I was kind-of getting used to being disconcerted when I meet him. And suddenly, things have changed. How did that happen?
It started at noon on Monday. A panicked attendant calls to tell me that Anna had suddenly become loose-limbed and nearly fainted on his walk back from the park. Two times, to boot! Murphy's Law demands that I not be at home when there is an emergency and hence I am ensconced in an office in Noida, working.
I call Sanjiv, who has just returned from taking his father to the doctor, and tell him to rush over and take Anna to the hospital. I believe that Anna's loose motions have weakened him and caused his fainting-like symptoms. I am also pretty sure that physical illness exacerbated his mental acuity.
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Neptune is the name of the small hospital with great doctors that we go to.
Me: Take the red sling bag - it has all his medical papers.
Me: The orange cloth sling bag has a change of clothes for a hospital stay, if needed. Take that too.
Me: Take the plastic zip bag with all his pillboxes and emergency medication. The sheet with his pills' administration schedule is in a pocket in the bag.
The poor man isn't able to get more than a word in while I continue to give instructions!
Me (not missing a beat): Take the schedule register that logs his daily routine.
Me: Call me when you know what the doctor says.
And, I put down the phone. I look up and notice people looking at me strangely. "Aren't you rushing home?", I am asked.
No. I take a call not to. I have it all organized. The bags, the register, the reliable doctors at a nearby hospital. Not to miss out Sanjiv, who is conveniently at home.
We find out that Anna has a stomach infection that we treat with antibiotics. He is also prescribed lots of liquids and no food from outside.
At 6:30 am on Thursday morning, I ring Anna's doorbell with my characteristic quick double-beat. I ask the night attendant if Anna is OK. He responds with, "He is fully awake. He heard your signature bell-ring, and his eyes flew open!"
Me (leaning over his bed side rail): Hi, Anna.
Anna (with a wide beautiful smile): Bandya, amma.
Loosely translated that means, "So you've come."
Me: Anna, are you ready to get up?
Anna (with alacrity): Yes.
He attempts to get up, and I give him a friendly push to help him sit up.
Me: Anna, do you want to have coffee?
Anna: Why else would I get up in the morning?
Hrrm! Why indeed!
Me: Anna, do your joint loosening exercises.
I show him the finger contraction and release movements. The wrist rolling movements. The arm bending motions.
Anna (doing some of these, for show only!): Joints need lubrication from coffee, amma!
|Jules Destrooper Butter Crisps|
I laugh. He's back! Witty at 6:30am in the morning.
We sit in the rear courtyard and chat while he eats half a waffle crisp with his one-third-cup of coffee. With his second one-third-cup of coffee, I ask him if he wants the other half of the waffle crisp. Selflessly he offers it to me saying, "You have it, amma." I say "no" and we decide to keep it for a snack later in the day.
He watches an airplane fly by and tells me stories of his brother, Krishna, throwing stones at planes claiming to hit them, and getting responses from pilots!
Then he is ready for his after-coffee before-breakfast nap.
I come back home feeling good. As light as airy warm soufflé.
On Friday morning we spend 3 hours in hospital!
The circle continues....