Saturday 17 October 2020

More ears are needed

 I've reached that stage of life where I get to lose stuff, often hidden in plain sight. I haven't yet applied my self-advice to keep things simple and not tote around, or live amid, so much shite. This definitely true for my little red Yaris, which I use . . . for a variety of purposes. Up until recently, I used m'wheels to commute to work several days each week and often, on these voyages into a hostile world, I'd buy something [almost always food, occasionally petrol] from a shop. Those simple transactions seemed to me to require: own shopping basket; shopping bags, glass for recycling, bucket for hand-washing; gloves; mask. Other things accumulated from these transactions: promo-mags from shops; receipts. So the interior of the car is "cluttered"; but then I'm not vain about myself so it would be fatuous to become a suburban Saturday car-valetter. Apart form anything else I live on a farm, so there is a fair bit of real shite about the vehicle let alone the metaphorical shite.

It's not usually a problem!

But earlier in the week, I was i/c Pat the Salt, my venerable father in law, and one of the tasks on my ToDo list was "take Pat to GP clinic for winter 'flu shot". It wasn't a terrible day on the weather front but he's now 90-something and feels the cold more than sprightly me. I bundled him up in a hat and coat. Thermoregulation is not the only deficit of old age: Pat has glasses, hearing aids and going-out teeth, so he can see, hear, and look presentable. When we got to the clinic, following the SOP, I hooked a surgical mask over his already multi-tasking ears and in we went. The nurse was on time, although we were early, and we shuffled into their office. It was utterly beyond their world-view that Mohammed, with fully functioning legs, would come out to serve the ould chap. And The Only Place a 'flu jab may be administered is in the upper arm. I offered his neck . . . but nothing would satisfy the professional but that I unpack the old chap.

And a few minutes later we were safely back in El Yaris and I whipped off Pat's mask and <pToinnggg> one of his hearing aids flew into the back of the car. I wasn't expecting this but glimpsed something travelling fast from the far side of Pat's head. Even National Health hearing-aids are pretty small and beige and the missing part didn't stand out in the complex environment back there. At least the search space was finite, and the hunt was successful. I tell ya, that's an exciting day in pensionland!

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