Monday, 23 March 2015

Mothering Sunday in The Home

Mothering Sunday.  Flags out for Mother’s Day in the sitting room of The Home.  We sit beside Mum just as the show starts.  The singer bounds in wearing a khaki uniform.
“This is an ATS uniform, which the Queen wore during the War,” she tells us, and she dances around the room, doing higher leg kicks than the Queen ever did. 
“Mammy, mammy, I’d walk a million miles for one of your smiles.....”
She shares her microphone with all of us in turn, using lots of eye contact to get us to sing.
Mum knows the words of songs I’ve never heard of, like “Red Sails in the Sunset” and her eyes are bright as she sings.
“Hang out the washing on the Siegfried Line....”
Even Stuart, who can hardly speak any longer, belts out the words and the singer stays with him, flirting.
“You’re like Stewart Grainger, you are....”

Later that afternoon when the sitting room is back to being more of a sleeping room, Stuart’s grandson visits.
“Have you done any singing lately, Grandad”
“Stuart!  Barely an hour ago you were blasting songs into a microphone,” Jamie says.
“Sorry to turn him in lad, but you need to know.  He was one of the stars of the show.”
“So were you,” Stuart says, “This man’s got a lovely voice.”
“So you do remember?”
“It’s coming back to me,” Stuart mumbles, in his usual voice.

“Where did we go today?”Mum asks.  “We went somewhere....” 

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Mum's wallet

Mum's wallet was in her handbag for months before it vanished.  I kept checking and it had the thirty pounds she took to the home with her in March.  When it disappeared I assumed she'd lost it in one of her hospital visits and told the manager about it.

You'll be amazed where they turn up, she said.

Then it turned out that the manager herself had been helping herself to the residents' money. She threw away her record of Mum's loss.

She'd worked there for twenty years.

I didn't tell Mum.  She would forget anyway.  The new manager gave us her money back and apologised.

The old manager had a talent for choosing caring staff, so we keep her at the home.  But the cosiness and wholesomeness of the place has been depleted.