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The Railer, the Juicer and some Plans

He's upset that she hasn't come to visit. They've been close friends for a long time and she lives nearby, but he hasn't seen her since he tottered away from the hospital after his op, went to the Mind, Body and Spirit festival and grew weak. He needed a chair, but she and her stall were being filmed so she wouldn't let him sit there. And he wonders now if she is embarrassed at that, if that's why she hasn't been to see him.

Others tell him the rationale; she watched her partner die of cancer, she's had to be a carer for other people in her family, it brings back bad memories... But it was all meant to get better when he left the hospital, only now she can't come to see him because she's phobic about council estates...and the grand plan for the juicer, in which she and The One Who Loves Him would come by regularly and make fruit and veg juices for him so's to thwart the obstruction in his stomach, well, that isn't happening. The One Who Loves Him rails about it, especially when he forgets because of the morphine, and needs to have the lady's absence explained to him all over again. Everyone has their battle, I guess, and we can't always understand someone else's. But that doesn't help the poor railer. All I can do is listen really.

The One Who Loves Him is railing a lot right now. She rails about the carers not following her list of chores. She'll probably rail when she learns about tomorrow; He is hoping to meet a couple of us in the middle of town, Museum Street, right near the British Museum and Atlantis Bookshop. If we can find a little cafe or maybe just sit outside the Plough, and maybe make slow progress across to the book shop for a rummage, he would enjoy that. The trouble may be coping with the vomit. I am thinking of taking one of those reinforced carrier bags, lining the inside with plastic and he can just use that.

The One Who Loves Him will rail about this plan, calling it ridiculous (the meeting, not the bags). She has railed about the party being held for him at the end of the month, with people going that he barely knows and a lot of food and drink he can't enjoy, in someone else's back garden! She has already pointed out that the reason she makes his flat so scrupulously clean and pleasant is so that people can visit him there, where he can be in comfort, and of course, it all makes sense. But he seems to desperately want to get out and see London with its bustle and life and learning; and if he could get to the party being held for him, a back garden full of flowers and balloons and friends might tire him - but it would please him, with all his heart.

I am not convinced either the gathering tomorrow or the party are wise choices but they are certainly closer to what I imagine my own desires would be. I also don't think the meeting in Museum Street will happen. If he calls off, guess the answer might be to check, see if he wants visitors and if that's the case pop down to his place - and maybe take loads of fresh fruit and veg down, get that juicer out of its pristine plastic.

There's a certain amount of tenderness needed for the One Who Loves Him. She says he calls her a nag and I don't doubt she is a tyrant of hygiene, but she calls him every day, and never stops caring. She just needs to be persuaded not to drain herself entirely, or suddenly leap upon the Lady Who Never Visits and beat her head to a bloody pulp with the juicer. She is passionate and fierce, brave and kind. She loves him.

Death turns people strange, but it also brings out the best in some folk. And others? Well, same as everyone is fighting a battle, everyone has something from which they turn tail and run. Can't help it, can't blame it. Have to just carry on regardless.



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