Today, we left the UKE. Eventually.

There was a bit of a panic in the morning when I was told that the ambulance to take us back to the apartment had been ordered and would arrive with the hour. After two and a half week, my stuff had had a great time, it seems, multiplying. So where I had had two pieces of paper, there now were heaps. Same with books, toiletries, and even socks (you might remember how important socks can be).

We were all ready by 9am.

Waiting.

At 10am, the first ambulance arrived which couldn’t take him because “Pádraig is too tall”, with me insisting that it was their equipment and car that was “to small”. Anyhow, this is when they ordered the BUS from the Feuerwehr. Now, as we all know, the Feuerwehr is supposed to turn up in no time when you call them.

We were ready.

Waiting.

Then the second ambulance turned up, as it turned out it was the XXXL version with an extra wide stretcher to take patients of up to 250kg. No sign of the Feuerwehr. And the XXXL stretcher didn’t work for Pádraig – in case they would have had to apply the brakes in the car, Pádraig would just have slid through the straps, it was all far too wide. What would be next?

We were ready.

Waiting.

After 4pm, the third ambulance arrived, this time with a stretcher that was still far too short, but one that could just about take Pádraig.

Finally, we left the hospital.

The car itself was one of those big Mercedes vans, big enough for his feet not to stick out of the back, and even the doors closed without having to push his feet and knees up.

By the time we arrived at the apartment, it was 6pm. I spent the night getting organised again in the apartment, happy to be out of the hospital with Pádraig’s operation over, ready to start where we left two and a half weeks ago.