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  • harrystigner

Waxwing and nightingale

For this week's bird doodle I was still preoccupied with waxwings, and whilst it's much too early to hear a nightingale heralding the spring, I sketched one of these in homage to all of our heroic key workers in the midst of the pandemic.

The idea was inspired by the name of the 'nightingale hospitals' that began taking patients in London in January. One of our good friends, an occupational health worker, has just recovered from a long bout of the new strain of Covid and volunteered to work at one; Clare, one of my oldest friends, is an ICU nurse in Bristol caring for the many patients that have been helicoptered in from Kent and London to fill their wards, and my fairy god mother is administering vaccines in the same hospital. Another of my best friends has been teaching in schools in her pregnancy, and her wonderful mum has a patient facing NHS role. My sister-not-in-law began the pandemic working in a supermarket, immediately after getting her distinction in radiography, and is now full time Radiograoher in the thick of it at Guys Hospital; her mum is another crucial, patient facing NHS worker in Sussex. My best friend from university is a newly qualified doctor who has dived straight in at the deep end working punishing shifts in London hospitals, like her anaesthetist girlfriend; and our brother from another mother, a haematologist has had the distressing experience of conducting Zoom meetings between fatally ill patients and their families in the first wave of the pandemic.

I can't express how proud and in awe I am of these friends and family, and all the NHS workers that we can rely on. I've always nicknamed Clare (who was an A&E sister at Kingston hospital before specialising in ICU, and worked on a secondment in a desperately under-resourced refugee camp in Greece in between) Florence 'nightingale' so this seemed the most appropriate design for the key workers I'd like to personally thank.

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