Saturday, March 01, 2014

bra bra bra

You can almost see Jean’s loneliness. It’s palpably there in the room with her, a witch’s familiar, sadly pacing the carpet between the window and the chair.

‘Hello me duck,’ she says, her head nodding slightly, her eyes shining. ‘Sorry to call you out but I was having another one of my do’s you know and I got me’self in a bit of a lather.’

I’ve met Jean before. She’s been checked out a number of times for chest tightness and palpitations, but nothing’s ever being found. She gets plenty of help at home, and her son comes over regularly through the week. Despite it all, for whatever reason, sitting quietly in this pristine room, with the sunlight shining in on the rich green leaves of the umbrella plant, and glinting off the framed pictures on the wall, and the gold coloured casing of the carriage clock gently ticking on the mantelpiece, with the sound of children shouting and laughing and screaming in the playground just across the way, for some reason Jean gets overcome with a feeling of doom, and her heart skips up, and she presses the red button on the cord round her neck.
‘Sorry love’ she says.
I chat to her whilst I go through all the obs and wire her up to the ECG.
‘You used to work in a shop, didn’t you, Jean?’
‘I did. I was in women’s underwear. Lacy knickers, camisoles, combinations. You name it. All very high-end. I loved it. All the girls under me. We had a right laugh.’
‘Sounds like a nice thing to do.’
‘It were. I used to do the windows, n’all. Dress ‘em up nice. Different times of year, you know. Valentine’s Day. Christmas, with all the fur. We had a right laugh. But the shop got bought out by one of them big chains. And not long after that I was walking by and I tell you what it almost broke my heart. Just a load of bras, piled up in the window. I mean, what’s the good in that? Who’d want that?’
‘You’d think they’d take a bit more care.’
‘I used to take a lot o’care. All interesting poses, dressed up nice. Enticing, you know. But this! This was just bra, bra, bra.’
She holds still whilst I take a print out of her heart.
‘No wonder they went bust,’ she sniffs, as the paper spools out. ‘How’s me heart looking, mate? I’ve still got one I tek it?’


Lynda Halliger Otvos (Lynda M O) said...

Only thing likes change is a wet baby, I've heard tell. Seems to be playing out that way too, as life whips past me on silver skates. Thanks for sharing, Spence, I enjoy reading every one of your posts. Bloglovin brings them to me, since google reader went walkabout.

Spence Kennedy said...

That's a good saying, Lynda - not heard it before. It never gets any easier, change. And then just when you think you've got it covered, something comes along to turn it all around again (shop window displays as much as anything else).

Thanks for the comment, Lynda. Always lovely to hear from you :)

Anonymous said...

I love the line about going bust.How do you keep a straight!

Spence Kennedy said...

I know! Great line - and Jean was completely deadpan when she said it, so I don't know whether she knew or not. Mind you, she probably heard it said so many times all those years when it happened, it desensitized her to the joke.

Anonymous said...

Aw bless
Thank you as always

Spence Kennedy said...

Cheers L! Hope all's good with you x

jacksofbuxton said...

A decent frequent flyer it sounds like Spence.All helps pass the time on shift I suppose.

Spence Kennedy said...

Yep. You never really mind the entertaining ones (even though you know at the back of your mind that they're a drain on resources...) :)