First posted on July 29, 2019
Mary went to the hospital to see the rheumatologist.The entire hospital had been re-built and half the site wasnow full of so called “Executive Homes”
She and Annie took a cab as it was raining hard.Although Mary was wearing her new green raincoat, she did not like to get it wet.
Where did you buy your mac,Annie enquired jauntily?
Cotton Traders,Mary admitted nervously.It looked lighter than it is and Stan liked me in green
You already have two trenchoats and a nylon mac,Annie told her.
And Stan is no longer here
What’s it to you? you want me to give all my money to the poor?
Well, some of it,Annie responded anxiously.You need to pay your utilities.
My utilities!That sounds like something sexual that cannot be openly named,Mary cried
You are confusing it with urethra, Annie laughed
What is my ethra? whispered Mary
No, the urethra is a little tube for the bladder to empty itself through
Isn’t the human body amazing? Mary acknowledged using a cliche for better effect
Definitely, said Annie and I love wearing beautiful clothes like velvet
Where do we draw the line though, between looking good and giving money to the poor, tortured or victimised,Mary pondered
It is hard now because we can see what the rich have and we want it.Annie shouted calmly
Or in your case you can see all those philosophy books on Amazon and buy them with one click she continued.
Mary could see in her mind’s eye her living room piled high with books but if she were rich like Michael Frayn she could have a huge house full of shelves and desks.
Adam Phillips,’ room looked more full than Mary’s and he must want it like that as he is well off.
In the waiting room Mary looked at Wittgenstein’s biography by Ray Monk on her kindle while Annie read The Sun.
Soon Mary was called in
Hello, said Doctor Morse.How are you?
In the pink , she cried shyly.
I don’t understand that, he said in his kindly way
It’s an old English saying.It means I feel fine, but I don’t really that’s why I am here
He looked at her left hand. and said there was no cartilege between the the thumb and wrist.
Where has it gone,Mary asked but he remained silent
Then he said,I think steroid injections will help.Would you turn your chair round by 180 degrees so you can put your arm on my desk?
Mary turned round and felt a bit dizzy
It’s hard getting older isn’t it, the doctor said in a tone rather artificially kind like a bad actor on stage and afraid of forgetting his lines or whether he was in King Lear or a Comedy
Mary burst out laughing, to her surprise.
You are a weird person, the told her thoughtfully with his green eyes shining like the sun over Lake Windermere in October.
Well, we can’t all be exactly the same ,she told him logically
Then she had to turn her chair round again. despite her poor hands
Why don’t you have swivelling chairs ,she asked pointedly
They won’t give me enough money, they doctor said, even though I a Consultant and I have published lots of papers
Can’t you buy a second hand chair? Mary wondered
No, it has to pass Health and Safety,Dr Morse whispered cautiously
I see.Well don’t blame it all on the EU.
I love the EU, he told her.I hope Brexit evaporates
Me too she croaked sweetly
They sat in companionable silence for a few minutes until his next patient arrived
I will see you in September, he told her optimistically his smile making her giggle inside so her body shivered with suppressed laughter or terror.
Miaow, cried Emile from Mary’s designer handbag
What in Gd’s name is that, the doctor asked nervously
Don’t worry doctor.I forgot to leave Emile in the Waiting Room
Emile stuck out his head and smiled at Dr Morse
Good morning, he said graciously.Is Dave the paramedic here?
No, they are not here they have their own Ambulance Station down the road
Emile began to sob as he liked to get his own way by any means he could
Mary apologised as she shook hands with the doctor.
Thank you for helping me, she murmured.I feel better already
And so say all of