Sweating Like A Twat

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Sweating Like A Twat

I’m not sure if I believe in miracles anymore. Maybe just incredibly rewarding coincidences in a world of wonder. Who knows? No one really. Mostly because life is not a level playing field. There is no reason why some people suffer more than others or why tragedy seems to hit others and not you or someone you know. I remember meeting the 5 time Canadian heavyweight boxing champion George Chuvalo. His life is a litany of family tragedies that make little sense other than to say, ‘life isn’t fair’. For some indeed it is not.

The rest of us get by as we can. Some through established religions, others through other spiritual paths and yet others by betting on lady luck. How we get to the end of life depends on so many things. You escape death from this or that traumatic accident or event and it’s either a miracle or blind luck. If you got through it, why didn’t the other guy who died at the scene? Depends on how you look at it.

Some get through it all because they have better health plans. Old Prince Philip doesn’t rely on the NHS when he’s sick. He gets the best care….and private. How else do you think he has made it to the ripe old age of 95? Joe Blow never goes to doctors, smokes and drinks to excess and lives to 102. A child is born with cancer and dies at age 6. Anyone who tells me they know why is an arrogant a%#h&*e. Call it a mystery or call it the luck-of-the-draw, but getting by is just that….getting by. Getting through.

Unless you are my next-door neighbour Miriam (I call her Mimz). She lives with Eddie on the narrowboat ‘My Precious’. The woman is a walking miracle with a capital ‘M’. And this is the only time I am going to use that word. Why is she a miracle? I’ll tell you….because I am an a%#h&*e after all. So I’m told. I’ll use the word arrogantly, thank you very much. In medical parlance, Miriam should not be here. She is a walking miracle.

I won’t go into all the details, but I have never seen so many scars on one person. I think there is one (or two) for every appendage on her body and in areas I have not seen. She takes, I don’t know how many pills each day to keep nasty things at bay, including a cancer that could kill her instantly if she stopped taking them. Chemo pills of some type. I don’t ask. Some days the pains in various parts of her body are so bad, she can barely function, but you’d never know. She just gets up and gets going.

Miriam recently had yet another operation on one of her wrists. She was awake during the procedure and told the surgeon part way through that the freezing had obviously not taken fully as she felt extreme pain. As she told us this, she rolled her eyes and said, “What can you do?” And then she laughed. So, my best friend and I offered to look after her the next day after the surgery while Eddie was at work. The next morning we texted saying we would be going to Sainsbury’s and could we get her anything.

No answer back. My best friend was going over to her boat to see if everything was OK, when we saw Mimz hanging some laundry at the back of her boat. Then she said she felt fine and was about to drive off to Sainsbury’s and asked if we needed anything. “But we’re supposed to be looking after you, Miriam. You just had an operation,” said my best friend. “Oh pish,” said she back (or something like that), “I’m not letting a silly thing like this hold me back.” And it didn’t.

Mimz is the Prosecco and wine queen of our marina. How she takes all those meds and consumes alcohol without any side affects is a wonder if not another miracle. A medical miracle. Mimz is no drunk, be assured. When I asked if the wine interferes with the meds, she replied, “Not yet.” If anything, it preserves her for greater things to come.

With all the aches and pains, operations….another coming up just before Christmas….and meds, Mimz is the epitomy of cool and classy. Always nattily dressed, always in good humour and generous to a fault. She regularly thinks of others before herself. Quite a lady. She also volunteers  at a local school to teach and coach Netball. Mimz has also taken it upon herself to show my best friend and me the wonders and splendours of this area where she grew up. She is a wonder herself. Did I mention she’s a great cook? Ever tried her roast potatoes? You ought to.

Along with the regular medications is a blue pill. One of the other pills Mimz takes causes her body to heat up quickly. We have had meals on Eddie’s and Miriam’s boat in the winter when the windows had to be open because it’s too hot for Mimz. When she overheats, she often sweats profusely and has to find cool air quickly. The blue pills help. But she handles the whole thing with grace and humour.

I’ve Blogged about our trip with Eddie and Miriam down to Paddington Basin this past summer. It was Eddie’s job to make sure Mimz got her daily ration of pills. One evening we were off the boats and on the town in London and were sitting in a restaurant eating a fine meal. Mimz began sweating and feeling quite uncomfortable. ” Why is this happening?” she asked. “This is very unusual.”

Eddie sat beside her looking particularly sheepish. “I think I know,” he said. “I think I forgot to give you the blue pill,” he added. “I was wondering why you were sweating like a twat.” Well….we all broke out in a laugh that caused everyone in the place to look our way. Mimz laughed the loudest while wiping her red, wet face with a napkin. “I thought it was unusual,”she said. She turned to me and said, “Now, there’s a Blog for you.” And here it is.

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