A poignant, gently humerous tale from the master storyteller Alan Bennett
All his life Midgley had felt he had disappointed his father. Given all the opportunities his father never had Midgley carried them like a burden, but when the phone call comes saying his father has had a stroke and is not expected to last the night Midgley determines not to let him down.
Mounting a vigil at his father's bedside Midgley is desperate to do this last thing right and be there if only to hold his father's hand when he dies. Then he feels he can start ('Start what?' says his wife. You're 39, '). And even with his father unconscious the battle between them goes on.
In his own inimitable style, Alan Bennett tells this funny and poignant story set largely in a northern hospital. Comedy is mixed with farce and family relationships are revealed in a throw-away sentence. The life and death struggle of father and son (with Aunt Kitty hovering in the background) is by turns comic and tragic - and always recognisably real.
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