JANUARY 10th 2016

Posted by Jeni in | 10 January 2016

8.45 on a Sunday morning. January 10th.

There's a light grey stillness outside, all the decorations have been swept up and the cats are waiting to be fed.

Him and her are asleep upstairs. Later on we're driving into Hackney to collect some things, then drive home again with a boot full of creativity.

It has been a full, family Christmas, with 11 mouths ravenous for my particularly moist turkey, 9 full stomachs for my Boxing Day gammon, and 6 overloaded bellies for my New Years slow cooked lamb.

The trimmings were easy, the exchange of gifts touching and the settling down for games and Quentin Tarentino in front of the big log fire, was worthy of a Drew Barrymore film.

It all came and went in the blinking of an eye.

Friday was funeral day. Hundreds of mourners at The Jewish Cemetery in Bushey for the sudden death of a dear, dear relative. As men, in skull caps, Trilby's, and other hats to cover their heads, stood separate from the women. The mourning men, their black boots sinking into the cold Hertfordshire clay, watched the coffin being lowered into the ground. The women, clutching their handkerchiefs wept quietly, as their men took turns with the shovel. Three spade loads of earth over the simple coffin. So many men the grave was nearly filled to the top with the cold slippery clay. As we all traipsed back to the assembly point, washing our hands under running water, scraping the mud off our shiny shoes, hundreds of us shivered as the Rabbi closed the service. Then we all drove back to Harrow to eat funeral food.

In a small room with a giant television screen a loop played of the deceased man with his wife and children. Weddings, holidays, the happiest of times, the man buried but one hour since.

And Jim and I collected our car from a driveway that a neighbour had offered us and set off back to Sussex. 7.30 start home by 3.00. A full working day of mourning.

In the car my mobile rung. We were listening to Miles Davis, cool blue music. It was the doctor with the results of yet another blood test. A Doctor with as much bedside manner as the gravedigger we'd just left behind. He left me strangely numb as he told me that all was not well, then the phone went bubbly, the sound of clucking chickens, and the phone went dead.

So I wait for another scan.

Confusing health is a leveller. That the three of us are together to deal with it is remarkable. I am not who I was before, I am considered and on hold.

2016 is the Chinese Year of The Monkey, a year of curiosity and mischief, well we'll see won't we?

Jeni Barnett tells of her scrumptious time at Good Food Live in her first audiobook! Download NOW from iTunes

Comments

1. At January 11, 2016 8:11 PM Poppypeewee wrote:

Hey Jeni ... Do not take any poor attitude off any GP . They are paid to tallor the resources available to your personnel requirements . A huge part of their work also involves compassion . They do get a monthly bank cheque for this too . Makes me cross to still get vibes that doctors are " gods" . No ... Doctors are there to filter / resource services . Regards ... Ex NHS nurse of 32 years .

2. At January 12, 2016 7:42 AM lynne chazer wrote:

Wishing you all the best

3. At January 18, 2016 11:25 AM June wrote:

Hi Jeni
Do so hope all is well with you.
Oh how we took our good health all for granted when we were young!
Thinking of you darling girl.

Much love
June

4. At January 19, 2016 4:00 PM Lindy wrote:

Hope all goes well with the scan.
Xx

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