coffins and speedboat

It is the dead of night and I am my the sea. Everything is dark: the sand is black and the water is covered completely by a dark blue foamy film. A boy gets into a speedboat which is like a rectangular orange bucket and heads off into the sea. I swim out nervously through the blue foam. I see the boy struggle and nearly capsize. I swim near to him and notice he is dressed in an entirely black spiderman type costume that covers all of him including his head. I am fearful for him. I swim back toward the shore.

I am in a building, it might be my home, though not my real home. My son has been playing a kind of hiding game with me. There are a number of graves and coffins about and I can’t find him. He has hidden himself in one of the graves and now I can’t find where he is. I hope he has not made a dreadful mistake.

I am team leader

Now that I am Team Leader for nursing and midwifery research at my esteemed university, I am responsible for everything, not just ‘vision’ of course for our research but other things too. Here’s an email I got this morning:

Dear Michael

I would like to say how disappointed I have been with the whole set up following our move here. Yes, we are in a ‘mess’. It seems to me that there is a need for someone to take full responsibilty for the staff here of which I am one of many. I am not alone in voicing this.

I thought following our meeting with you, and [name removed to protect the innocent] there would be an action plan drawn up with timescales and clear lines of communication with relevant H & S/Fire and Security managers as well as day to day running of this place such as ordering of papers etc… Could you please clarify for all of us who and what is currently being followed up and timescales involved. We probably need to see an action plan.

There are still unresolved and outstanding issues related to the above and it would be helpful and timely for all of us here in [name of building removed] to know what you (& [name removed]? )have decided. It has been a complete waste of time for all of us to be in dialogue with different people at different times.

Hopefully basic requirements are being actioned now; We need to know what is happening with the rest.

M[name removed] has been here looking for you and I am unable to tell him where you can be contacted. I have asked him to email you!

With all good wishes
[name removed]

Dr [name removed]
[other identifier removed]
Middlesex University
Highgate Hill
London N19 3UA
[further identifiers removed]

Any other ‘team leaders’ of anything out there with similar expectations to share?

Stansted airport horror

I remember when Stansted Airport, 30 minutes by train from where I live, was quiet and sleepy. Yesterday, on my journey up to Scotland the entire airport formed an unbelievably long and snaking queue for the privelege to get through the security gates. It took me 15 mins to check in at Easyjet and then another 1 3/4 hours to get through security. I got through to see the final call for my flight which luckily was delayed so I just got on it. They were telling us it was all due to increased security. Cheap short-hop air travel is getting less attractive. Settling down for 4 hours on the train with a good book is more appealing in an old-fashioned and eco-friendly way.

The last night of the Proms

I looked away, I felt sick. I was watching David Cronenberg’s Naked Lunch, with typewriters turning into ghastly monsters dripping foul fluid. After the end late tonight, I turned on the radio to blow away the nightmare images and I hear …. Jerusalem. Its the last night of the proms ‘as always the national anthem is the climax of the last night of the proms’, the commentator says. I can’t believe it is over already, with its horns and conductors and stamping of feet. For many years, on and off, I had marked the end of the summer with that last night and this year it just slipped by, I discovered it too late for the spell to work on me.

This ship used to be seaworthy – now it isn’t

I am in the navy, on board a ship or even a submarie that is sinking – sinking slowly. I am by my bunk. A woman who is in charge or is a commentator comes in and tells us we need to evacuate. I take the time to put on a warm pullover because I think it may be cold in the lifeboats. I even have time to go into a drawing room and take some documents and money that I want to take with me. The woman says ‘this ship used to be seaworthy – but now it isn’t’.

Then I am with others in a wide open space in India or some exotic country and it is night. I look up at the sky and in addition to bright clear stars there are golden symbols in the sky and a golden swarm of points of light. We are stunned by their beauty.