I’m off to see my father in a few minutes. Remember? The old boy with a bullet hole in his head.
I have a bag of fruit and a packet of ‘Crunchy Nut’ to take with me, he loves crunching his nuts, but I’m not so sure about the fruit. Bananas are easy enough but oranges well….he finds them a little impertinent, rather like me most of the time I suspect.
You know, I’m old enough to remember the days when old ‘uns died at home, when we weren’t all such busy bees and families looked after their own until the bitter end. I will sit in the Nursing Home and watch my father’s memory fade faster than any of my precious sun-splattered Persian rugs, and as usual wonder if it’s all really worth it.
He will spin me an occasional smile, as I sit and observe myself in a future bombarded by ‘Alright love!’ and ‘Oh love you ‘aven’t eaten your tea!’ His eyes will watch, they are still ‘all there’; he knows I lov,e but there’s bugger all he can do about it.
I will leave after half an hour, to return in a few days time with some more fruit and perhaps a different packet of breakfast cereal.
Maybe a change will do my father good.
Maybe it will help his will to live.
Maybe it will help my guilt.