Sunday, 12 June 2011

Not-very-near death experiences

Last night I needed company.  No, this isn't going to be a series of salacious confessions (for that you have to read my other blog, the details of which are known to only a few special people.  What, you don't know about it?  Well, sorry....) so I went to bed with the radio on.  This is a habit only recently acquired, previously the radio to me was a series of loud notes and a Chris Moyles jingle, and that was all.  But, nowadays, my station of companionship is Radio 4. There's something very soothing about John Humphries telling me all about the state of the National Health service, I don't even need to listen to the words, I'm just tuned in for the gentle wash-cloth of the accent, the bed-bath of consistency, the warm towel of intellectualism.

This man is the equivalent of being fed nursery puddings whilst lying under a snuggie blanket.

But.  Last night I went to bed very late, for 'twas after midnight.  And I was subjected to the strangeness which is the World Service.  Not that it was very strange really, because I went to sleep to the news, woke up occasionally to more news and, so far as I could tell, the World Service consists totally of news. Which is fine, I had it on for the company, not for the 'being stroked by velvet' things...  But then I woke up in the morning, having forgotten that I'd left the radio on.

I opened my eyes to bright light and a gentle chanting.  Then a choir started singing.  "Bloody hell," thinks I, for it came as a shock and I don't usually use profanities such as these, "bloody hell, I've died in the night!"  There followed a brief, but illuminating service, at which I was slightly shocked not to have my good qualities praised, nor any audible outpourings of grief.  I was just pondering whether or not I should move towards the light, which was quite realistic, down to the background sound of starlings fighting on the guttering and a small motorbike starting up, when I gradually came to to realise that I was listening to the Morning Service, and had not, in fact, died.  I didn't know whether to be grateful or feel really really stupid, but since no-one else was there, I don't suppose it mattered.

So I settled for moving towards the kitchen instead.  It might not bring me eternal peace and happiness, but it did bring me toast and tea. Which, sometimes, is good enough, quite frankly.


It was this or the salvation of my soul.  I think I might have made the right decision....

5 comments:

Ranae Rose said...

Must have been pretty dissapointing to get so close to eternal bliss, only to have your salvation foiled! I too had a brush with death this week, but unfortunately, there was no choir. There were only the words 'oh, crap' echoing through my head. That always happens to me during the split second when a disaster begins. Someday when I die, my last thought will probably have been 'oh, crap'.

Debs Carr said...

Whenever I'm in doubt, miserable, or have a dilemma I always head towards the kitchen. No wonder I have a growing writer's bottom!

Jane Lovering said...

I feel I am going to have to get a lot closer to death for John Humphreys, tea and toast not to bring me back from the brink. In fact, to be on the safe side, if my death is ever announced, please pop round with a box of Hotel Chocolat chockies, and wave them under the nose of my corpse. I could stage a miracle...

Elizabeth Currie said...

In the old days it used to be smelling salts! But I sympathise, although personally I have never tried John Humphries for company during those dark bleak hours; another friend of mine swears by Andrew Marr. My mother was a regular all-night user of radio and John Humphries could generally be reassuringly heard whenever one went to visit her. David Attenborough has always been the man with the voice to me - sort of silken smooth and charming (sort of chocolate like in fact). But he's rarely to be found on any radio programme! However, you've given me an idea; perhaps I should try the radio a bit more often...and get used to John Humphries instead.

Glynis said...

Gosh I haven't heard John Humphries voice for years. I did love your post it brought a smile to my face, thanks for sharing.


Glynis Smy (writer)