Goodbye to a pleasantly relaxing afternoon. Preparation.
Malcolm looked at his watch. It was almost two o’clock.
He covered his options again. It was an hour’s drive, or longer, getting around that lake and across to the Island, or... it was a ten-minute, kayak trip. It was too nice a day to waste driving anywhere, and his surgery was finished for the day.
He was still on-call for the hospital for a few more hours, but he was never that far away when he was on the lake. The difficult stuff didn’t happen until after things closed on a Friday evening, and the clubs and bars emptied. Even then, it was mostly minor.
With luck, he would have all weekend to himself.
He’d take the kayak.
The best fishing was on the other side of the lake, and farther up the channel, but one had to get out in the early morning to catch anything, so he wouldn’t take a fishing line with him.
He stripped off, changing quickly into a light shirt, shorts, sneakers (no socks), and picked up more medical stuff than he would need. It was better to be oversupplied, than under. He’d need various pliers and other assorted snips and cutters, just in case (he’d done this before), and other bits and pieces. He knew what was needed from long experience helping his father.
Fishhook piercings and other related injuries were common things in these parts, along with chainsaw injuries… usually very bloody… broken bones, axes in feet, toe and finger amputations in heavy equipment, falls, kicks from heavy animals; a goring or two. Every so often there’d be a tree fall on somebody.
‘Widow makers’…that’s what they were called… trees that got hung up on another tree, and then let go when they were not expected to. Then there were the usual, bashed thumbs.
Farming communities were very different from the city. Not many drug overdoses or gang problems, here. No rapes or murders. Lots of shenanigans. But that was true the world over.
She’d said she had a lot of fishhooks digging in. How bad could it be? Fishhooks were usually superficial and hurt like hell, but at least you didn’t stand much of a chance of bleeding to death. However, that was not the point. They were bloody painful, as he knew, firsthand, and could become infected.
As he moved around and got everything together to take with him, he ate the sandwiches his mother had left him for his lunch, and then drank the milk. She’d do a good dinner tonight. His mother still looked after her busy family very well.
He loaded his things behind the seat of his kayak, along with a light jacket and threw in a few bottles of water before skidding it down to the shore and launching it as he stepped into it.
Megan would give him hell after this, telling everyone how callous he was, getting fishhooks out of her without any consideration for how painful they were. That was her style. Complain, complain, complain. There was no way anyone could do anything right, around Megan Sinclair.
He’d smile and put up with it, like he usually did. All of that family could be difficult, but they carried a lot of baggage.
Maybe he should have just phoned the ambulance, and have it meet them there, for when he’d finished seeing to her.
Except… if he did that, he’d have to ride with her to the hospital. That would be another ordeal. He was the doctor on call until about six, and that was almost four hours away. His recreational break was quickly receding.
If he went in the ambulance with her, that would mean he’d have to leave the kayak over there, and he didn’t want to do that. It would soon disappear.
He’d deal with it by himself.