But that doesn’t mean he can’t put on a brave face.
The “Stay with Me” singer, 22, posted a fierce image of himself on Instagram Thursday sporting a hospital gown, peace sign and steely gaze in a pic he simply titled “Hospital Selfie.” A second image, which features Smith with a nurse, is captioned “Flying.”
Last week, the British crooner announced he was preparing to have surgery on his vocal cords, an operation that will force him to stay completely silent for three weeks and leave him unable to sing for six to eight weeks. The news comes after he had to cancel his Australian tour due to vocal cord hemorrhaging.
“Bad news. I have my operation booked for next week, so getting really nervous. But by doing this in 8 weeks time I’m gonna be able to sing like never before so it’s worth it. I am so sorry to all. Dreading the next month,” he captioned a text image he posted on Instagram last week to explain the need for the procedure.
On Wednesday, Smith was spotted doing the tourist thing on a stroll through the Boston Public Garden. He headed down Newbury Street, best known as the city’s shopping mecca, and up the escalator at the Shops at the Prudential Center. Clad in sunglasses, black jeans and a black shirt with an army green bomber jacket, Smith took selfies with fans who asked him for pics along the way.
“He was quiet but still warm,” said Elizabeth Auguste, who spotted him on Newbury while she was babysitting. “He said that he would take the picture for me, because I was holding the baby.”
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When the wind started to blow and her stroller started to roll away, she said the quick-acting singer was there to catch it – and address the issue with a cute Britishism.
“He said something like ‘Your pram is getting away,’ ” Auguste told PEOPLE.
Although Smith hasn’t confirmed he is undergoing the procedure in the city, Boston is home to throat surgeon Dr. Steven Zeitels of the Massachusetts General Hospital Voice Center. He has treated John Mayer, Adele, Steven Tyler and Roger Daltrey for similar afflictions in the past.