Showing posts from February, 2016

Dear Jeremy - the rhythm of a hospital

We are hanging in there, thanks for asking. I thought you might find it useful to see how actual users of the NHS find it, given that your experience of the NHS is through reports and spreadsheets rather than as an actual patient/family member.

Tuesday was Dave's first chemotherapy treatment.

As I walked around the hospital (the restaurant was in a different block than the oncology wards and I walked loads on Tuesday) it occurred to me that when you visit a hospital it's probably a bit of three-ringed circus. You and the Queen probably think hospitals smell of new paint and pine-scented disinfectant. When you go for your carefully controlled walk around, you are surrounded by a retinue that is ready to step in between you and something unpleasant that may come walking around the corner. You see a hospital at an arranged time, when corridors can be cleared of the riff raff. It's all a bit safe, isn't it Jeremy?

I am beginning to see the tides of the Norfolk & Norwich U…

What gets you up in the morning?

I had an email flurry with a long-standing friend of mine this morning. In and amongst the news catching up on, she asked me this question. It wasn't difficult to answer, but it's stayed with me since. 

I had intended to spend the day in my onesie, but the question got me up and writing in my journal, which I haven't done since the beginning of November. It got me dressed and kept me company as I mucked out the chickens and tidied up their area, something I've been meaning to do for a couple of weeks.

It's incredibly useful, being asked questions like that. It allows me to solidify my watery thinking and to mull over context and content. I've been doing an awful lot of feeling in the past few months, not a lot else. No writing, no thinking, no poetry, no art, no gardening. I have been looking after my house, looking after the cat, the chickens and me...and Dave when he lets me. 

But that question and thinking about the answer made me broaden my contracted feelings…

Dear Jeremy Hunt (again)

Further to my letter of 11th January 2016, I am writing to you once again to ask you to reconsider your political (and apparently, personal) stance on junior doctors and the NHS. 

Last year before the election, my friend Z and I discussed politicians and the way they were being vilified in the press. She believes that politicians, in the main are good people who try to make the best decisions they can for their constituents and that the press' treatment of them was very unkind. As you may deduce, she is a kind and gracious lady. Me? Not so much, but I am trying to be a reasonable human being when I write this. After all, you catch more wasps with honey than vinegar.

I wonder if you truly understand what it is to be afraid for someone you love?

Your wife, when you broke your leg, attempted to move heaven and earth to get you sorted. When she couldn't, she took to the press in a damning indictment of the service you received. The fact that she was trying to get help from the wrong …

No woman is an island...

This was the message that a few people have being trying to drum into my stubborn head in the last couple of weeks. Personally, I think Life has been taking a monumental dump on a lot of people around me and frankly, my problem shared is a problem doubled. But I took their point and have been leaning a little more on those around me.

Last Tuesday, I went for my New Patient check up in my new doctor's surgery. I've only been out in the Wilds for 18 months, I figured it was about time to organise my healthcare over. I got a bit of a shock when the nurse went through my stats. It seems I've been a little too successful in my comfort eating. Yes, my butt has become the size of a South American country. I have been meaning to get back to the gym, but struggled. I sat down, thought about it and signed up for a fitness class before I thought about it too much.

In the past, I've avoided fitness classes like dog poo on the pavement. Generally speaking, the ones I've gone to i…

Two tales about chickens

Things here are...well...challenging. I've responded by doing what I do best: hiding. I've become a little turtle pulled into my shell which for the most part has worked quite well. But I miss blogging. So here are two things my lot did, that had me roaring with laughter.

I think I told you Jenga discovered sex? He decided that he wants his three ladies and as many hens from Z's flock as he can get away with. Unfortunately for him, Cocky (his dad) has his number. When both flocks are out and about, I've seen them interact fairly reservedly. They puff out their chests, bob heads and then back off to chase hens. 

A couple of days ago, I went out to get them back in. I wasn't surprised to see my hens at the bottom of the garden, they like hanging about there to try and get into the walled garden to dig through compost heap, it's a veritable cornucopia if you're a hen. Z's flock were in their coop watching Jenga and Cocky have a set-to.

I've never seen a…