I decided yesterday to visit the ‘bum puffer’ bloke in hospital.
I drove over the mountains to Bray [that Enniskerry place has even more SUVs than my village, which is saying something], and caught the train.
It was only when I got on the train, and the doors were firmly shut that the driver cheerily announced that I was on the express to Maynooth. I like the way they do that – they give you the destinations after the doors are shut, and the train is moving. So you can’t change your mind. I suppose it’s one way of getting people to see the country?
Luckily it stopped at the station I was going to, anyway.
The hospital had changed beyond all recognition since the last time I was there. That was the day I left RTE. I first entered RTE in 1971, on a Yamaha 90cc motorbike, and I left in 2001 in an ambulance. But that’s another story.
I saw the patient. They had done quite a good job on him. The only mistake they made was to sew back his arms the wrong way around, so if he decides to take up the piano, it will be interesting.
On the way back, I just knew it was going to happen. Men have intuition too. I knew I was going to meet my old pal Raymond, who I haven’t seen in years. So I strolled into the station and there he was. He was leaning on the wall, staring into the distance, and smoking his pipe. So I leaned against the wall beside him and smoked mine.
“Howya, Raymond” says I.
“Jayzus! Grandad! What are you doing here?” says he.
So we leant against the wall and talked about old times. Trains came and went, but it was pleasant there in the sunshine. It turns out he has been stalking an old arch-enemy of mine. He wants to kill him, and so do I. So eventually we caught our train and made our plans on the way home.
It was a good day.
I met an old friend, and I’m going to enjoy working with Raymond.
And I got the €5 back off that bloke in the hospital that I had loaned him.
Which was the reason I visited in the first place.