Sunday, 6 January 2013

The Waiting Room

The woman arrives at the appeal venue with a friend

Her face says that she's in a lot of pain

She walks very slowly, with a heavy limp, into the waiting room

And lowers herself into a chair very carefully

The clerk introduces herself to the woman

The clerk has what you might call a sunny disposition

Neither the woman nor her friend understand what the clerk is saying

So they agree to wait for the interpreter

The interpreter is late

The woman has to get up and move around and rub her back

Another - older looking - woman in the waiting room watches her do this

The older woman glances at the man next to her

And rolls her eyes to heaven

The interpreter arrives and introduces himself to the woman

He is very tall indeed

The clerk, via the interpreter, explains the afternoon's procedure to the woman

The woman, via the interpreter, asks the clerk various questions

The interpreter interprets

The older woman across the room tuts a few times

The conversation between the clerk and the woman goes on for about five minutes

The older woman across the room is thinking up something to say

It's really obvious

The interpreter and the woman share a joke

There is laughter

The older woman gets the clerk's attention

'Would I get an interpreter if I was Welsh or Scottish or something? I bet I wouldn't'

The older woman looks at the rest of the room for approval

The man next to her chuckles

The clerk smiles at her

'Yes of course; if you need one, we'll provide one'

The clerk turns back to the woman and asks her about her paperwork

The woman gets up from her chair again to rub her legs and back

The clerk asks her if she has any more questions before the hearing

The woman answers via the interpreter

The interpreter says:

'She says she has only one question and that is to God; she asks him to make her well again.' 

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