Jeff

Wheelchair-Service1Rolling down the corridor on his wheelchair, Jeff paused by the first open door. His arthritic hands acting as brakes on the wheel rims as he maneuvered into the doorway.
“Ya coming down to the TV room, or what?” he asked.
“No!” came the stern reply.
He spun himself straight and continued down the corridor. Stopping at the next door. The door was slightly ajar. Reaching out with his foot, Jeff pushed at the door with the sole of his tartan patterned slippers. How he hated those slippers. He also hated the grey woolly cardigan, the brushed cotton shirt and the corduroys, he really hated those. Still he knew that he shouldn’t grumble, they were all given to him when he had to evacuate his home in the middle of the night.
He remembered how warm he felt, sitting in the middle of the road in late October, watching his home burning. They blamed him. Said that he was no longer able to look after himself. What did they know? And that’s why he’s here, kicking open doors of his fellow inmates.
“Whatdayowant?” came the sound of one of his toothless
“Haven’t you got ya god damn teeth in yet?” he asked.
“What’sit-tado-wiyo-arsonissst?” came the snarl from room.
He ignored the arsonist comment and returned to his recruitment. “Ya coming down to the TV room, or what?” he asked.
“No!” came the reply. The door was pushed back towards the frame.
It was the same routine every day. Jeff would go to each door, ask each resident to accompany him to the TV room, and each resident would turn him down.
Jeff sighed. As he breathed out he felt his nose run. He reached into the little woollen pocket sewn onto the outside of his grey cardigan and tried to retrieve a paper tissue. The tissue, already gummed with passed use, reluctantly came free. Jeff wiped under his nose with the tissue ball and plunged it back into the pocket.
With a hand on each wheel, Jeff leaned back and made the wheelchair pivot on the back wheels.
“Pack it in Jeff,” the voice of Vincent, one of the carers, boomed from the TV room at the other end of the corridor, where had been keeping an eye on Jeff.
The front wheels dropped back to the floor. Jeff sighed again.
“Never mind,” he thought, “I’ll be going home soon….”

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