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IMG_9530We went for a walk on the North Sea this morning. It was like a scene from “The Road” or “The Book of Eli”. The sky was so grey, there was no sun, the sand was as lead-like as the sea, and it was almost impossible to see where the beach ended and the sea began. We were the only people on this vast beach. Not only because it was a bit early for a Sunday morning, but also because this was a really miserable day.

We went back to Hamburg early. With Pádraig, the day turned into something very different from where it had started. Pádraig was as alert as he had not been, at least not for some time. He had his eye open and moving, he really tried to talk, and – I know you have waited for this for a long time – there was another first:

Sitting in the wheelchair, he lifted his right foot completely off the ground. Of course, I was not there to see it; but even Pat almost missed it because he was squeezing her hand so tight trying, that she was watching his hand – until she saw what was really going on there.

And that was not all.

The nurse looking after him remembered, when we were telling him in the evening how well Pádraig was doing today, that the morning nurse had told him that when she had told Pádraig that she was going to re-arrange the blankets in his bed and whether that was ok, he answered very clearly and unmistakably “JA”.

Then, in the afternoon, Pat finally translated the letter to me that had come with the brown envelopes and CDs. I can only imagine what it said in Irish, but even in English translated by Pat for me it was wonderful. And when she read it out in Irish, Pádraig was there listening.

Just shows that something that starts like as if it was the end of the world can turn into something quite wonderful. Ja?