Nursing comparisons now and 1955

Nursing comparisons between today and the olden days, when nurses trained in an apprenticeship system, make me laugh. Recently some nurses exchanged ideas about this topic on Facebook. I was seventeen years old when I began to train as a nurse in 1955. Then, nurses in Western Australia became indentured to the Health Department. Actually, …

Witness by Louise Milligan – a review

Witness: An investigation into the brutal cost of seeking justice by Louise Milligan deserves its place on the Stella short-list (2021). Witness provides a frightening account of what it can mean to be the complainant in a sexual assault case. Few people report sexual assault to the police. Fewer still take their case to court. …

Baby steps on the road to recovery after loss

Baby steps. The concept resonates. Do one small thing. Then another. Brush your hair. Put bread and cheese on the table. Water the plants. Rest often. Talk. Cry. Find a comfortable space to be. Fold the washing. Put the socks in drawers and fresh sheets on the bed. Take care of yourself. Ask for comfort. …

Child Protection stories and my involvement

Child Protection stories don’t sound like a lot of fun. But, always optimistic, I expect my newest venture, work with the Family Integration Network, WA, to be satisfying and enjoyable. That’s not just for me, but also for the participants in a group who want to write stories about how involvement with the Department of …

Hotel quarantine and COVID-19 from the outside

Hotel quarantine for all travellers from overseas as they enter Australia is mandated by the Commonwealth Government. Each state and territory enforces strict conditions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 from outside Australia. Some states use the term ‘medi hotel’ instead of quarantine hotel. We owe a great debt of gratitude to Australians returning from …

Does dislike of all-gender toilets make me a bigot?

All-gender toilets built at Curtin University will ‘help transgender students feel safe’, according to an article in The West Australian last week. The article also says that a ‘concerted vandalism campaign’ left many students feeling unsafe. The vandalism included tearing or defacing posters. A sad state of affairs. . There’s no excuse for discrimination or …

New shoes challenge old knowledge

Buying new shoes challenged me. At best the activity bored and, at worst, depressed me. Once or twice, a pair of shoes captivated my imagination. An orange pair, the year I turned 39. They matched, perfectly, an oversized pumpkin-coloured jumper I wore that winter. Forty years later, a blue pair made my feet twitch with …

Melting Moments delicious Australian delicacies

Melting Moments, the debut novel of Anna Goldsworthy, deserves to be widely read. It provides both an intimate picture of domestic life and an entertaining social history of women’s lives in Australia during the 20th century. Anna Goldsworthy has written several acclaimed non-fiction books, and has published widely in journals. She is also a concert …

The night guest by Fiona McFarlane – a thriller

The night guest, by Fiona McFarlane, tells a chilling story of ageing, dementia – and elder abuse. The author’s debut novel, published in 2013 leads the reader on thrilling roller-coaster ride. I discovered The night guest in a second-hand bookshop recently. I’m glad I did because it mesmerised me from beginning to end.

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