People change as time go by. Sometimes for the better, and sometimes for the worse. In my case, I learn from my mistakes, and try not to repeat them. I have my faith, and a certain code of values which will never change, but to err is to be human. So here goes ……….
It was the beginning of 2004. The Cardiologist told my (late) husband R to have an Angioplasty at Rwp CMH (Combined Military Hospital). We drove early from Peshawar, and checked into an Officers’Mess for the stay. R was told to come to the Hospital the next morning without having breakfast. He was scheduled for Angioplasty at eleven.
Before coming we were told the expected amount for Stents if they were needed to be implanted, and to bring the money along. The Angioplasty was done, and we found out that ninety eight percent of R’s arteries were clogged, and he needed a by-pass instead of stents. R was to stay the remaining day, and night in the hospital. We were to go back to Peshawar the next day, and return after a month for surgery at AFIC (Armed Forces institute of Cardiology).
I wasn’t allowed to stay the night with my husband, and leaving him to the Nursing Staff, I went back to the Mess after seven thirty in the evening. R’s niece B, and her husband came to take me out. They asked me where I wanted to go. I had never gone to the China Market, and that’s where we went.
While passing through a shop which was a treasure trove of beautiful objects, I saw a Water Fall. It was twenty, or something in height, and about eighteen inches, or so in width. I haggled the price, and of course after we reached a certain amount he wouldn’t go further down.
I had to make up my mind. The trouble was the little money I had with me I had already spent on a thank you gift for B, and a pair of unstitched clothes for myself. The rest of the money I had with me was R’s for the stents, and Mess stay. I briefly debated with myself. We were going back the next day, and any money I spent I could return it to R’s amount after reaching back Peshawar. I went ahead, and bought the Water Fall.
B, and her husband dropped me at the Mess’ entrance, and went their way. Meanwhile I learnt that in the time I wasn’t present R had phoned. I phoned back to the hospital. They didn’t let me speak to him, and only told me to bring all the money R had in the morning. and that it was needed.
I was in a fix. I had gone, and stewed myself well, and proper. That night I couldn’t sleep.
It turned out in the morning, R needed his wallet for a small amount he wanted to give to the cleaning staff. The person who phoned misquoted him.
It taught me a lesson. Never to go unprepared without money. God spared me the embarrassment in front of my husband.