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GUEST,Tom Tom Bliss home from hospital (46) RE: Tom Bliss home from hospital 26 Dec 09

Thanks very much everyone.

No - not in Alderney this year :-( - though it's a damn good thing I wasn't.

Even in Leeds the doctors all thought, like me, that this was another event (same symptoms) in a long-running saga that even had me misdiagnosed with advanced cancer of the liver in August 08 (we thought The Whisper would remain unfinished). If I had been in Alderney they'd not have been able to process the blood test which sounded the alarm. It was only because I was already in Jimmy's (and - after three days - finally on IV antibiotics) when they realised that this was in fact a burst appendix that I survived.

If I'd gone to Alderney at the usual time - with just my lad Jack at that point, I'd have been 15 stormy miles of sea away from the nearest proper hospital. They'd only have found out what had happened at the autopsy.

No, the Alderney life is on hold while I finish an MA in Landscape Architecture at Leeds Met - specialising in climate change/peak oil/green economics issues, and even then will only be viable if we do a Good Life.

I'm sufficiently worried about developments (yes, I'm naturally sceptical but I've now read widely on all sides of the argument and, post Copenhagen, feel it's up to us to move things forward - and fast) that I feel I should be using my communication talents in the political sphere (small p) rather than going survivalist on a small island.

The MA is to 're-green' my CV. I'm already a qualified Landscape Architect (that's NOT gardening, by the way, it's anything to do with anything that grows - from window boxes to allotments to farms to forests) but I'm having to re-learn skills I abandoned 25 years ago - and the business has changed out of all recognition in the mean time. I'm not going to practice, though. I'm going to work in communications - schools, local authorities, NGOs, pressure groups - who knows, so I need to understand all the issues at a level that will permit informed debate - and that means becoming something of an economist and something of a scientist too.

I've NEVER worked as hard as I have these past few months, or been presented, at 54, with so much new information. I've been taking modules in Wales (The Centre for Alternative Technology), Leeds Uni (MA in Activism and Social Change - most of my classmates were protesting at Copenhagen) and anything else I could slip in - on top of the Landscape modules.

Hence why I'd decided not to go home this Christmas (or to start a folk club - for the benefit for any point-scorers out there ;-)!

Was a good thing, eh?

Right. That's my 'sitting up time' taken care of. Back to bed and the test match.

Happy Boxing Day



Hmm... should I be writing some protest songs, do you think?

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