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  • Writer's pictureA. Murphy

C'mon I don't have 2020 vision

I know we can't really use that joke anymore but I couldn't resist. In retrospect that joke was deeper than we thought huh? We really couldn't have predicted where 2020 would go. I mean wow.

Christmas was over though the decorations remained. There was even a special boxing day dinner, although they got it wrong. I ordered roast beef in gravy, roast potatoes, and peas. That is not what I received. At least I got the roast beef, but instead of roast I got mashed potatoes, and I got no peas at all. My mum was with me and took my plate account determined to get me what I ordered. She was partly successful, they gave me the correct potatoes. It wasn't unusual for me to get the wrong order. Ah well. It was still better than the time I got nothing at all. Well that's not strictly true but it was close. I gotten the hang of the hospital routine so I knew breakfast should arrive at around nine o'clock, it did not. Okay so they're running a bit late, it's happened before. But my breakfast never came, it was getting later and later. Luckily I had some yoghurts in my room so I had one of those. Yet I kept thinking What if everyone is going hungry? What if they don't have any food in their rooms? When someone eventually came in I told him that no one had come to take my order for breakfast. He didn't know what was going on either. Turns out the catering department had sent up a newbie on her own and told her nothing. She didn't even know our ward existed. Bless her. Once she knew we were there though she made sure we got our lunch and dinner.

Despite the food I now had the New Year to look forward to. my treatment would have finished by then and it meant getting to see my friends. We all met in school (except one who already knew my friends from their previous school, and another because she is my friend's fiancée) but then we went to different colleges, then different universities, plus we moved out of our parent's houses (except me). Only one remained in Southampton but he now had a job (and a fiancée, what a grown up!) so I rarely got to see him either. We're all still very close friends though and we'd organised a Secret Santa on New year's day.

Now I'd done something that to be fair, was kind of a good idea but it cost a lot of money. Not only had I bought a Secret Santa present (which was met with absolute joy might I add) but I had also bought a present for all my friends. These were not Christmas presents for you see because we all live far away from each other I often miss their birthdays. So the gifts I bought were in fact birthday presents which they could only open if they'd had their birthday, so a couple of them had to wait.

My dad made a curry for everyone. To be honest he went a bit mad with the curries. I have one vegan friend and another who is vegetarian so there needed to be a vegan option. He made three or four vegan dishes and only one with meat. Couldn't even convince him that he didn't have to make us food, I had bought things and my friends always bring a variety of stuff. But no, he'd made his mind up. "All right I'll cook curries for everyone so they can have, no, honestly I don't mind they need something to eat...this means I'll have to spend all night cooking but no, no! It's fine absolutely fine!"

Curry, cake, and everything else we had with us, it was an amazing evening. It's always fantastic when we get together, it happens so rarely now. We all exchanged our secret santa gifts and I handed my birthday presents. Then we played One Night Ultimate Werewolf. It's a strange game in which person gets a card with a character on it. Each character has a certain ability. Then everyone closes their eyes, because it's 'night time'. Then the abilities come into play, so people can open their eyes at different times. The abilities mean that sometimes a person can switch cards, or look at another person's card. Anyway you want to find out who's who because the aim of the game is to find out who the werewolf is. At the end everyone must collectively agree who the werewolf is. It got complicated, everyone confused. So we played something different. I do not remember what it called, there were cards, medieval characters. I got confused again. So we switched to Jackbox. Everybody loves Jackbox and if you have a chance to play I thoroughly recommend you do so. They're a selection of party games (if you are planning to be rude DO NOT play with family).

It a nice memory to hold onto when I went back up to the hospital for my next and final round of chemo.

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