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Thursday, December 17, 2009

When I checked the address of one of my patients today, I found that she lived in a house called 'Qurna'. So being a very thorough healthcare professional (and a lifelong nosey parker), I naturally asked her why. She told me that she and her husband had first met in Iraq, many years ago, "back when it was still nice" (which is an outrageous slur on modern day Iraq, which I'm sure is delightful). They'd fallen in love on the banks of the River Tigris, where it meets the Euphrates, in one of the most oil-rich regions on Earth (and she should know - she probably owns most of it), which is thought by some to be the location of the Garden of Eden. So having moved back to this country and bought their own piece of paradise, they decided to celebrate their union by naming it 'Qurna' after the town where their romance began.

My parents have done a similar thing. They've both put the word 'Reading' on their glasses cases.

Anyhoo, on the subject of my parents, today is my Mum's birthday, so Happy Birthday to her. Unfortunately I haven't been able to send her any birthday wishes because I've been stuck all day in a hospital so remote that I can't get a mobile signal. I've been forced to chat instead to a gentleman who usually goes to Harley Street, a bloke who owns five hundred cows, and a small child who looked into my consulting room and announced to everyone outside that "the man's playing on his computer". I can't get away with anything these days.

I did, however, have the assistance of a hospital volunteer, who spent the day greeting people at the entrance, showing them to the waiting room, and telling them to "wait here until the optometrist calls you". Frankly they'll have a long wait. I can't believe she's been calling me an optometrist. Most people think I'm a doctor.

But on the subject of mad people who need doctors, Lisa had another nasty tumble last night. She's so unsteady on her pins, I'm thinking of getting her a CareLink button to wear around her neck. This time she went flying as she came out of the kitchen, took Amelie's safety gate with her, and hit her head on the side of the sofa, before landing face down on the floor. Well, on the safety gate. Which, by then, was lying on the floor. I'm gutted I didn't get it on film. By the time I'd picked up my camera, she was crawling across the carpet in tears, and I felt it would have been insensitive to press 'record'.

So having comforted Lisa on the sofa, and established that it wasn't quite as bad as the time she fell down a cliff, I spent twenty minutes on my knees with a spanner in my hand, reinstalling the child safety gate. At which point Lisa got up, went to get a biscuit, and did exactly the same thing again. Even Amelie learns a lesson faster than that.