I'm still hopeful to get out to Saudi Arabia at the start of next month, although my passport is still not back from renewal. I might need to start making my peace with this adventure not happening this year..
After speaking with my care co-ordinator last week about this exciting travel possibility, we got onto the subject of the British nurse, Helen Smith, who died at an illegal party in Saudi back in the late 70s. She remembers it because she was training to be a nurse at the time. I immediately went onto Google and found this book, written by the Doctor whose party it was.
The British media hasn't changed one bit - back then they blew this story wide open with rumour, innuendo, whisperings of conspiracy and murder. Dr Arnot breaks his silence 30 years later after moving to the other side of the world to get away from the backlash. This book cuts to the very heart of the matter and feels genuine and honest with what really happened that night. I particularly enjoy his accounts of being in a Saudi jail and the way he was determined to make the most of it, despite the appalling conditions and treatment. Strangely this felt very akin to how I spent my time in a psychiatric hospital during my first stay back in 2018, minus the appalling conditions and treatment of course. It was largely very civil and, because I was voluntary, I had priviledges some other patients did not. Which was the same for Dr Arnot - being a doctor and British and able to converse sensibly. I think a lot of people in his situation would have simply gone mad with the confinement and the waiting - nothing happens quickly in a Saudi jail!
Blogging is an amazing concept so here I am giving it a whirl. You'll get words. You'll get pics. Sometimes a vid or two. You'll get tongue in cheek, the odd humble opinion and an honest insight into my travels and writing life. Maybe even a few gems along the way. I'll be musing on home turf as I see more and more of the UK and sharing my experiences further afield on holidays and adventurous trips across the globe.