Wednesday, May 12, 2010

David Cameron's Volunteer Army

I'm fortunate to have a wide and varied group of supportive friends but despite that I've not been able to find anyone who is able to give me a lift to Leeds for my appointment with Professor Bird tomorrow. I would rearrange but as the Prof is retiring in September this might be the last chance I get to see him before then. So, regardless of the condition of my joints I'll be driving myself there and back tomorrow afternoon. 

This is exactly the kind of situation David Cameron must have in mind when he talks about replacing state with society and exactly the kind of situation that demonstrates the problems with transferring dynamic sounding rhetoric into reality. People want to help each other, but the practicalities of modern life make that very difficult to do. I live in the kind of old fashioned small town where people tend to be involved with their neighbours, and will help in emergencies but most of the needs so euphemistically supposed to be covered by volunteers aren't emergencies but the day to day grind of life. Taking a day off from work, family, caring responsibilities, or all three has too high a financial and practical cost attached to it to make it realistic.

So yesterday I went off for a practice drive to make sure I could control the car safely with the state my joints are in. Within moments my left shoulder had dislocated, my left hip was already out before I started driving. The one advantage of having such incredibly unstable joints is that I'm used to moving and functioning, including driving with multiple dislocations. I just needed to ensure that I could continue to concentrate with the increased pain. It won't be top of my list of fun things to spend spoons on, but I'm confident I can make it there and back safely. And there's always the option of spending the whole weekend in bed if I need to. 

Wish me luck! 


 

8 comments:

Fire Byrd said...

Good Grief you are mad on the one hand and understandably anxious about seeing the man on the other before he retires.Even I would have voluntered to take you if I wasn't going off on my hols.
I do hope that the effort of getting there isn't undone by the level of pain you will suffer.
xx
weirdly the word ver is 'woriest' which I think says it all.

WendyCarole said...

if i could drive I would come and get you

Rach said...

You take great care, I am up your way ish tomorrow anyway, off on my hols too the yearly rugby piss up....xx

Lankylonglegs said...

Hope the trip goes well, sadly I will never get to see this guy as my local NHS trust won't support this.
I am praying that you make it there and back in one peice, just mind you take it nice and steady.
*hugs*

transfattyacid said...

Careful what you write here... by the sonds of it you are fit enough to be an HGV driver and your beneifts are stopped hence forth.

Though seriously why not take a train - obvioulsy I don't know where you live, or the impracticalites of my glib suggestion but it's got to be better than going through the pain and effort of driving.

Still good luck with the appointment

bonetired said...

Bit late I know but for the future, isn't there some form of voluntary car service run by the local ambulance trust?

bonetired said...

http://www.nwas.nhs.uk/internet/Services/Volunteerdrivers/tabid/133/Default.aspx

Serena said...

I hope you got there and back safely - and that the appointment was helpful.

It's worth checking (if you haven't already done so) whether there's a group of volunteer drivers who could take you to things like that. Round here, there's a local care group who will take people to things like medical appointments for a very nominal charge.