 p.m. I was in a happy place.
Mr B was safely back home, suffering no obvious ill effects from his sudden dive to the floor; and Jack was in the kitchen cooking up a Madras Beef Curry, the smell of which was wafting, promisingly, all through the house.
I know I didn't want my grandson to find his short stay with us rather boring but, really, did we - possibly - overdo the drama?!