Is it really 3 weeks ago that I wrote that last post? I still have no appointment with the specialist. This leaves me wondering how seriously I should be taking what the doctors have told me so far. Just under three weeks ago, I was told not to leave the surgery for an hour so that my blood pressure could be checked as it had been scarily high (“Go and sit as quietly as you can in the waiting room for an hour – yes, we realise that you have three small children with you and it’s their lunchtime; no, you may not go and buy them lunch, that wouldn’t be sitting quietly.”). My blood pressure came down in that time (that is amazing, isn’t it!), so they let me go. And no word from the surgery or the hospital since. Presumably their logic is that if my blood pressure can stabilise when I’m trapped in a waiting room under such circumstances, then nothing is going to send it back into the danger zone! I think that logic may be flawed…

Oh well. Thank you, the NHS. I’ve never had cause to complain before, to be fair. Although, come to think of it, our paths have not frequently crossed in the past! I’m sure things will get going soon. Once I have a specialist, at least I’ll have someone to nag!

So… to the news. M phoned yesterday and told me what might be about to happen to the president. My parents already knew about it because they keep themselves informed, but I don’t read the papers enough! I had no idea that this was in the air. M on the other hand, along with everyone he works with, has known it’s been on its way for some time.

It made me think, how strange it is to live somewhere on account of one’s husband’s work. He learns huge amounts about the place through his work, spending his work time talking it through with others who are equally knowledgeable. I spend all my time with expats, except for a few shop assistants and some mothers at my children’s school. It’s incredible that two people living in the same house can have such different levels of knowledge of the country in which they live! Occasionally, really significant bits of information like this one come up and are passed on – and I’m blown away! Sometimes, especially in this summer back in the UK, I’ve been asked, “So what’s the situation like there now?” And I suppose the honest answer is, “You’ve probably got better access to the BBC than I have, so I expect you know better than I do.”

I do know that the people I meet are surprisingly welcoming and tolerant, given the violence happening not far away.

Anyway, expat families are likely to be getting out and staying out for a while. Which casts more uncertainty over our movements for the next couple of months. It also sounds like more bleak times for people with little cause for hope.