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     All the while, Mrs Pumphrey hovered anxiously in the background, ringing a dozen times a day for the latest bulletins. I dodged the questions about whether his cushions were being turned regularly or his correct coat worn according to the weather; but I was able to tell her that the little fellow was out of danger and convalescing rapidly.
     The word ‘convalescing’ seemed to do something to Mrs Pumphrey. She started to bring round fresh eggs, two dozen at a time, to build up Tricki’s strength. For a happy period my partners and I had two eggs each for breakfast, but when the bottles of wine began to arrive, the real possibilities of the situation began to dawn on the household.
     It was to enrich Tricki’s blood. Lunch became a ceremonial occasion with two glasses of wine before and several during the meal.
Mrs. Pumphrey's dog was improving day by day, but she was still worried about him because Tricki was very ill when he left her home. Mrs. Pumphrey frequently called the narrator after Tricki was admitted to the narrator's hospital to inquire about Tricki's health as she was not allowed to visit her dog for two weeks. She was always inquiring about Tricki's coats, beds, and other belongings, asking whether they had been changed for day and night accordingly, and if Tricki had been given the appropriate coat for the weather. The narrator's did avoid such questions and informed Mrs. Pumphrey that Tricki was no longer in danger and that his health was improving.
Mrs. Pumphrey hoped Tricki a rapid recovery because she couldn't bear being separated from her beloved pet. As a result, Mrs. Pumphrey started sending the narrator's hospital two dozen eggs per day because she thought that would nourish her dog, and indeed the narrator and his friends were each given two eggs for breakfast (provided by Mrs. Pumphrey). Mrs. Pumphrey then started sending in bottles of wine to boost the quality of Trickis' blood. Before lunch, the narrator and his partners had two glasses of wine, followed by a few more. Despite the narrator's warnings concerning Tricki's food restrictions, Mrs. Pumphrey sends meals to the narrator's hospital to be given to Tricki. Normally, people drink wine with their meals on ceremonial occasions, but with Tricki's presence at the hospital, the narrator and his companions, as well as the surgical assistant, etc. drank wine with their meals sent by Mrs. Pumphrey in the same way that they do on ceremonial occasions.
Meaning of difficult words:
S. No.
Convalescing A gradual recovery after illness
BulletinA short news report
AnxiousBeing worried and afraid
DodgeTo avoid doing something
National Council of Educational Research and Training (2008). Honeydew. A Triumph of Surgery - James Herriot (pp 1-6). Published at the Publication Division by the Secretary, National Council of Educational Research and Training, Sri Aurobindo Marg, New Delhi.