I’m home after the operation to remove the cancer from my ear. It isn’t pleasant. I have a huge wad of gauze in my ear, soaked in gooey yellow antiseptic fluid that leaks slowly down over my neck and sloshes backward and forward in my ear canal as I move my head. The surgeon, not wishing to encumber me with bandages, has stapled a dressing to my head. It is anchored by six staples, one through my upper cheek, two in my scalp and one or two behind my ear. This is uncomfortable but acceptable. I now have body piercing that would make a youngster writhe in ecstasy. Luckily, there is no pain at the moment but my ear itches like the devil was tickling me with a feather. I have been measured, weighed, starved, stuck with needles and had catheters inserted in my arms. My blood has been harvested several times. I have had the “don’t smoke” lecture and finally, yesterday, I was hacked about by a very clever surgeon. I am told, they got it all. My upper left arm has donated skin to my ear. That wound hurts more than my ear does.
I don’t recall much about last night. The anæsthesia had it’s grip on me still. My wife was there, I was hungry and tired even though I’d been asleep for most of the day. I ate, took pills and sat on my bed. I watched TV while trying to recover some sense of consciousness and mobility. Finally, after my lady had left me, I fell asleep.
And then I saw the angel.
Soft white light emanating from somewhere above and behind her illuminated a shock of short, wild, wavy white-blond hair that perfectly framed her face. I gazed into the greenest eyes I have ever seen. A button of a nose above the most perfect mouth one could imagine. She was dressed in brilliant white.
Something had obviously gone very wrong during the night. I felt a bitter sweet regret and was glad that I had spoken with my wife the night before and told her I loved her. I felt relief, knowing that I had lived a good life and that now I was being welcomed into heaven by this vision of loveliness before me. It appeared that we atheists are right after all. I closed my eyes for a second. Opening them, she was still there. As I looked upon her, she spoke the three words a man loves to hear. She spoke softly in a language that I understand, but with an accent that was slightly foreign to me.
“Here’s your breakfast.” said the angel. I thought, “Are all angels Norwegian?” and then, suddenly, I was wide awake.
Wow! Quick reality check. Yep. I still had all my vital parts and no pain to speak of. Oh, happy day!
“Tea or coffee?”
Six o’ clock and all’s well.
Man, it’s good to be alive!