According to various ologists quoted on R4 at regular intervals, yesterday was supposed to be the gloomiest day of the year. The combination of imminent Christmas credit card bills, tax returns due by the end of this month, failed New Year resolutions and biting cold apparently knocks people down like nine-pins.
In Ch Kings, however, it was a remarkably good day.
Could be something to do with the fact that both morning and evening were spent in the company of people I love dearly, and the bits in between featured people rather than paperwork too.
I received another gift from the dear man in hospital .His family had taken a break from their vigil, as he's now deeply unconscious but not yet really struggling...so I sat with him for an hour. I prayed a bit. Chatted a bit. But mostly just sat and held his hand.
It's interesting the way people react to a dying patient. To some nursing staff, he represents failure, and, perhaps, fear. They avoid your eyes and engage busily with the responsive occupants of the other beds.
One visitor came over to talk to me, briefly, about her memories of sitting with her dying dad.
Other nurses are so comfortable around death...their voices are gentle, their eyes warm.
When I had to leave, I spoke to one of those, and she promised that she'd find time to sit with D herself later on.
I'm sure she did...Like me, she knew this was holy ground, and an opportunity to spend time there is not to be dismissed lightly.