Exercise in Boredom

I’ve been here one hour, eleven minutes, thirty seconds, so far.  If you want to lengthen your life, or seem to, this is the way to do it.  Sit in the Disabled carpark in the cold, by a tall hedge, facing a row of blackthorn that haven’t bothered to blossom.  Wait at least two hours for Grandad to get out of the clinic.  Turn on the radio, by all means, but don’t change channels in case you can’t get back to Radio 3.

Zeb Soanes will be droning out the latest from Syria in forty minutes’ time, in his 1950s old man’s baritone.  I remember you in acting school, Zebedee.  I remember your father, the vicar, saying you were coming home to Suffolk at the weekends, swearing.  Oh well.  Happy days.

What time is it?  Twenty past.  Oh God.  Come back, Grandad, all is forgiven.  Mum was livid, the first time, when she saw which clinic it was.  When you took a sharp right, past audiology and went down the green corridor, Mum’s face was a picture.  Fran and I were sent straight back to wait in the Rover. 

Here I am, ten years later.  They still haven’t found a cure for that variety you picked up in Cairo, just after the war, eh Grandad. 

And here I am, ‘resting’, on the dole, ferrying you about, dropping you off at the same old clinic, waiting in the carpark, as usual, in the rain.