Ruth Kidane has become one of the most familiar faces at Barnet Hospital in North London
The 21-year-old man, who has a weak and degenerative muscle disorder, is very happy here and loves staff.
"They are brilliant," he said in a barely audible voice when we met this week.
Ruth was limited to a wheelchair and sometimes had difficulty breathing, eating, swallowing and even talking, all of which she faced with calm endurance.
It is impossible not to warm himself to Ruth, or to fail to be moved by his mother's devotion, 50 Mimi Tebeje, who is always present at his side.
But behind the undeniable distress of Ruth's everyday existence is another story.
One who has inflamed public opinion, angered the patient group, and put Ruth, his mother and Barnet Hospital at the center of the controversy.
The reason is this: for the past 15 months, Ruth and Mimi, who are from Ethiopia, have been living in hospitals.
& # 39; Life & # 39; it might seem like a strange word to use here, but actually this is an accurate word.
Ruth, you see, is not a patient. Not really. A patient is someone who needs medical care or care.
Ruth is disabled but she is not sick. Twice a week, for example, he goes to college, where he learns basic English and mathematics, and he enjoys his days with his mother, who sleeps next to her in a rollaway bed in an en suite room on a public ward that must be used to treat really sick.
How did this funny situation occur? The simple answer is that Ruth was initially treated at Barnet Hospital with respiratory problems after arriving in London in July last year and, within a few weeks, was declared eligible to be dismissed.
Under normal circumstances, of course he will. But Ruth and Mimi, who lived in Grimsby before coming to London, claimed they were homeless and had no place to go.
Hospitals can obtain ownership orders to expel patients from bed, but the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Barnet, has chosen not to issue legal proceedings.
So, more than a year, Ruth and Mimi are still guests & # 39; at Barnet Hospital at the expense of taxpayers – and will, apparently, for the foreseeable future.
Their application for social housing in the area had been rejected and they refused to return to Lincolnshire, where the council had offered them a new home.
Understandably, the case has caused public unrest when the beleaguered NHS is being stretched to its limit.
The average daily cost of a hospital bed, according to the Ministry of Health, is around £ 400 – to £ 12,000 a month.
That means the cost, to date, to accommodate Ruth is around £ 180,000.
More seriously, the disaster must result in patients being rejected by hospital beds.
Back at Grimsby, where the family was accommodated after being granted asylum from Ethiopia 16 years ago, some of them who knew Mimi believed he was only playing the system. to live in London.
His older daughter, who left Grimsby to the capital several years ago, is based in London and has just given birth.
"No, no, no," Mimi insisted when the accusation was playing on the system. TV stations and newspapers have all tried, unsuccessfully, to interview Mimi since the scandal was revealed earlier this week, but she chose to talk to Mail about the events that had pushed her and Ruth into the spotlight.
"I understand why people are angry," he admitted. & # 39; This is a ridiculous situation, I know.
Many sick people are waiting for beds. I just don't feel I have any other choice. We had no place to go and Ruth would be on the road if we were forced to leave. & # 39;
He acknowledged his former home in Grimsby – a specially adapted bungalow on a new estate where there is a four-year waiting list for properties – & # 39; very good & # 39; and she has no complaints & # 39; about the accommodation itself.
They left, he said, only because they were subjected to racial harassment and abuse in the city.
The police, however, have notified authorities in Barnet that there is no risk at this time & # 39; for Ruth and Mimi at Grimsby.
This information was buried in correspondence about their difficulties that Mimi gave me during our meeting.
However, he insisted they would never set foot on Grimsby again.
"It's no use," he said, "because we will be in the same position as before."
Whatever the truth, it may not be true that a room at the frontline NHS hospital has become slightly more than B & B. Ruth and Mimi receive three times a day, but there is no medical treatment. A nanny helps Mimi get Ruth out of bed.
Sister Ruth visited regularly and washed them. Posts are sent to their rooms. Most of their property is stored in Grimsby.
They have several changes to clothes, and Ruth also has books for her courses.
Amazingly, he recently enrolled at Barnet and Southgate College and nearby Mimi, accompanying him on buses to and from campus on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Their various visits are recorded on social media.
"Me and Mum go to town," said Ruth on Instagram. "We are looking for a summer dress for Mother. He said let's go to H & M so we go. I find more that I like. & # 39;
But Ruth, who hopes one day to work in the fashion world, hardly says a word of herself during the interview lasting several hours at a coffee shop near Barnet Hospital this week.
You certainly have to be hard-hearted not to sympathize with this young woman, who was born with cruel paraparesis that has been hereditary, and the burden that she bears on her mother.
It is also true that, after coming to England in 2003 and finally being granted asylum in 2008 – because Mimi said her family is no longer safe in Ethiopia – some countries can do more to help them – something that Mimi does not seem to always fully do. appreciate.
He could not understand why they were not automatically offered suitable accommodation at Barnet, even though they did not have a connection & # 39; with the borough. (Local connections are one of the requirements to be placed on social housing.)
Ruth was six years old and her sister was 11 when they first arrived on this beach after the death of Mimi's husband.
He once worked as a chef at a hotel in Addis Ababa, but stopped working to become Ruth's full-time caregiver when they were accommodated at Grimsby.
Over the years, Mimi and her family have lived in a series of board properties and received benefits, he said, around £ 1,400 a month, along with a van equipped with wheelchair lifts.
The newest property, on the development of mixed social and private housing, which they entered at the beginning of last year, has a front room and a combined kitchen equipped with a new beech unit, a defective sofa, double glazing, a rear garden surrounded by tall wooden fences and a courtyard front and parking lot.
Mimi shows off her garden photos on Facebook, encourages a friend to joke: & # 39; It looks beautiful you have to come and do my garden Mimi lol x. & # 39;
In fact, Mimi now said, she and Ruth were often too afraid to leave because of the racial violence they suffered.
He says they are called names (this black or that. N *****. Return home & # 39;) and even spit on the road.
"Sometimes I'm always awake at night just to hold Ruth's hand when she sleeps," Mimi said. "I started to close the curtains during the day."
Humberside police confirmed that Mimi had made & # 39; a small number of claims regarding anti-social behavior and alleged racial harassment & # 39; but said & # 39; no suspects were identified & # 39 ;.
His friends, neighbors, and disability support groups who belong to him, however, do not have any feeling about any harassment.
"I'm a private person," Mimi explained. "I don't know who to trust and does not tell people in the caregivers."
The incident, he said, which convinced him to leave Grimsby, occurred in the early hours of July 8 last year, when a stone was thrown through a French door window behind their house.
That was the culmination, he said, of a campaign of intimidation by a group of white boys who used to throw stones and eggs at their bungalows.
Residents on the cul-de-sac said there was a problem with a group of youth, but they were not aware of Mimi and Ruth was targeted, or that their behavior was racially motivated.
The next day, he took drastic action; Mimi threw some clothes into the suitcase and fled with Ruth on the train to King's Cross.
Those who knew Mimi would say that she had not kept secret that she wanted to move to London because her oldest daughter, who lived there, had just given birth. Mimi denied this was the reason for their dramatic departure.
They went to London, he said, because it was & # 39; a multicultural city & # 39; where Ruth will be safe.
Once they arrived at King's Cross, they took a black taxi and asked to be taken to the nearest hospital.
Mimi explained that Ruth was traumatized by what happened at Grimsby.
He could not speak, he said, and had difficulty breathing.
"We were taken to the Barnet Hospital and we went straight to A & E," Mimi said. "Ruth was shocked and I told them that she couldn't answer, she couldn't talk about anything."
Ruth was admitted to the Medical Short Stay Unit (MSSU) – how ironic the name is today – and Mimi slept beside her in the chair. After a month, Ruth is ready to leave the unit. The trust declined this week to answer Mail's question about Ruth on the basis of patient confidentiality.
Initially, Mimi said, the staff tried to persuade her to put Ruth in care but her daughter began crying at the prospect of being separated from her mother and begging: "Mother, I don't want to go anywhere without you."
The decision was finally made to move Ruth to the general ward on the top floor. He was assigned as a social worker and a lawyer – an action that is almost guaranteed, in many situations, to extend any problem.
Ruth will be the most controversial example in the note of what is known as "bed blocking" & # 39; – a term usually used to describe the delay in dismissing elderly patients from the hospital when there are difficulties in managing social care.
Research by several leading universities, including Oxford, found that up to 8,000 people die each year due to blocking of beds on the NHS ward. Lack of beds for patients who need urgent surgery often leads to cancellation of surgery.
The hospital obtained 413 ownership orders to move patients from bed in 2016.
Rarely can there be more emotional cases than Ruth Kidane. He remained in the general ward, in a six-bed bay, for the next 11 months before being transferred to the side room where he and his mother are now.
How are they still there?
Initially, they were given keys to a temporary flat in Barnet, but the front door was too narrow for Ruth's wheelchair and it was later considered inappropriate for Ruth's defective needs.
Barnet finally decided that Mimi could not be placed in the area because he made himself homeless in Grimsby.
Also, at first, he can return to Grimsby even though he wants it. Mimi's benefits were cut when he moved out of town but he continued to be a registered tenant on his board property for the first six months.
This means he has to pay debts for unpaid rent, making him not eligible for other board accommodation.
The North East Lincolnshire Council, the authority that includes Grimsby, has now accepted & # 39; they have a legal obligation to provide accommodation & # 39; for Ruth and her mother and has & # 39; suitable properties available & # 39 ;, but, at the time of writing, both Ruth and Mimi have responded to their message.
But we know they won't return to Grimsby.
Mimi, for her part, said that she had conveyed all correspondence to her lawyer, who refused to help explain the process. "This is an ongoing problem so I will not comment on this case," he told us.
Only the highest optimists will think it will stop being & # 39; ongoing problems & # 39; in the near future.
Additional reporting: Stephanie Condron