Every day Bill would see a doctor. I don’t think he saw the same doctor twice. I don’t even think he saw the same nurse twice. He would tell his story, they would take notes and say we will do X-rays and ultrasounds (they never did). And he would ask yet again to be transferred to the private hospital.

This went on until one evening the woman in charge, they used to be Matron but now I think it’s N.U.M., stood in the doorway, arms akimbo. She said, loudly and aggressively: “You can get it out of your head, you are not going to be transferred to the private hospital”. That’s what I call Bill’s Nurse Ratched moment!

Well you would think that having top hospital and medical cover would count for something, but not so.

Then it boiled down to WHO you knew. My very good friend contacted his very good friend who worked for the owner of the private hospital. He was in London and contacted his friend who was in charge of the private hospital which was just up the road. At 11 a.m. the day after Nurse Ratched’s pronouncement Bill was told to pack his possessions, a trolley arrived and he was taken to the basement. There was a patient transport waiting and he was whisked off to the private hospital.

He was virtually kidnapped. I’m not even sure the release papers were signed.

Immediately on arrival he was given X-rays, ultrasounds, whatever tests were appropriate. Then lunch was served. The food was excellent. The man in charge popped his head around the door and asked if there was anything he needed. Bill asked if the sauvignon-blanc in the fridge could be changed to a chardonnay and his fridge was kept stocked with Margaret River Leeuwin Estate Chardonnay from then on. (More next time)