Just in case you thought you would pop in for a cup of tea or something... forget it. We - or at least The Old Man and sometimes me - are never in. The reason being that the whole medical world finally wishes to inspect him for something or other.
The other day we do the 2-hour drive thing to the hospital where The Old Man had his heart valve operation. This is for the surgeon to inspect him. We have to get there two hours before the actual appointment, in order to have some tests - which take half an hour. So an awful lot of tea is drunk before - at the end of the afternoon - we finally get in to see Mr Surgeon (after insisting it was him that The Old Man sees... not someone else on his team... after all there had been a bit of a "do" after the op; a small matter of life or death.)
We see Mr Surgeon and break the news of The Old Man's cardiac arrest and two week stay in our own hospital. This is all news to Mr Surgeon, who duly looks solemn and takes some notes. Mr Surgeon says that "lessons must be learnt" - by whom, I am unsure - and also informs The Old Man that he has "an atrium the size of a bucket" (? -me neither) The Old Man seems inordinately pleased with this observation. Mr Surgeon also has a view on medication, unlike The Old Man's Cornwall based cardiologist, and the Old Man is relieved to hear it. All in all The Old Man seems very pleased to have seen Mr Surgeon and is very impressed by the tweed jacket.
And after a whole 15 minute audience with Mr Surgeon we return to the car and do the 2-hour drive back home. I insist we stop off to get chips and stuff - cos it is about 7pm when we get home and I for one am too knackered to cook from a standing start.
It is very tiring being companion and observer.
Today the Old man is summoned to see the Heart Nurse.
He also gets a letter with an appointment one day next week, he knows not why, to be strapped into some other portable contraption (see blood pressure recording post) - this time to record his heart.
He's got an appointment with the Stroke Nurse next week as well.
And the GP.
And on the one free day next week, I've got the dentist.
So - we're not home, right?