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Dinah has an explosive week with a slimy enemy


Up early to mow lawn before work, garden rampant from heavy rain. Beetroot doing particularly well but rocket attacked by slug epidemic. Ugh, I hate their slimy squirming, and their mating rituals! Entwined on long slimy ropes stabbing one another... Kids help by throwing as many as possible over back wall into graveyard. Drive to work shuffering. Note to self: research slub eradication techniques.

School holidays - boys still glued to Harry Potter so fairly easily herded into car with usual kit (games consoles, MP3s, comics). Plan to meet practice manager at home later in week so get with seeing patients.

Somewhat explosive morning. First patient worried about contraception, but soon the real problem emerges - will she explode if she doesn't have 'proper' periods? Next patient is a teacher desperate for school holidays - now classes are over she can face her 24-hour BP monitoring. She didn't dare take it to school in case kids rigged it so her arm blew off. Except of course it's school holidays now so her BP will be fine...

Older son busy on internet and comes at coffee time to tell me about his discovery - nematodes. Pardon? Biological warfare, they kill slugs without poison. I happily order a bucketful. Should be here by Friday.


This morning set off for PCT, kids in tow and car laden with bicycles - on roof, hanging off back... Drag factor means journey takes longer than planned and fuel consumption off the scale. This isn't right - surely we should be riding the bikes, not driving round with them?

Health Improvement Group - we're working on commissioning plans for next year. This wistfully of bike as we talk about schemes to encourage exercise. What about schemes to encourage people who never have time to exercise? Will stick to slug throwing to keep fit.

At home nematodes not here yet so patrol garden and add to pile of corpses in graveyard.


Up late, rush to surgery then PCT. Meeting seems to be about fast food - or am I hallucinating because I've missed breakfast. A manager is talking about KFC. Judging from blank looks I am not the only one who doesn't get it - eventually emerges he means KPI - 'Key performance indicators'. Perfer KFC - keep firm control seems more appropriate.

Back at home, practice manager arrives for meeting. Sit in garden, review the week's business. If only it didn't rain all the time this might be a better plan than Monday mornings... Relaxed and comfortable, with me popping up every now and then to confront another slimy enemy. Kids thoughtfully provide coffee and other crudités and dips! Hold on - didn't think we had any humous... 'Oh, it was delivered from the online deli this morning!' Oh no. Nematodes!

Dinah Roy is a GP in Spennymore, chair of Sedgefield PBC group and co-PEC chair of County Durham PCT

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