Rose felt shaky. “I’m frightened….I don’t know who I am or where I come from. I might remember in a few minutes and you won’t have to look at my bank details.”
The father shrugged his shoulders. “I was only trying to help.”
“Thank you. It was good chatting to you.”
Rose stood up, brushed the sand from her jeans and wondered away. She felt her heart beating quickly and tried to control it by taking slow, deep breaths.
She was not ready to discover who she was. What if she had run away from a bad relationship, or if she was in trouble with the police? What if she didn’t remember her family? Could she coped living with strangers?
She walked up to Main Street and went into the Holyrood Hotel to use the phone but it didn’t accept sterling coins.
She walked out into the street and saw a taxi parked there.
“Can you take me to the nearest hospital?” she asked the taxi driver.
“The Sheil Hospital is in Ballyshannon. Will I be taking you there?” he asked.
“Yes please,” she said, trying to sound confident.
She got into the taxi and tried not to panic as they drove to Ballyshannon.
“Now, here’s the hospital,” the driver pointed. “That’ll be five euros.”
"I haven’t got any euros,” she said, her voice trembling. “I’ve lost my memory and I have to see a doctor.”
“I’ll take pounds, then,” he told her.
She walked into the Accident and Emergency Department.
“I think I’ve got concussion,” she told a clerk at the reception desk. “I’ve lost…I’ve lost my memory.”
“Sit yourself down there,” the receptionist pointed to the seats in the waiting room to her left. “I’ll call you when a doctor is free.”
Rose sat next to a woman who was hugging a little boy. His left eye was bruised and swollen.
“I’ve been sitting here for an hour waiting to see the doctor. I wish they’d hurry up.”
“I know exactly what you mean. When I took my son to…to hospital in Enniskillen…I can remember!” she shouted as she stood up, attracting the attention of everyone waiting for the doctor. She didn’t care if they thought she was mad.
“Have you got a phone book?” she asked the receptionist.
“No but you can call the operator on this phone.”
Her hands shook as she held the phone and asked for the number of Mrs Rose M. Gribbon.
“You’re through,” the operator told her.
“Yes, I am through,” she thought.