12 August, 2008

A perfect moment

I'm feeling quite flat this week. Nothing terrible has happened to me personally but there have been a couple of sad stories in the news and they made me think about the random nature of life. The first story makes me particularly sad as it happened a stones throw from my home. I walked past as the fireman were hosing the poor mans blood off the street. Misery is everywhere.

And yet. Misery might be there but there is happy stuff as well. After a particularly shitty day at work yesterday I was trying to think one perfect moment in time. And I found one.

Many years ago I was a staff nurse at a busy district general hospital in East London. When I say busy I mean busy. It had few redeeming features; it was set close to a remnant of Epping Forest and had a rather good chip shop close by. Entertainment was found at 999 parties and by watching the cows who found their way over the cattle grids and wandered aimlessly through the grounds. Anyway, it was extremely busy and we worked like carthorses. It was common for patients to leave us chocolates as thank you gifts but one week in the summer of 1989 we cared for a woman whose husband was a greengrocer. When she was discharged her husband gave us the most amazing amount of juicy strawberries. It wasn't just a couple of punnets, it was more like twenty. It was a beautiful summers day and for once it was quiet. My friend and I made a pot of tea and took some strawberries outside with a couple of rickety old chairs. We drank tea and ate strawberries. We laughed about nothing in particular. We sat back and felt the sun on our faces. It was a perfect moment.

How's that? It was probably 20 minutes in total and I can still remember it now. Tea, strawberries, sunshine and a good friend. Life has shitty moments and it has perfect ones. The key is not to let the former overrun the latter.

On to Olympicwatch. Team GB has two golds, one silver and one bronze. And this weeks Twat of the Week? This cretin. UK readers might be surprised to hear that Australians don't think the British wash. Clearly they never met my dear old grandfather, who would have said that cleanliness was next to Godliness. Well, he would have if he hadn't been the worlds biggest atheist. Sod off, Coates. I bet I smell better than you.


NiC said...

Nice story, put a smile on my face.

And I'm sure it will when I run through those hospital grounds next (I do so two or three times a week). Sadly both the cows and the grids have all (I think, there may be one left!) gone now.

I'd never heard the not-washing thing before.....a weird one, that.

SSS said...

Yes, I think the link road saw off the cows.

I think the washing thing goes back to the days where Aussies spent time in England and found people didn't have a bath or shower every day. I don't know if our Aussie readers can shed any further light on it. I know it's always puzzled - and offended - the English people I know.

mscrankypants said...

I don't know why that myth keeps propagating, or the reverse that English folk think Australians are loud, beer-drinking yahoos. Shame.

Your post reminded me of my favourite part of living in Sydney, which was mid-November when the jacaranda trees flowered. Always cheered me.