Thursday 26 November 2009

Looking For An Oasis Of Calm

One of my pupils has just been to Tunisia with her parents - and kindly brought a postcard back for me. It is the sort of picture that cries out for a caption, don't you think?


What do you call a camel with three humps? **

Oooh, it makes you want to spit!

          Don't I look cool in these Ray-bans?

Actually, I think they are pondering on the feeble nature of human beings who cannot go for very long without liquid. This morning I was due for a blood test - so was told not to have anything to eat or drink from 8pm last night. The very fact of being forbidden stuff made me crave food and drink even more!

Things got further complicated at 9.30pm last night, when we heard from Steph that she was about to go into hospital, as her condition was even worse than it had been at 1.30am on Monday. I knew I had to be sensible, and not leap into the car and hurtle 100 miles down the motorway - but my three usual sources of reassurance [ prayer, hugs from Bob and many cups of tea] were limited to just prayer-and-hugs.

alarmclock Then this morning [probably because I didn't sleep well] I overslept the alarm and was almost late for the appointment.

I am happy to report that the intravenous antibiotics administered at St Thomas' Hospital have done their stuff, and she should be back at her place shortly. I am extremely grateful to her big sister, boyfriend and housemate who have all been very supportive, and not only looked after Steph this week but also kept me up to date with medical bulletins.

I am also grateful for the British NHS- in the past seven days, between us, Bob, Steph and I have notched up two doctor's appointments, two lots of blood tests, a physio session, a chest X-ray, two prescriptions, and a hospital stay - with minimum waiting and minimum financial cost. We must never take this sort of thing for granted - I am acutely aware that many of my friends in other parts of the world either have to foot the bills for medical care themselves - or do not even have access to the facilities available to us  [As far as I am aware, the fourth member of the family, Liz, is fit and well, and I am praying she stays that way!]

thanksgiving Thinking of our healthcare v. the American system, prompts me to say Happy Thanksgiving to all my friends 'Over There' - may the holiday time you spend with your loved ones be truly happy and blessed.

Now I am hoping that things will quieten down a little over the next couple of days - my texting thumb is quite exhausted from tapping out frantic messages to the family. And the car passed its MOT test without having anything extra done [hallelujah!] and I found all the things I mislaid earlier in the week [housekeys, folder of schoolwork, library books...]

And finally, a camel joke, before I prepare a meal [and yet another pot of tea]...

A mother and baby camel are talking one day when the baby camel asks, "Mum why have I got these huge three toed feet?" The mother replies, "Well son, when we trek across the desert your toes will help you to stay on top of the soft sand". "OK" said the son.

A few minutes later the son asks, "Mum, why have I got these great long eyelashes?" "They are there to keep the sand out of your eyes on the trips through the desert" "Thanks Mum," replies the son.

After a short while, the son returns and asks, "Mom, why have I got these great big humps on my back??" The mother, now a little impatient with the boy replies, "They are there to help us store water for our long treks across the desert, so we can go without drinking for long periods."

"That's great Mum, so we have huge feet to stop us sinking, and long eyelashes to keep the sand from our eyes and these humps to store water, but... Mum?" "Yes son?"

"Why are we in London Zoo?"

My blog layout has inexplicably altered itself - I shall have to sort this out later. Apologies to any people trying to find things here!

** Humphrey of course!


  1. I'm so glad Steph is okay.
    Thank you for the Thanksgiving wishes. We had a very foody day!

  2. Love the camels and their attendant jokes. Sorry to hear about all the family illnesses, but I'm so glad that things are sorting themselves out. We have been very well cared for by our French health system this year, but we are conscious that this is partly because Ben is in work and has health insurance through his company. For us, French health care is even better than British, but for a family struggling to get by, the NHS is truly a God-send which is not replicated in France.

  3. So glad to hear that the antibiotics are doing their job. It is always such a worry when one's children are far away and unwell.
    Love the camels!

  4. Glad that you are all on the mend. With reagrd to the fasting - I am always challanged by my Muslim neighbours who fast for up to 20 hours in the summer time here with not even a sip of water and they do it daily for weeks. Whenever I ahve tried it I always give in to the odd sip of water when its hot. (mind you I also enjoy the feast when they break the fast each night)

  5. I hope Steph is recovering well, Please send her my love.
    I love the postcard, great poses.

  6. I am much better, thanks to housemates making me tea, a sister bringing me magazines, a boyfriend bringing me chicken soup, and wonderful parents putting up with me phoning at all hours of the morning! plus some very lovely nurses at the hospital - I'm pretty much back to health now, thanks!


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