… Freedom moving along …
The sun shines on the righteous.
With which, Partner got a rare parking space outside our block, helped by our wonderful neighbour opposite who moved his car to let us into the tight space and I was all set to shuffle down the stairs on my backside.
As a kid, my mother had impressed upon me that shuffling across the floor led to tight cheeks. No idea where she got that from. Or why I needed to know it. Bit hard on our kitchen floor I must say.
Years later at university, I carried out the same manoeuvre in aerobics classes.
Much later still, in my fifties, I’m shuffling down the steps to hopefully escape to Spain for a few days.
A quick leap into the Land Rover, no queue at the frontera, and we were off.
Two and a half hours saw the reverse procedure. Out of the Land Rover, and up the steps to our finca. Except this time with an audience. No secrets in Spain.
After one neighbour had joked about Partner kicking my leg, my ankle and said next time he should kick my head and complete the job properly, he then offered to help lift me up the steps.
Domestic violence is rife in Spain. Especially in Andalucía. But this wasn’t the right time to give a feminism lecture. Not to a neighbour who was pleased to see us, always looks out for our house when we aren’t here, and offered to lift me up home. Does that make me complicit? Yes. But there are times and places for education and this wasn’t one. I let it go. In fact Partner was more offended than me. For obvious reasons.
My immediate neighbours talked twenty to the dozen. At the same time. Two Spaniards speaking at you simultaneously is not an easy one.
Once Jose had got the broken ankle on both sides bit he repeated it to all and sundry.
They’d been very concerned and feared an accident. But not to me, to Partner, painting up ladders at his age. Everyone else his age in the village is retired/on the sick. Certainly not working up ten floors of scaffolding.
And after that, life drifted into its leisurely routine. Well, apart from having to hop further. Next doors gave us squash. The cockerel got half. Our Indian neighbour in Gib may get the other. We hate squash.
Big dog went to see the vet. Our household limps a lot at the moment. I ripped out dead lettuces and the weeds that Partner
ignored didn’t see.
He bought me some new massage oil. Weleda. For delicate skin. That should suit Mr Doom and Gloom doctor. Thanks to those commenters who have recommended various ways to improve healing. I appreciate it very much.
And suddenly we were back. Birthdays, Spain, gone in a twinkling. He pulled up on the edge of the loading bay, and I struggled, by which I mean struggled, to hop up the street. One of our neighbours asked how I was and then looked at me and her face fell.
I sat on the step to watch the vehicle while he took the dogs inside.
‘Hi how are you?’ said one dateless neighbour. ‘Fine, I have a broken leg.’
Later I was shuffling up the stairs and met the beauty of the block.
‘Can I help?’
‘No, it’s ok.’
She wasn’t convinced.
‘Are you trying to get out?’
Ah. I’m trying to escape from the mental asylum.
‘No, I’m going back home.’
Whereupon I got the keys out of my bag, unlocked the door, shuffled across the floor inside the flat, heaved myself onto the sofa, and then hopped over to pour a birthday class of cava. A woman needs to have her priorities right.
The reason for coming back was to see Mr Doom and Gloom.
Patient transport due to pick me up at 10 am. Oh no. They rang at 9.20 and when Partner put down the ‘phone they were outside. No heated up pasta for me for breakfast. I hopped to it.
Clinic was late as ever. Darling nurse beamed at me, ‘Only two more and then you.’
Once in, she admired my scars. Perfect, apparently. As scars go. But all dried up.
Mr D & G appeared. ‘Perfect.’
We need a consultant to repeat what the nurse has said?
‘How are you walking?’
Idiot. I’m not.
‘She came in a wheelchair,’ added Darling Nurse for the benefit of unawake consultant.
‘You told me not to weight bear,’ I said.
Peevishly he pointed out I had no support for my ankle (Er, I forgot to put on the splint when the ambulance turned up 40 minutes early) and said he would refer me to physio.
X rays. ‘Have you had one?’
‘Yes, two weeks ago.’
‘Oh, another one in six weeks then.’ With which he flounced out.
Result of X ray? No idea. Wound swab? No idea. But, I can escape to Spain, start trying to put weight on my feeble bones, and even shower. I think. Because no-one tells you what you can do.
Actually Darling Nurse did say, don’t go to A&E if you have any problems, come here. Strange.
We discussed the busy clinic. I said people were patient. She rolled her eyes.
‘Don’t you believe it. We’re frontline and we get shit.’
Sad that. Nurses doing a good job shouldn’t be held accountable for delays in the clinic. My policy is to go prepared for a wait, be polite and courteous to everyone. Why is that difficult? It’s not. There is no reason to abuse anyone in a hospital, whether porter, receptionist, patient transport staff, nurses, or doctors.
Yes, I’ve waited two hours. So what? I’ve also been rushed in quickly too. Front line staff should NEVER get the grief. Call a manager. That’s our job. If I’d been managing that clinic and my staff were getting shit, I would have been right down there.
Now, the results of my blog poll. Most of you don’t care two hoots about smilies, although some of you like the like button. Either way, things can stay as they are. As many of you wondered what an emoji keyboard was. By now you’ve had time to look it up, but if not, it’s a graphic keyboard. No idea how it works on that uncivilised windows thing, but on a mac you go into keyboards, add, and click emoji. 😛 Pretty much like clicking on Spanish or French.
Reading around, one of my pals pointed out the advantage of having a blog that doesn’t shrink nested comments. As I’m far too idle to browse through 6000 wordpress alternative themes, any suggestions for similar looks to this (2011 theme) with a changeable header and better options for lengthy chat would be helpful.
I have updated my about page. So those of you with ‘satiable curiosity can now check out my career in journalism, PR, editing, publishing blah di blah.
An author’s conundrum
Reading, as ever, a book this week, I was fascinated with, yet again, American English. If you have a book set in the UK should the vocab be Americanese? From what I could gather, two characters were American, everyone else was British.
Do English women really say: ‘I was trying to save your ass’?
And everything else was Americanised eg flavor, realize, trunk instead of boot.
I’ve read books that have jumped continents. A story that starts in America that travels around with main US characters keeps US language. Similarly Brit stories going globe-trotting stick to English. But a story set in the UK written in American didn’t hang together for me.
And in another tale, a YA slopfic, the end finally packed a bit of punch – with the line, read the next novel to find out more. Oh come on. It was hardly Dickens to start with, but to end the book with the biggest revelation and say you have to buy the sequel is just crass. If you are writing a novel, it needs to be complete. It should comprise a beginning, a middle and an end. It shouldn’t stop in the middle because you want to sell the sequel. If your book is good enough people will be interested anyway. Cheap tactics.
Trying to put weight on my broken ankle yesterday, Partner asked naively, ‘Does it hurt?’