Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Relationships: The doctor and the teacher

Dr Huppert

Miss White

As children we all knew that Miss White the teacher and Dr Huppert were close friends, that Miss White would carry tales to Dr Huppert relaying all our naughtiness when they shared afternoon tea together.

But as adults looking back perhaps we have a greater understanding of that relationship between the two women.

Both were outsiders: Miss White an English woman,( I think) and Dr Huppert an Austrian Jewish emigre. Neither would have fitted easily into this close-knit Welsh community.

Why both, independent of each other, should have been drawn to Craig-y-nos Castle and to spend the major part of their working lives there remains a bit of a mystery.

Yet these two women, along with Sister Morgan, represented to us, as children the official face of "grown-ups": cold, distant, officious. It was left to Nurse Glen, and "Auntie Maggie" to bring some warmth into the wards along with some other members of staff though their names are no longer remembered.

This trio of women - Huppert, White and Morgan-
determined the quality of our every day life in Ward 2. There was an added frisson to this relationship because Sister Morgan did not like either Dr Huppert or Miss White whom she had scant regard for.

It is easy to see how Sister Morgan came to be spending her life in Craig-y-nos Castle but one wonders what brought Miss White to this remote corner of Wales. As for Dr Huppert, she must have been glad to find a niche for herself, especially one where she could exercise her own strident medical regime.

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