Hovis’ Friday diary: the hole in my foot is SO big it needs its own address

Dear diary,

Well I’m still here! The Hoverine still flies forth! Well more like hobbles at the moment, but this is more about the symbolism rather than reality, right?!

My latest adventure started very, very, very early on Monday morning when a slightly stressed looking mothership awoke us from our dreams of Burghley stardom (well that’s what I dream about, I can’t speak for my fellow equines — I’m not a shrink) and demanded I not only get up, but that I willingly enable her to clad me in my robo-horse outfit and shove me onto a lorry when it was blacker than Mark Zuckerberg’s bank balance outside. I’ve got to be honest; I was less than keen.

By the time the lovely Frances from Equi-Move had arrived, the worst of the swearing and fighting was over, and mum was wearing the slightly smug look of a woman who had single handedly wrestled 750kg of extraordinary equine into submission. In my defence, she used polos and a sleight of hand that would have had David Insane crying into his glass box for a month in envy. I had the last laugh though — I do wonder how long it took her to notice the snot trail up the back of her left leg?

Anyway, we headed out without incident and up to the lovely resort of Rainbow, where I was off loaded into a large double box with en-suite and a nice view of several attractive-looking females. All was good. Until I noticed the “starve until” signs. Like what in the name of haylage was that about? NO food?! I made my discontentment very loudly known until mother suggested that they were likely to knock me out again if I carried on. Remembering the chains, the bondage and the hangover from the last time, I refrained from loud customer service complaints à la American style and opted for a more British approach of glaring and lofty disapproval — clearly some of mother’s traits are wearing off on me…

Next thing, the very nice surgeon had arrived and I was made to run up and down outside, naked I might add — NAKED — in like minus 200 degrees. I refute all suggestions I nearly fell over my own feet because I was perving at a very fine-looking mare who was throwing a hissy about being lunged in the pen across the driveway, and point out that I was being a gentleman and gently jogging to allow the lovely assistant to look fit next to me rather than be dragged in my wake like a kite in a hurricane…

Next thing I know, I’m in the theatre (and I’ve got to be honest, I didn’t see either the stage or the curtains) and the nice surgeon had suddenly turned into a lunatic with a saw and is carving holes in my foot like a woodpecker with a migraine. I mean I’m all for helping others and all that, but was there any need to build a full on mouse hotel inside my foot complete with impressive ceiling height double doors? The hole in the front of my foot is that big it needs its own address and the gaping chasm in the bottom of my foot will be seen from space every time I take a snooze. It’s really not subtle people.

Anyway, the upshot of this industrialised excavation was that there was no Kevin. Not a sniff of a Kevin the Keratoma. No, instead I had a Mervin. Mervin the mystery mass. Now according to mother (who let’s face it, is prone to over-exaggeration and a penchant for using the English language more enthusiastically than a toddler with finger paints — and with about as much talent to be honest), Mervin looked like Slimer’s slightly smaller and less green cousin. I think the word “snot” was used. Which is delightful and a little lacking in delicacy. Mervin has gone for tests to try and ascertain his ancestry, which then no doubt mother can call into question. Loudly. Especially when she sees the bill for his eviction. I, in the meantime, am left with a foot that could feature on Grand Designs or DIY SOS depending on your point of view.

On Tuesday I was fitted with a new shoe and something called a hospital plate. Sadly it doesn’t appear to come with food — something I blame mother for because when she was asked what I liked to eat she was heard to quote “as little as possible”. This was met with approving looks from these health freak vets and a look of unmitigated horror from me. I had a cannular in my foot to flush me with antibiotics — which did sound like an amazing spa treatment until they walloped a needle the size of Dogtanian’s sword in my leg — I am wondering about my choice of hotel it’s fair to say…

That was removed yesterday, and I’ve moved to oral antibiotics which sounded much more pleasant until it became clear it’s the same caramel-smelling gloop they gave me after my eye operation and “oral” means “be wrestled into submission by a nurse with a determined glint in her eye and a syringe of gloop down my throat”. They also tried removing my hospital plate and repacking my foot without sedating me — something I bore with the fortitude of a real man, if only because I do worry what they do to me when I’m in la-la land. It equally lulls mother into a false sense of security so that the first time she tries to do it at home alone, my attempts to put her through the barn door will be much more comical.

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All things being well, by the time you read this, I will have been signed off to come home, which is currently scheduled for Friday afternoon. I have a long road ahead with a lot of box rest in the immediate side of it, but Mervin has been evicted and all is reasonably well. To be clear, I’m fine — mother’s nerves, bank balance and sanity? Slightly more questionable.

My thanks to all the team at Rainbow, who have been very lovely, but I am thinking of perhaps taking my holidays somewhere else next year. Somewhere with a little more grass and a little less likely to maim my body parts in the name of science…

Next week I have news for you all, which will possibly change my life forever, but I shall save that for next week. This week it’s all about my manly heroics and manly fortitude in the face of overwhelming adversity — send sympathy presents and hot mares (I need nursing) as soon as possible.

Laters,

Hop-a-long Hovis

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