2007 — 15 October: One step forwards, two steps back...

My post-birthday present to Christa was, I'm sorry to report, to accompany her in an ambulance this morning as she was admitted to the Southampton General to try to sort out her digestive system. This was after giving up, and calling in the out-of-hours cavalry shortly after 4 a.m. as things resolutely refused to settle down, or stay down. I remain impressed by the efficiency and competence of the NHS. I also remain utterly appalled at what's happening to my Best Girl. This is a truly loathsome1 disease.

She's now on a drip to rehydate Her, a nasal tube to suck junk out of Her stomach, has been X-rayed to see more clearly what's going on, and will be in at least overnight according to the nice young Rumanian doctor. Plus She'll be seen by Her usual consultant in the course of his normal round, I gather. We were actually due to see him this Friday in any case. (Though at a different hospital.)

Post-Lunchtime bulletin

I got back in time to "zap" a semblance of thermal life back into a double dose of Beef and Stout Pie — one either side of a driving session wherein my kindly neighbour acted as my co-pilot for an hour and 25 miles worth of gentle pootling around places like Hursley, the Potter's Heron (not that it's called that these days), Poles Lane, and an exciting tussle on a mini-roundabout with (first) a stonking great SUV who decided to carve me up and then (second) an even larger double-decker bus who ground to a halt when he belatedly realised I was actually traversing the entire roundabout. (I thought drivers were taught to expect the unexpected, by the way.) I'm assured I was in the right on both occasions but, had I scratched the paintwork, that would have been very minor compensation for my first real outing in 39 years, don't you think?

Speaking of very minor compensation, I have at least discovered that I have a sufficiently one-track mind that I simply cannot drive and worry about Christa at the same time. Since I spend most of my time at the moment doing very little else but worry about Her (as I expect most readers will have deduced by now) driving makes an oddly welcome distraction.

But there's a very decent performance of Beethoven's 2nd Symphony just coming to an end on BBC Radio 3. Followed by a burst of Terry Riley's In C. Good grief!

Evening update

Just (19:30ish) got back from a brief visit. She's comfortable, bored stiff, in no pain, and some of Her systems are now working overtime. However, the X-ray suggests some form of obstruction somewhere, so there may yet need to be some form of (I hope, minor) surgery. They will be better able to assess the need for this after Her tum has had a complete rest overnight, it seems. Anyway, I took Her in today's main Guardian section, before even glancing at it myself, and the two most recent issues of the New Statesman. That should help Her blood pressure, don't you think?

Just about enough energy left for a cup of tea, and then I shall hit the pillow and await oblivion. Sleep has been largely distinguishable by its distinctive absence for the last 72 hours or so.



1  It occurs to me I may have expressed that opinion more than once.