At exactly 8:30 a.m. every day the phone rings.
The call has been triggered by a signal sent from his heart. Following his heart-valve replacement surgery, this heart message is his daily reminder to put the cuff on his arm and install the finger clip.
Then it is time for his morning walk.
His steps are measured and slow. There are no shadows today. A misting fog obscures all but the nearby overhanging branches. The path ahead is blurred, in part due to the affect of the unearthly grey shroud but also because he has forgotten his glasses.
This is a familiar path, an old path, one he has walked so many mornings before.
For three years now he has walked this path alone. Then it was hand-in-hand. Now, to steady himself, he leans occasionally, unconsciously on his cane.
A long journey they had shared together. But he did not long for those better days. For indeed it was those days gone by, those memories – the joy, the laughter, the heartache, the years – it was those days that made this day matter.
In returning home he would rest.
Tomorrow the phone would ring. It would be a reminder from his heart.
Then he would go for a walk. The way forward would be the way back, along the same, old familiar path.
It too would be a good day.
And then he would rest.