Saturday, 31 October 2009

Conversations with Homeless People

I'm warning you now, it'll be a kind of lengthy post. :)
Before talking about the title, I should first point out the awesomeness of last weekend- Three day weekend, two birthday parties, one in Wolverhampton, one in Dewsbury. Much cake and generally amazing food was eaten, and much catching up was done with the ever-more-immobile Aunty em :D Thank you, by the way, t'was lovely. Hasan, as ever, was gorgeous, and his rendition of a Dark Dark Tale was spine chilling. Once back in Dewsbury, further junk food was had, plus another cake and my mum's generally awesome cooking. Catching up was also done with parents and brothers, which was rather lovely. And I found that Archie had a cold, and my dad was administering human eye drops to him... apparently you can... *shrugs*
The downside: being pelted with peas by ten little shits (from either Earsheaton or Chickenley) in Asda, who had peashooters and weren't afraid to use them against brown people invading their chav turf. Grr.

Minus what shall be referred to as the frozen vegetable incident, great weekend. Aherm.

So I ended up in Leicester city centre today, and decided to just wonder round. My theory was if I got lost a few times and re-navigated my way back to the bus stop, I'd get a better idea of where everything was. I *think* it worked. Wondering round by myself was nice :) I haven't really had a day when I've been free to do anything, without a schedule, for a while now. Time to think, and all that. I bought several pointless items- junk food, and Clockwork Orange on DVD, because it's one of the few things I want to watch before I read the book.   
Going into Cafe Nero for a panini, I went to sit down and was stopped by a Bosnian woman with two babies. She had some paper asking for help because she needed to buy food for her kids. I gave her some money, however naive it was.
I was waiting at the bus stop to come back, when an Asian guy approached me- it was a slightly more disturbing exchange:
Guy: Sister, do you think you could help me with 70p for the bus?
Me: (He looked slightly dangerous, so I thought I'd just give him it) Erm..yeah. Hold on.
Guy: You a student? Just been shopping? Bet you're tired, bless you.
Me: (Smile and nod etc) Here's 70.
Guy: So...what do you think of them illegal drugs, then?
Me: (Alarmed) What?
Guy: Skunk, weed, all that stuff...You think they mess with your head?
Me: I guess they do, yeah.
Guy: Yeah, I did em for a while, but then I got schizophrenia. Now I'm on tablets and stuff.
Me: (Looking for some kind of escape route, yet strangely interested) There is a debate about whether cannabis causes schizophrenia. (Yes, I realise the ridiculousness of starting this conversation with him, my head was screaming at me). I...stay away from them myself...
Guy: Yeah... it's bad for your head. Anyway, thanks for this sister. Bye!
And he walked away, leaving me a little bit unsure as to how to react to that. People at the bus stop were all pointedly pretending to read books whilst silently judging me. Woo.
I don't even know where to stand with stuff like that. I always take pity on people who ask for help, because with that woman, what if I was the reason her kids went hungry that night? Or if this guy actually was a bit mental, and homeless? My mum says I'm too soft though, and shouldn't have even talked to him. I guess she's right. *Sigh*. Not cut out for city life. 
So yeah. Now back at halls, reflecting on how most of the money I spent today was given to supposedly homeless people.And I didn't get cookies, though I will tomorrow when I go to Asda. Got oreos as a temporary substitute, woo!
Over and out, hello to all etc.

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Grey days.

Utterly depressed. One of those days, I believe. Of course, it could be down to the fact that it is horribly grey outside and there hasn't been a hint of blue in the sky since yesterday, and that it's just that nasty kind of rain that isn't enough for you to get out an umbrella but still ends up soaking you.
And I stayed in the library to catch up on work and still feel waay far behind. *Sigh*
And we've started genetics. Which tends to melt my brain at the best of times. 
And I'm blogging because my head hurts and so I do not wish to face Tissues of the Body just yet, thank you very much.
And I don't think I can face another vegetarian meal. :| Twenty nine minutes and counting.
And it's windy! Like the weather could get any worse!
And I'm now homesick because of the nastiness of this weather and day. 
Okay, I shall leave this pointless monologue where it stands and look forward to the only good point of today- the HOMED event which is tonight. Obviously, have to come back and do Tissues of the Body, but I suppose it's gotta be done at some point.
Bring on the weekend. ¬_¬

Friday, 16 October 2009

Societies and socialising.

Why yes, my title IS catchy :D I thought of it myself.
So the Medsin meeting was yesterday- it's kind of an umbrella society with loads of organisations/projects/campaigns going on, all centred around equal healthcare rights, locally and globally. I sound like their spokesperson already :| lol. But I did think they were wicked. The meeting was just them introducing all their projects, so you could pick out whatever you wanted to get involved in.
I really liked the sound of HOMED, which is all about removing the stigma attached to the homeless in Leicestershire- so you could do campaigns, or go to the shelters, or organise clothing collections, stuff like that. I think it would be wicked :D Also liked the idea of Crossing Borders, which helps asylum seekers in Leicester- so you can help with teaching English as a foreign language, or general stuff like that. They had a Christmas box collection last year so all the kids got presents at Christmas, it sounded really nice :)
Also, there's the Kenyan Orphan Project, where you get to spend two weeks in Kenya and visit the schools, health centres, GPs etc, and you get to spend time with the kids. It looked absolutely wicked, but I doubt I'll get to go since there's only like 11 places. Still, going to find out a bit more about it. 
Of course, I could be speaking too soon, but it's the kind of stuff I've always wanted to get involved in, so it's nice to have the opportunity there.
There was  Medsin lecture this evening, which I went to - Poverty and Parasites in Sub Saharan Africa. The speaker was a professor from Imperial College London, and the lecture was wicked. All about the different parasites, how widespread they are in Africa, and how easily treatable they are- the drugs are actually dirt cheap but it's just the organisation and distribution etc that gets complicated. I thought I should go because I've always thought that if I became a doctor, I'd want to go to Africa and be helping out where I was most needed. But obviously, being completely sheltered, it's a naive dream to have if I know nothing about Africa in the first place except for what I see on TV. So I'm trying to educate myself more about global health and how it all works. I think this was a good place to start, really glad I went. There's also going to be a Global Health week-long course in June at certain unis, so I'd love to look into that.
Lol, was well inspired :) I think it shows. Ah well. Can't hurt to have a dream.
I have nothing else interesting to say...just watching one of the documentaries that the professor recommended, all about sleeping sickness in the Congo. Interesting stuff, but quite sad. And I should probably be asleep, lol.
G'nite all (I say all, I have an audience of about 3).

Tuesday, 13 October 2009


This is a blatant attempt, orchestrated by my subconscious, to keep me away from my work.
That and the Leicester Blackboard site won't let me access any of the work :( But hey, can't be helped. Times like these, my cool-head-in-a-crisis ability comes in use.'s just what I do. Guess I'll just have and then have a nap.
Hurrah! Or 'Huzzah' as a rather fantastic block-mate said yesterday, when he remembered my name :D
I have nothing new to tell. Well, I have lots to tell but I'm supposed to be using my time more productively. So I'm going for dinner now :)
Hello to everybody, and I promise more coherent posts at some point

Sunday, 4 October 2009

Winding down like clockwork.

Asda chocolate sundaes make great breakfast :D
T'has been a hell of a busy week. Tuesday involved the scariest biochemistry lectures I have ever experienced, and in fact I'm only typing this blog because I'm avoiding the long calculations sheet we were given to complete in our own time- apparently we have to be comfortable with volumes, concentrations, dilutions and conversions. Who am I kidding- I knew that, I was just hoping it'd conveniently never come up :|

Wednesday- I went to see Sorority Row in the evening with my rather lovely flatmates :D The film was fairly awful, and jumpy (so I watched most of it through my fingers) but we had a laugh. In fairness I was concentrating more on my Ben and Jerry's chocolate fudge chunk. Woo!

Thursday consisted of the most boring lecture on earth- Health and Disease in Populations (shortened to HADPop, but I'll never get used to that). Even the lecturer admitted it was pretty boring. I fell asleep for a good two minutes and woke up to Jessie and Sarah laughing at me. Bad memories of year 12 chemistry conferences where I may or may not have fallen asleep...

On Friday we had a lecture on consultation and communication skills at the Leicester Royal Infirmary- it felt very weird indeed sat in a hospital lecture theatre. We're going to have sessions where we get to take patient histories as a group, and practice taking vital signs etc. I think it'll be more fun than I'm expecting it to be. Things usually are... :)

Saturday- the ultimate laziest day on earth. Got up at 10 (which usually I'd be mortified at, but after a fortnight of seeing 06:30 on my alarm clock, it felt like I'd slept forever). I then toodled downstairs to the dining hall for 'brunch', which was decidedly nasty (a Hummus and carrot wrap?! Carrots?!), and then tried to work out how to get to Asda. Having found said Asda, I shopped (very economically- woo for Asda brand stuff!) and came back. Then dossed and slept and ate and watched inconsequential US dramas, sat with flatmates for a bit, then watched more stuff until about 4 in the morning (I didn't want to sleep early and waste my Saturday night). Also that evening, very scarily, we found a man wondering round our flat, with no reason for being here. He kept changing his story, then left when we all appeared in the doorway, :| So we called the warden, who said she'd seen him wondering round another block earlier, and she called security. I'm really hoping he was someone's dad, but it definitely didn't seem like it :| Using the peephole from now on.

Today I got up at 11, which felt goood, and because I didn't fancy the brunch after yesterday, wondered up to Asda again. It's a gorgeous walk :D All sunny with trees on either side and autumn leaves raining down *poetic moment*. I have brought myself cookies and some kind of jalapeno crisps to get me through the week :D Woo! 
Oooh, also, I saw the Head of Anatomy and Dissection in Asda!  Is it wrong to be starstruck by a lecturer...?
Now back to those calculations, I'm afraid.... *sigh*
In a while, crocodiles :)