On the phone, my father rapidly works his way through his two standard concerns, health and weather. His questions come like bullets (How is work? Can you manage? How is your digestion/hearing/balance? Medication side effects in line? Outside temperature? Air pressure? Rainfall? Windy/icy?) and my answers must be brief and to the point. This is all about the big picture, no fretting over minor inflammations or elevated liver enzymes, certainly no mention of feelings or fear, ohgodnono! And of course rainfall is never soft or gentle or hard or depressing, forgoodnesssake didn't he install it himself down at the bottom of the garden, the, the what shall we call it, the thingy with a scale recording the
Once we have this covered and ticked off to
general his satisfaction, we proceed to politics.