Yay, it is Friday again, and Fandango has just published his Friday Flashback post. The idea is that he picks a post from this day in a previous year, to give newer readers a better insight into what does and doesn’t make him tick.
I have always liked that idea, so shall also post my own reminiscence. As much as anything, it reminds me of where I was, where I am now, and how far I have come. Hopefully, you will find it entertaining along the way.
Just about a year ago, the stroke charity gave me a gold watch for my voluntary efforts. Actually, don’t get excited – it was just a paper certificate. They cut funding to most of the charities a couple of years ago and most of them don’t have a proverbial pot to piss in. I chuckled about it when I found the post; I chuckled about it at the time.
I’ve actually stopped volunteering for the charity now. I won’t bore you with the details but they did something, it pissed me off, and this was only voluntary work, after all. I think they were planning on buttering me up to see if I would change my mind, my county has no other volunteers so it was probably a big deal for them to lose me. But then COVID hit us.
Towards the end, I thought I was out of step in any case. I’d chat to patients about the system’s failings, and would be told by the charity worker “oh no, it’s better than that now”, and I would look around me at the paint peeling off the walls, and marvel at all the other things that had (have) improved in society in that time. Looking back, I picked up on this even when I first started volunteering. They could tell you what *should* happen, but they’d then repeat it as gospel, as though it *did* happen. It was bullshit, every survivor I met could reel off how the system had fallen short for them, and it just grated more as time went by.
I have the weirdest feeling of déjà vu about this flashback, although I’m not quite sure why I would’ve presented it before. If I did flash back to this one previously, I apologise – it must have been tough enough first time around! I’m waiting for the calendar to work for us, so I can start posting flashbacks of my flashbacks! Anyway, my undeserved gold watch:
Hahaha – you have to take this stuff with a pinch of salt!
The stroke charity gave me a certificate yesteray for 100 hours voluntary work. I did say to the co-ordinator that the number was nonsense, but hey, it was just a bit of paper.
In fairness, this woman has quite diligently recorded the time I’ve spent volunteering – since she joined 9 months ago. Prior to that, her predecessors were a bit more variable. In the early days, I would go up to the hospital on my own, so how could anyone know?
So I will try to hazard a guess myself. I’ve been volunteering every 2 weeks for approximately 2½ years. 25 visits per year, so, about 60 visits. Then it starts getting harder. For each visit, “time away from home” is about 3½ hours per visit. Easy! That works out to about 200 hours.
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