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A Coughing Cantata

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Life – I have been told – is rather like a roll of toilet paper.  The closer you get to the end, the faster it goes.  My days are now rolling by at an almighty clip.  Just now, I looked in my appointment calendar for the exact date of something that I had done, and was astonished to find that it happened more than two weeks ago!  It feels like it was only yesterday, or at most the day before!

Such is old age, I guess.  A month goes by, and what have I got to show for it?  The blink of an eye, the drawing in of breath to tell a funny story, and zip!! it’s four weeks later.

Mind you, since getting back from the lake, most of the time in our house has been spent coughing.  First it was me, for a week or two, and now Heather.

Koff!  koff!...    Koff-koff-koff-koff-koff-koff-koff-koff-koff-koff-koff
hack!  snerf;  sniffle;  koff koff koff koff!  snorffle...  gurgle...

It’s constant.  In fact it was so bad when I had it in the early days of September, that I slept in the living room – (a) trying not to keep Heather awake with my coughing, and (b) hoping (in vain as it turns out) not to infect her with the condition!  But she caught it, and as of this writing, still has it.

This doctor makes house calls! (almost)
Our ‘flu or bug – or whatever it is – was never bad enough to knock either of us out cold.  Heather hasn’t missed a day of work; and I kept a number of appointments.  Although I was pretty fatigued most of the time, I treated the condition lightly, and even put a version of the above “Koff koff koff” on my FaceBook wall.  The post drew a number of sympathetic comments, and a query or two from the people with whom I had upcoming appointments (“are we still going to get together?”).  But the most remarkable one of all was this:

“Might want to see someone about that!”

Sensible, right?  Rather low-key, even inconspicuous.

Except for this: the person who posted it is my doctor.

Can you imagine?  A physician who visits a patient’s FaceBook page and is concerned enough to say, in effect, “Why not let me have a look at you, and see whether or not you have something serious!”  Now that’s what I call good medicine!

So I obeyed, and made an appointment to see her.  Soon she had satisfied herself that I didn’t have bronchitis or pneumonia or anything else moderately fatal, and I went on my way, still coughing for a few more days, but very content.

The next big thing:
In a way, if we have to be sick, it’s a good thing that we succumbed this month, and not in October, because – guess what!? – we’re going on another ocean cruise!  Last January, we cruised the Caribbean, and now we’re heading out to Europe, to cruise the Mediterranean.  Venice, Athens, Ephesus, Pompeii and more, then after the cruise, four days in Rome.  It would be really upsetting to have this coughing cantata then, don’t you think!?

All else being equal, I shall post something about the cruise here.

And the next important thing:
Churchgoing.  For a year now, Heather and I have attended a different Christian church almost every Sunday. 1  It has been a deeply rewarding experience and I would recommend it to anyone.  But now we need to settle.  In all those places that we went, we were guests – visitors – observers of their Christian experience.  It is time to belong somewhere.

For some of the reasons that I outlined in my recent post, we’ve chosen to belong to St. Margaret’s Anglican church in Winnipeg.  Heather has been asked to accept a voluntary position of leadership there, and I will be preaching now and again, and perhaps taking up some other duties.  We’re going slowly, one day at a time, but are content with our decision so far.  It feels like home.

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1  Here is the list: United Church of Canada (2 places), Roman Catholic, Presbyterian, traditional Baptist, Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada, Mennonite (2 places), Pentecostal, “Non-Denominational” (2 types), “Big Box” evangelical (3 types), and Greek Orthodox.  In the summer we attended our usual Anglican parish near to our cottage, and from time to time throughout the year I would do some “clergy supply,”  – presiding and preaching as a substitute or fill-in at Anglican churches in the Winnipeg region.  I wrote a partial report here last October.  I thought at the time that I would post a complete report in these Currents once we had concluded our explorations, but so far haven’t managed to get around to it.  Do you think I should do one? (If yes, click here and send me a note).
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