Why aye pet, the nettie’s upstairs.’
My ex-hubby The Geordie Gent used to tickle the ‘g’ spots (giggle, that is) of any visitor to our home with his north-east expressions.
The ‘nettie’ means the toilet.And it had a double-whammy chuckle for my late Pa because his mother Vinchenza’s sister was named Ninette, but was always called Auntie Netty.
In the 1970s when I worked on Union Castle/Safmarine passenger liners (no not as a stoker, a stewardette), amongst the catering crew there was a real north-south divide.
The Geordies, Scousers, Scots and Yorkies used to revel in the fact that us ‘snotty suveners’ couldn’t understand their broad accents and regional words.
So it was with utter dismay I read this headline in a national newspaper last week:
‘Nurses who can’t speak English put patients in danger’.
Listen, I have the greatest admiration for all NHS nursing staff, whether home-grown or from overseas. They do a wonderful job.
It appears that strict EU rules mean that the UK’s Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) is banned from carrying out any check on the English spoken by overseas nurses. This is deemed to restrict the ‘free’ movement of labour.
The NMC has admitted that the current situation puts patients at risk.
Yet if a British nurse has not practised for over three years, they have to prove their medical training is up to date.
Come on David Cameron, this is not on. You need to ensure lives are not put at risk, possibly due to the language barrier in NHS hospitals.
And finally...I was an ’orrible schoolgirl. My parents spent lots to have me privately educated so I would become ladylike and refined. Huh!
But the second I was out the school gates, my gymslip was hitched up, skimming my regulation navy blue elasticated drawers.
And now UK schools are getting upset because schoolgirls roll their skirts up so short.
No change there then.