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Showing posts from March, 2013

Blue skies and thoughts on leading with heart...

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This week we have stumbled into Narnia and the white witch has ensured it's ever winter. A snow flurried Holy Week. But I had a short break and the photos I took belie the temperatures. The sky is blue and you couldn't guess from them that even with several layers, a hat, a scarf and gloves I still needed to buy a snood for another layer of warmth! But I had a lovely break , well pampered and lots of putting the world right. ( Still a way to go!). The hotel had excellent customer service, everyone from the local girl ...to the young man from Bulgaria,a credit to their organisation and countries. Its a lovely hotel in the elegant bay at St Andrews so there will be a prestige attached to a job there, but the pay won't be great and the hours are long. But the atmosphere was calm and happy and that helps in a large, complex institution like that. The customer focus was evident, good systems and training was in place, there was a good level of staff and there w

Will you still need me, will you still feed me...

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I realised this week that its 20 years since my Godmother died of breast cancer. She was ever a warm presence in my young life. Her ability to name each wild flower, to nurture her own garden and her aura of gentle kindness enriched my childhood in a way I will never forget.She was my Mum's good friend and one of many she has now outlived. A sad situation for her ........but she has also been luckier. She has been able to see her grandchildren thrive and make her proud, enjoy many a family celebration and find joy in her great grandchild.  And she has even in her 85 year moved to a new home and starting a fresh...life is still an adventure, even if that can be scary too. And in  the same week the House of Lords committee have reported on our response in the UK to our aging society. We are woefully unprepared they say. We need to look at so many of our structures like housing, pensions, workplaces, care services, it effects them all. But it does strike me that we tend to see all o

Women, twitter and challenging us all to do better.

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Thanks to Nancy at Nancy's Point for this great quote Women in Kenya heading to vote this week. Its been a week when I have seen the impact of some really special women.  But it didn't start well from that perspective. I noticed a flurry of activity about a fundraiser on twitter that had the hashtag of #hundredhooters. Now I have deleted most of my rant as I know at heart it is well intended so I will just say, please , please think about all the issues that have been raised this week around international women's day. Women across the world are a long way from experiencing equality and this kind of activity is not empowering ...just demeaning. So long as women think this is ok then how can we expect issues of women's place in society to be taken seriously.  I was shocked to learn  that women from across the world aged 15-44 are more at risk from rape and domestic violence than from cancer, car accidents, war and malaria combined. It's down to us 

Doing my bit for the baby boomers?

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  I was walking along in the winter sunshine the other day when I took a call about my request to take my pension early. I decided to do this to act as a security should I need more treatment for cancer in the future , to act as an income buffer for me if I was unable to work. Not what I plan you understand , nor what the risks would suggest but no guarantees either so it made sense.  They had good news for me, was the message. Because of my reduced life expectancy I would get a bigger annual sum. Now it's meagre so any enhancement is frankly welcome. But having your reduced life expectancy confirmed whilst walking along Princes St is a bit of a blow. Clearly my plan is to take the money and,  if not run, just walk away with my head up all the while planning to prove them wrong! With this backdrop I considered the recent awareness raising with regard to changing demographics and the impact on health and social care. I personally may buck the trend but in the mai