Today the sun is shining. Summer has finally come to Ambridge and environs (though possibly not for long if the Radio 4 forecast is to be believed). Indeed we now have proper double digit temperatures for the first time in yonkers. Twenty-something in the shade mark you! (That’s in new fangled Centigrade obviously—after all we are not at the South Pole here—although recently one could have been forgiven for thinking so what with all the rains and floods and penguins).*
It’s so warm I’m sitting here in the lunch hour with BOTH consulting room windows open listening to the pulsing chink-chink of a reggae rhythm wafting in from the car park. There must be some law of nature that brings the reggae into full bloom as soon as there are more than four hours of uninterrupted sunshine and twenty-something temperatures if you ask me. In short, barring the absence of a suitably exotic cocktail, and the small matter of an afternoon surgery to be survived (chiz, moan, groan) all’s right with the world.
Which is good, because in the past few days much of the world has been calling in to visit us. So far this week, in no particular order I have seen Black South-Africans, White Zimbabweans, a Kiwi, a few Poles, a Russian, a guy from one of the Baltic nations (sorry can’t now call to mind which), an Uzbek, numerous Pakistanis and Bangladeshis, more than a few Jamaicans (one of whom regales me with a tale of woe about his erstwhile tenants, whom he took to be Chinese when they were in fact illegal Vietnamese immigrants) and even taken delivery of a box of Mangoes from a very kind and appreciative patient who imports them specially for me once a year.
Even ten years ago it would have been hard to imagine such a widespread mix of peoples visiting a sleepy suburban surgery in the heart of England, but nowadays such consultations are increasingly routine. The only thing missing from our little League of Nations is a coach load of Japanese tourists. Oh , no, hold on a minute, first appointment this afternoon, Mr Harunobu, bus driver….
* O.K so I made up the penguins.