Have you noticed how nice Scottish people smell? If you've spent any time with lovely children's diabetes nurse Louise Wootton you might already know this. A fact that was consolidated in my mind during a recent jaunt to Glasgow. It really was a feast for the senses together with crisp autumnal weather, impressive Georgian architecture, and a scenic train journey during which I gained a heightened appreciation of my own bathroom. Whirling around in the massive toilet pod frantically searching for the 'close door' button, and then the usual roulette with the hole in the wall where you either end up with the gale-force dryer blowing water all over your crotch, or an extra squirt of soap after you've dried your hands. Give me a fairtrade cotton towel and a bar of sustainable-palm-oil soap any day.
My Fräulein Maria moment, wide-armed, breaking into song on top of the Alpine hills, occurred when I saw that Glasgow has recycling bins EVERYWHERE. It reminded me that our patient participation group recently mentioned the issue of recycling unwanted crutches, walking frames, and other items patients have borrowed from hospital and no longer require. Unfortunately York Hospital has no obvious recall system for this, relying solely on patients to return the items to A&E by braving the perilously narrow carpark or risking a bus journey where the chance of getting yourself and/or other passengers entangled in the crutches is 100%.
So what can we do? Well, fantastic local equipment lenders Be Independent and Medequip have kindly agreed to help us launch...the OSMP Crutches Amnesty! Forget miserable-November, remembering to order your free-range truffle-fed spa-reared turkey or tofu mega-mountain for Christmas dinner, worrying how you'll replace plastic-filled crackers, or stressing over suppliers of non-plastic wrapping tape (have you tried ribbon?!). THIS will be THE event of 2019. Like every good spy thriller, we'll set up a designated area for the dead-drop, and a date for the stash to be collected. Although it'll probably work better if the location and closing date aren't secret from the general public.
So please check your garage, loft, dog kennel, man-hole, maybe even a corner in the wine cellar. Did great-aunt Mildred have a zimmer frame after her hip operation that she doesn't need any more? Are there crutches tucked away somewhere, silently begging to be sent on to another hapless accident-prone victim? Please bring your items to either of our branches, no questions asked, no need to make eye contact, and totally fine to arrived balaclava-clad, drop the booty and jump into your waiting getaway electric-car.
Look out for our posters, and get that loft ladder down (but please don't fall off. Then we're back to square one)...