An odd thing happened this week. Well, odder than usual.
The vicar asked to see me. I was totally mystified. I had not the first idea what this might be about … couldn’t think of anything major I’d done wrong recently … and the vicar NEVER has time to see anyone – we really like him but organisation is not his strong point
Anyway, I sat down dutifully and he politely asked me if I was happy with all the things he was giving me to do (I had just said no to a shed-load) … and I said I was … and waited …
… and he went through some of the things and explained what was behind his decision … and I waited …
… and then he said he had something else to ask me … and I could tell by his body language that he wasn’t finding it easy … and I sat there thinking WOT ON EARTH IS GOING ON
And then he asked if Hub was all right?
Yes, said I, cautiously, wondering why he wasn’t asking Hub himself.
And he said was I sure? Hub wasn’t doing too much in the parish?
No, I said, totally befogged. We always discuss things, I said. Hub had suggested working more at the 3rd church, because one of the priests has left, so they are short-handed. And he wants to do this. I said.
Well, he said, so long as he’s all right. He realised how difficult it was, getting used to being retired, and how frustrating it must be …
I left, just as much in the dark as when I started.
The next day we went to Communion before we went shopping, and the curate was there, and he and Hub get on really well and have regular times when the two of them have coffee together and just let off steam. And the curate divulged that the Communion at the third church hadn’t taken place on Tuesday. Which Hub knew. And he also knew that it was supposed to be the vicar who did it. Only he didn’t turn up.
Actually, said the curate, I checked on my rota. I think it should have been you …
Hub had nothing to that effect in his diary.
Then the curate asked me how Hub was, as he gets minor dizzy spells in the mornings these days. Fine, I said …
And by the time we got back to the car I had it.
‘Basically,’ I told Hub succinctly, ‘he appears to think you might be cracking up. Because you forgot the Communion. And you’re getting dizzy spells. So p’raps you’re overdoing things.’
‘And’, said Hub thoughtfully as he eased the car down a very narrow lane, ‘there’s that other thing that I’m not doing either.’
Ah. It’s all adding up.
And later that day, Hub sent a carefully-crafted email. Apologising for the mistake. And explaining about the other thing.
We wait to see what happens next …