Saturday, June 5, 2010

Bob's shoulder

My ex-neighbor Bob (who has become one of my regular visitors at Gamone) has just dropped in to pick up his mail.

During his career as a top-grade rugby player, Bob received a lot of knocks. But none of those rugby incidents ever did him as much damage as his recent bicycle collision with a tractor. During the last month or so, while his fractured collarbone was mending, Bob has been constantly in pain, and he's still unable to move his right arm freely. His doctor has just learned from a scan that Bob's shoulder joint was smashed in the accident, and will necessitate surgery. Fortunately, an orthopedic specialist in nearby Romans was able to put Bob in contact with one of the leading European surgeons in this field, and he'll no doubt be undergoing an operation in the near future.

Knowing that he'll be out of action for a couple of months, Bob has asked me to search the Internet for information about computer tools in the domain of landscape gardening (akin to the computerized design tools used by architects). This was Bob's initial profession, many years ago, until his firm folded up. So, he's wondering whether his forthcoming convalescence might provide him with an unexpected opportunity of moving back into this kind of work. I'll do my best to provide Bob with useful information, because I've come to appreciate the rude but sympathetic common sense of this friendly guy.

Intellectually, it's a fact that we agree about almost nothing. Bob seems to believe in the antiquated biology of Jean-Baptiste de Lamarck, rather than that of Charles Darwin. Besides, he has always believed in various miraculous cures for rugby injuries. But our disagreements have become a regular pretext for splendid friendly debates, of an uplifting nature, on the sunny terrace in front of Gamone.

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