A friend asked me today if I was alright because I was awfully quiet. It got me thinking. As far as I was aware I was good – happy in fact. I was also busy today, but not stressful busy. What I think was up, was this whole dreadful Asian Tsunami business. When I went back into work yesterday for the first time since it happened we had a few emails about it – alot of our typesetters our out in India and China and our distribution is from Singapore. The emails were reassurances that thankfully none of the staff or their friends and family were involved, although there were some close shaves. The ones in Chenai were very close shaves…

Coupled with this, I am accutely aware of my own bank balance. I don’t have alot of disposable income – like many people I have to be careful – but I have a house, I can afford some good food, go on holidays, enjoy a comfortable existance. There are thousands of people in this country who are a worse off than me, and even them, their ‘poverty’ pales into insignificance to the millions out their in developing countries, and to those affected by Boxing Day’s natural disaster. It’s humbling. It’s sobering.

Then there was three minutes silence held today across Europe in memory of those who’ve died or lost their livelihoods or who are otherwise affected by the tsunami. I chose to observe the silence quietly at my desk, slowly pushing away my mouse and keyboard, and plugging in one earphone to Radio 4. I heard the announcement, and the strikes of Big Ben, fading after the twelfth beat to a silence of discordant white noise and hiss. For me this distressing absense of the sound that normally comes from the radio brought home ever so much more powerfully the truth of the situation.

( help, and buy them part of a box, or hell, if you can, a whole box )