The butterfly is a flying flower, The flower a tethered butterfly

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Be PALS, not BMAT ...


Puggsy: [to Tom and Jerry] You guys are fighting like a cat and a mouse.
Frankie da Flea
: They are a cat and a mouse, Puggsy.
Puggsy
: That's true, Frankie, but they gotta learn to be pals or they ain't gonna make it out here.


So the Irish do not trust the BMAT, or it's Irish equivelant the HP; Health Professions Admission Test! Recently introduced, they conducted a study on it's viability and here are the findings: "A NUMBER of the State’s consultant surgeons would be unlikely to get into medical school today if they had to sit the recently introduced aptitude test for medical school entry, a study has found.

Researchers from the departments of surgery at the Mater and Beaumont hospitals, Dublin, organised for 222 hospital consultants, junior doctors and medical students, including some who had taken the graduate entry route into medical school, to take a modified HPAT exam like the one introduced last year for school-leavers wanting places in medicine ...

Junior doctors on average achieved the lowest scores and graduate entry medical students did best. These students were the only group to have previously sat an aptitude test to get into medical school. the scores achieved by consultant surgeons were surprising and suggest the HPAT exam does not measure what it purports to measure.

“We would have expected that consultants, with years of experience accrued in the clinical, research and academic fields, would have outperformed students.

“The ability to interpret data along with the more intuitive ‘wait and see’ decisions, combined with the ability to make a decision based on suboptimal knowledge and change as the situation evolves, are critical determinants in the performance of a doctor.

“There are skills gained with time and experience and would be akin to the traits purported to be tested by the aptitude tests. If a true measure of these skills, consultants should clearly have scored higher,” it says.

It adds that while it has been suggested one cannot prepare for or use grinds to improve one’s performance in the HPAT, the fact that it was those medical students who previously prepared for and sat an aptitude who did best may cast doubt over this assertion.

Two of the nine consultant surgeons who sat the exam scored six out of 12 and one got a score of five. It is “unlikely these three would have been offered a place in medical school. Clearly in our test situation, our profession would have lost . . . valuable colleagues had this been the requirement 30 years ago,” the authors state.

They conclude that while the change in the selection criteria for medical school entry is a positive step, the HPAT “is not without its flaws”.

While the sample sizes were different, with just nine consultants compared to 29 junior doctors and 105 medical students taking part, the authors say the trends found are still interesting."

Well, clever Irish academics! Why didn't we think of that here?! But then a Dr O'Flynn, a man of great responsibility, had other views:

"Views on the HPAT vary widely. Dr Siun O’Flynn, a member of the national research group evaluating revised entry mechanisms to medicine, said earlier this year that it had resulted in a significant number of candidates getting into medicine who would not have otherwise secured places. This included candidates from lower socio-economic groups.

The exam has also restored gender balance to medical degree courses, with more males getting places in the past year."

... and here is what members of the Irish public have said in reply to Dr O'Flynn:

"This is exactly the equivalent of saying that a significant number of candidates were excluded who otherwise would have secured admission on the basis of better school Leaving Certificate results. Why exactly is their exclusion to be welcomed?"

"The fact that many of the participants, including experienced consultants, did not perform well in the test led the research organisers to conclude “the scores achieved by consultant surgeons were surprising and suggest the HPat exam does not measure what it purports to measure.” There is, potentially, an alternative explanation for the results."

... and on that presumption that the BMAT helped those candidates of poorer backgrounds into medicine:

"I presume Dr O’Flynn has facts on which to base this last statement because research by Prof David James of Nottingham University on the influence of the UK Clinical Aptitude Test (UKCAT), the UK equivalent of HPat, on entry to medical schools published in the British Medical Journal recently found that even when the same A-Level results had been achieved, the UKCAT test favoured males of white ethnicity from professional/managerial backgrounds who had independent or grammar schooling. Other studies have shown the “grind” school classes on HPat do help achieve good scores in the test. These cost €200-€300 and are less likely to be availed of by students from poorer backgrounds."

Oh! So we in England did some research on the 'test' afterall! ... and the 'test' is failing to deliver?! Except for rich male kids from higher socio backgrounds?! ... and what about Dr O'Flynn's claim that it addresses the gender balance then?! Is he saying that it is right that the 'test' finds young rich white males more intelligent, more logical and better at problem solving than females?! Of all social backgrounds?!

That very, frankly stupid notion, urges me to help 'convince' Dr O'Flynn, and his English counterparts, that those so called tests are nothing but discriminatory and a proper idiocy that has already killed ... and is bound to kill many hopes and talents ... if allowed to continue ...

Sooo, whishshsht! you there Cousin? ... we have some unfinished business to do! Let'sss go teach'm all these big cats and their rediculous aptitude-killer tests a lesson or two! .... Ditch it ya Drs O'Flynns of this world, orrr ... heeeere wee come! ... Beware! ....

And you young ones, Wremember! All ya have to dooooo ... is whistle! ....

wwhiiishsht!
@@
















Jerry
: You okay, pal?
Tom: Yeah, but don't call me pal.




Puggsy
: What's your names?
Tom
: I'm Tom.
Jerry
: I'm Jerry.
Jerry
: [looks at puggsy then to Tom] You talk!
Tom
: Well sure I talk, what do you think I am, a dummy?
Jerry
: You said it, I didn't.

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

My Cairo ... :-)

"I wish I had two hearts ..."

Been there, done that and I am now back to my natural habitat; my parents residence on that small tree lined road on the island in the middle of the Nile! It is only about 2 kilometres long and about 400 meters wide ... and it's what being in Egypt means for me!

... And that's the view from the local bridge five minutes walk away, only there is much more but the river here is so wide, impossible to get into one shot!




This is only 4 minutes away and it's where the view above was taken ... and if you cross it; the Gamaa bridge ....


... and stroll for a few minutes more .... and there it is, Cairo university! Isn't it beautiful?! ... and look at that huuuuge dome! Search it in Wikipedia if you wish, nice story ... only, I can't be bothered! ... it was a bit hot today, you see! ... out of character for June!


... and if you walk back to the river or take short taxi ride, you can have a brilliant lunch on one of the many all shapes and sizes boats .... here, the big one on the right sails for a 2 hour lunch and same for dinner ... A really amazing experience! ... and at the back ground, that's the Cairo Tower and gardens .... and behind the big boat is another residential island in the middle of the river. Here, you can see some greenery from ''The' Al-Gezeera sports club, the most exclusive in Cairo and in Egypt! Want to join? You need to present your credentials, and they better be good! ... and pay a six figure sum - in hard currency - but the yearly membership thereafter is bearable! And it is worth it .... when your turn in the queue comes and they eventually allow you in ... I won't even bother! Tooo ... you know! .... for me!

And that's my parent's local market only a few minutes walk away ... mostly Delta stuff, you know .... truly deliciooous!


... and here is an unlicensed peasant just setting up anywhere she can find in the market and selling quick before she's found out! .... Bust! ... but she does come back ... the same day ... and if you buy her produce and for a little extra, , she'll even clean and cut it for you, even core courgettes, aubergines, peppers, potatoes ... etc, for you to stuff at home, then pretend you've done it all yourself! Very popular these women! ... and if you don't have the money, you can pay her tomorrow .... or day after .... and no, she doesn't know where you live ... or anything about you for that matter ... but there is trust, isn't there?! :-)

... and the prices? Well, about 25p for a kilo of baby cucumbers, because they don't like large veg here - those you get for half price ... or even less! Tomatoes are 30p/kilo, lettuce 15p each, a mixed bunch of flat leaf parsley, dill and Corrianne is less than 10p, but just a little less ... and don't these fruit look inviting?! If you want Delta ones, you must buy them in season ... and they are expensive! About 40p for a one kilo melon, around 1.50 pounds for a big water melon, one pound for 4 avocados, 60p for a kilo of Guava, 30p/ kilo strawberries .... and those mangoes are goooorgeous!

But that's not cheap for the Egyptians though - it's just because my pound sterling make eight and a bit Egyptian pounds ;-)


... and if you fancy a sheep's head! ... or cow's feet ... and no, I wouldn't dare! @@

I just like to wear my Jellabya and go, with a neighbour or a cousin and .. walk about, go mingle with the crowd, and saviour! ... loads of them know me, you know! Even since childhood! ... and they do come and say hi :-) ... and if we ever bite more than we can chew, ie, buy too much, which is unavoidable, lads like him below will help carry it home for us ... providing it's after or before school hours, of course ... and it's up to you how much you give him ... and he loves it ... and loves helping his mum too ... he's a good man ... and look at that smile! .... It's because he's a happy man too! ... he has no idea that all the banks have crashed everywhere ... Bliss! :-)

... and this is the real Cairo... and there is much, much more .... even more ... away from the tourist trail ...

Bye Cairo ...




"Sunset, and the flute is singing, by the banks of the river, and hearts are swaying, swaying ... " Singer: Om Kolthoum, Nile song

Monday, 21 June 2010

Cairo central :-)

"I wish I had two hearts ...""

Been there, done that and I am now back to my natural habitat; my parents residence on that small tree lined road in the island in the middle of the Nile! It is only about 2 kilometres long and about 400 meters wide ... and it's where being in Egypt means for me!

... And that's the view from the local bridge five minutes walk away, only there is much more but the river here is so wide, impossible to get into one shot!


Cross the bridge and stroll for a few minutes and there it is, Cairo university! Isn't it beautiful?! ... and look at that dome!


... and if you walk back to the river or take short taxi ride, you can have a brilliant lunch on one of the boats .... the big one on the right sails for lunch and dinner ... amazing! ... and at the back ground, that's the cairo tower and gardns .... and behind the big boat is Al-Gezeera sports club, the most exclusive in Cairo! Want to join? You need to prsent your credentials, and they better be good! ... and pay a six figure sum - in hard currency - but the yearly membership thereafter is bearable! And it is worth it .... when your turn in the queue comes ... I won't even bother! Tooo ... you know! .... for me!

And that's my parent's local market ... mostly Delta stuff, you know ....


... and here is an unlicenced peasant just stting up and selling quick before she's found out! .... Bust! ... but she does come back ... the same day ... and if you buy her produce and for a little extra, , she'll even clean and cut it for you, even core courgettes, aubergines, peppers, potatoes ... etc, for you to stuff at home, then pretend you've done it all yourself! Very popular these women! ... and if you don't have the money, you can pay her tomorrow .... or day after .... and no, she doesn't know where you live ... or anything about you for that matter ... but there trust, isn't there?!

... and the prices? Well, about 25p for a kilo of baby cucumbers, because they don't like large veg here - those you get for half price ... or even less! Tomatoes are 30p/kilo, lettuce 15p each, a mixed bunch of flat leaf parcely, dill and corriander is less than 10p, but just a little less ... and don't these fruit look inviting?! If you want Delta ones, you must buy them in season ... and they are expensive! About 40p for a one kio mellon, around 1.50 pounds for a big water mellon, one pound for 4 avocados, 60p for a kilo of Guava, 30 kilo strawberries .... and those mangoes are goooorgeous! ;-)


... and if you fancy a sheep's head! ... or cow's feet ... and no, I wouln't dare! @@

I just like to wear my Jellabya and go, with a neighbour or a cousin andwalk about, go mingle, and saviour! ... and if we ever bite more than we can chew, ie, buy too much, which is unavoidable, this lad will help carry it home for us ... providing it's after or before school hours, of course ... and it's up to you how much you give ... and he loves it ... and loves helping his mum too ... he's a good man :-)

... and this is the real Cairo... and much, much more .... away from the tourist trail ...

Bye Cairo ...




"Sunset, and the flute, by the bank of the river sand ... and hearts were swaying, swaying ... " Om Kolthoum

Saturday, 19 June 2010

While we wait ... :-)


Friends are those rare people who ask how we are and then wait to hear the answer.

And you know? I can't play the Saxophone ... but I am good at listening to it ...

... and I sincerely hope those cats can still meaow ... and will return soon ....

:-)




A true friend is someone who thinks that you are a good egg even though he knows that you may sometimes be slightly cracked


Wednesday, 16 June 2010

She who dares wins!

- I am Dr Oxbridge, the Head of Science - I think that we can both safely agree that 'we' at this school are qualified and experienced enough to know what's best for your child!

- No you don't Dr, I do!


- (with a pinch of salt) But I am sure you'll agree, these are not very promising first term reports here. 'We' think your son would be much better off dropping one subject ... we think that this should be ....

- Excuse me! I think you made a mistake here! Those are not my child's reports!

- Oh yes they are. And we think ...

- Well, 'I' think the school is not used to my child yet!

- Well, yes ... maybe .... mmmmm ... excuse me! You mean your child is not used to the school?!

- You heard me teacher ... I am not signing these reports ... It's been a pleasure meeting you this evening nonetheless .... I am sure we'll meet again soon ... till then :-) (hand shake)

-------

With all due respect and appreciation to all teachers, from a parent perspective, here is how the current system really works ...
-------

Mothers compete for children's parties! Well, sure ... but real competition begins when your first child starts school ... here is how it all begins ....


Myth: Schools want and encourage 'parental involvement in 'the child's education'!
Fact: No, they don't! Apart from helping serve tea on parents evenings or on jumble sale day, what they really want to is to shoot you off to another planet till they are finished with your child if they even smell you intend to get envolved! Help other kids read by all means, but to actually have a say on how 'your' child should be educated is a struggle and a continuing fierce battle starting from primary year 1 until they are 'safe?' at uni!

The fight usually starts towards the end of primary year 1. That's when you notice that your child can't even write their own name,a or multiply number by naught! And that's also when you make your first appointment to see the headteacher!

- The school's policy is to allow each child to work at their own pace. Your child is a bit slow, but don't worry, they'll 'eventually' get there ...

- Own pace!! What pace is that?! Shouldn't you be pushing them to their potential limit now? If only to find out about that 'pace' you're talking about? ... This the school obviously didn't do, and my child has been left to stagnate as a result! Well, we all live in a competitive world so, this can't be ... Only, I should've been more involved ... I know your staff is always under pressure, the reason why, from now on, I promise I will work with the teachers and co-operate with you. I am sure you welcome my envolvement and I look forward to that, thank you :-)

- :-(

... and the fight begins! .... and it doesn't matter if your child is at a state school or a private school. They don't want you' interfering'. So, new mum, prepare to be pushed off every step of the way!

For example, they say that they; No longer educate the whole class together or ask a child to read aloud, because they think that causes embarresment to less able children, which in turn, can cause psychological problems later on in life - and specially because those problems are to do with assertiveness and confidence. Well, I don't know about that!

I think that 'ability' groups are a notorious hinder to achievement and a proper tool for all sorts of discrimination - which are Sure to cause most psychological or otherwise problems 'throughout' life! They are unjust and should be banned! Full stop!

Children change day on day, let alone year on year. And they should 'always' have the same equal opportunity to progress as they grow up as those who may have started better - because many will always come from behind and surprise those teachers - and many who started well may fall behind later on and shock them too. This is why this segregation is so unfair, because once a child is labelled as of lower ability, it becomes much easier to go through rings of fire than to get them out of that blackhole and into higher groups! If that does not crush the confidence and assertiveness of a 'stuck' able child, nothing else ever will! Such is the effect of the injustice on those kids! So, mum, if you know your child can do it, avoid those lower ability sets like you avoid the plaque; and Fight! Otherwise the label will stick for the duration of your child's school years and beyond ... and that's how hopes are lost forever!

... and beware mum, you wouldn't want your child stuck in a lower set in a core subject! ... and specially not in English! For that's how 'ruined beyond repair' begins ...

No read, no write = no Maths, no Science, no Nothing ... No hope!

... and this seperation begins, not at seconadry school, but in primary ... with all those seperate round tables in that very classroom ... :-(

To survive that fiercest of competitions depends on your child's survival in the system. For this you need to establish an understanding with your child's school; where everybody understand where they stand and who's who in the relationship. Once this is done, it all becomes plain-ish sailing thereafter ...

So, here are some dos and don'ts to help you do just that - and for when you attend those parent's evenings too :-)


* Do dress your best and look as the 'professional' mother you are, regardless of what you may or may not do for a living. So, Don't ever show up in your jeans and a T-shirt ... and always put some light but defining make up on, some nice accessories and a sweet smelling perfume .... believe me, it works :-)

* Do introduce yourself, I am Mrs ...., Mother of ... and always shake hands with the teacher.

* Do sit tall with confidence and look at the teacher straight in they eye - and don't ever show how anxious or vulnerable you really feel inside ... and remember; It's all an act, so do it well!

* Do speak calmly with respect regardless of what is thrown at you, but don't ever be intimidated by their superiour knowledge of Latin, or the letters they may have before or after their names, because 'some' teachers will always use this 'we know it all' technique to try and drive you to submission, ie; to convince you that they know what is best for your child - Don't ever fall for that trick! Because they don't, you do.

* Do know what you are talking about, because teachers can be opportunistic bullies. And with those, there is nothing more harming than a mother who doesn't know her subjects; including her child's - and her - legal rights too! So, learn your Education Act well, including article No 9 which states that a child must be educated according to the parent's wish - not that wish of the school as they try to make you believe.

* Do prepare and rehearse for each individual teacher with a friend, or even infont of a mirror ... and develop a common strategy for responding to communal issues such as scruffy dress, bad handwriting and the like ... and always respond to 'false' accusations, if any, with courtsey [have you ever seen a doctor with a good handwriting teacher?! My child is a seed for one!] -

* Always have an answer ready for every question, or you'll be fighting a lost cause - So don't ever go ill prepared for a meeting ... and do promise improvment whenever possible; ie, strive to return school homework on time or handwriting, though not that bad, can improve, help with work ... etc :-)

* If yours were O levels ... and well before your child is due to sit the exams, do enrol in an hour a week evening class, regardless of how many PhDs you may have under your sleeve, and take your GCSEs in English and Maths at least - so that you know how the system ... and the game .... works. This does wonders to your negotiating powers, specially with those valuable coursework marks - and that forever changing maze of policy, exam boards' trends to setting exams and marking overall ... to name but a few.

* And providing your child is well rounded and well behaved as you know they are ... and you too, then chin up! Don't stoop! Never flinch! And learn the oldest trick in acting; Never blink!

... and do show them your teeth! I mean .... Smile! :-) ... and they are sure to smile too ... they'd have to, won't they?! Grrrrrrr ;-)

Compete the easy, practical and very interesting way ... with firm diplomacy ... and remember ....

She who dares wins ... Always!

And for the sake of stuck able children everywhere, I hope those 'ability' groups are abolished soon ....
Peace!


... continued from the top ... and nearly two years later ....

- (Shaking hands profusely, smiling and talking with racing enthusiasm) Congratulations Mrs Mother ... your son achieved the best results in the school this year ... This is a brilliant achievement .... of course, he was always a pleasure to have ....

- Didn't I tell you?

- (handing me a card) You did ... but .... It was YOU!

- I've never been to that exam room teacher, it was 'him'! ... and the school .... and, yes I will attend that prize giving evening ... and give that little speech in your open day .... well done and thank YOU :-)






















... years later ....

- Did you enjoy that school reunion dinner son?
- It was in the marquee mother, not The House itself ... and yes, it was very enjoyable - Here, I got you The
House's little box of chocolates too. BTW, Dr Oxbridge was there. He specially asked about you and sends you his regards.

- He still remembers me! He was a good teacher this one, I hope you gave him my regards too
.... and, are these chocolates edible? :-)

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Singing the world healthy! :-)

" Yo no soy marinero, soy capitan, soy capitan, soy capitan"



Bamba, Bamba- Bamba Bamba - Bamba Bamba!

Para bailar, La Bamba, Para bailar, La Bamba
If you want to dance La Bamba

Se necessita una poca de gracia, Una poca de gracia
You have to have some grace

Para mi, para ti, ay ya arriba ya arriba
For me, for you, then higher and higher


Ay y arriba y arriba Por ti sere, por ti sere, por ti sere
Higher and higher, to make it happen, it will happen


Yo no soy marinero, soy Capitan, soy Capitan, soy Capitan
I am no sailor, I am The Captain, yes The Captain, 'The' Captain



Bamba, Bamba ... Bamba, Bamba ... Bamba, Bamba .... :-)
























Not 'one' British article in all the links, par British Satellite News, on 'one' occasion! At a time when, realising the potential impact British science and innovation can have on our economy, education and wellbeing as well as global health, the previous and the incumbent British governments are trying hard to promote same! ... ie, British NHS, scientific excellence, innovation and expertise locally and around the globe! It is, therefore, shocking that the world media is taking huge interest and is vigoursly reporting on 'our' science and 'our ' scientists ... while 'our' British media is turning a blind eye! Shame! ....

When will the British media take proper note of our world class science, scientists and doctors ... follow them, as well as their exhibitions and events, like others do, then celebrate and promote their local as well as global excellence and innovation?!

Friday, 11 June 2010

The EWTD isn't working!

“The way out is the way through”

It's official!
The European Working Time Derlictive is harming the training of junior doctors in the UK!

"Too many junior doctors are missing out on vital training and being left unsupervised, while consultants need to take more direct responsibility for "24/7 care", says a new report by Professor Sir John Temple."

... but the Review's report; 'Time for Training' stops short of recommending the The UK should opt out of the dire-ective!

"The report was commissioned by Medical Education England (MEE) at the request of the former Secretary of State for Health Alan Johnson.

Sir John’s report concludes that high quality training can be delivered within the reduced number of hours available but fails if trainees: have the major role in providing out of hours service; are poorly supervised or have limited access to learning.

"Time for Training" focuses on the quality of training provided now and says any current problems will not be solved by either increasing hours or lengthening training programmes.

The Review reveals that, despite an increase of more than 60% in consultant numbers over the past ten years, hospitals remain too reliant on junior doctors to provide out of hours services."

Instead, the report wants:

"a move to a consultant delivered service, with consultants working more flexibly and more directly responsible for care around the clock"

That, a consultant delivered service, is, of course, good news and is what the seniors have been asking for since time began because this move, as Sir Temple puts it, will lead to:

" better quality of diagnosis, better decision making and better patient outcomes and safety"

Yeees Sir! It would, you're right! Consultants being responsible for their own patients 24/7!

Fantastic!
About time too!

"Dr Mark Porter, Chairman of the BMA’s Consultants Committee, said the call for a consultant-delivered service was something that the BMA has long advocated.

"It will assure a high quality of care for patients as and when they are in the greatest need. The challenge now is to work towards it in a systematic fashion instead of the current piecemeal approach, investing in consultant expertise to deliver high quality care," he said."

F A N - Bloomin' - T A S T I C! ... so, everybody must now 'insist' that this is a non negotiable must! And the young ones be allowed to work, rest and learn! All in 48 hours! ... wonderful! ... But oh! Hold on! ...

Did anyone mention Money?! This ghastly, ghastly word?!

No wonder Andrew has replied so quick! Only I have no idea what he said!

Well, as wisemen say "The news you pay for today is free tomorrow", sooo, let'ss wait and sseee!

Meanwhile, Professor John Black remains critical:

"John Black, president of the Royal College of Surgeons, said: "We are relieved that this report openly acknowledges that the European Working Time Regulations have critically damaged medical training in the UK. However, we are deeply disappointed that the remedies proposed are unworkable. It is unrealistic to put training concerns above those of patients, and there are not the bottomless resources available to fund these proposals. The one obvious solution for the acute specialties - that of removing the EWTD itself - is not assessed at all."

... and, Dr Sheree, of The BMA, is right to be cautious ...

"The report makes it clear that high quality training can be delivered within the constraints of the 48-hour working week, however, this is dependant on implementing the recommendations in full. It cannot simply be put on a shelf to gather dust and to do so would not be in the interests of junior doctors or our patients."

... After all, well, for the juniors, you wouldn't want to be bitten by the Luna system twice! ... and you don't know how will the sleepless seniors behave while their juniors are fast asleep, do you? Does Sir recommend how to answer your sleep deprived elders if and when they ask you for a favour or two? ... or ten?

The Medical Profession v The Government!

Reviews, reports ... reports, reviews! Ooon ... and oon ... and on ... an' ....

... that invest business again ... why? If I am getting it fr free?! ... deficit ... debts ... times are tough ... tighten your belts .... Britain is bankrupt ... must get the country off it's knees ... tough decisions need to be made ... cut, cut cut ... era of austerity .... and it's gonna last for aaaaages ... ;-)

Why try to pin tails on old dogs alone when the young ones can help too?! When you know what the answer is?! ... and ... what's the difference between 48 and 56 'legal' hours to young hearts?! Not much really .... it just makes all those hard working young and old dogs feel alright! ... As for the cost, miniscule! .... Take your blindfolds off! ... and OPT OUT! ... and when you consider other 'endeavours' .... and all those improved benefits for patients ... their safety ... outcome ... experience ... World class!


Dog! Sleeep!



It's been a haaard days night ... I should be sleeeepin' like a lo-og ....



“Don't pray for lighter burdens, but for stronger backs.”


Monday, 7 June 2010

... Of dancing water and fried swines!


Nobody creates a fad. It just happens. People love going along with the idea of a beautiful pig. It's like a conspiracy.




I wish I was there! :-)

Mermerising innovation that let's your dreams run wild! A pleasure for the eye ... and heart, to behold! ... as the saying goes;

Water is the elixir of life, water contain medicines!

Well, this time it's visual medicine. Water performing in Dubai ... and what a performance!

Costing $200,000,000.00, roughly about 140,000,000.00 pounds, and labelled as the most expensive water show on earth, I think every penny spent was well worth it!

... if only the 14,000,000,000.00 pounds spent on the Swine who flu scamdemic worldwide were spent on this type of medicine rather than further enriching the pharma sharks! On making people happy with happy ventures like this! Can you imagine! 100 shows like this all over the globe!

Or one between every 2 countries on earth! .... Well, near enough! :-)

... but we were had!

Everybody around the sphere is angry you know! Everybody now feels this was corruption on a global scale ... and that the globe was taken for a ride!

What can you say?! ... enjoy the show ... then ....

Fry the Swines! ...


they reminded me of a pig who has been taught to play the fiddle. He did it cleverly, but would be better employed in squealing.

Sunday, 6 June 2010

It's only one word!

There is never jealousy where there is not strong regard

I think it's a pity the university of Oxford has abolished it's infamous one word test! Whether certain people accepted or refused to take it is their preference. But to abolish a test that really challenges an individual's ability to create is sad, because for those who are naturally creative, this was one invaluable excercise to show how limitless their abilities are! Such is the loss!

I think Oxford, as well as other unis should introduce 'the one word club', rather than a test to allow those with potential to shine through ... and especially if they have the freedom to choose their own words, so that with practice, they can graduate from the easy, moderate, to the really challenging. I would love to read some entries on difficult words, like 'draw' or 'jealous', a word that has been a pillar of humanity since time began! .... I am sure they'd be fascinating stuff!

Here, for example, is Hafez on Jealousy ...

Jealousy

And most all of your sufferings

Are from believing

You know better than God.

Of course,

Such a special brand of arrogance as that

Always proves disastrous,

And will rip the seams

In your caravan tent,

Then cordially invite in many species

Of mean biting flies and

Strange thoughts-

That will

Beat you

Up.


Powerful stuff, eh? Who said you need to write a whole essay, the smaller and more concise, the genius! ... fiercely challenging when difficult definitions intertwine, because of the endless possibilities! Infinity! Don't you think?

... and back to the theme of 'jealousy', here is an Egyptian song that says it all, it goes:

Ya ahla menhom,
you are more beautiful than them,

Ya farqa anhom,
You are way ahead of them,

Enty elly feehom,
You are the one who stands out amongst them,

wehoma feenhom?!
And where do they stand?!


See what I mean by concise genius?


... and on another note, JD draws my attention to this here ... interesting! ....

will maybe reflect on it soon ... maybe!

Happy Sunday, enjoy the song :-)





A competent and self-confident person is incapable of jealousy in anything. Jealousy is invariably a symptom of neurotic insecurity.

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Ici Le Caire ... :-)

- Ma'am
- Yo
- Care for a drink?
- Nah! What is he eating there?
- Fillet mignon au poivre avec ...
- How much is it?
- $$$
- Maybe later then. I'll have a salade Nicoise and a glass of Pina Colada with a dash of lime s'il tu plait, merci


Hi everybody! :-)

No, I am not on a seaside resort by the beach, this is actually a residential compound on the outskirts of Cairo, about 10 minutes drive from the pyramids. I am in the sports club which is exclusive to that well closed and guarded from the outside niche. I've been invited by my late uncle's wife, untie Muneera (The one who lights up her surroundings), who we call 'Banoura' (the precious crystal) for short. She's 84 and never had any children but she had a brilliant career, mostly as a high ranking expert then diplomat until she retired. And she's always considered me as her own, there were even friendly fights between her and my parents on how she spoilt me when I was a child - but they accepted she has a share in the one child they have - and she still pampers me no end! A very special and still beautiful lady. This is an open invitation for me to stay as long as I like ... and sooo, here I am ... and have been for a while! ... I have two sets of parents, you see ....

There is any sport you can think of here and so, we come and sit together, but she can only stay for an hour or so because she's now on a wheel chair because of her artheritis ... and then back to the house with her helpers who take really good care of her, then out again in the afternoon for another hour or so - This is this afternoon and we're watching a few games. Friday being the first day of le week end, and it's a pungy jumping competition. Early this morning, I did some clay pigeon shooting with some of the residents, a sport which I absolutely adore but can never master! I only got 3 out of a dozen, shameful in front of people I do not know, I know! It's that unpredictable changing direction of the breaze and the curve that the pigeon makes once it's out of the hold that eludes me! But there you are, I'll always take part anyway - and will always make up for my losses when we go riffle shooting at static objects - because I get the bulls eye ... every time! Honest, even ask untie! ... not as lucky aiming beyond 10 meters though :-)

... and that's the scene during the week .... you can see some of the houses at the back, the orangy one is the smallest, a 4 bedroom 4 reception room 'little' thing, untie has one of those. She keeps two of the bedrooms as guest rooms, and they do get used often by other family members ... and the white house is the medium size ... and that little structure below it in the middle of the lake is the dance floor and bar, which is strictly for adults only. Week day; kids at school, most adults at work, kids left with nannies from Africa or Asia somewhere, while mum goes to work/shops/visit friends in other compounds, stay at home ... or even goes to downtown Cairo for a while ... I do that too, I am a Cairo girl afterall ... and I do take untie with me if she wants ... She sold her central Cairo flat and moved here, because it is quiet, secure, friendly and the air is cleaner. She's happy here amongst people of all ages ... she would never have considered a care home.


Other older people come and buy or rent, even share a house and helpers here, but they are still quite a few in comparison to the whole community ... And why is it soo empty here? Because everybody has gone to watch a game of golf ... of course!

... here is the last of them leaving .... oh yes, this is the gym house btw ...


... and I have the whole lounge to myself ...



... and one of the waiters has offered to get someone with a buggy to take me to see the game ...

... but no ... I don't like booooring golf .... I'll stay at the relaxation room, next to the gym ... and where shall I dine today? The Chinese restaurant in the lake maybe? Or the French one next to the Club House? ... or ... maybe stay at home ... untie has a brilliant cook who comes once a week.

... and this villa bellow is for sale or rent if you're interested ... not cheap, but not as expensive as a care home in England either ... if you cook at home! ... and yes, everybody speaks English too ...

Oh, here are two 'friends'! Time to brush up on my French ... Saluut!

They never talk about the weather here, you know! ... odd! ... and I can hear the dance music in here! Have they started to dance already?!Life is tough!

Wish you were here! :-)



La vieee, Oui, c'est une gymnaastiquue ...