Bloody Hell, yesterday was a strange day. I made a semi-lighthearted reference to Friday 13th on the blog, but I never realised quite how disrupted it was going to be.
I woke up bright and early, determined to spend the day working diligently and catching up on some of the backlog of work that has built up over the last week due to things way beyond our control.
However, I had only been in the office for half an hour when I received a call about our old friend (and oldest CFZ member) Noela Mackenzie. She had fallen and hurt her hip and would Graham and I come and see her.
Pausing only to grab my wallet and walking stick, we drove into Bideford. She was in bed and in a fairly bad way, and we agreed with the paramedics that she should go to Barnstaple (the North Devon District Hospital) for an X-Ray.
She asked whether I would accompany her in the ambulance, and (as always) I try to be a parfait gentile knight albeit one clothed in the guise of a fat hippy dressed in very shoddy black, and wearing a leather jacket (I was wearing old and extremely crappy clothes as I had been planning a day of office work and fish-tank mucking about, and so I must have looked a terrible sight to the young nurses who watched me stagger out of the ambulance).
My legs were particularly unco-operative yesterday and I staggered about the place like a ruptured duck. However, I (in my guise of unofficial next of kin) signed her in at reception whilst Graham parked the car (he had followed us from Bideford, taking pictures as we went), and Noela was wheeled off into the intersteces of the hospital.
Then we sat down and waited for three hours. I amused myself by looking at the NHS information posters and imagining double entendres for each one. There was one particular poster of a sultry-looking young woman lying in bed (it can be found here by the way, captioned 'Imagine this was your wife', which I thought was particularly unfortunately laid-out.
Three hours later we were called to her bedside. I expected the worst but Noela looked surprisingly chipper and it turned out that she had not broken her hip after all.
So we bundled her into the car and took her home. Getting her in and out of a small Japanese 4x4 in the middle of what was shaping up to be a particularly nasty gale was an experience, but I slipped my leather jacket around her shoulders and we managed well enough.
There was a brief spurt of excitement when we thought that she had left her emergency alarm pendant at the hoispital but we found it neatly curled up by her bed, and so (after stopping at Morrisons for doughnuts) we went home to find that the telephone system had gone down, something very nasty had happened to Corinna's blog and the window frame in the office was leaking, and there was water all over the desk.
We sorted it all, but I finally ate that morning's breakfast at 10:30pm, and slid (shattered) into bed a few minutes later.
Friday 13th, huh?