Captain Scarlet was, famously, indestructible. I reckon I know his mum.
Freda was in this morning. She is the far side of eighty, has had rheumatoid arthritis for all the time I have known her (and a decade or two before that too). She is also inclined to be a bit chesty—the product of a few too many woodbines, a habit picked up back when Herr Hitler’s boys were trying to do for her. She’s not actually smoked now for donkey’s years, but still lives with that legacy. So much so that in the autumn she went down with an acute pneumonia.
When I visited her and told her she would have to go in to the hospital for a day or two to start the intensive antibiotics she was going to need she looked crestfallen. The thing was, she was due to go to Spain to visit relatives ten days after my visit. I promised her we would try our best to get her fit for travel, and sure enough, ten days later and after just three days on IV antibiotics before converting to bucket loads of amoxicillin and steroids, she boarded her flight and convalesced in fine style.
Today she is back to review her steroid dose. She needs it tickled up a bit she tells me. This is because her arthritis has been a bit naughty since the weather has been getting worse again. And because she is fretting about her baby, now a grown woman of fifty-something, who goes in for a major operation next week. So Freda wants to be fit, so she can go and cook her son-in-law his Christmas dinner!
Knowing the world is peopled with characters like Freda helps me to sleep soundly in my bed at night. After all with such folk to protect us surely we have nothing to fear from the Mysterons!