In the Hawkesbury Parish News this month, I was looking on the bright side of hospital visits.
Although I was not keen on the closure of Frenchay Hospital, every time I go to the revamped Southmead site, I find more to love about it.
When I went to visit a poorly friend today, entering the soaring light-filled atrium immediately made me feel more cheerful as I sought the right “gate” for her ward. Glorious paintings and photographs on the walls, with interesting notes from the artists and photographers, took my mind off medical issues. I felt as if I was about to jet off on holiday, or to enjoy a pleasant day at an art gallery, rather than spend time in hospital.
The most pleasing touch came at the end of my visit. As I was descending the stairs, I became aware of distant piano music, reminding me of posh hotel lounge bars. As if lured by an NHS Pied Piper, I followed the sound down the atrium until I discovered a grand piano, complete with live pianist, and a sign inviting volunteers to play for the benefit of others. It wasn’t just the music that moved me, but the generosity of the musicians who took the time and trouble to perform there for free.
For patients and visitors, such acts of kindness are a real tonic. It’s just a shame you can’t get them on prescription.
OTHER POSTS ABOUT HOSPITALS
Tour of Hope at Southmead Hospital (report on tour of research labs with JDRF)
Always Someone Worse Off Than Me (funny post about overheard conversation)