Flip Side of a Coin

imageWaiting to see a doctor can be tedious or fascinating depending on the humanity sharing that space and moment. One one recent visit, I waited with an open lively, old woman and her young granddaughter as well as a geriatric couple. The wife was obviously fatigued by the demands of caring for her husband who suffered from advanced Parkinson’s Disease. He had such a pronounced tremor, he had to clasp his hands on his knees to come control the shaking.

Bored, we all sat as though mesmerized, zoned in on a commercial featuring a cow when little Susie, the granddaughter asked Granma if she’d ever milked a cow.

“I milked me many a cow!” She laughed. “Why, one time when I was about your age, I was a’staying with my granpa and he set me to milking. A big ol’ hog slipped up to that cow on the other side and he was a’sucking that cow’s back titty while I was milking the other side. I was just a’laughing, but didn’t stop my milking. Granpa heard me laughing and knowed what happened and came in and run that ol’hog out. Grandpa said that ol’ hog tricked him and stole milk that way many a time.”

She had the complete attention of all those waiting as she finished her tale. Meanwhile, the man had taken advantage of his wife’s distraction to attempt to pick his nose. He was intent on the task, made more difficult by his tremor. Using both hands to guide his finger to his nose, he’d almost completed his mission when his wife whirled and caught him about to claim his prize. Disgusted, she slapped his hand away.

I loved the the old lady’s story while I felt bad the old man had to live that way. They were the of an age but their situations were so different.