While there (well, while getting there and back, to be honest), I finally read NHS plc, which my dad has been raving about (and for which I swapped him Paxman's excellent The Political Animal). As the old man promised, it's an extraordinary, damning and horrifying study and everyone should read it.
'New Labour's chief tactics were to denigrate the existing public services and tout the imaginary superiority of market-based services in other countries; to add fuel to public discontent by aggravating and highlighting exisiting points of stress; to muzzle internal critics; to dismiss and/or contaminate scientific evidence; and, finally, to attempt to discredit, marginalise and intimidate anyone bold enough to point out what was really happening.'
Allyson M Pollock, NHS plc: the privatisation of our healthcare, pp.194-5.Have passed it on to the Doctor.
Also zipped through one of the funky, hardback ninth Doctor Who novels, which was something of a contrast. Loved it, loved how it felt just like the TV show, loved this bit in particular:
'Freddie grinned. The grin froze, then faded as Rose leaned over and kissed him on the cheek. "Thanks," she said.
He was rubbing the cheek as he walked away, glancing round embarrassed.
"I only kissed him," Rose said.
"He's a boy," the Doctor told her.
"I thought that's what they were for," she grumbled, following him down the street.'
Justin Richards, Dr Who - The Clockwise Man, p. 130.
In other Droo news, A Day In The Life is now out, and includes Dr Who meeting a chap called Brimmicombe-Wood. Which is kind of funny now, what with the Doc's new, weird teeth and all... Stories for Christmas are trickling in, and there's some other stuff I hope to be able to boast about soon...
Off to do washing up now. And maybe have a shower and a shave - currently doing a good impression of a hairy, stinky farmhand.