The car I drive for work is a Mini I inherited from my father-in-law. Whether I’m negotiating tight passing places in narrow country lanes or squeezing into impossible parking spots in town, it’s ideal. It has a small boot crammed full of all my nursing equipment but not so large as to tempt me to carry too much. How many spare urinary catheters does one nurse really need? It is a faithful companion.
Yesterday I pulled up outside a cottage in a quiet village, donned my PPE, and went inside with my colleague Sarah. About ten minutes into the visit, and knee deep in bandages, we heard a car alarm. The village in question is a particularly out of the way village so I joked, “I bet that doesn’t happen often around here. I hope that’s not my car.” We all laughed. I didn’t for one minute think it was my car!
A few minutes later Sarah straightened up. She happened to look out of the window and her expression made me look too. I was just in time to see my Mini sailing backwards past the window. I watched it pick up speed as it sailed on down the hill, out into the lane, bounced off the hedge on the opposite side, rolled back into the lane, and then came to a standstill, lights flashing. I mustn’t have put the handbrake on properly! Apron flapping, I went racing after it.
As I wrenched open the door, desperate to get my car out of the way of any oncoming tractors (they take no prisoners), an old man popped his head over his garden wall where he had been working on his beds and asked, “Did you mean for that to happen?” Did I mean for that to happen???!!! That is such a Devon thing to ask. No one rushes to a conclusion in Devon. Not if there’s the option of chewing the cud, considering the options for the next century or two.
Thankfully my Mini was none the worse for its adventures. My antics made my patient laugh and were soon eclipsed by one of the team sending in pictures to the office of her disastrous hair dying attempts. Lockdown restrictions on hairdressers have led to desperate measures amongst my teammates. She had turned her hair blue, but we all consoled her, at least she hadn’t given herself chemical burns like another one of the girls last week.