Monday, April 18, 2005

Back in Circulation

Back in Circulation

I am now an official first aider. If, by chance, you accidentally lose a limb whilst reading these pages, drop me a line and I'll be along within a couple of days (schedule permitting) to patch you up.

As a matter of fact, I've been doing first aid courses on and off for 25 years, and I am pleased to say that this is the first one where there not strictly no fannying about with triangular bandages. This was brutal, realistic car-crash keep-em-alive-until-the-grown-ups-arrive stuff complete with screaming casualties with blood pumping out of sickeningly authentic looking wounds.

Just to make sure we got the message, the classroom sessions were filled withphotos of the real thing. A far cry from a scout hut and stern-faced instructors testing the quality of your head bandage on a little old lady from the WI.

It's a sad fact that the course was there to prepare me for the three most likely events that will happen in a war zone:

* Road Traffic Accidents
* Americans with guns
* Road Traffic Accidents caused by Americans with guns

They couldn't stress the bit about the Americans enough. Gone are the days when all you had to worry about was some shifty looking generic terrorist with an AK-47. These days, the biggest menace to your safety in any war-zone wears dark glasses and thinks they are liberating you. So, they took us all down to Bisley Ranges and showed us what it's like to get shot by firing at tins of tomatoes. It's the exit wound you've got to worry about. Ugh.

Then, we got taken hostage.

Bag on head chic. It's what they're all wearing in Fallujah Fashion Week.

If there's one thing this experience has taught me, it is this: stay at home, it's safer.

I still wouldn't do mouth-to-mouth on a tramp, mind.

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