While on my runs

By waipushrink

Makes me think of Slough House

Another long day, starting early and finishing later than I had wanted. Without the time out for management issues, I might have left a couple of hours earlier. At least the hearing of an appeal by a patient to the Court for release from compulsory status was shorter than the one which preceded it. Set down for 15 minutes the first hearing had taken an hour. The one I was in took just the 15 minutes. It was certainly arguable that the young man was not mentally disordered (as defined in the law) and easier to argue that way, than that he currently is. I put before the Judge that it would be best if I could continue his treatment for a few more days (as he intended to (and did) leave if allowed to. Reasonably the Judge decided that my concern that colleagues may not continue my treatment was insufficient grounds for declining the appeal. 

I have known this Judge for many years. He was initially a lawyer who represented patients before the Court on Mental Health Act matters, and he then became a District Inspector, an independent role ensuring fair treatment of patients, and then was appointed a Family Court Judge. P is very informal, and refuses to sit behind the desk (bench), and introduces himself by name rather than title. He does consider things at length in order to feel that compulsion is the right thing, and although there is a possibility this may go wrong, his decision was the right one.

On my way home tonight I had to go past the Northern Regional Headquarters of the New Zealand Army. In Great North Road. Very obvious. As is the big pine tree in the front corner of the grounds. I had previously noticed the wires linking the large heavy branches. And tonight it looked a little Heath Robinsonesque. 

And then the series of books I am currently reading by Mike Herron; the Slough House Thrillers. Slough (pronounced slow) House is described very graphically and much much less neat and tidy than these headquarters. But for some reason the use of wire (NOT number eight fencing wire) to prevent a large tree from splitting apart reminds me of the building in the books.

They make an enjoyable series mixing "thriller" with comedic, and with challenge to our comfortable ideas of the superiority of our democracies.

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