It's all just bang, bang, bang...
Often, when I’m feeling particularly irritable about how the world really ought to stop dragging its feet and start paying me the living that I’m damn sure it owes me, things happen that stop me in my tracks, in a manner not unlike a humbling sledgehammer.
The empty skull I parade around atop my shoulders is constantly amazed at how super, and indeed duper, good friends can be.
Without going into paralysing detail about the sort of bad back I have, heavy lifting is probably out for the majority of the future unless I get off my arse and get fit. So, having relatives come over from Parts Foreign and assist in the re-laying of a slab base for a monstrous shed is gratefully accepted. Yet, in that manner one has of doing stuff for one’s family members, it’s almost expected that relatives will probably pitch in with their greater experience and show you just how duff your DIY ‘expertise’ actually is. Not that it gets taken for granted, but if you were to draw up a list of people that it might be easy to ask for help, family members would probably be up there, covering off at least the top five.
So, when Work Buddy decides (while up here at HQ, before a late-afternoon filming job starts) to lend helping a hand with what is a ball-ache of a job, in sub-Saharan conditions, and ends up soaked through with sweat and quite possibly a dash of sunstroke into the bargain, I’m kind of left speechless. And a little on the guilty side.
If you’ve ever had serious problems with your spine, you’ll know how inadequate the phrase “I’ve got a bad back” can sound, spilling from your chuntering gob, when you know that, a few years back before the operations, you could have easily jumped in and got on with lobbing paving slabs about and not merely been a spectator, standing around, uneasily shuffling from foot to foot, wondering whether you should make another round of cold drinks for those getting on with the actual work. Intellectually, you know that it’s not a problem you can get around by ignoring it or bluffing through it, yet it still grates on you, especially if there was a history of even moderate physical activity prior to being let down by Things Spinal.
Before the impression is given that I feel sorry for myself, let me nip that in the bud. I’m up and walking, I can play guitar again, have a great life and demonstrably fantastic friends, and there is very little between me and laughing while awake. Probably while I’m asleep too, but I wouldn’t know about that, would I? ;-) There really are legions of people with far more interesting/disturbing/heart-breaking stories to tell, and none of this is about sympathy. I would probably smack in the mouth anyone that supplied me with that, so be warned. I merely offer the info about the spine as back-story, for want of a better phrase.
No, what I’m on about here is the selfless good nature of a dear friend who just steams in and helps out, knowing that I can’t do a certain task, with no expectations of reward or profuse thanks, thereby reinforcing something that I hold dear, which is that, of all the things one ever stumbles across in life, one of the greatest treasures is friendship.
And not chob-lobbers...