An everyday tale of trust folk, appearing fortnightly
Where is A&E exactly, wonders Greycoat. Now read on...
As if the merger shock was not enough, Greycoat had a second arrest when the red phone rang again. This time it was the minister's private office. After a few moments Greycoat threw down the phone and strode out purposefully. He'd moved too fast for me to hitch a lift, but a few seconds later he reappeared looking chastened and asked Miss Twix where the A&E department was. She said she wasn't sure, but wasn't it near the florist?
For 20 minutes I accompanied the Great Navigator through the hospital, following various signs - but without success. Eventually, he went into the road and waited for an ambulance to see where it went. When we found our destination we entered the casualty clearing station at Scutari.
Greycoat forced his way through the throng of harassed, but delectably stained, staff and wandering patients to seize a pimply youth.
He said he didn't have a clue who the Sister was, while thrusting a flat box at Greycoat and asking him to deliver this super-size pepperoni deluxe to a Mr Whinger. He then whizzed off on a motor scooter which he'd ridden inside.
As I tried to find a way inside the box, a light came into Greycoat's cold eye. 'Whinger? That's the very complainant I'm here to see!' Reinvigorated, he swept from cubicle to cubicle until Whinger was found, looking pale and drawn, wearing an examination gown back to front.
'About time too. Who are you?' said the grateful feeder. Greycoat introduced himself, only to be regaled with a story about coming in three days before to have a dressing changed and sitting in the cubicle ever since without a morsel passing his lips.
Greycoat said something about him being an overnight waiter and was corrected - overweek would be more accurate. As Mr Whinger stuffed his mouth so full he couldn't talk, the Grey One made his excuses and left. I stayed behind - this place was a banqueting suite.
A few days later a a cheque for£9.99 arrived from Whitehall enclosing a copy of a letter from Mr Whinger, saying how kind it was of the minister to respond to his complaint by ordering him a pizza and having it delivered by the chief executive. Greycoat seemed to think this was a result.