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Saturday, 16 February 2013

A Little Glimmer of Hope


(Contiued from Wednesday)
 
I learnt that afternoon from one of the male nurses she had, it seemed, lost her memory, nobody could make sense of anything she uttered, which was very little in any case. Coming in three weeks previous she had been retrieved from a multiple pile up on the motorway, they didn’t even know which vehicle she was travelling in, so bad was the state of the accident it couldn’t be determined in which direction she was travelling in or if anyone was with her. The police were baffled, and although they had not given up had stopped calling in to enquire of her progress. Waiting it seemed for someone to report her missing.
Being old and wrinkled I didn’t think she would consider me a threat and enquired if I could perhaps have the use of a wheelchair like hers and join her the following day out in the sunshine. I hadn’t been out of bed for what was now several weeks and my curiosity took over from the concern about my health and after a lot of pleading on my part the authorities agreed to let me out for a couple of hours.
The following morning I was anxious to get out, ‘boy’ was I wobbly, my legs turned to jelly as I swung them out and over the bed, if you have ever been laid up for any considerable time you know, I’m sure, that feeling. I felt sick, my head spun in a direction that can’t be described as I leaned against the burly male nurse who was sitting on the bed beside me. We took our time at his insistence and gradually the world around me came back into focus, and with a monumental effort on both our parts he was soon pushing me out of the doors into the garden.
It was about ten in the morning and the sun was shining down on me sending a feeling of shear joy at being outside as I remember filling my lungs with the fresh air, taking gasps like a child in a candy store, this also brought on the dizzy spells again.
I came to a halt as my chauffeur parked my buggy next to this young woman out there in the garden. The previous night I had planned for numerous scenarios, how I would approach this mysterious young lady and what I would say to her.
It didn’t happen, we just sat there in silence for a good half hour not saying a word. My head was getting uncomfortably hot from the strong sunshine by this time so I took out of my dressing gown pocket my hanky. Remember being on the beach and seeing the holidaymakers in deckchairs with their hankies tied in each corner to make a hat?
With a lot of effort on my part the said hanky took its place on my head;
She smiled!
In that instant out there in the bright glare coming from the sky, the smallest glimmer of hope passed across her once lovely face, and something passed between us both, a kin, like father and daughter would have, nothing else, it wasn’t pity but a small recognition of comfort as I just laid my hand on the arm of her wheelchair and she instantly took hold of it.
We had made contact, and it felt good, my mission had been accomplished without saying even one word to her. 
I closed my eyes and drifted off, revelling in the fresh air and warm sunshine, I’m sure it was doing me good to be outside because the next thing I knew was her hand squeezing mine to bring me back from where ever I was, it was dinner time and Arnold Schwarzenegger was taking the brake of my chariot, looking across to her I just said;
“Tomorrow”
There was no answer, I don’t think she understood, but there was that smile again, faint, but definitely there, and it made a difference that was obvious to everyone watching.
That night after visiting, two ‘coppers’ appeared from nowhere and stood at the bottom of my bed and started to question me about my encounter that morning, that was until my mate ‘Arnold’ came and interrupted them, reading the riot act to the one who was firing questions at me. He politely told them to be quiet, and he would ask the questions drawing the curtains around me as he did so. You didn’t argue with ‘Arnold’, he was about 6ft 6” with not one ounce of fat showing from his large frame, a gentle giant of a man and to the patients on the ward a real friend you immediately took to, we were all under his care in that ward and we felt safe and he would do anything within reason to make us comfortable.
The upstart of it all was they were no wiser for their journey that night than they were before, but were very keen on the outcome if I could in some small way find out who she was and where she had come from. Which of course, I promised to try and find out.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                                                                             (to be continued)
Thanks for stopping by.

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