A short while ago, I whinged on TP about Jean not wanting her hair done. It ws a nightmare trying to wash and dry it and the torment would only take place under bribery of a chocolate bar. Just to diversify for a moment. How is it that Jean cannot hold a knife and fork properly, has to ask where the toilet is, has no idea how to put her shoes on, yet, give her a bar of chocolate, fully wrapped with fiddly polythene wrapping, and she can get inside it within ten seconds? Is this a part of nature that the anthropologists have overlooked or is nurture from peer groups? Back to the hairwashing. Being thoroughly fed up of the battle, I invited a hairdresser friend to go through the process with me. For sake of argument we will call her Mrs. Fartoo for reasons that will become obvious. "Right Grommit, You are going to wash hair in that water? It's fartoo hot. Your pouring fartoo much water over her head at anyone time. There's fartoo much shampoo in the palm of your hand. Your rubbing fartoo hard, massage gently. There's fartoo much water in that jug for rinsing, your'e not creating the Niagra falls. You are drying her hair with the towel fartoo hard. She needs her head leaving on her shoulders. That hairdryer setting is fartoo high. Are you trying to blow her head off? and it's far too cold and you are holding it (this made me giggle)far too close. No that's far too hot are you not able to see how her face has gone beetroot red? That comb is far too fine. To start with, gently brush." Ok, so I'm a dumbo and got it wrong. It won't be the only thing I get wrong, of that I am sure. My real point, I suppose, is that mastering the skills required for caring is no easy task, although this is probably preaching to the converted. Perhaps, on accepting the role of carer, there should be a small grant available for training new carers in the basics, such as cooking, cleaning, (I was the one that poured no end of disinfectant down the toilet instead of bleach and could not understand why it went black), dressing patients (everyday and special occasion wear taking in colour co-ordinates and fashion seperates), hair care and, where appropriate, the application of cosmetics.