I wasn’t originally going to post this on the Afterword, because it isn’t related to music, books, TV, Richard Thompson, progressive-rock, etc. Plus, in these times, we *all* have friends in difficulties of one sort or another – and there’s only so much any of can do.
But on reflection, it’s a friend in need, a long way from home and it’s potentially life-changing… so I’ll just leave the link here and if you want to share it somewhere or contribute a small sum, then great.
In brief: Veronika is from Slovakia, and is a massage wizard. She has lived/worked in Belfast for a few years, but has only one relative in the UK. She very recently married a fellow mainland European in Belfast, who was also in Belfast more or less alone, but who has relatives in Scotland. Veronika was diagnosed with a brain tumour late last year – and moved to Scotland a few weeks ago, permanently, with her husband (both giving up their jobs), for two reasons: (1) to get surgery with one of the best UK surgeons for this condition in February; (2) to stay with her husband’s relatives while recuperating, which may take months.
I heard from Veronika today that both of them have just been through Covid, and this has affected her husband’s start date for a new job (now, April).
Veronika is a wonderful person – a very positive soul, no complainer, and she didn’t ask for help. But she humbly accepted my offer to start a Go Fund Me campaign a few weeks ago. My immediate circle of friends have been terrific, but I haven’t shared it more widely than my own Facebook page until now.
I’m in awe of anyone who moves to a new country and learns that language – let alone being terrific at the job they do. If that person falls seriously ill in that new country with a very limited support network… Scary.