Saturday, May 16, 2020

Another weekly update although this week I booked an annual leave day for Friday and wouldn't you know it, I came down with a cold on Thursday so I was pleased to have the extra day off. Yesterday and today was spent doing some modelling, walking for a dose of sunshine and fresh air and tidying up a small part of the garden with the aid of various felines. We joined the local swan watch and they benefitted from some cake we had bought as we felt they needed it more. The nesting swans have produced one cygnet which is very unusual as they usually have a brood of several cygnets. There is a lot of rebuilding work taking place on the Haven particularly the old building some local youths remodelled with the aid of fire many years ago. We believe this has disturbed the wildlife including the swans. We saw them again today and amusingly we received some dirty looks from a couple of women who were watching the swans and photographing them. Odd really as we were about fifteen feet away from the women and I'm not aware of a local bye-law allowing specifically named people the right to watch the swans. The lockdown has certainly exaggerated the personalities and behaviour of people although happily most people are ok.

Work continues on the diorama with the latest build of the motorcycle combination on the left a work in progress as I have weathering to do and then the diorama base.  The one on the right is a build from three years ago and the improvement is noticeable although I still have much to learn. A scene from a very dry and dusty Russia in late summer 1941. This will be finished in the next week or so and I then have a choice as to what I build next. I still have an earlier small diorama to complete with a small Schwimmwagen and the Blitz bus needs to be finished off. Otherwise the next new build will be an aircraft and it is likely to be either a bomber or a seaplane

This a picture from last year and there are about a dozen more kits stored away plus boxes of figures and accessories. I shan't be buying any more kits plus I have a lot of books to read so when I do have some time off later this year I intend to visit family and also focus on hobbies at home.

I shan't talk about work as little needs to be said other than it is very busy and very tiring. As I have said before I tend to get home, eat and collapse in front of the TV. Words have been exchanged with colleagues from other professions who are quick to email demands yet we haven't seen hide nor hair of them for eight weeks. 
I hope all is well with you and you are all keeping safe during these strange and trying times. What comes next is anyone's guess but I have a horrible sense that it ain't gonna be good.


Friday, May 08, 2020

I guess I should say Happy VE day but it is an odd celebration and begs the question why?
I can see that commemorating the efforts, the trials and hardships of all who participated and fought against the Nazi's is worth this but...

The war ended formally on the 8th May after a variety of separate surrenders throughout Europe but fighting continued, particularly in Czechoslovakia and in the Baltic states, Poland and Ukraine fighting continued between the Soviet Union and various nationalist groups who didn't want Stalin's tyranny to replace Hitler's tyranny. There are a couple of books I recommend:

'Savage Continent: Europe in the aftermath of WW2' by Keith Lowe. It makes for depressing reading and yet I think essential because people don't consider what was required to clear up the physical mess and damage but, also the enduring emotional and social legacies of the war. 

'The End: Germany, 1944 - 45' by Ian Kershaw also offers a good insight as to why the war ended when it did and the increasing horrors of the death throes of the Nazi regime but also why the Germans continued to fight until the bitter end. 

Inevitably there is also the question of the war against Japan which continued until September 1945 yet always played second fiddle from the British perspective to the war against Germany. Why not commemorate the ending of the war in it's entirety this coming September? Interestingly, the British used Japanese troops to put down nationalist uprisings in Indonesia (Dutch East Indies) late 1945 -46.  The former enemy worked alongside British troops to control the islands. 

I used a picture of a Polish aircraft because they were the first to fight and they were betrayed by all sides post WW2 in the realpolitik of Soviet and allied occupation of Germany and Europe. The war might have ended but for many it continued in other forms and with other enemies whose behaviour and rule differed little from that of the Nazi's. 

BW raised an interesting point about 'Post-viral syndromes' when this mess is over. From discussions at work we believe we will be inundated. When the 'primary' service which offers CBT for the less severe cases can't cope they have a tendency to refer our way. Despite having fewer staff and working with the severe and enduring cases we do get dumped on a lot. The primary service earns a profit whereas we don't. Schizophrenia has never been a money earner unless you are a Hollywood actor portraying it in a movie, often very badly. I hope we don't as we can barely cope most of the time so the next couple of years could be very interesting. Post virus, the immediate impact of the lockdown itself, fear and anxiety possibly likely and there is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome which inevitably gets sent our way by GP's who believe it is all in the mind. But more likely is the potential for loss of work, money, home, relationships, alcoholism, domestic violence , etc... which might also increase the need for MH provision to address the various issues that arise. Realistically, we have no idea as to what will happen next and this is the latest chapter of the daily drama called Living in Interesting Times.


Thursday, May 07, 2020

Absence makes the heart stronger...or perhaps not as I have nothing to report other than work and more work. I said the cracks are starting to show with the CV-19 lockdown and our work.  Crisis after crisis this week and today as I was heading out the door at 4 p.m having secured an hour off from the accrued several hours time owing I was still being chased for work! 8 a.m. starts and late finishes is not good so three days off will be gleefully devoured.

This part has been deleted: the original entry gone but all is good. ;)

Otherwise my plans are for modelling, more tidying of the garden and if the sun shines, I intend to sit out with a good book, some good coffee and top up my vitamin D.