>Putting it into perspective

>I was listening to BBC Radio 4 on my drive to work this morning. Libby Purves had 4 guests on her Midweek programme – a football referee, a merchant sailor, a famous animator, and a Sierra Leone survivor.

The programme was quite jolly and funny, even when the interview began with Mariatu Kamara. Then it started to gradually dawn that this 23 year old woman not only experienced the terrors of Sierra Leone first hand, she also watched people she knew get executed in front of her, she was beaten and raped, and she had both of her hands cut off with a machete. She was 12.

An award winning journalist helps Kamara tell her harrowing story, which is fully available in the memoir The Bite of the Mango by Mariatu Kamara and Susan McClelland. I may get this book along with the Enid Blyton biography. But doesn’t stuff like this put everything else into perspective? Kamara is such a cheerful girl, and pretty too – I Googled her when I got in.

It has been raining here for several hours, although it looks as though it may have finally stopped. There is surface water on most of the roads, up to several inches in many places. We have more gales and rain forecast, starting in the north west (top left), working its way south east (middle right), until eventually arriving in the south west (bottom left). And it’s here until Saturday. The Environment Agency has put much of the country on flood warning.

Last night I worked until 1am on both the magazine and the confidential job. I have more to do on both today.