Although I should be prioritising the other tasks currently cluttering my ‘to do’ list, my first task of the day remains sitting at my keyboard penning today’s observations. An action whose pecking order rank lays way below the importance of undertaking laundry tasks, dusting, vacuuming, dropping off items to my mum in hospital, along with procuring groceries.

Due to COVID restrictions, I can’t physically go visit mon mater in her hospital ward. However, visitors are still afforded opportunity to drop off patient necessities at the ward entrance to members of staff

As mentioned in yesterday’s chronicle, the family matriarch has been residing within a West Yorkshire medical establishment since suffering a stroke four weeks ago today. An episode that’s currently affected her mobility and cognitive wherewithal, requiring her to undergo physiotherapy exercises and neurological testing.

Despite being stricken in this way, the octogenarian remains in good spirits. Although her presence has NHS budgeting teams scratching their heads as to why this particular hospital’s tea bag usage has risen so markedly of late.

I’d venture, through Maggie’s month long tutorage, her fellow ward patients are now word perfect in lyrics to a raft of old music hall refrains. These decades old tunes including such classics as ‘Oh Mr Porter’, ‘Don’t Put Your Daughter on The Stage, Mrs Worthington’ and ‘Hang Out Your Washing on The Siegfried Line’.

The above trinity of songs just a few of the ditties which also formed a part of the maternal whimsy proffered to my siblings and me during our fledgling years. Performed by mother with a mischievous smile and twinkle in her eye, along with a raft of gloriously funny tales and sayings, these episodes forming just part of her ‘act’ which filled our childhood with laughter.

Hopefully, the treatment she is receiving will return her to the physical and mental baseline where she stood prior to her medical setback. One thing for sure is Mags won’t allow this reversal to drive her into despair. She’ll confront this new nemesis with the positivity, respect and appreciation of her carers she bares for every single event and person she meets.

Not being able to visit mum for a face to face chat has been a bind. However, we converse regularly via the miracle of mobile device telephony.

After a few years of trying, my brother Ian, sister Helen and me finally acquiring a phone she could utilise with confidence. Every other device whose workings we’d attempted to tutor her through were deemed by her as unfit for purpose. Or in the brisker patois, which she occasionally adopts to raise a smile, the other phones were “Like my backside……. Best covered up.”

The mobile device we procured Maggie is specifically designed for elderly people, ie very basic for those who struggle with new fangled technology; the kit also possessing large buttons for those with sight issues.

In fact, I’d suggest the red and green buttons, closing and answering calls are so huge, akin to The Great Wall of China, on a clear day you could probably view them from the Moon.

Anyhow, as I’ve a shed load of significantly more pressing tasks at hand, I best bring the curtain down on today’s narrative. Hopefully, my expose surrounding the Strachan soap opera’s prevailing storyline proved interesting fare…… If it wasn’t, at least you can console yourself with the fact you didn’t have to pay for this unreliable flimflam.

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