• She was bedridden falling a fall which broke her hip. X-rays showed that she had cancer of the colon which had already spreed. To my surprise I found her cheerful and free of pain, perhaps because of the small doses of morphine she was being given. She was surrounded by neighbours and friends who congregated at her bedside day and night. In this cosy, noisy, gregarious world of the "all-chinese" sickbed, so different from the stark, sterile solitude of the American hospital room, her life had assumed the astounding quality of a continuous farewell party.