28 September 2016


I'm sat in the University Hospital Wales, Cardiff, waiting on someone having a routine procedure. Anyway, i was sat in the concourse with my book and phone (free wifi - fair play), and a feller in a wheelchair was purchasing a coffee from a little takeaway gaff. He was struggling to wheel himself with one hand (the other was holding a coffee) so I offered a hand, but he said he was alright. He parked up next to me anyway, and we got to talking. He came in last night for a transfusion. He has terminal prostate cancer. He hopes to survive until February to see the birth of two grandchildren. He got us both a bit emotional to be fair, but he isn't a maudler. In fact, the feller has left a hell of a legacy. Simply put, he was a decorator when he was able to work. However, the kind of decorating he did was pretty specialised, mostly for Cadw, the body that works to preserve Welsh monuments. I'm talking castles, churches, all sorts. He was even on telly with Eddie Butler (of Welsh rugby fame - he said he was a bit bombastic, which was pretty hilarious), decorating a listed building in Pontypridd. What a remarkable feller - it puts everything in perspective, listening to someone in that position. And he had a bit of devil about him too, having sneaked off the ward for a taste of real coffee. He had me rapt. I hope I can leave even a little bit of something worthwhile behind, like he has.

Edit - the point being that life is fragile and you only have one crack at it, so at least try to enjoy it. I could go on. Feeling a bit philosophical. I'm not going to though, as it sounds way preachy.

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