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Sunday, January 13, 2008

Cold Winds

Merry merry life. Granny is sitting in her flat well wrapped up. Her boiler has met its maker - but the corpse, alas, is still sitting there, will stay sitting there until Wednesday when the boilermen arrive to install its successor at the usual hideous kind of price. Boilermen will make "as little mess as possible" - they say. Merrier and merrier. Dustier and dustier. But at least once they've done it will be warm dust. Warmer.

Meantime , to add to her general cheer, dear agent is very thumbs down on any hope of selling Going Mental in present publishing climate....not that she's read the new version: she just knows the market. Granny is gloomily soldiering on with what might turn out to be yet another bloody corpse. But at least this one won't be dusty.

No more corpses she promises. Nevertheless, worse, far worse than any of these - relatively - minor matters, one of her oldest and dearest friends has been diagnosed with breast cancer. Much discussion about things like lymph nodes over the telephone. Friend lives in what you could, loosely, call Loamshire, and new guidelines about patients being involved in treatment decisions etc etc doesn't seem to have reached Loamshire General. After being told - no argument - what they proposed to do, dear friend has voted with her feet and demanded second opinions and a specialist centre, preferably in London where her children live. She should NOT have to fight like this. Good for her self-esteem maybe, but not her nerves. Granny's long experience in this area is being called on. For whatever good that does. What she can say - does say- demonstrates in her very flesh - is that diagnosis is not a death sentence..... True enough. But it sure does remind everyone, particularly the sufferer, of their mortality; good for the soul perhaps but not much else. Granny is sighing and worrying; old friends MATTER. Something she realises more and more as the years go on, as other old friends confront the failings of their not so mortal flesh, and do not always survive the confrontation.

After a weekend of rather more cheerful things like families and grandchildren, well-chilled vintage Granny has been having other more cheerful thoughts too; these she will spare you for the moment.


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