A head wound

The church yard of the Holy Trinity Parish Church was the setting for many World War 2 battles, with two groups of lads armed with broomstick rifles stalking each other through the bushes and long grass. During one such encounter I was ‘badly wounded’ by a ‘hand grenade’, probably a piece of brick or a large stone that actually did hit me on the head!

With blood streaming down my face, I was taken home. No-one was home so we went to Peggy Williams next door.

“I think we’ll have to get you to the hospital,” she exclaimed, when she saw the blood dripping off my nose. She grabbed a grubby tea towel from the sink to cover the wound and led me out into the street.

On the way, we were escorted by the rest of the gang who were obviously enjoying the drama. Lenny, Cliffy’s ‘retarded’ brother, was leading the procession with siren sound effects. Mam, who had been shopping, turned up just as the doctor was inspecting the wound.

“It will have to be stitched,” the examining doctor said gravely.

“Will it hurt?” I inquired nervously.

“Not much. Only one stitch,” he answered reassuringly.

Two weeks later I was required to front up again to have the stitch removed. My hair had grown since the accident and the nurse searched for the spot.

“There it is,” she said, talking to the back of my head. “How many stitches are there?”

“Only one,” I replied. The whole operation was completed in a matter of minutes and I was allowed to leave. Months later I asked dad to look at the ‘scab’ because it kept catching on the comb. He laughed. “The doctor was having you on about there being only one stitch. There’s no scab but I can see a couple of stitches that’re still there. I’ll get the scissors.”

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