I knew it was my turn to go in to the plaster room when an empty wheelchair seat silently appeared in front of me together with the same rotund chauffeur.
I smiled up at him, he was impassive. I hobbled myself into position and sat. I was pushed to the far end of the plaster room, passing by two patients on trolleys; one patient sported a bare leg waiting to be 'done' and the other was having a blood red plaster applied to a lower leg.
Number twenty-eight's purple clog with big toe brace sat on a table facing me. This incongruous footless form sat there, it looked like a portable male urinal [without the handle].
|I could not find a picture depicting the shape in royal purple.|
Portly man sat down on a chair facing me and for the first time he addressed me. "Put your leg here," indicating just above his knee and on his green plastic apron. He checked the bit of blue paper that had so far accompanied me everywhere this trip. A flexible tube was plugged into a cylinder and a wheel was slotted into a head placed at the end of the tube. The high pitched sound of the grinding wheel was nothing in comparison to the vibrations that went right through the bit of me I had been so carefully protecting all these weeks. My reflexes overpowered any control I might have had to stay still. Two shallow cuts about two and a half inches apart, ( about 7cms) were made over the top of my plaster clog, the centre piece was lifted and the remaining plaster fitting slipped off.
I was wheeled back out, this time into a different part of the corridor. Without a word, the chair and me were placed in specific place to await the next stage. As for the brakes- I had to trust to luck.