Back when we were preparing to have the attic converted, we had a lot of stuff that needed to go into storage - books, videos, DVDs, CDs, stuff like that - and Max and Delores Jakubowski and very kindly let us put it in their shed. Now Max is closing Murder One, he needs the room for stuff from the shop. So our plan today was to do as many runs as possible between their house and ours, then go up to the RVC to visit Kuron, then do one more run, then go and see a friend of ours who needed her email connection sorting out. Busy day.
So we managed two runs in the morning and early afternoon, then went up to Potters Bar to see Kuron.
The Royal Veterinary College is actually just north of Potters Bar, near a place called North Mymms. It's nice out there - open countryside, winding roads, that kind of thing. The College is in a lovely setting.
Anyway, Kuron's not doing do badly. He still has anaemia. It's being caused, apparently, by his white blood cells attacking his red blood cells, and nobody knows why, although the infection caused by the abcess caused by the rotten teeth seems a likely suspect. Anyway, what they're doing is giving him medication to suppress his immune system so that his haemoglobin count can recover, and his bone marrow is actually making red cells again. Not in Cecil B de Mille crowd scene amounts yet, but it does seem to be coming back.
The downside of this is that he still has the infection caused by the abcess, and with his immune system deliberately compromised if the infection gets into his bloodstream he'll get septicaemia and it'll almost certainly be game over. So they're dosing him with mega antibiotics to try and sort that. The doctor said they're walking a very fine line here.
On the other hand, she was confident enough in his improvement that she was happy for us to take him home for a few days and take him back on wednesday for a consultation. And certainly he seems a lot brighter than he was, although he's been shaved in a bunch of new places, most startlingly around the eye that had swollen up.
We didn't feel confident about bringing him home, though. We're going to be out a lot of the weekend, the place is filthy and full of bags and boxes we've been bringing back from Max's, and Bogna can't get any time off to take him back on wednesday. Also, he's by no means out of the woods yet and if his condition worsens again there's no guarantee we could get him back to the hospital in time. So we decided to leave him in the care of the hospital. We spent an hour or so with him, and to be honest he seemed more interested in the doctor and the view out of the consulting room window than he was in us, but that's par for the course.
So we left the hospital and drove back down the winding roads towards Potters Bar. We'd gone about a quarter of a mile when I noticed a silver Mercedes or something backed into a field entry and a well-dressed couple doing something at the boot. I looked at them as we went by, then I looked out of the window on my side.
A moment later I looked back out through the windscreen and there was a hatchback with a number of people coming towards us. It was sort of sat down, as if the driver was braking heavily, and it was fishtailing across the road, and for just a moment it was coming straight at us.
The driver seemed to come out of the skid but as he passed us his nearside wheels went up on the verge, and the car took off. Bogna said it rolled twice, but I only saw it roll once. It clipped a hedge, rolled on its roof and whacked the silver merc before coming to rest upside down.
Bogna pulled onto the verge and called the police and ambulance, and by that time the cars behind us had stopped and people were running to help. The police and ambulance arrived very quickly, but by that time the driver and passengers of the hatchback had got out. One of them seemed to have hurt his legs, and one had some scratches, but thank god they all seem to have been wearing seatbelts, because nobody was killed. The couple beside the Merc must have seen the car flying towards them and got out of the way, because they were okay as well.
Anyway, Bogna gave a statement to the police and we left. We stopped off at home for a few minutes, then went on to Max and Delores to grab another batch of stuff, then on to our friend to sort out her email. Then home.
I don't know how fast the hatchback was going; I didn't see it coming, the accident was already happening when I first saw it. According to Bogna everyone in it was teenaged or early twenties, but that doesn't automatically mean he was going too fast. The speed limit on that road, I think, is forty miles an hour, and whether that would put enough energy into the car to make it take off and roll in the air at least once, I don't know. I'm just glad there seemed to be no serious injuries.
But he missed us by that much.