Tuesday, 4 May 2021

Bank Holidays - Ciaran Murtagh

Everyone loves a bank holiday - or at least they should. I mean when else can you splash out on a £500 'essential' bank holiday hamper? 

Now maybe it's because I just can't conceive of a world in which that hamper will ever be essential, but I find them particularly hard, which is why this time of year is always a bit of a pain! 

Of course I love the excuse to spend more time with my family. But  - and I'm being VERY honest here - having home schooled a 4 and 6 year old for much of the year I feel I've spent quite a lot of time with them already! 

Quality time with my family always looks like this. Only one of the children should be crying and a relative will shortly announce they've become vegetarian and won't be eating the turkey. 

It doesn't help that there's still a limited number of places to go and quite frankly over the past 14 months we've done every walk, playpark and craft activity this sweet world has to offer. There's only so many times you can go on a nature trail in Croydon, and I'll be honest, where I live, you don't always want to encourage your kids to poke around in the bushes... 

Then there's the work stuff. I am a creature of routine. That's been hard enough over the past year or so with some kids going to school, some kids not going to school, my wife being in the house then not in the house... It's been building on shifting sands. The kids feel it too. The Easter holiday was peculiar for them - they were so happy to go back into school and then four weeks later they were housebound again. Nobody really knows where they are... 

Also, being self employed, my deadlines don't go away, I just have less time to try and make them! I'm not great at deadlines at the best of times, but give me a fighting chance. 

So yeah, bank holidays can jump in the sea as far as I'm concerned....unless you've got an essential bank holiday hamper for me - then I'm all yours! 

1 comment:

Andrew Preston said...

You can always tell a self employed person. They all seem to view bank holidays as a curse of the earth. As in, lost earning opportunity. 

I've never been to Croydon. I did a work stint in nearby Coulsdon, though, 35 years ago. An unlovely place. Or to be more exact, my workplace was rather unlovely. Netherne Hospital, aka the Surrey County Asylum. One of several mental hospitals built, as I recall, in what was then countryside areas, for inhabitants of London.

I, and a couple of other consultants bringing computers to an NHS Health Region occupied the former half way housein the grounds of the hospital. This was where residents/patients who were due to leave the hospital lived for a while, semi independently but with support.  I remember the bathrooms as like an instant introduction to Victoriana.

I also remember how I ached from carrying computers ( 'luggables', predecessors to laptops ) up and down the stairs. Ditto, the cell phone and it's arm stretching power pack.

Recently, I read that Netherne had been very much a favourite place for the lobomotization of patients. The words of the Netherne medical superintendant , Eric Cunningham Dax About how he selected patients...

" The operation was carried out with the primary object of relieving the most disturbed patients in the hospital quite independently of their poor prognosis. They formed a large proportion of the most violent, hostile, noisy, excited, destructive or obscene cases in the hospital; the type who distress their relatives, upset the other patients and consume the time and energy which could be put to so much better purpose by the staff.

Two died of cerebral haemorrhage, two were discharged (of whom one relapsed); of those remaining in hospital two-thirds had shown at least some improvement, needing less staff time and supervision. ".

Yummy.  Of course, no one would do all this nowadays, would they... ?   Mainly perhaps, because, from the little that tends to leak out from today's equivalent establishments, it seems that powerful drugs are used to zombify patients.