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Sunday, 27 September 2009

A week of contrasts

It has been a week of contrasts for me, with 3 letters from my sister, each following in quick succession and each getting progressively more demanding and aggressive than the last. Some time ago, my brother made the mistake of agreeing to look after some money on my sister's behalf. It wasn't a great deal, but now that her inheritance is gone and she has to live on benefits alone (she should try working for a living if she thinks that's tough), she says that she needs this money, to no doubt squander on cigarettes ...

I have done my best to contact my brother and get him to send her the money (she has lost his contact details and he has asked me not to let her have them), but to no avail, and she keeps hassling me. I wish she would get it through her thick head that any problems she has with my brother are nothing to do with me, and I cannot get involved, but she doesn't seem to get it.

In her last letter she said that while she realises I have to work, it would be nice if Coran and I put her first for a change. Does the time that Coran spent the night with her in casualty count for nothing? Or what about the time that I called an ambulance and dashed to her house after she attemped suicide (it turned out to be a false alarm)? Or the time that she fractured her neck in a car accident and I visited her every night, the time that her fiance attempted suicide, or the time that she set fire (by accident) to her flat. I could go on, for this is just the tip of the iceberg, but it all falls on deaf ears. I am beginning to regret allowing her back into my life if this is the thanks I get ...

On a happier note, I had an email over the weekend from Shirley Henderson, the Vicar of Hartland, Welcombe and Lundy, to ask whether she could use some words from this blog at a service at the island's church conducted yesterday to mark the 40th anniversary of Landmark taking over the island's administration. Naturally I said yes, and considered it a real honour to be asked. I wish I could have been there.

Despite my decision not to return to the island for a while, with the beautiful weather we have been having (temperatures of around 20 degrees with wall to wall sunshine), I have found myself thinking about the island a lot. I get these thoughts from time to time, so know it will pass, and don't dwell on it too much. This is the time of year when I would normally be booking for the winter months as the boats season comes to an end. I have a week off soon, and a few nights booked at the Chalice Well in Glastonbury to look forward to, but other than that have no more concrete plans.

I hope to go to Iceland next summer, and trust that the funds will be there. After a few weeks of basic hours, the overtime is starting to come back, as my colleagues take their holidays, and the exam season will soon be once again in full swing with mocks and re-takes to invigilate.

What with my sister and the Church service on the island yesterday, it has then been a week of contrasts. But you know that they say, they can't be light without darkness, and personally I wouldn't have it any other way.

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