12 July 2019 (Friday) - Rostered Day Off

The dogs were restless last night. I say “the dogs”; Treacle was squeaking. But it only takes one dog to keep me awake. She eventually shut up some time just before three o’clock.
Over brekkie I had a little look at the Internet. Nothing much had changed since last night on Facebook, but I did have a flurry of emails to read. LinkedIn wondered if I knew Anthony Keenan. So did I. Apparently we both studied at the Open University. Looking at his profile photo I was studying pure mathematics with the OU at the same time that he was being born. I ignored the connection request.
NHS Jobs wondered if I might be interested in a job in the Royal London Hospital. I’m beginning to wonder if I might approach the job market again. This idea of eking out my time until retirement is no way to waste the next eleven years. Whilst I don’t dislike my job, I’ve been doing it for *so* long. I wonder if I might spend my (hopefully) last working decade doing something utterly different. Forest management, selling ice-creams… perhaps I might have a word with a careers advisor?
Three new virtual geocaches had gone live (but none within a hundred miles of home).
Amazon was recommending all sorts of stuff that didn’t interest me.

And I got an email from the British Blood Transfusion Society that *really* boiled my piss. I rarely blog about work, but sometimes needs must. In my work I provide blood for transfusions. I sometimes flippantly describe it as “hours of boredom interspersed by moments of stark terror”, but it really can be like that. With no notice at all I may be called on to provide massive amounts of compatible blood. If I don’t get my arse into gear right away, people may die. But that is what hospital work is all about.
This morning the BBTS sent an email asking for nominations for an award which “will recognise the ‘behind the scenes’ staff who contribute directly or indirectly to the care and continuity of transfusion support”. This annoys me. The day after my son was born I was on duty for twelve hours because no one else was available. During that time I ensured the compatibility of over fifty units of blood for cases involving someone with a major intestinal bleed, various people with anaemia and a patient whose aorta had ruptured. I missed my daughter’s first eight birthday parties so that there would be someone in the blood bank outside of routine working hours. But (quite frankly) this is nothing special. People in hundreds of blood transfusion labs across the country do the same and have done for years. But now nominations are sought for “the best”. And everyone else’s efforts are automatically cheapened.

Once I’d calmed down I got dressed and took the dogs out. We drove along the route I take when I am working in Pembury but veered off and parked up in Hemsted Woods.
We had a rather good little walk though the woods. As we walked we met a few other dogs. And I had something of a revelation. When Pogo meets other dogs there is sometimes a bit of a woof, but it usually passes rather quickly. If the other dogs are off of the leads, the shouting (from both sides) is all over and done with within minutes. If the other dogs are on leads then there are often bitter words from the people holding the leads. But… Perhaps the dogs are OK? Perhaps the dogs are just doing what dogs do? Perhaps it is just people who are a problem? Take for example the only “episode” we had today. One silly old bat was walking her dog on a very short lead about a mile from the nearest road. Why not let the dog have a run? Pogo and Treacle ignored her dog, but she went hysterical when Fudge walked within five yards of her mutt. Fudge had previously in our walk porked other dogs (who were off the leads) and everyone had a good laugh.
As we walked today Fudge rolled in the dust, all the dogs had a good run. Everyone (except me) spuddled in mud, and I did the preliminary leg-work from a new series of geocaches; hopefully twenty-three of the things over four miles.

I came home and made a start doing all the admin and paperwork involved with turning this morning’s walk into a series of geocaches. After three hours I was in a position to contact the geo-feds to ask if the locations were suitable and (more importantly) to ask that the locations be reserved until I can go put the caches out.
I’m not spending money on buying the pots until I’m sure the locations are OK – I’m mean like that.
I then spent a couple more hours getting pictures and working out the descriptions for the cache pages. Being all written in html script takes some doing.

I had planned to clean out the fish pond’s filter and get the lawn mowed, to say nothing of attacking a ton of ironing, but time just ran away with me this afternoon. I looked at the clock to see that six hours had passed whilst I was fiddling about creating web pages… and I’ve only got one of twenty-three done. (To say nothing of ordering all the bits that I need).

"er indoors TM" came home and boiled up some fish and chips which we washed down with a bottle of plonk.
I really should see about writing up those other twenty-two cache pages…

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