Jacquies Rant Page

Blogging the world from the middle of Norfolk.

Thursday, February 12, 2004
Health...again! This time not mine.
I am so angry on behalf of a friend. She has a bad skin rash on face, neck and chest and went to our 'wonderful' surgery on Monday. Instead of referring her to a skin specialist, she was given anti-histamines and told to come back after 2 weeks if it didn't clear up. This morning on the 'phone she is tearful and clearly very stressed.The rash is worse and she doesn't feel like getting out of bed. She is also reluctant to go back to the doctor because he said to wait 2 weeks!!
What kind of a health service do we have here, when patients have no confidence in doctors and at the same time have no real alternative? I daresay someone with lots of cash could go to a skin specialist and pay for treatment immediately but for the rest of the population, there is the overworked GP, doling out pills and praying, no doubt, that we all go away!

Sunday, February 08, 2004
It's been a funny old week really. Had a visit from an old friend from college days....40 years ago! Oh dear...............the mirror told a very scary story but what can you do? Life leaves its marks on us all. As it turned out, we had a great time and appearance was totally unimportant.
My friend is a writer and after the visit I thought hard about my own use of the English language.
Living in Germany for 17 years, working in an American school, resulted in a 'mishmash tri-lingual' sort of language, conversationally. When we returned to England we realised that there were new words and expressions in use which we didn't fully understand. my answer was simply to copy them, mimicking the sounds and hoping they were appropriate. However, German words often come to mind before the English equivalent and then I have to translate................or I find there is no accurate translation.Friends smile or even laugh aloud at American expressions which slip out so readily..........oh the perils are endless so I am determined to 'clean up' my language and try to be English once again:-)

Monday, February 02, 2004
For the first time I rang our local council highways department this morning.....my neighbour has tried many times............The hole in the road at the end of the gravel track to my house had been filling with water to form a small lake, every time it rained...........and it does that a lot here:-) The Highways workmen came a couple of weeks ago to take care of it..........I won't go into details about how it looked after they left. This morning we have a small lake again.
Sweetly I asked if there was any chance at all that they would be coming soon to fix it...........ooooh! Seems you need to take levels before you can do that.............Hmn. didn't they do that before they started? The guy also assured me that he had driven by at 7 this morning and even taken a photograph to show that now there was only a 'very small' lake!
I stayed sweet and calm and really nice, suggesting that a small load of gravel and a rake might just take care of it or at least improve the situation. No way!! 'Madam I'm sorry, you just don't understand. These things are complicated but I will definitely take another look and we might be able to send a team of men to deal with it soon..................'

The dent in the wall where I bang my head, is getting bigger!

Sunday, February 01, 2004
Can something be so very bad that it's good? Crocodile Dundee 11 was just on TV and it is so corny you want to weep but somehow you end up smiling. I only had half an eye on it and smiled so.............!
Joined Orkut on Friday so I hope to meet some more interesting people. I have suggested a couple of friends and hope to recruit more. It's a new idea and certainly worth support:-)

Meanwhile I stuffed 2 jars full of dried chipotle chiles and peppercorns and filled them to the top with sherry.............I'm down to the last third of the last jar I did in 1999.............they keep forever! Adding a couple of those or a spoonful of the sherry after they have steeped for 6 months or so, to a soup or casserole, is a revelation for the tastebuds!

Wednesday, January 28, 2004
Just watched and listened to the Hutton report over lunch and then the prime Minister making his speech to parliament afterwards.That is one relieved Tony!!!!! No wonder there are signs of a tiny bald spot appearing.............he must have been worried sick over the last months.

At the same time there was a sudden blizzard and now we have a really decent covering of snow. It is so beautiful out there but a bitter wind makes walking unpleasant so it's nice to stay indoors for a change and drink mugs of coffee and tea...now that was thoughtless....why didn't I get some brandy this morning too????

I noticed that The Office and Ricky Gervais got awards at the Golden Globes.........Many, many Congratulations! it's so good to know that friends around the world can appreciate the squirming humourous horror of it all! I gave it as a gift to my son in Germany and my American son-in-law so I really hope it made them smile.

Sunday, January 25, 2004
Whoever thought that trucks have curtains!I don't think I ever noticed curtains when we used to hitchhike around Europe............Oh it was so great to be given a lift on one of those vehicles and truckdrivers were terrific............I bet they still are!

Winter descends once more on Norfolk....................although the sun is shining brightly, the temperature is diving out there and we are in for some bitterly cold nights and more wind over the next few days. Lunch today at the Indian restaurant will mean huge consumption of 'hot stuff' to get the 'internal' heating system ready for the big freeze! My American friend in New Hampshire would probably laugh at what we call 'cold' but what about my friend in Spain who never sees frost in Winter?

Hurray for Mr Gates who promises no more spam inside of two years.....................I wait to be amazed!

Thursday, January 22, 2004
Such a wet and dreary day but not in the home of yours truly! The reconstruction of my home continues and if i could concentrate on one room at a time,it would be finished by now. It's always the same when I start something like this....................I end up on the floor going through old letters, photographs etc etc. surrounded by empty cupboards and a floor covered in paper!Of course I've done exacxtly the same thing in the other room so ......................I do see light at the end of the tunnel though! I play music very loud and samba along carrying things from one room to the next but I did find places to hide the demolished cupboard pieces...so things are looking neater.....in a way.
It's 'soup' day tomorrow for my butcher friends so the rest of the mallard went into the pot and i'm soaking some guallijo chiles to spice things up a bit:-)