This blog is about the NHS and kidneys, mostly mine. I have three, two of which are the size of walnuts and getting smaller every day. On the popular UK nut size scale, the next comparison will probably be a brazil, then a hazelnut, then a pine nut and finally the consistency of ground almonds. What’s that you say? Almonds are FRUIT? That’s the kind of craziness that makes life worth living. The third kidney was my father’s. He fearlessly gave it to me in 2001, right at the point that mine pretty much gave up on filtering toxins from my blood – lazy little fuckers. Lucky timing? No, we had been working up to the inevitability of transplant since 1999, when their underperforming was first diagnosed with a prognosis of slow decline leading to the medical term ‘completely knackered’. Now, nearly 13 years on, I’m looking at partying with the NHS surgeons once again, as my dads begins to run out of puff. It’s done sterling work, seeing off all manner of viral nasties, bacterial onslaught and toxic high-dose medications but it was never going to last forever. Of course, there’s a waiting list for a new or more accurately a part-worn used replacement. Here’s hoping that someone with a good match dies – in the nicest possible way of course – or a friend or relative steps bravely into the flickering NHS spotlight and says ‘take mine, after all you are my brother’. Hang about, the relative who says that would have to be my sister. Damn, if only I had one. Hang on, I have! And she’s going to give it a go. Good on ya Sis. Of course, it’s not entirely one-sided and altruistic, donation is a two way street. In return, I’ve bought her a ticket to see Roger Waters next month. A trade of equal measure I’m sure she’ll agree.
And the good news?