Monday Morning Blues
A World War 2 Trilogy - By FRED NATH (Novelist and Neurosurgeon)
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Fred's Blog

Monday Morning Blues

20 6 16

5 am. Dog wakes me – need to go out. Oooooh groan. Dressing gown, slippers stumble down stairs – fresh air on my face.

Damned funny time to get up. Start to think… Could I be more productive? Apportion my time…

Bed beckons. But… and there’s always a ‘but’. Can I?

Full-time neurosurgeon, prolific medico-legal expert, published author, house person to my daughter or was that slave? More productive?

But work never seemed to be ‘work’. I always enjoyed it. Never felt that even at 3 am. opening someone’s head that it was hard work. Loved the surgery all along and the rest was a means to an end. If you don’t do clinics you don’t see enough patients to operate on. If you don’t operate then who are you?

I used to wake up in the morning on Thursdays and think, ‘Great, got that aneurysm to clip or that tumour to take out.’ Difficult, dangerous stuff – adrenaline monkey maybe.

 But I’ve done other stuff too. At school I worked in the holidays. Shop junior at Irvine Sellars on Carnaby Street. Served Tom Jones once – he always carried a huge wedge of cash in his pocket, I recall.

Oh, yes – hospital cleaner at the now defunct St Olave’s Hopsital. I remember doing a night shift and cleaning a ¼ mile corridor down one side, scrubbing on hands and knees. I watched as a junior doctor walked all the way up on the wet floor, leaving footprints all the way, so I started again.

Plumber’s mate at a building site in Findus, Sweden one summer. They called me Dr. Findlay as it was the only British medical thing they’d ever heard of.

Delivering books for a book store in Sweden – Kilberg’s Bokhandel. Driving around in a two-stroke Saab – great fun, but reverse gear was a bit tricky.

And the Post at Christmas. That was fun. All those cards.

The thing about all those jobs wasn’t the money, though to a student it was welcome. It was the people. All kinds of people. Nice ones, bad ones, poor people, rich people. They made the work a pleasure.

I wonder now whether the characters in my books aren’t based on my experiences of people where I’ve worked. Each of the French Résistance books are character-based but apart from one I haven’t consciously used anyone I’ve met.

5.30 am. Breakfast, run with the dog, rest, shower – to work.

All work no play, makes Jack a dull boy.

All work no play, makes Jack a dull boy.

All work no play, makes Jack a dull boy.

All work no play, makes Jack a dull boy.

All work no play, makes Jack a dull boy.


5 Comments to Monday Morning Blues:

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Bren on 13 September 2016 07:17
Now that you are a regularly published author do you consider writing to be work or play? A dull boy you are certainly not...yet somehow you manage to find time to do all of the above that require dedication, skill and energy, as well as writing.
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nirma on 10 May 2018 16:47
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Lesley Childs on 12 May 2018 18:26
Never dull Fred.I have done lots of things too to make life more colourful and to make ends meet.I was a fully qualified hairdesser,went to Germany to work.Just to "See what it was like"Actually,I went to get away from my wicked step father.Came back,Got marriedWent to live in Spain with my own shop to run. Came back,got a job washing up in a cafe in Darlington.Hairdressed again.Worked on the pst delivering mail.Didnt you just love it when walking down someones drive where there were lots of trees dripping rain all over your
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Lesley Childs on 12 May 2018 18:33
head.Got a job driving the elderly about.The tapestry of life.Like you I have met some varied people.Very interesting.I once cut the hair of ,,,,I have forgotten his name but he was a "Bent"cop from Hong Kong.Nice bloke actually. He was a whistle blower on all the tricks that his collegues were up to.I think one of them was called Godber.All ended up in nick except Peter the whistle blower.He retired to Spain near my shop.Had big gates and a high wall.and dogs
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anonymous on 15 August 2018 09:58
nice post
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