Sally’s car was in the garage, so she sat outside- she worried if Tracy came round she would just drive past, not seeing Sally’s car. Sally had gone to bed early, but having breakfast at 9 worried that she had not had time to do her housework that morning. She shoved a mop round the wood floor and got a stool to sit on just before Tracy arrived. Tracy insisted she would have knocked on the window even though the car wasn’t there.
Tracy talked about herself, mostly. She’s not on the sick much, but when she goes sick she takes a long time off. She was off 5½ months once, she came back just before half pay started. She had a meeting with Helen and her daughters on Friday night.
-No use? asked Sally.
-And then some. They just shouted at each other. Helen has such a short fuse. She shouts at Tracy, too. Mind, the daughters would wind anyone up, all the time it’s not what she wants, it’s what they want. Helen was complaining Tracy talks about her.
Tracy asked about Sally’s Welsh course, in Harlech, and her painful hip. It’s bad in Sally’s knee and all. But after Elaine came, Tracy and Elaine just talked between themselves. Elaine had been out for a walk on Sunday, and had a seat outside a pub. The man came out of the pub shouting at them not to sit there. Then he had a bucket of water which he threw out, nearly splashing her. If he’d thrown that water at her, she told him, she’d have emptied that bin on his head. He was really stressed, she said, “I felt sorry for him”.
-Didnae show it, though. That earned me a sharp look but not a sharp reply.
-He said, those stones are free over there.
-Did you get a cup of tea or anything off him?
-No, and I wouldn’t now, he’d probably spit in it or piss in it. He was really angry, he was really stressed. There were no people there, it’s gone dead quiet since he took it on, he should give it up.
Elaine went to see Tom Jones in Colwyn Bay. Tracy’s friend had been, but it took her 2½ hours to get away after. It took Elaine 1½ hours. Elaine goes into great detail about the transport. She could have gone to the train station (Railway station, Sally corrects her, fruitlessly). They had to walk all that way. Then a bottle ‘a wine was £20, just ordinary wine, £2.75 in Aldi. I’m not buying that. Still, everybody was buying it. They do, don’t they. Tom Jones was really good, and on for two hours, she didn’t think he’d be on that long. She hadn’t heard of anyone with him, they were on The Voice and she doesn’t watch The Voice.
It’s her 35th wedding anniversary coming up. She’s not going to celebrate it, nothing to celebrate.
-You could get drunk to forget, I suggested, helpfully.
-No, I still have to go to bed with him at the end of it.
-Now the children have left you could use another bedroom?
-I have six bedrooms, I could use another bedroom if I wanted.
Elaine went into a hospital which was the dirtiest hospital she’d ever seen. She told Pauline to wipe her feet on the grass when she left. There was sick on the seats. Sally and Tracy make yuck faces.
Elaine and Tracy took Sally to the Post Office. So that is what support work is like. Tea and conversation. Sally doesn’t think much of Mental Health services round here, they’re useless.