In Croatia we trust - In the name of Thiago - Day 129



If you’re starting to wonder what the fuck is he going to be banging on about today, fear not I have some Croatia-based stories to kick things off tonight.

As I looked down to my feet this morning and gazed at the socks adorning the ends of my wondrous legs, ( I know, I know this bit’s called creative licence, so you’ll have to indulge me a little), my mind was drawn to the not particularly halcyon days of the summer of 1998.

I was working in a pub in Fratton, the heartland of Portsmouth, at the time and was doing everything to excess, with the exception of study newspaper journalism. Pompey was also the scene of one of my most inspirational punts. On the day that Brazil edged out Scotland in the World Cup tournament opener, I went down to Billy Hill and put £2 on the silky skills of Davo Suker to finish as the tournament’s leading scorer at 66/1.



A month later and after the slightly goofy looking frontman had put Croatia in front against hosts France in the semi-final, I knew I was pretty much home and hosed. So yes, Croatia have always had a place in my heart!

Now I don’t suppose Angelica will particularly appreciate me mentioning this, and it is going somewhat off piste, but in the final I was back in the pub and just happened to become acquainted with a group of celebrating French women and before that night was out, well another spectacularly unlikely punt had also reaped a dividend shall we say. I left Portsmouth not long afterwards.



Today is International Nurses Day, which under any normal circumstances would escape most people’s attention. It is though, as my limited research has confirmed, 200 years since the Lady of the Lamp, Florence Nightingale was born.  So to keep you entertained and keep spirits up I’m attaching a couple of photos of Angelica at work with her colleagues showing what they are having to wear on a standard shift.

I should say that though Angelica is no longer worker on a specialist Covid-19 overflow ward as she was previously, the requirement to wear the full PPE has not been relaxed. She views that positively but it’s hard work and very time consuming getting the kit on and off before, after and during her shifts.



One thing she is certainly enjoying on her shifts is a terrific sense of camaraderie. It exists to some degree at my place but it’s very hit and miss. I’m going through a good spell at the moment though, so I shan’t dwell on that tonight.  

That’s really all I have for this evening folks. I still need to get out for some exercise, which is something being made a lot easier for me by the opening of tennis courts this weekend. Well I needed a bit of a fillip.

So in the meantime, keep the donations coming if you can. There’s still quite a way to go to reach the £10,000 target but I know that I can rely on you wonderful readers (and your contacts - please do share this blog with people you know) to help me get there.   


Hvala vam i laku noç (damn I can’t get the right diacritic mark on the c) – thank you and good night!

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