This time last year – just heading into the Canada Day weekend, all lazy and sun soaked, I wrote about mojitos; specifically, where to find an excellent one, and failing that, how to make this refreshing summer drink with a fistful of mint leaves and half a lime.
I’d love a mojito about now. It needn’t be great. An ordinary rummy, minty mojito that tastes of heat and breezy days would do nicely.
Summer was already off-kilter here in WI64 land what with Mr being confined to a neck brace until August. We’ve held on to the prospect of corks popping and mojitos muddling on its removal.
Then last Monday happened.
After 26 summers in a south facing house, I unpacked and installed an air conditioner. Air conditioners come with quite a lot of packaging and what with Tuesday being garbage day, I was tearing up plastic wrap, stuffing it in a large orange bag on my way to the garbage bins in the driveway. Still stuffing the bag, I jumped – as I have hundreds of times – off a concrete wall. And I knew. I knew in the millisecond of that little leap that this wasn’t going to go well and heard the confirming crunch as I came down on my right ankle.
You know how this turns out. But bear with me for a wee bit
So I’m lying on the driveway moaning – I hurt – and I distantly hear a voice. Are you ok?
The question is repeated. No, I say. I’m not.
Do you need to go to hospital?
Yes, I think so.
I’ll take you.
Her name is Cheryl. She’s lived in the neighbourhood for years and this is how I meet her.
I ask her to tell my husband who, I explain, has had neck surgery, is in a brace and mustn’t move his head.
As Mr WI64 tells it, he’s watching TV, unaware of any calamity when the front door opens, and a woman he doesn’t know stands directly in front of him, introduces herself and says, I think your wife has broken her foot. I’m taking her to hospital.
One minute his wife is taking out the garbage. The next she’s on the way to hospital.
Cheryl, bless her, stayed with me for the four-hour wait at emergency and the two minutes spent with a doctor who confirmed a break, and an air cast for some time.
So that’s two of us down.
How’s your summer going?
A couple weeks ago I wrote about the community of angels who loved and supported us through Mr WI64’s surgery and homecoming.
And here they are again.
Neighbours, friends, family have rallied to help us through the days. My doctor’s office stepped in to help us get home care after I reported a conversation I had with the helping system I’d called:
(Me to nurse: I broke my foot. My husband has had neck surgery and can’t bend his head. He needs help putting on his shoes.
Nurse to me: Can’t you teach him?
I kid you not.)
Here’s what they don’t tell you in a busy emergency department as they stick an air cast on you, hand you crutches and send you on your way. No matter how you master the crutches – which I haven’t – getting coffee cup from counter to table in the morning is impossible. Seeing how unfathomably awkward I am lurching around on crutches, Cheryl-my-savior suggested a kneeling scooter. I handed her my credit card and, with a basket provided by friend Jean, now bomb around the house with cups and pot on board.
Not to be a big old bore about people, but people are making this bearable.
Neighbour Robyn weeded my vegetable garden today. Meals have arrived courtesy of friends and the meal service arranged by a daughter. Additional help with all kinds of things being arranged by another daughter. Julie, who used to care for our dog Stan, got to work cleaning and doing laundry when she walked in the door. Linda’s taking me out just to get me out tomorrow. Drake, my dream hairdresser made a house call.
The World Cup is the gift of the season at our house as I in my cast and he in his brace find ourselves cheering wildly for underdogs. Go, Iceland! Come on, Senegal!
So that’s the perspective on my summer thus far.