On Thursday evening, I parked at my friend’s house to visit for a meeting and strolled through his front door like everything was quite normal. How your world can be turned on its head in a second’s flash!
My left foot slid on a rug and I landed on my backside, my right leg twisted in knots under me. The seven people in that room caught their breath collectively. All must have heard a slight but distinctive crack. I did. And I knew that finally, after 63 years of protecting that leg, God had finally caught the Devil’s eye.
I sat with my back to the wall, and we waited just over three hours for an ambulance. What terrific guys they were. They were choked at their own situation. Knowing a person had been slumped in some discomfort with no real knowledge, no confirmation of what had happened to them for so long, visibly affected them. I’m a pretty patient Patient: I learnt long ago that I could not rush things physically, even if I’d wanted to. Those around me, still in shock, found it all more traumatic, I think, than I myself did.
Had I been in a more jocular frame of mind, I might have audibly thanked the Good Lord for sparing my left leg, the life-line to some sort of normal life for so long. But I felt slightly sorry for myself and used the time asking my colleagues to call a couple of my professional team to cancel/postpone the five February shows, and discuss rescheduling with the promoters. I knew it was bad enough for that.
But I believed I’d live, so thought it prudent to get a grip and get moving with the serious business of dealing with the horrible knowledge that I would be letting down five sold-out venues of fans.
At West Suffolk Hospital, Bury St Edmunds, fine surgeons rushed me through a hip operation, inserting a long screw through a metal plate. I’m home, after three nights on the hospital bed. Seemed so unlikely when I woke at 4pm last Friday after the job was done. I can’t add much right now. But I thank all who wrote messages, sent cards, commented on Facebook/Twitter, or even thought of me for a while when they heard. It’s been gratifying to a great degree, I promise. All the good thoughts really helped.
We’ll be there in Yarm and Holmfirth at Easter. And all other shows will be unaffected. The three Cardiff Acapela shows are in for June now and in July we play Leyburn for Breast Cancer, and Lytham has just been agreed for August 12th.
Home visits from my favourite physio start on Friday, and there are robins and blackbirds playing like crazy schoolkids in my garden and a woodpecker on the nuts. I feel better already. Not so much has changed really. Just me perhaps.