Monday, November 13, 2006

I can't stop thinking about one of the strangest stories in the papers over the weekend. A couple, Lynda and Ian Gammons, went through a kidney transplant together (Lynda donating one of her kidneys to Ian) and now apparently he is turning into her - sharing her love of shopping, cooking and - hurrah - dogs. All things he says he 'despised' before. Although she tries to explain the shared hobbies by saying they're just spending more time together, and presumably he's pretty grateful to her for the gift of a kidney, they do admit that they even think the same thing at exactly the same time, something they put down to the memories held in cells. I love this quote from him:
"Strangely, my old tastes and interests haven't changed — now I just have extra dimensions. So I listen to Black Sabbath while I bake the scones and I still love bird-watching and rugby."
The first signs that something was changing apparently happened in the supermarket when he turned to her and said he was enjoying it, and did they need more eggs? I would have loved to have seen the look on her face. I know I'm generalising hugely here but have you noticed how many husbands just cling to the trolley for grim life in case they'll be asked for an opinion on washing powder, while their wives dart in and out of the aisles filling it up - a bit like a dog on a walk who covers twice the distance. Anyway, the possibilities with this story for character development in writing are endless. There's something particularly moving too about how, when they first met in school, he fancied her straight away because she carried a briefcase while the rest of the girls had satchels. It's all in the details, and surely only a matter of time before they make the movie.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

I am a kidney recipient and I inherited all the donor's food cravings. I thought I was crazy- and I mentioned it to many doctors and they just looked at me like I was crazy. However, a little over a year ago, after 16 years with my new kidney, I read a book called a Change of Heart. It discusses cell memory in depth and it talked about a group of kidney patients getting the donor's FOOD CRAVINGS! Wild!

Sarah said...

Wild indeed, anonymous. I hope at least they were good food cravings. I'll look out for that book.

Jan said...

Talking of detail ( the briefcase rather than satchel ) this reminded me...
See Anne Tyler's superb" Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant" where AT introduces Edith Taber, a schoolgirl who " carried a zippered notebook that wasn't the right kind at all, and over her skirt she wore what appeared to be a man's shirt, which no one had ever heard of doing. But she had thick black hair and the kind of gipsy look Cody liked; and he was also drawn by the proud and scornful way she walked alone to her classes...."
Anne Tyler is the mistress of character sketch ( almost literally a " sketch" ) Eg Mrs Scarlatti in the restaurant:" Mrs Scarlatti, as glamorous as ever, striding on rangy, loose-strung legs and tossing back her asymmetrical hairdo...."
Loose-strung legs?!?She's great.

Sarah said...

Ooo yes, I like loose-strung legs too. There's something about the asymetrical hairdo that gets me too!

Lynda Gammons said...

You're right - it was in the detail! I saw Ian in a pub - we weren't 'going out' together - and I 'knew' that we would get married and spend our lives together. He had his back to me (I was sitting down) He had the best bum in the world, very tight jeans and slim hips! This was in 1972 - and I can remember it like it was yesterday!

M.E Ellis said...

Bless you Lynda. That 'know' feeling is bizarre and very special--unexplainable.

:O)

Sarah said...

Thanks for dropping by, Lynda - so come on ... who would you get to play you in the movie? And which actor could possibly have a bum to compete with Ian's!!!!!
And yes, Shell - that 'know' feeling is unexplainable. Luckily it doesn't happen all too often - imagine the chaos if it did all the time!!

Anonymous said...

what a wonderful and bizarre story!! it is so surreal- a bit like stepfords wives!

Lynda said...

It's nearly three years since the transplant - when Ian received one of my kidneys. I am writing a book about our experiences - from when we met 'till now. Phew! it's hard work but very cathartic. The journey has been a tough one, made even tougher when Coloplast threw Ian out of work whilst he was recovering. The story is full of joy and laughter and is written to help others in a similar situation. It was wonderful that I was able to help Ian - in doing so I have also helped our two daughters - Emily 19 and Elizabeth 21 - keep their Dad. I do thank God for all that we have and will not let our story go unread. Lynda

Sarah Salway said...

That's great to hear from you, Lynda and I really do wish you all the best with the book. Will you email me - sarahsalway@gmail.com - if you come back and see this! Thanks

Anonymous said...

Life's a roller coaster,not a well ridden one, but a new one every day. Still writing our 'story'and life is good. Found 'Twitter'; what a great way to communicate with like minded souls.Also found Frampton Nature Reserve on the edge of the Wash - now that's what you call 'a little piece of Heaven in a crazy world'. Supporting Living Kidney Donation by helping others in the situation that we were in - only we didn't have anyone to talk to.
C'est la vie.
Lynda Gammons.