In 2013, my daughter, Ella complained about having a sore hip. She lagged behind as we walked around Disney World in Orlando for three weeks. Vicky shouted over her shoulder “It’s growing pains. Get a move on”. When we got home she was taken in to hospital and underwent surgery to have a pin inserted in her hip.

In 2016, I told Vicky, that due to severe stomach pain, I was going to see the doctor.  She replied “that is a waste of NHS time, you need to eat more fruit and vegetables”. Twelve hours later I was in hospital having my appendix removed.

Last night I expressed concern about the blister which had appeared on my heel, following the eight mile walk I did on Sunday in preparation for the West Highland Way. Vicky looked at it and said “It’s fine”. I gulped, Ella went white, if Rebecca had been there she would have drawn a picture of a man getting his foot amputated.

On previous walks, my sister, Christine has been there to repair and reconstruct feet which are in tatters at the end of a day’s walking. Christine isn’t a medic by any manner of means, she is in construction, but she applied the principles of repair and reconstruction she practised in her day job with great effect. Sadly she can’t join us this time. So without Christine, who will we turn to for those running repairs? As I cast my eye down the list of the walkers, one named sticks out. Judy, Edward’s sister. Why? because she is trained in medicine.

Well sort of.

She is trained in vetinary medicine.

Surely the same rules apply? I have never heard of a gazelle having a blister (I still like to think of myself as a gazelle, although others may disagree), but there must be some transferable knowledge.

I think the first thing to do is to make sure she is aware that she doesn’t need to shoot us with a tranquilliser gun prior to treatment, going down on all fours isn’t entirely necessary, and the best place to take someone’s temperature is, in fact, their mouth.

And no approaching anyone from behind wearing rubber gloves. Under any circumstances.

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