“So how’s Mabel Richardson doing?” It seemed like a safe starting point to a conversation following on from the shopping, a doctor’s appointment, the bi-weekly visit from the district nurse and the number of tablets that Mam has to remember to take.
Mam grimaced. “Poor woman was taken to the Infirmary last Friday.” She shook her head, “I say if you’re going to be ill try to do it on a Monday. By Friday everyone is thinking of the weekend and you might just as well die and have done with it. Mrs Bentley was never the same after they made that mistake about her Stan.”
“Ah,” I replied. There’s not a lot one can say to that as a conversation opener – though I’d still like to know exactly what happened to Stan.
“Mind, Mrs Graham went to visit her. And apparently they lost her teeth.”
“Mrs Graham’s?” I really must get Mam to turn the central heating down when I visit or else invest in an ice pack to put down my back as I arrive at her frontdoor.
“No. Mabel Richardson. She went in on Friday, to the Infirmary, and by Tuesday they’d lost her teeth – apparently they’ve looked everywhere. In the end a woman from laundry came up to the ward with a selection.”
“And she’s got her teeth back?”
“No – but she says the one’s she’s got now fit better than her own did, so she’s keeping them.”
“I don’t think I want to know anymore,” I said envisaging a huge lost property cupboard with row upon row of mislaid dentures followed just as swiftly by the image of a gummy Mabel being presented with an identity parade of teeth to try out. It was neither a pretty thought nor one I wish to repeat.
And that was just the start of the week. Shame that I managed to book somewhere without connectivity.