March 11, 2019

Lord Brain Demonstrates the Signs of Disseminated Sclerosis – The London Hospital, 1964

Posted in Uncategorized at 9:56 am by aleksan

The Bearsted Theatre, London Hospital Medical College, Whitechapel, 1964

Clinical Demonstration – Disseminated Sclerosis by Lord Brain

I was in the first year at Medical School at the London Hospital (now the Royal London Hospital) mostly focussed on pre-clinical Studies, Anatomy and Physiology, so this invitation was too good to miss. I waited impatiently high up on one side of the Theatre for the great man, formerly Sir Russell Brain the country’s top Neurologist, to appear. He was a London Hospital man through and through, author of the textbook Brain and someone to be proud of.

Lord Brain appeared dressed in Morning Suit, black jacket and grey pin stripped trousers – and bowed. We all clapped. He then proceeded to bring in his specimen patients, regulars brought in from different parts of England with classic clinical signs of DS (later called Multiple Sclerosis). He tapped knees, pricked with a needle and bent arms and legs, showing us hyper-rigidity, spasms, sensory loss patterns, and loss of balance and coordination. He was polite and considerate to the patients, male and female, and brilliant at elucidating neurological signs and explaining their causes.

Finally after about two hours he bowed deeply – we all rose and clapped – a brilliant performance by a great man – I felt privileged to have been there, but little did I know that within a few years I was to be diagnosed with DS myself – that is another story which I have told before, although my diagnosis has been modified in the last few years. Lord Brain was an inspiration, the Old School at its best, and I have never forgotten this great occasion, or the top man – Brain by name and Brain was his business. Do such events still occur at Medical Schools? No, not like this noble piece of History.

Dr Alexander Burnfield MBBS DPM FRCPsych

London Hospital Medical College 1963 – 68

Formerly House Surgeon to the Neurosurgical Unit, the London Hospital and now Retitred Consultant in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

March 6, 2019

An apology please, Mr American Ambassador Woody Johnson – for your lies on British Radio

Posted in Uncategorized at 2:04 pm by aleksan

Despite the patronising remarks about backward Agriculture in the UK and EU by Woody Johnson, the American Ambassador, it now seems that he was to put it diplomatically “Ill advised”. Prof Erik Millstone from Sussex University, refuted the Ambassadors words, making it clear that not only does the USA have more food poisoning than the UK and the EU, but also more animal infections, more antibiotic use, worse animal welfare and lower food hygiene standards. Not only that, but washing chicken in chlorine water is ineffective. Looking forward to getting an apology from the Americans on this lie, an attempt to manipulate people in our country for purely financial gain.

March 4, 2019

The Hospital Vampire – a near miss….

Posted in Uncategorized at 12:43 pm by aleksan

“Are you on Blood Dinners, love?” enquired the Hospital Vampire aka Phlebotomist, baring her canine teeth, and preparing to collect some blood before my next Out Patient appointment with the Knee Man. Blood dinners? My imagination blared Brides of Dracula. “Blood thinners?” She asked again – I told her no, and relaxed. Wow that was a near one…🔴

March 3, 2019

“Get off my Manor” – an avian dog fight….

Posted in Uncategorized at 4:12 pm by aleksan

I love looking out of my bedroom window during storms! Most wildlife is keeping low today, as Storm Freya passes by, but just now a White Egret appeared by the river, mooching in the meadow. Soon a big flapping Grey Heron dived in from stage right, and buzzed the Egret – a little dance in the wind then ensued once the Egret flew off, pursued by the outraged Heron “Get off my Manor!” A dog fight of WW 1 proportions took place, before the Egret was seen travelling at about 100 mph with the South Westerly gales at its tail….

February 25, 2019

Spared the Winter….

Posted in Uncategorized at 12:03 pm by aleksan

Sam and I have just been for a bimble in the meadow, warm in the Sun. We are no longer capable, either of us, of long walks. Sam ambles slowly, sniffing often, clearly like me, happy with his lot. I push my Rollator seat, and often sit on it. He could not make it to the other end, but I caught up with him on my way back. Poor old chap is not too good at seeing and hearing and his legs are stiff – I can relate to all that. Signs of climate change, the Willows are no longer growing tall, and are gradually giving way to very heathy Elders – I salute the Calliach, the old witch, who lives in the Elder thicket, and she gives me a knowing look – the look that old people give each other “Look after yourself, there are few of us left“ – but we have been spared the Winter…

February 19, 2019

Ode to the Dragons of the Four Directions

Posted in Uncategorized at 2:02 pm by aleksan


Lord Red Dragon of Fire and Light

I see you in the Sun and in volcanoes

in the vibrations of electrons

your energy gives me power

Lady Green Dragon of Earth and Nature

I sense you in the forest and on the mountain

in stones in plants and in the movement of animals

your life gives me being

Lord Yellow Dragon of Air and Heavens

I know you in the stars and in the flight of birds

in the vastness of space and in the clear sky

your clarity gives me understanding

Lady Blue Dragon of Water and Lakes

I feel you in the rivers and in the seas

in the swimming of fish and in the Moon sparkling waves

your healing makes me whole

Gillbride (Alexander Burnfield) February 19th 2019

In the light of the Silvery Moon

Posted in Uncategorized at 10:30 am by aleksan

In the early hours of the morning I saw light from the full Moon shining on Hazel catkins, sparkling gold and silver – magically beautiful! I hold that vision now, still enchanted – a much needed perspective on yet another news crazy day – reality in the midst of illusion, an experience I share with ancestors, seen in times before history began.

February 17, 2019

King Arthur is dim, and his Knights all bonkers

Posted in Uncategorized at 5:22 pm by aleksan

I am reading the Acts of King Arthur and his Noble Knights by John Steinbeck based on the manuscripts of Thomas Malory – it’s exciting stuff but somewhat disillusioning – King Arthur is not bright and really rather nasty, the Knights are all bonkers, Merlin a conflicted smartass and the women manipulative and unfaithful – still I am only a quarter of the way through and it could improve – however I doubt it as modern life seems to be a parallel universe, and observing the world at the moment, Malory and Steinbeck are not just telling stories but reflecting real life people and their quandaries…nothing has changed…..

February 10, 2019

Alexandros kai Penelope – by Paddy Killer (2007)

Posted in Uncategorized at 9:49 am by aleksan

Emma speaks truth to power and should be honoured

Posted in Uncategorized at 9:44 am by aleksan

I am so impressed by Emma Fairweather who speaks truth to power. After being injured in an accident caused by the Duke of Edinburgh, her criticism of the Duke has now resulted in him having to stop driving at 97, and made the public roads in this country safer. I hope the Royals will do the decent thing and Emma is honoured in the Queen’s Birthday List.

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