Twenty Twenty Three

Christmas passed off nicely in our tiny corner of the north Norfolk coast. Sid’s interest in astronomy gathered pace after I told him that the stars flash and change colour during the festive season, and he picked up some agricultural experience as a shepherd in a local nativity play. Elsewhere, I thought the King did well in his first Christmas speech. I was still eating dinner when it started, so stood in the doorway to the front room so I could see the telly while leaning back into the dining room to chew when he was off camera, so as not to be disrespectful. At one point the dog acted in a potentially treasonous manner by barking at a wandering horse outside while he was talking, however, I suspect it was a republican horse and in any case King Charles is named after a type of spaniel so I am sure he wouldn’t have minded.

At work, I was able to tell patients that we’d got them a stent for Christmas, but we’ve kept the receipt in case it isn’t the one they wanted, and so forth. This was against the backdrop of the Training Mania outlined here and here, still raging like wildfire to the probable dismay of our Minor Injuries Unit, which deals with burns patients. As a shortlisted candidate, I have to present the school certificates I don’t have to the selection panel on Wednesday. There has been a great deal of to-ing and fro-ing in my quest to find these. Not getting a job because you make a mess of the interview is fair enough, but not getting the interview because your education authority no longer exists and there have been too many Bank Holidays to make alternative provision would be a bit annoying. I’d have to leave and be a social worker instead, and I don’t want to do that because at least when you deal with people in the hospital, there is a chance of them getting better.

The year closed with a blizzard of Star Wars Lego and an afternoon of classic war films with Sid, who thinks Hitler and Darth Vader are the same person. This did not prevent him from raising philosophical questions regarding the nature of good and bad during the Battle of Britain. Struggling to think of a definition that would make sense to someone who has just turned six, I focussed upon the difference between action and intent, which after all is the basis of law in a civilised country. Therefore, the German pilots are doing a bad thing but are not necessarily bad people, and so on. He seemed happy enough with this, pointing out that another way to tell the good guys is that they always play the badpipes, as per the arrival of the 92nd Highlanders in Waterloo. I agreed that, yes, this is probably true and, thusly armed, we marched into 2023.


Main: Badpipers arriving at the battle of Waterloo.

Top inset: Leads, for wearing in the room during procedures.

Lower inset: 05:30, and about to set off on the commute.

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