Optimistic, the nice lady said. Pro-active, she added. Oh I couldn't resist that.
See, having now got a full-house spines and heads in Hypochondria Poker (unofficial national game of elderly French people – yes I am, ignore the name) I'm very unpopular in the local chemist's because I always win.
With a casual “OK, spinal arthritis, scoliosis and sciatica backing Bipolar and Brain Damage – anyone see that?”
Harumph, the only thing that beats that is “I died of that – twice!” which seldom happens even in our rural corner of the hexagon. Unfortunately it also severely limits my ability to do much in the way of charity work. I used to volunteer at a homeless shelter but I was good at it. Fearing it would become a full time job when I am supposed to be on disability and UN-able to work, the Old Feller dragged me out of it.
Yes, there is paying back in gratitude for all one's good fortune and there is being made a mug of!
So what can I do to raise money for charity? Sponsored anything is a bit out of the question – asking me to walk or run any distance is akin to begging a Parkinson's sufferer to enter the egg-and-spoon race. Silence? I'm an author. Words are my life. When not spouting my own, I am practising dialogue between characters in my next novel (of course with all the different accents, voices etc.) If anyone is really desperate for 50p I could do a sponsored silence.
I looked around. What have I got lots of apart from self-opinion and giggles?
A stand-up comedy routine in the village hall might do it but I've done one of those before. I looked in the mirror and went ….Brave the Shave!
Here I am with my pony tail before we started, with the Old Feller brandishing the clippers and filming.
I was quite happy to donate my locks for MacMillan Cancer and had put the call out on the internet. Apparently none of my friends doubted I'd do it and they were keen to see me bald. So, encouraged, I contacted the charity who were unable to give me any real proof that I was an honourable donor but, undeterred I went around locally putting up posters reading “Chauve Une Vie” which is a word play on Save /Bald. Only one local shop refused to take my collecting tin as I had no bit of paper but yar boo to them.
My small pigtail
Came the day and the first thing to go was my little pigtail. Awwwwww – here it is on the table and I had to throw it away. Too small to be donated for children's wig making it would have upset me as a keepsake.
Finally with the Old Feller resorting to his ex-military past and giving me a real crew cut – the crew of the Black Pig if I am not mistaken. I was a bit shocked, I'll admit.
Never too particular about my looks and vanity zero I looked at this photo on the video and gave a shriek that turned into laughter
It's growing back and I'm happy. People have called me “brave” but I think they are pretty people who care. I am not and never have been.