My Christmas Present

Jimmy was my last patient of the day today. He is a very simple man. His orange hair was heavily slicked forward into a long fringe that almost extended over his left eye. It was gelled so liberally that it clumped together, exposing his scalp between the streaks of hair.

He was already lying face-down on one of the three tables in the treatment room, relaxing, in preparation for his adjustment. A knelt down beside him and introduced myself.

“Jimmy! How are you? My name’s Ara”
He raised his upper torso from the table to greet me and his wide smile of genuine sincerity revealed a mouth full of elongated, rotting teeth, whose orange colour matched that of his hair.
“Very nice to meet you,” he said in a thick Northern Irish accent, his bulging eyes rippling the skin across his pale, middle-aged face. I detected a faint whiff of manure emanating from his person and so I assumed he must be a farmer – a common job in these parts.

He didn’t have any particular spinal issues – he was just in for a check-up – so I made some small talk as I adjusted him.

After I finished he got up off the table and there were big smiles all round. He was happy with the adjustment he received, and I was happy with the adjustment I gave him – and he was very impressed and saddened that I’m only a temporary doctor. He shook my hand in thanks and I led him to the front desk where I would finish noting the particulars of his treatment on his file.

As I scribbled the treatment notes in the tiny allocated box with shrunken writing, I noticed that - following my handshake with Jimmy - my fingers were a slipping a little upon my contact with my pen. It felt a little like moisturiser -not something I would have pictured Jimmy using, but there you go.

I continued scribbling as Jimmy paid my receptionist for his treatment and booked his next appointment.
“Are you all finished for Christmas now,” asked Michelle from behind the reception desk.
“I’ve just got to go in in the mornings - the bulls still need to be fed," replied Jimmy. "I do artificial insemination, you see.”

I couldn’t hear the rest of their conversation as I was in the bathroom, furiously washing “moisturiser” from my hands .

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