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Another break in proceedings, so I thought it was time I wrote some more about what's been happening.

College

Luke has been back at college for a month already and is trying very hard to eat his daily portion of fruit with his breakfast. When he came back home at the beginning of summer has was quite constipated and rather then tell us directly he'll go and lie down in his room. Eventually one of us would go looking for him and then he'll explain that his tummy hurts. However over the summer we substituted his normal cereal for a mixture of raw oats and granola with added linseed, cacao nibs and a side portion of fruit. Luke will never mix foods in the same mouthful so he wouldn't have the fruit in the same bowl as the cereal. Bottom line is that it seems to be working and his support team in Brighton are helping him to keep to this regime. Having said that Luke did say there have been a few days when they forgot. He still has to learn that ultimately he has to remember.

We went down to visit him last Saturday and he was full of beans. On the Saturday he'd been to see Dreamboats and Petticoats and after we left, he went to see a screening of Sister Act with a live choir. Which sounded amazing. He also has a far larger room than last year which has made a big difference. The college are trying to sort out a problem with wifi as Luke can't access it in his room. Not that he's a social media obsessive, far from it. More like a social media recluse. However things like Spotify, YouTube and Wikipedia occupy an important part of his day to day routine. 

At the moment he's working on an article for the college magazine on the history of musical theatre. This should come out in the next half term.

He certainly seems very much at home in Brighton. He took Anne and I to the library as he had to return some DVDs. Just watching him use the Auto Return and then, realising he dind't have his library card, queuing up at the desk to take out some CDs. It's difficult as a parent to take that step back. He didn't need our help. He was comfortable in that environment. He got the CDs he wanted. They weren't what I would have chosen. So many positives. 

This came in from Jan, Luke's key worker - "Tues: Luke went to the junior school again where he signed a song, and played his ukulele. He really enjoys this work experience and the children adore him."

I'm not sure whether I'm being delusional but when you read something like that it does raise the possibility that Luke could have a life where he actually uses his talents. Allowing others to enjoy them and maybe making their days a bit better to having spent some time with him. To have a future where he can wake up with a sense of purpose.

I Love Thunder

As far as the band is concerned it's obviously a bit tricky with Luke being in Brighton and compounded by Vinnie moving to Billingshurst and Eric living in Spain for the time being! We've got a gig coming up in Croydon on Monday 16th and both Vinnie and Luke are getting support to come up and play with us. Mind you loads of other bands have memebrs living all over the place but I imagine they might have a bit more money sloshing around than we do. Still it hasn't affected our creativity and we're writing more than ever now with 2 new songs on the way.

I took the music for 'Drifter Coaster' down to Brighton and Luke picked up his uke and we recorded this on the second take. 

 

We'll be performing it all together for the first time in Croydon. I remember reading an interview with Niles Rodgers recently and he said the band (Chic) never rehearse new songs, they just run through them at sound check. We're not quite there but certainly new songs come together a lot easier than they did. Well we've been together for 7 years and have over 60 gigs under our belt which all helps. 

EalingHELP meandering

Recently I visited a few sites that specialised in BAME communities and whilst doing some more research found quite a bit of debate going on about the use of acronyms such as BME or BAME. The main question was - are they really helpful? Do we need to define ourselves in this way? I've been doing quite a bit of work with the Power Group recently, over their use of the expression "We are people first, disability second".  It has always struck me as being a strange way to define yourself. We have been asking people what they enjoy doing and realised that everyone is different. We looked at the whole concept of infinity. There is no one else like you on this planet, there never has been and there never will be. So labels can be a bit presumptuous. What do you think?


Nick Radclyffe writing about Life at EalingHELP on 10 October 2017

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