Saturday, 7 June 2014

The Big Bang Theory

Despite numerous warnings, and hysterical mutterings about getting a month's worth of rain in one hour, all we've managed to achieve in the Bedfordshire bubble is a bit of drizzle. Now don't get me wrong, I don't want to be flooded out but I do love a good storm so I'm a little disappointed at the moment. However it is still early so there is plenty of scope for something more dramatic.

I have a theory about all the weather warnings we get these days. I'm convinced that the weather people, or Meteorologists to give them their proper title, go into overdrive in order to justify their air time. After all it would be boring just to stand there and tell us we are in for a bit of rain. It always has to be a 'downpour' of biblical proportions, or snow six feet deep etc, etc. What happened to normal weather, why does everything have to be a crisis now and what's with those weather warnings? Even if we get a spell of hot weather they are still at it, warning us to slap on sunscreen or keep cool if we suffer from heart problems. Are they medically trained now or what? And we even get yellow or red warning for sun! Seems a bit daft to me, especially when most of us Brits spend fortunes flying out to places to indulge in the weather we are being warned against back home. When did we became such frail flowers and when did weather forecaster become so concerned about our health?

Now don't get me wrong. Being able to tell the weather is a valuable resource for certain areas of society. Farmers are the obvious beneficiaries. Long term forecasts enable them to plan which crops to plant for instance. Those who work out to sea also benefit, and goodness knows how many lives have been saved because a boat has remained in habour because it was warned of approaching bad weather. In the days before accurate weather forecasts it would have been hard luck if you put to sea and got caught in a storm. Power providers also need to know when we are in for a cold snap to ensure there is enough fuel. I'm sure there are many, many more too. However my question is, do the general public really need to know quiet so much? Most of us I'm sure would be happy enough knowing whether we need to take a brolly out with us on our shopping trip, or whether we will need to wear a hat for a spot of gardening, not that we couldn't work that our for ourselves.

However my pet hate is when they tell you 'not to make unnecessary journeys'. What the hell is an 'unnecessary journey'? Is it the journey you make into work? The journey to take your kids to school maybe or the visit to an elderly relative to ensure they are safe and warm with plenty to eat? Do they imagine that, the minute they mention bad weather, we are all going to leap into our cars and race around the countryside like lunatics trying to get into trouble? It seems so. I'm all for progress, I'm all for being warned of unusual weather in order to keep people safe but please, stop turning a normal summer storm into a crisis.

Yesterday afternoon was spent in the garden soaking up the last of the sunshine we are likely to see this weekend. To be honest I wasn't out there for very long but it was enough to lift the spirits. I must say that, apart from that lovely afternoon I spent with Diana, I haven't been able to use the decking at all. The sun only seems to come out when I'm at work or when I'm in hospital. It looks as though we are going to be in for yet another disappointing summer. I hope not, but it looks that way.

As reported yesterday I felt really well, today not so much. I'm a little bit breathless this morning and I can only put it down to the change in weather. Like most PH patients the British weather plays havoc with my breathing and means that I rarely get a sustained period of feeling well. I have to take the odd day here and there and be grateful. As the weather is damp and there is little point in hoping for improvement, I am settling down for an afternoon in front of the TV and maybe another Skype chat with my sister. Now that we know she is definitely coming down for a visit we have a lot of planning to do. All of which will be much easier face to face than through facebook.

Two stories caught my eye in the paper this morning. The first concerns D Day veteran Bernard Jordan, aged 89. Bernard, bless him, was do determined to join his friends and comrades at the Normandy celebrations he did a runner from his care home sparking a large police search. The story goes that Bernard was 'banned' from going by the care home for reasons undisclosed. This intrepid old soldier left the home saying he was 'going for a walk'  having carefully hidden his medals under his coat. When he failed to return the home notified the police and the search began. It seems Bernard joined a coach of other veterans and made his way to France without a hitch. The home later got a call from one of Bernard's friends saying her was safe and well and would be coming home 'when he is good and ready'. Absolutely brilliant! Like most people who live in this nanny state of a country, Bernard must have been sick and tired of being told what was 'best for him', and, showing the same spirit that got him through the war, stuck two fingers up at the powers that be. Good on you Bernard, I hope you had a great time. One question does remain though. The care home says that it didn't 'ban' him but had merely made a mistake and failed to enroll Bernard on The British Legion official trip. Who knows which version of events it true but, given they knew how upset Bernard had been, wouldn't you have thought they would have made every effort to get Bernard there come hell or high water? After all they admit the fault was their's so why not ensure Bernard got there safely rather than him having to go it alone?

The second story concerns an eleven year old boy who is being taken into care because he weights fifteen stone. Fifteen stone! That's overweight for most adults.The parents are being accused of child abuse and claim that it is just his genes. Despite numerous interviews with police and social services they still deny responsibility. The dad, weighing in at twenty stone, and the mum who, and I quote, 'has a bum the size of a black cab' don't even think he's fat and call him 'Wee Chubby'. Mum claims his favourite dish is steamed broccoli and that she encourages him to play more active games on the wii.  Poor child, his school life must be absolute hell. With parents like that what chance has he got of ever marrying and having kids of his own. Not to mention living long enough to do so. Although I kick against the nanny state this is one of those rare occasions when I think there should be state interference because that poor boy is getting no help at all from his family.

Time for a nice cup of Ceylon tea this morning I think. Next blog tomorrow.