If you have digested the entire contents of this page and noted my comments regarding child teachers in the footnote, you will enjoy looking for a second time at the impromptu hypermarket lesson.
This time in the knowledge that, by the end of the following week, those lovely twin girls
WERE ABLE to TALK
to their teachers
Their teachers being the supergirl who took over my lesson that day, and her super supportive sister who was by her side as she gave it.
Explanation: the twins (living in Surrey) suffer from an impairment that I had never previously come across. They can speak normally with the family at home, but find it impossible to speak to anyone they don`t know extremely well. I have never heard them talk. Not one word. Which means....
Their teachers deserve medals for performing the cure in record time
after starting the course of treatment at the bridge and chess tables
in a Bophut hypermarket cafeteria
Not wanting to take the gloss of that story, it could not be classed as a miracle due to the fact that there is clearly a rational explanation. However, in my thinking, the final bridge story I am about to tell is a miracle. To this day, I have heard no rational explanation of how I came back from the dead.
In fact it was the one and only time in my life when I actually said to myself "That`s it. That`s the end. Goodbye...." before starting to recite the names of all the people dear to me. I hadn`t got far down that list before losing consciousness. In the sea, in the pitch dark, unable to shout for help any more.
The next thing I remember as I recovered consciousness lying on my back, was genuinely thinking I was in the after life. Until someone kneeling by my head said "Did you not see the Red Flag?" If I had not had an oxygen mask on and if I had my wits about me, I would have said something like " I suffer from colour blindness when I go for a twilight dip".
I remembered I had gone for a swim whilst waiting for the others to arrive for St Tropez bridge club`s annual dinner and dance at the restaurant on Pampellone beach.
The first miracle is that I lived to tell the tale, The second is that, the following day I was able to go with the other members of my St Tropez bridge team to play the regional finals of the Interclub comperition in Aix on Provence. Not only that, I played my best ever bridge for the two days and we qualified for the final in Paris a fortnight later.
I am not going to tell the whole story myself. Instead I am going to wait for one of the 80 plus bridge players at St Tropez to come forward and tell their version of what happened in the middle. How and why I came back to join the bridge party and prizegiving at 11PM. In only my hospital gown!
In the meantime I would say that the only explanation I can think of was that Buddha must have sorted it. I say that because my next outing after the weekend in Aix was to have a chat with a delightful lady* affectionately called "Vitamin". She ran a restaurant in the Port at St. Trop. When I told her the story, she suggested I go to Thailand to teach the kids bridge whilst I recover from the shock. Buddha will look after you, she said. So that`s what I did. To show the Thais the educational beneifts of bridge.
*Vitamin asked me to bring her back a present. I won`t tell you just yet what the present was that I bought in a Temple out there. The clue is that every Thai person knows which day of the week they were born - and I was required to tell the monk her birth day (as opposed to her birth date) to get it.