After a rather uncomfortable invasive procedure - and an associated sharp decrease in food intake - I have been feeling even weaker and achier than usual this week. For the first time in a while, I've been using my walking stick.
It's quite amazing the difference it makes. No, not to my ambulatory discomfort, though the improvement there is considerable; to my image. People hold doors open for me. Bus drivers wait for me to sit down. Gangs of hooded youths who last month were loitering menacingly, now part respectfully to let me pass. The sheer volume of respect is palpable. No fashion choice, no body shape, and no real-world achievement has ever afforded me such an improvement in street status.
Needless to say, the temptation to continue carrying the stick after I strictly need to, is now strong. I am always uncomfortable with, and suspicious of, melodrama... but I can't ignore the benefits I have seen, and I'm going to feel the loss if I surrender them.