Yesterday I bumped in to my neighbour Laura who asked how we were and how the strike was going. She sympathised saying "So you have Bathrobe Man in the house. " She explained that she had had many phases of "Bathrobe Man " herself but luckily her husband was "Suit Man " at this particular moment in time.All hopes of an agreement went before xmas were smashed on thursday when it sounds like a revamped miserly offer was made to the writers. So we are back to phoning schools and explaining why we cannot pay the fees in full, organising loans and tryng to be in the moment rather than resort to panic and hysteria. Here are some of the good things that have come from the strike.. we have both taken a keen interest in our parenting techniques and spent more time with the children. A book called "Between Parent and Child" by Dr Haim G Ginott has changed the way we relate to our children for the better. It is a beautiful book by a man who died tragically young. It has made me squirm in parts as I have been doing just what the book tells me not to do . Another good thing is that I am forced to put myself "out there" in terms of my painting. In England it was such a huge part of my identity but it has been lost here as I have no connections to the art world .I have to become "go get " and "take Charge" -very alien to my nature. All our woes were put in perspectiive last wednesday . I went to do a talk at a womans group and just as I was about to speak a woman started having a fit and was apparently overdosing on meth amphetamine.It was truely tragic as this poor woman could have been any of us having made the 1 wrong decision. It showed me where the disease of addiction takes people. We all thought she was dying but luckily the paramedics arrived in 2 minute (God bless America ).