neighbours observed – Ahmad

Ahmad is heavy set, slow, cantankerous and diabetic. His left foot has turned dark, almost completely black and he walks with the aid of a stick. Dr Gan has him on a strict diet and some medication but Ahmad’s not fond of limitations or pills and says he wants to enjoy what’s left of his days and not be confined to ‘rabbit food and nasty friggin chemicals.’
‘I’m eighty,’ he says. ‘Don’t i have a point?’
‘You do,’ i say because it’s what he wants to hear.
‘As long as i can get out of the house and walk to the coffee shop without anyone’s help i’m doing OK. The day i can’t go for coffee and sit and chat with my pals will be the end for me. If i can’t do that, what’s left? I’m not asking much, just the chance for coffee and a chat. Anyway, them doctors don’t know shit.’
He looks at me and says, ‘What do you think?’
‘You have to look after your foot,’ i say.
‘You always say that,’ he says, ‘but what’s the use? One of these days they’re going to tell me they have to cut it off. I know they’ll tell me and when they do i have my answer ready, i’ll tell them fuck off. Anyway, i wouldn’t survive the operation. I arrived with all my pieces and i’m going out with them all, black foot or no black foot, and if you were me you’d be the same.’
He leans on his stick and sets off for the coffee shop, a five-minute walk for me, thirty for him.

31 thoughts on “neighbours observed – Ahmad

  1. Brother John – We all know an “Ahmad” raging against the limitations of life and of aging. Indeed we all have a little “Ahmad” in us, too. Though logic would indicate following the doctor’s orders, I still have to respect Ahmad’s choice and not think less of him.

  2. Wonderful observation, John. I’m with Ahmad here: I’d hate to find myself beneath the wheels of a bus thinking: “Shit, I wish I’d eaten that vanilla slice after all.”.

  3. Beautifully written, John. Ahmed came alive on the page and I do admire his spunk and his clarity. That final phrase, ” a five minute walk for me, thirty for him”, said it all and said it well.

  4. He sounds very familiar to me, John! The only sad thing about it is I’ve seen people like this completely change their mind when the rubber meets the road…and they suffer a huge emotional loss!
    Hope you have started a super week 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.