Seeing the light


Hello, it’s great to be here early for once instead of rushing around at the last-minute. I hope you’ve all had a good week. I’m looking forward to the Bank Holiday weekend and Monday off, when I will try to catch up on some of my writing projects (she says with fingers crossed)

Thanks to Renee Heath for the photo prompt this week and a special thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for her continuing support, diplomacy and encouragement.

Copyright Renee Heath

Copyright Renee Heath

Genre: Historical Fiction

Word Count: 100

Seeing the light

Frederick watches the crowd gathered on the pavement.  They are getting restless. Some shout concerns, about their safety, loss of their livelihoods. Not many seem supportive of his demonstration.

‘You’ll blow us all to kingdom come, you mad German!’

‘It’ll never work!’

‘What about the poor candlemakers?’

His wife tightens her grip on his arm.

At 9pm the gas is turned on. Pall Mall is lit up from end to end; the crowd roars approval, some even come to shake his hand.

‘Listen to them now liebling, no need for your fears.  You should have more faith in your husband.’

Artist unknown. Courtesy of National Gas Museum

Artist unknown. Courtesy of National Gas Museum

and now for the history bit…

In 1807, Frederick Winsor, a German born entrepreneur, demonstrated the use of gas to light streets, in London’s Pall Mall. Fifteen years later almost every large town in Britain, as well as Europe and North America, had a gasworks. The company he founded – The Gas Light & Coke Company, continued to supply most of the gas in London, until the industry was nationalised in 1949.  Read more at The National Gas Museum website.

For more stories click on Mr Frog 

 

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Watching Trooping the Colour wearing tight pyjamas


Saturday 15th June was the Queen’s Birthday Parade in London.  We  had tickets to watch the pomp and pageantry in Horse Guards Parade; our seats were in a row that backed onto the gardens of Downing Street.

On Tuesday 11th June my husband complained of feeling unwell. He got worse throughout the day; our doctor decided that he should go to hospital and arranged for us to attend the Acute Assessment Unit at A&E.  We arrived at 9.00pm with overnight bag at the ready and were seen almost immediately for a blood pressure check and blood tests.  Next, my husband was sent for X-rays, and then we were told to return to the waiting area to be seen by the duty doctor.

We waited with a lot of other people; some moaning softly in pain, some just staring into space, some playing games on their phones or talking with friends and family. One woman was having an argument with her husband over the fact that he never took the rubbish out; he just sat and held her hand, understanding perhaps that this was her way of handling the uncertainty of what lay ahead.

At 12.30 we were called in to see the doctor. The results were back and it seems my husband had a kidney infection.  We were given antibiotics and pain killers and sent home.

I wasn’t convinced.

For one thing one of the antibiotics had to be ‘taken with or after food but NOT on an empty stomach.’ As my husband hadn’t eaten properly for three days and wasn’t about to have anything to eat now, I knew we were going to have problems.   He went to bed with one of the other tablets as I crossed my fingers and hoped he would have a peaceful night.

Wednesday dawned and things weren’t much better. He still didn’t want anything to eat but managed a piece of toast so he could take his tablet. He still felt ill and had a high temperature, but didn’t want me to call the doctor.

Om Thursday he seemed worse. I rang the surgery and spoke to the doctor. He asked a lot of questions, then told me he was going to admit my husband to hospital and I should take him over there straightaway.  On the way, I realised that I had forgotten to pack his pj’s.  We called in to a large clothing store on the way to the hospital, they had no pyjamas only ‘Leisure Wear’.

Once in hospital, we waited for what seemed like an eternity before he was admitted to a ward. Finally about 11.30pm he went to get changed into his ‘leisure wear’.He wasn’t impressed with my purchase; the top was too tight and the trousers too long.  I kissed him goodnight and left him in the care of the night staff.

I left the hospital and went to stay at my son’s house, not wishing to be on my own that night.  My daughter-in-law had laid out a pair of her pj’s as I had nothing with me. I was touched and amused that she thought her clothes would fit me; she is at least two sizes smaller than I and a good four inches taller. We had a hot drink and discussed what had happened during the last few days, then I climbed into their spare bed in a top that was too tight and trousers that were too long, but I was too tired to care.

The following morning I switched on the television to watch the Welsh Guards trooping their colour on Horse Guards Parade and wondered who was sitting in our seats.

In Horse Guards

Trooping the Colour

In the Mall

(More photos and full report @ BBC)

And a couple of balcony shots, courtesy of my tv.

On the balcony

On the balcony 2

Red Arrows over Buckingham Palace