(Whilst we have a lull on at the moment, my next few posts are going to be old jobs from the past few years. As always, details changed to protect the innocent, guilty and the stupid.)
The phone call that we all dread, experienced and newbies together, that is guaranteed to set our hearts racing and cause our adrenal glands to dump adrenaline into the blood, is one from a parent panicking that their son or daughter hasn't got in touch with them for a few days and that "they always call me on Sunday morning, I've not heard anything from them since last Sunday".
As with any of the nastier jobs, I tend to attract more than my fair share of these calls. Every one I go up to the student's room with the trepidation that I'm going to find a body. Especially when they don't answer the door and I have to unlock it.
Thankfully the worst I've had is someone bedridden with swine-flu. No bodies yet.
Normally they're asleep, or drunk, or hungover, or not in.
The kicker is that we're not allowed to tell these worrying parents that their offspring are alive and well, if a bit dopey. Thanks to data protection laws, we can't even confirm to our own parents that we're alive and well if we're on duty. Go figure.
I just know that I'm going to find a body one of these days. But I'd rather I found them than other staff. I've seen death before, I've seen a body that has been there a while. I can deal with that.