Tuesday, October 9, 2012

A Whittington Baby

TLOML and I have decided to have our baby at the Whittington Hospital. We started our antenatal care at the Royal Free, a very good teaching hospital that's a ten minute walk from Fox Corner - but have decided to switch, as the Whittington sounds better.

The rooms in the Whittington's birth centre were recently done up, with double beds and nice big plasma screen TVs. So if TLOML wants to take a nap or watch some telly while I give birth, he can. We aren't sure if this is important or not but it seemed like a nice option to have.

The Whittington is named after Dick Whittington, legendary Lord Mayor of London. According to folklore, Dick Whittington came to London to earn his fortune, having heard the streets were paved with gold. Times were tough so he decided to quit on his dream - but as he headed out of London on Highgate Hill he heard bells ringing, and felt sure they were telling him if only he gave it another go, he could one day be Lord Mayor. Thanks to the mouse catching skills of his cat, he did indeed become Lord Mayor.

I'm a bit hazy on the details - quite how the bells told him to turn back, and exactly how the cat helped him become Mayor. But every schoolchild in Britain knows the story, and there's a statue of his cat on Highgate Hill, so it must be true.

The TVs, the double bed, and the cat story are excellent reasons to choose the Whittington. Another good reason is that they have plenty of birthing pools, so the chances are very good I'll get a room with one.

Isn't it marvellous that I can, thanks to NHS patient choice, opt without constraints for the quality hospital I think is the best? And it's all free too. God bless the NHS.

However I will, apparently, need to bring my own sieve and mirror.
Which made draw yet another comparison with life in the US. I know if we'd had a baby there we would have had to pay $500+ a month in insurance premiums, or find at least $10,000 for the birth.

But I bet they throw in a new sieve and mirror for that price.

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