Wednesday morning. I’m pairing socks on my sofa. Glenn Miller American Patrol playing in the background. Incoming call on my mobile.
Sunray’s number comes up. He has not phoned me on my mobile number for nearly two years. Is this the call where a stranger’s voice tells me:
“Hello. Is that German Ginge? Could you sit down, please? I’m sorry to tell you…”
It was not to be. It was Sunray himself. At least he was sober. Well, it was 0930 in the UK. Give him time. He was fine, thanks. Actually, no he was very, very down. Nobody cares about him. Nobody comes to see him. He does not very often leave his house. No, he does not want to go to the library. No, he does not want to go to coffee mornings to go out and meet people.
Clearly he is in a rut, and it is hard to kick-start someone when they are that deep in the mud.
But, but, but…
I can’t help but asking if some people are “only happy when they are unhappy,” when they can portray themselves as victim.
Nobody from the Royal British Legion (charity for ex-servicemen and women) has been to see him since they were contacted four months ago. How shocking. How inept. How uncaring.
A blatant lie.
A liar has to have a good memory. His is clearly very poor. He himself told me two months ago about two lady caseworkers visiting him for coffee and chat. I myself had a long phone call with one of his caseworkers two months ago, whotold me about his:
- Drink-caused accidents at home
- Callouts to the ambulance
- Discussions with the alcohol nurse as follow-through
- Constant drunken calls to people in his address book at all times of the day and night, in once case, fifteen (sic) times in one day
Then he tells me the (expletives) from the Legion have not sent a single person to see him.
It’s my birthday in less than a week. It’ll be forty years to the day since one morning I was asked to come to the headmaster’s office at Wolfenbüttel Primary School, Germany, and take a phone call from Sunray on duty at HMP Maze in Northern Ireland, wishing his first-born a happy birthday. I think of where his now. Choose the action, choose the consequences. You cannot always rescue a drowning man, without you risking drowning.
Have a sober day, won’t you!