Last night Mrs J got one of her fingers bitten while intervening in a squabble between Meg and Queenie . The cut looked as if it might need stitching, so off we went to the nearest casualty department – Abingdon. On arrival we were greeted by a sign informing us that the department was open between 10am to 10:30pm, too late, it was 11:30pm, so to the John Radcliffe A & E in Oxford. There we waited ten minutes to see the triage nurse and a further three hours to see the doctor; who on inspecting the wound said that they no longer stitched up dog bites as they were dirty. He then instructed Mrs J to wash the wound out thoroughly with soap and water using the sink in the cubicle, he then said something which I thought rather odd; i.e. that the soap would kill the rabies virus. I said that I didn’t think that Meg had rabies. The doctor mumbled something and wandered off leaving the efficient male nurse to dress the wound. This post isn’t a whinge, round here we all know that a call at the Radcliffe A&E usually lasts about 4 hours and we know people who have been there for up to seven hours. A few years ago we could have gone up to the cottage hospital in Watlington and got fixed up, but now its a 30 mile round trip to the Radcliffe or 24 miles to Abingdon. We have a nice new surgery which must have cost a bob or two but they don’t do minor injuries and in any case the opening hours are Monday to Friday 8.30am to 6.00pm Saturday 8.30am to 10.45am (except Bank Holidays).