If you visit a ward for the demented, the drugged, the dying, then, however Bad Samaritan-ish your inclinations or brief your stay, you will end up performing tasks for the rest of the ward which, in a better-managed NHS, would be allocated to auxiliary nurses – picking up stuff guys have dropped, juggling food and drinks, helping them get where they need before it’s too late.
Bed 3 can’t be more than early 70s but is pretty foxed, as Mrs puts it. He takes advantage of the restoration to him from behind his cupboard of an imaginary object to mutter (nudge, wink), “Can you help me? I need to go next door.” Next door is either the singleton dying room or ladies, but whatever, so it’s out of bed on the left-hand side with him and onto his wobblies. “Please make sure you bring those egg sandwiches with you, I’m going to be needing them.” Gotcha.
His left arm round my right and the sandwiches in my left hand, we set off on our journey. I wheel him left around the foot of the bed and aim for the ward door, but he continues to pull strongly to the left. “We’re there!” Back into the bed on the right-hand side and the egg sandwiches go back on the table. He considers the manoeuvre, looks me in the eye, and says sheepishly, “Oh sorry, that was a bit silly, wasn’t it.”
The Last Insect on Earth flies in through the leaky skylight. I hadn’t thought about Yan Larri’s The Extraordinary Adventures of Karik and Valya, an even smaller odyssey, for a long time. Here’s an animation:
If the Soviets had been even microscopically decent, they’d have given Yuri Norstein the resources to make stories like this.
More visual pollution (you’ll have to imagine the roar of the M3 a couple of km away):
- The invisible ethnicity of Inspector Richard Tanner of the Met
The British-Jewish detective who hung the German murderer of a London banker. With photos of his tombstone in Winchester’s West Hill
- Thomas De Quincey on the sewers as a conduit for small boys from Winchester College to the downtown pubs
With his guide to the Ziph language, and with the death of a Savoyard organ-grinder’s white mouse, of which he was
- Don’t piss on the wall
Gents, Level C, Royal Hants County Hospital, Winchester.
- Bread made of Catalan woman
Someone once told the English that “tapas bar” was Spanish for “exotic chav drinking hole”. El Sabio in Winchester has taken
- A walk from Petersfield over the South Downs to Bishop’s Waltham
From the banks of the Rother (almost) via Stroud, Ramsdean, the source of the Meon (just about), Frogmore, East Meon, Old