Archive for the ‘nightmare’ Category

Hospital Memories I

May 30, 2008

He had bloodshot eyes, moss-covered teeth and malodorous breath. We were in the corridor. He reached out and tried to pull me towards him.  I hit out at him and backed away.  There was a nurse sitting nearby.  He did not intervene.  He just looked away.


March 31, 2005

I slept deeply, drowning. Then I awoke from a nightmare in which Bella and I were caught up in some trees as we attempted to escape the flat. Their branches held us tightly to their trunks. I shouted and Bella yowled but nobody seemed to hear us. It was as though we were on the other side of a sound-proof glass wall or that we had somehow slipped into another dimension. The sun, shining though the widow, woke me up. I was shaking. So now the trees are out to get us.

A bunch of people came traipsing though my flat. A smug council woman in a pillar box suit who clutched her clipboard so tightly that it was as though she was afraid she might drop it and would be instantly devoid of everything that made her life worth living. She asked curt, brief questions. A dark look crossed her face when I told her I’d reported LMP on Friday and then on Saturday, pointing out that she had been under psychiatric care.

The care taker came booming in and then a whole bunch of council workmen. It’s bank holiday but the world at the council clearly hadn’t stopped working as the gentleman on the other end of the line had implied.

The caretaker took over the place with his booming voice and the other two just chatted amongst themselves about fishing. I was, in fact, feeling like a fifth wheel and the Doug showed up and united everyone. He is excellent at that.

Later, I went back to Doug’s. I hadn’t eaten all day so Doug made me some toast. Unfortunately, before I had time to tuck in, Jill turned up with a rather gormless-looking, student-boy in tow. (Athough later he told us he was 33 and was deceptively young). He made an unforgiveable faux pas. Jill was giving me a deep purple mid length skirt which, to be honest, I didn’t like. I prefer very long, or above the knee (with opaque tights, of course, I like to preserve my mystery). Then Student-Boy said ‘But that’s a lovely skirt. Is it too large for you?’

I am not larger than she is. Most of her weight rests upon her bouncy breasts. I am a little more evenly built.

I said, ‘Gosh, Jill, you’re a size 8. I never managed that even when I was anorexic. These hips you see here are bone and they can only be removed with a chisel. Anyone care to volunteer?’

Weak laughter. Then Student-Boy tried to redeem himself by telling me that most fashion designers are gay and that is why they prefer their models to look like boys.

Sorry, babe, you missed your chance.

They were on their way to the Live and Let Live for Sunday lunch. They invited me along. Not after that remark. I bear a grudge.

Later, Doug and I went to out usual Kami’s – a Greek/Italian restaurant run by an Iranian (only in Cambridge). We had Vegetable Moussaka. Heavenly but not heavy as those dishes often are. Doug recounted the time he was ‘laid out with the dead’. He was fighting in the toe of Italy when he contracted infectious hepatitis (nothing to do with the sexually transmitted kind). He was airlifted to Sicily and then somehow put aside with those who had died. An American airman happened to be passing, saw Doug’s eyes flicker and alerted the authorities . Doug was transferred to a military ward in which other men placed bets on whether he would wake up or not, ‘You lucky bugger,’ one of his comrades remarked ‘The last seven men who’ve been in that bed have all died’. Doug was appalled but it was not long before he himself was joining the fun and games.

A wonderful evening all round.

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