[arrangement by Living Flowers]
My Mum has been in hospital for nearly three weeks and she is being very well looked after. It's made me thankful all over again that we have the NHS, and reaffirmed my belief that millions of pounds spent on various non-urgent and 'vanity' government projects would be better spent on our over-stretched health service (I said so on the radio at the time of the Olympics).
If I am allowed one little criticism, though, it's that flowers are very frowned upon in the general wards. Flowers provide some of the few bright moments of being in hospital - the joy of receiving them, the pleasure of looking at them - but nowadays there is a lot of fuss and tutting and saying the water poses an infection risk (although Mum has no intention of drinking it...). I took a bunch of daffodils in on my most recent visit, and you'd think I'd tried to smuggle in a bottle of brandy or packet of cigarettes or a pet or something. My Mum loves flowers, and eventually we were allowed a jam jar for a few stems to brighten up her bedside table. (The rest went home with my wonderful sister, Kate.)
It seems you can say whatever you like in a hospital on a mobile phone (remember when they were totally banned?), but you can't say anything with flowers.