Crazy mad internet friends. A couple of weeks ago, one of the students I support randomly brought me a 'thank you' gift for all the help I've given her. It wasn't the end of term, or after I'd done anything especially out of the ordinary and so it was very unexpected and a bit worrying when I realised that she must have spent about forty or fifty pounds that I don't believe she could readily afford. It's my belief that the gift, although kindly and generously given, was a manifestation of a deeper anxiety issue on her part but in any case, college policy wouldn't allow me to accept something like this. I had to gently explain that I couldn't accept the gift but that if she were willing she could choose a charity to donate it to instead. I happened to mention this to my group of online friends because I was seeking advice from a couple of them who work in mental health and also because the gift had actually been two of my favourite things and as much as I knew it was the right (only) thing to do in returning it, I was a little deflated at not going home with a massive bottle of expensive gin and an extravagant amount of turkish delight. They gave me the referrals I needed and I thought no more of it. Until about a week later I got a call from my husband while at work. A parcel had arrived for me, from Amazon. It was strangely wrapped, heavy for its size, lots of tape, no readable postmark and basically had all the hallmarks of a parcel bomb. (Both my husband and I have previously worked for MoD contractors and are well acquainted with annual mandatory 'letter bomb training' they dished out to all and sundry) I told him that I definitely hadn't ordered anything from Amazon so he said he was going to open it in the garden and keep me on speaker so that if it went off I could hang up and call 999!!!!! All this while I'm at work and my boss is listening - and laughing hysterically at my facial expressions. Anyway it wasn't a bomb, it was turkish delight flavoured gin liqueur and I knew immediately that it was my group of internet friends that were behind it. I got in touch to thank them and relayed the ridiculous shenanigans that had gone into the opening of it. Over the course of the next week, I got regular deliveries of Cadbury's Turkish delight, some Turkish coffee, a turkey stock cube and other random turkey/turkish items. All very amusing and I was warmed by their wit and consideration. Then this week I got another weirdly wrapped parcel. It had far too much postage, the address was incorrect, there was enough tape on it to wrap a very big thing, it had a wire sticking out at one end and greasy marks at the other. Gentle prodding suggested it consisted of 'rods' of some description. However, I could see a Dundee postmark and so I instantly guessed what it was. Sure enough, ten rolls of extra large parma violet sweets wrapped up individually in red paper with black electrical tape binding them together to create a bunch of dynamite look-a-likes complete with fake fuse wires. I suppose, on reflection, it's a reason to be amazed that it made it through our postal system without being siphoned off to the bomb squad but it did make me laugh.