It was rather wet and windy as I left for work this morning, so I opted for the i-Pod rather than the hearing aid. This was despite the fact that I planned to buy a get well card for a colleague in WH Smith, and the lack of hearing aid in that same situation a couple of months ago had got me in to a slight spot of bother.

On arrival at WH Smith’s, I made sure I had my wits about me this time while I picked a nice card from the ‘Contemporary Greetings’ section. The whole process was remarkably quick and I even remembered to pay for the card. I was blissfully unaware at this point that I had purchased a card which said ‘Happy Birthday’ inside, instead of ‘Get Well Soon’. Delighted at my unusual efficiency, I made my way to the office to the accompaniment of some rousing piano music donated to my i-Pod by the spouse.

As I reached the front door, I held it open for a colleague from another department, and a student who was carrying five times his own bodyweight in items retrieved from a skip. My colleague said something, so I ripped the headphones off and automatically adopted my bent double listening pose despite the fact I was standing up, and my colleague is about 6’4”. He repeated what he had just said.

“Eh? What?” I replied, unwrapping my windblown hair from my face, so as to look a bit less like a yeti.

“Eh? What?…you’ll need to turn your hearing aid up a bit!” joked my colleague, clearly not thinking for a moment there actually was one in my handbag.

He who laughs last….I smiled to myself.

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