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Birthday blog

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Chocolate is the answer who cares what the question is?

(Birthday card from Angela)

As Barry Jones has pointed out today I’m the same age as Colo, the oldest gorilla living in captivity. Erm, thanks Dad. It’s my first birthday not shared with a political hero, the late Tony Benn, the first British MP to table a motion concerning apartheid. Last night David and I celebrated early in a pizzeria with a couple of Windhoek beers on the side as he’s out this evening. At work I set a quiz inspired by a recently read novel, The Restless Supermarket‘s central character, a retired Johannesburg proofreader. There was a prize for the most accurate corrections of typos from my focus group transcripts and Jones-baked millionaire shortbread all round.

002 011

A thorn between Ria and Lisl: mother & daughter on their way to Graaff-Reinet’s first lesbian wedding; on the road in Capricorn

Even before that fun I confessed to FPD’s journal club, where today’s academic paper concerned HIV testing that I’ve been around long enough to have requested ‘HTLVIII’ when testing was first introduced. I’ve enjoyed my first South African birthday with two cards, numerous emails and Skype with Angela, Brigid, Steve & Chris. David wrapped some real coffee – hooray! The nut that holds together the cafetiere just went down the plug hole – boo!

Of late, report writing has occupied most waking hours. I’ve a vast data set and my 11th April flight north looms ever closer so it’s taken all my blogging and much of my emailing time. Apologies Will you settle for now for some pictures (paint a thousand words) and tables?



Mentoring clinical mentors Evaluating clinical mentorship
1 town and its environs 5 districts in 4 provinces
85 nights at Aa’Qtansisi Guesthouse, Graaff-Reinet 7 nights at Aa’Qtansisi Guesthouse, Graaff-Reinet
9 primary health clinics 78 PHC
4 pills-a-day first line antiretroviral therapy (TDF, 2x 3TC, EFV) 1 fixed dose combination pill: welcome Atroiza
£1 = R12 £1 = R18
“We cannot manage HIV in primary care” (Professional Nurses) “I am empowered to handle patients with care and love” (PN)



Written by martinjones183

April 3, 2014 at 7:32 pm

8 Responses

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  1. Happy birthday Martin – hope you had a very enjoyable day.


    April 3, 2014 at 7:45 pm

  2. Happy birthday Martin. Lots of love. Xxxxxxxx


    April 3, 2014 at 8:04 pm

  3. HBTY, HBTY, HBDM, HBTY! Hooray!


    April 3, 2014 at 9:31 pm

  4. Congratulations Martin another year wiser

    Jacqui Whinney

    April 4, 2014 at 9:19 am

  5. A belated Happy Birthday Martin! It sounds like a remarkable trip and a huge amount of work – well done you! I love the comparison table. Enjoy Easter in the UK. My schedule has changed and I leave rural Ireland 15 degrees for Durban, 25 degrees today! Candy

    Candy Duggan

    April 4, 2014 at 10:32 am

  6. Hi Martin

    Happy belated birthday wishes.



    April 4, 2014 at 6:18 pm

  7. Happy Birthday for yesterday Martin, just a day late sorry.
    I agree chocolate is the only answer!
    What a difference three years makes.
    See you soon.

    lisa balmer

    April 4, 2014 at 10:56 pm

  8. Happy belated birthday I know it’s very late! Hope to you back in the uk, it would be great if you could do a talk over at the clinic! Take care, Sach 🙂

    Sacha Pires

    April 12, 2014 at 6:25 am

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