I listened with half an ear to yet another of the interminable interviews of locals involved with the Ebola plague outbreaks in West Africa. Half-an-ear, that is, until this local woman stated that it was their right to wash the body of a dead relative because of religious traditions and local customs.
I was about to shout, as you do, at the bloody radio that the least possible safe thing to do with someone who has died of Ebola, is for all the bloody family members to salute, kiss and wash the virus-leaking body of their dead relative, before wrapping his or her remains and dropping them in a very deep pit in the ground.
But then I remembered who was being discussed, a bunch of deeply-superstitious and tribally-riven blacks, ill-educated and deeply suspicious of anything promoted by the White intruder; and instead decided simply to encourage them to go about their business as they wished to do, as long as all the British Service personnel gets safely out of their Sierra Leonian cess-pits after being placed in the direct line of fire by politicians who sensibly have steered well away from any possible contamination themselves. As long as our British forces personnel return safely to our shores, the rest can slowly perish in that particularly savage viral onslaught, while continuing to proclaim their right to smother any dead body with saliva in some sort of collective death wish. As with Sierra Leone, so with Mali, Liberia and Guinea.
As Seneca so memorably stated:- Non mortem timemus, sed cogitationem mortis.