Keep Taking the Tablets

Our eldest daughter has been in the wars – and that’s something of an understatement. For the last two weeks she has been fighting tonsillitis, and losing. She went through one course of antibiotics and appeared to be on the mend – but then the virus returned, and she hasn’t eaten all this week.

Guess who just took the afternoon off work to take her to the rapid access clinic at the doctor’s surgery in town, and came home with antibiotics, paracetamol, and ibuprofen? It’s at times like this the National Health Service comes into it’s own – I called on the phone at lunchtime – two hours later we arrived for an immediate meeting with a doctor who took one look in her throat, prescribed the drugs, and advised what could be taken together. No money changed hands. We walked across the road to the pharmacy, and picked up the antibiotics immediately. No money changed hands for the antibiotics either. The paracetamol and ibuprofen cost less than a fizzy drink.

We are incredibly lucky to have free and fast healthcare.

After getting home I counted out the pills to get Miss 17 started, and will be annoying the hell out of her every couple of hours for the next few days. She is already drinking fizzy drinks, and trying to eat ice cream – the first thing she has eaten for three days.

She cuddled up on the couch with me last night to watch a movie, and fell asleep a few minutes in. I ended up sitting for the next couple of hours with her head on my lap – not moving a muscle because she looked so peaceful. I didn’t want to wake her. I did wonder if the movie had bored her to death (The DaVinci Code).

My other half arrived back late in the movie, and half-watched the last few minutes with me. I bought her the book when it first came out – before it became famous, and she hated it. She had read the famous “The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail” years before, and recognised that Dan Brown had lifted the story immediately. This was a long time before the court case happened. We ended up talking about the movie anyway, rather than watching it (I’ve seen it before) – or more accurately, we talked about the subjects the movie raises.

If you throw away all the romantic rubbish from the Bible, there is a compelling story there – about a political dissident that was sentenced to death by the state. If you also look at the history of organised religion (not just the catholic church), you discover an apalling record of corruption, greed, and political maneouvering that stretches right back from the time before the crusades, to modern times. It’s interesting that pyramid schemes are illegal in most developed countries, and yet organised religion is not. The wide-scale indoctrination of children by parents still goes on across the world. Personally, I find it incredible that organised religion is allowed to be involved with infant and junior schools at all (it’s prevalent in the UK) – especially given the huge advances in education in the last century.

I went off on a bit of a rant there, didn’t I. I’ll shut up now.

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