I was initially going to have a grumpy outraged rant about some news that I heard recently. The news that here in the UK old married couples are sometimes split up and sent to different nursing homes.
I have to admit that nowadays I’m a pretty apathetic bastard a lot of the time and not much about humanity surprises me. But this bit of news actually got to me. I was genuinely outraged that this kind of thing can happen in a first World Country.
And then…. I remembered how privileged I am to be in a first world country.
Most of my life has been spent with my head pretty much in the sand (or with it up my arse?) and “world events” as well as “the other persons perspective” never really entered my head. I had for a long time given up following news and politics because its pretty much depressing (oh, and I rant about newspapers and biased or “silly” reporting).
Meeting and getting to know my beautiful alien has changed all that.
I was lucky enough to travel to her country and it opened my eyes. At least it did when I stopped thinking “first world expectations and rights”. I heard about some of the countries turbulent history too and how it affected my beautiful alien, her family, and a good amount of the countries population.
While I was there I saw a totally different way of life and values. It has made me realise just how lucky I am and just how lucky people in the UK are.
The UK government (and the news media) put out statistics of how the NHS is “failing”, for example. Some people have to wait over 4 hours to be seen.
I know it’s not as black and white as this but… the people are waiting for a free service. The doctors and nurses are busting their proverbial balls to heal people and everyone gets outraged if it takes “too long”.
Fuck me, Id rather wait for several hours knowing that someone will look after me (for free) rather than not get proper decent medical attention, or not get any treatment/medicine at all because I cannot afford it.
Sometimes I think that people have been “given” so much that some people scream about their “rights” if they are denied a luxury…. oooh, that can easily turn into an entire grumpy ranting post about having to work hard to get things in life, not expect them to be handed to you.
Its good to remind myself (or get reminded) of this occasionally. I know that for “first world people” first world problems can seem awful but at least we (here in the UK) are relatively safe and secure as we go about our day-to-day lives. We can walk the streets in (relative) safety, we are secure in the knowledge (even if we don’t always realise it) that whatever happens to us there is some authority or organisation that will pick us up if we fall and look after us. We don’t have to deal with corruption, nor see it as “a way of life” when dealing with authorities or corporations.
Oh, and we can turn on a tap pretty much anywhere and expect not to get sick off the water (and if the water is dubious [small risk of being a bit ill after drinking it] there will be a bloody big sign behind the tap telling us “not drinking water”).
I have no idea why I wrote all of that. It’s just my own thoughts and observations (as I see them). I love my little country and it’s interesting to see the differences between it and others around the world.