Monthly Archives: July 2013

Malapropisms, Prosserisms and the little mnemonics of life & Unmissable Offers.

Are you sitting comfortably? Then I’ll begin.

Sometimes life pays tricks on us. It gives us a perfect sense of direction , so good that my wife used to refer to me as DaveDave ( the only person ever to get away with shortening my name) because she didn’t need a TomTom after I’d been somewhere once. I was always proud of my memory and the fact I could get a woman who could lose her way at the end of the driveway home over hundreds of miles. But along with this perfect memory for directions I was given a certain playfulness with certain names and/or places, a method of mnemonics that never bore fruit with the tricks of age before I was old enough to use them as an excuse.

Sometimes what I referred to as playfulness could lead to trouble, usually for me. For instance the lead singer of the 80’s group ‘Aha’ was Morton Harket  which lent itself so well to being Horton Market. Get the idea? Well, I enjoyed the song  ‘A good Heart’ by Feargal Sharkey……yes you can almost see where this is going can’t you. It soon became Sheargal Farkey and I was in the habit of calling him that all the time. One day I got a phone call at home ( back in the days when I answered that instrument of the devil). “Hi Daddy” said Yvonne, ” you know that record you love A god heart is  hard to find, who did it?” “Shearg  Feargal Sharkey ” I answered. “Oh no, I just told ****** that my Dad knows so much about pop music and its Sheargal Farkey, he laughed at me. I said I’d prove it.” “Sorry Darling ” I told her ” you’ll just have to say your Dad’s an ass and was playing games with you.” The phone went quiet for a moment before a little voice said ” I don’t think I  can ever trust anything you say again if he breaks up with me.”

We had a local shop where we lived. It was such a small place that the shop was a conversion of someone’s front room with the addition of a counter. I know it was named after the woman who ran it and a lovely lady she was. But whenever anyone told me the name it automatically leaked out of my memory. The family used to roll on the floor laughing if I asked anyone to go there for sweets.( well they would have if we’d been able to afford floors in those days). It was referred to as Laura’s Larder, Pam’s Pantry, Katie’s Kitchen and anything else that came to mind. To this day I have no idea of what it really was.

Of recent times I was trying to ask Ugo if he knew of a particular singer. I’d heard a bit of a song and quite liked it. I’d described the man and then using my fabulous mnemonic system given him the name Little Tantrum. Ugo just looked at me blank and I was surprised I knew of someone he didn’t of what I imagined would be his music scene. I could hear Yvonne stifling laughter and thought she’s surprised Ugo doesn’t know it too. At least until she burst out laughing and told me what a fool I am. The singer is called Tiny Tempah. I’d have thought my name a big enough clue and close enough.

Ju’s favourite one to tell people ( no-one realises just what I had to put up with- evil woman) was as the result of a TV quiz where the question had been along he lines of ‘Which Dept deals with Tax Credit awards?’ I like quizzes and quick as a flash answered “Customs and Exercise” instead of Customs and Excise. She dines out on that one for years and wouldn’t accept it was just a little bit too much enthusiasm where the brake on my mouth was released before my brain was properly in gear.

The reason I came up with this blog as a subject tonight was the unbelievable stupidity of my l’il brother Mike. The subject of a trip to the South of France came up last weekend and he immediately said ” Oh yes, you’ve always wanted to see where your Cathetereers came from haven’t you!” Actually I’ve always wanted to go there because I’m interested in the history of the Cathars. I’m not the least interested in tubes for passing urine from the body. How do people make such silly mistakes?


The History of the Cathars?







I may not be here to blog again in the future thanks to a few strokes of good luck. ( stop cheering at the back there). I’m going to share with you one of the letters I’ve had…..



The Federal Bureau of investigation (FBI) through our intelligence monitoring network have discovered that the transaction that the bank contacted you 
previously for was legal. Recently the fund has been legally approved to be paid via Central Bank of Nigeria.The Federal Bureau of investigation (FBI) Washington conjunction with the United Nations (UN) financial department have investigated through our monitoring network noting you that your transaction with the Central Bank of Nigeria is legal.

You have the legitimate right to complete your transaction to claim your fund valued at $5.5 (Five Million, Five Hundred Thousand United State Dollars) Only,Because of so much scam going on internet,The Federal Bureau of investigation have decided to contact the FedEx Courier Service Company in Lagos, Nigeria for them to give us their procedures on how to send this money to you without any further complain or delay. We just got an information from the Central Bank informing us that; they have loaded your $5.5 (Five Million Five Hundred Thousand United State Dollars) in an ATM MASTER CARD and submit to the FedEx courier service company for immediate delivery to your doorstep.

You are required to choose one option, which you will be able to pay and also convenient for you, for quick delivery of your parcel containing your ATM CARD and other two original back up documents.

Service Type | Delivery Duration | Charges/Fees:
Premium Express (24hrs Delivery)
Mailing $100.00 00.00
Insurance $150.00 00.00
Vat $50.00 00.00
TOTAL $300.00
Special Express (1 Day)
Mailing $80.00 00.00
Insurance $100.00 00.00
Vat $50.00 00.00
TOTAL $230.00 00.00
Economy Express (3Days)
Mailing $70.00 00.00
Insurance$? 80.00 00.00
Vat (5%) $50.00 00.00
TOTAL $200.00 00.00

You are hereby required to advise us, on your parcel delivery option by filling in the required form stated above. Please note that the deadline for claiming your fund is exactly one week after the receipt of this email. After this period, your fund/ATM CARD would be returned back,so take note.
Moreover, this is some tracking number of beneficiaries that received their payment through us and via FedEx website (
As if this isn't enough. I've also had a Nigerian lady contact me to say she's dying and wants her young son's fortune to be taken care of, can she send me Two and a half million pounds to ensure his future in my care. I was particularly sorry for this bitch woman as she claimed to be dying of the 
same evil cancer that took my Ju away.

In a strange twist of fate I've had a proposal of marriage from a girl who's parents have died and left many millions in bank accounts in this country but she can't access them with out a national's help. I don't know whether she knows the crooked bank manager who has inadvertently come into  possession  of 50 million pounds but as a bank employee can't claim it. He can however transfer it to my account if I promise to give him half.
Life is just a bunch of roses and I don't know how I got so lucky......On second thoughts, I'd miss my friends and the ones I just like annoying so I'll have to turn them all down and stay with you.....SORRY. XX

                                                                                          My Pocket Money.


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BOGOF 2 ( A kindness update)

I was looking forward to Thursday since that was the day I was told my new Hallstand would arrive. Despite having been away and been otherwise occupied I hadn’t forgotten the amazing kindness shown me by a couple I hadn’t met and who after all were just selling me something.

Muriel and John were due at about 10.30 and I was (as always) looking forward to seeing them but perhaps with a little more excitement than usual since they didn’t know of my luck. John also has a small collection of walking sticks and I’d previously given him my old metal stand when buying the stick stand a short time ago. He’d admired the stick stand and commiserated with me that I’d had to settle for that because of the constraints of finding a full hallstand that I could get delivered without mortgaging my soul to the Devil. Probably a little late for that anyway.

When they arrived the stick stand had been stripped and all my own collection moved to the bedroom out of the way. I’d counted them all though I would still be checking his coat as he left. When I explained how lucky I was to have found exactly what I’d been looking for and after such a long time and so close to home, they were delighted for me and John’s face lit up when I asked if he’s like the now redundant stick stand. He didn’t pause for breath. Even Mu was pleased as the glove box was a perfect home for outgoing mail. We loaded the car before they left for the day but not before going out for lunch and having the usual arguments about whose turn it was to pay. This must be the only place I know where everyone insists it’s their own turn.

Just before they left the excitement level rose when I had a text to ask if I’d be in between 5.30 – 6.00 pm and would it be OK to deliver then. I promised not to leave the house even if it caught fire. John and Mu have to wait until next week before getting to see the object of my avarice but though the photographs are not good due to my taking them in poor light, you get a sneak preview.













Simon arrived on time and what a really nice man he is. He refused money for petrol and said he was glad it was going to an appreciative home. All I could think to offer then was a set of my books which was cruel after such a kind act, but still, the thought was there.

Thank you so much Simon and Kate. You’re delightful people.


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Monday of this week (15th) was Julia’s birthday. Though she’s no longer with us, the family ( or as much as could get away) wanted to celebrate the day to show she’s not forgotten. I wanted so much to show my appreciation of all the support I’ve had and settled on a couple of days away. I didn’t choose the place but in the end couldn’t fault the choice.

My niece Karen found a Groupon stay in York and we were able to book the last rooms available from Monday to Wednesday at a nice little place called the Queen Anne’s Guest House. Before I go further let me again thank Phil West and his wife for making our stay easy and pleasant. We arrived late morning and had been told it was fine to drop our bags off and go off to explore and find lunch if we wanted. My son-in-law aka The Stomach on Legs needed little persuasion so we headed the ten minute walk into town for food. The weather was a great help at lifting everyone’s spirits but our walk took us through the most beautiful park by the River Ouse where we were able to release balloons in Ju’s memory. True to form she didn’t make life easy when the balloon released by Yvonne hopped along the ground and headed straight for the nearest tree which it began to climb. She was quite the tomboy in her youth.














After  the release we had a coffee and light lunch, a wander round part of the city and returned to the guest house to rest before going out again for dinner. There was a nice pub/hotel quite close by and we had excellent food before realising how much the heat had taken out of us. In honour of the day I had agreed with a friend that I’d have a pint on his behalf. Not something I’d normally do since a sniff of the barmaid’s apron is usually enough to have me flat on my back.


Of course everyone was only too happy to record this and I think  four cameras were out and trained on me. We got back to the guest  house safely and had an early night.










Tuesday morning breakfast and Phil’s lovely wife was dancing attendance on us with our various orders. I can highly recommend the full English and even managed to have my fill of toast before Ugo descended from his pit. I’ve never seen hand and jaws co-ordinate with such speed before as the table rapidly emptied. We were lucky it was time to leave before he started on the tablecloths. Karen and Joanne kept me in check as we headed back into York as Ugo made sure Yvonne was OK and not about to give birth before the holiday was over. First job of the day was to indulge a whim of mine which was to ave a photograph taken together without one of us claiming they needed to be on the other side of the camera. We headed for York’s famous Shambles and the Past Images Studio. The Shambles is a centuries old Meat Market with many of the building still retaining the original meat hooks by the doors. It’s beautiful, it’s quaint and very historic.














These are some of the

Photographs from the studio.


















York Minster was another place we couldn’t afford to miss since it’s history is so significant to the City. After lunch it was our first stop before we again ambled back to the guest house to rest up before dinner at the same pub as before but without me indulging a second time.

DSCF3222 DSCF3231 DSCF3223

Breakfast on Wednesday wasn’t half as much fun as the day before as Ugo arrived before I could finish the toast. We’d all slept well after the walking but today we had to journey home and had a stop to make on the way. Stockport !! I’m going to make the excuse that the girls all wanted to shop for baby clothes but in reality I wanted to stop for pork pies before my brother visited that evening. After breakfast Ugo only needed to stop for food once before having his first beef pie ( my pies are safe since he doesn’t care for pork) just before stopping for lunch. Since I’m honest I can say we shopped for baby clothes and the girls between them created a dearth of clothes and shoes that will leave the women of Stockport stunned for many a year.

We arrived home safely. Of course in a blog there’s no way I can describe everything we saw even if I had the words to do so. York is an exceptional place, the guest house was superb and I’d gladly return there, most of all I was in fantastic company at a time when alone I may have been fragile. Thank you so much to my lovely family, Karen who stood to my right in the picture, Yvonne who stood to my left, Ugo to her left and Joanne who managed to get the only chair in a way I haven’t fathomed yet. You gave me a wonderful break.


July 20, 2013 · 10:17 pm


I don’t normally annoy you two days on the trot like this as I generally allow you time to recover. But. something nice has happened and I wanted to share it.

Most of you know I’ve been looking for a hall stand to keep my sticks in order. I’ve tried charity shops, antique shops, auctions and ebay. I’ve even placed adverts on the freecycle service and emailed all antique places within 40 miles I think. (It’s funny these days how many don’t even acknowledge receipt if they don’t have what you want in stock. What happened to customer service?) Anyway, today it happened. I’ve been watching a pretty stand of ebay for three days after I did a ‘ within a 25 mile radius ‘ search. Today was the last day and no-one had bid on one that is fairly near to home.  Something that big and bulky is usually collect in person or is extortionate in delivery fees. I asked  “If I won this could it be held until Saturday when I might be able to arrange for collection?” That appeared to be no problem, I bid and I won it. WOO-HOO.

Since then the seller has been on to thank me for my payment and her husband has offered to deliver it for me one evening this week. We’ve settled on Thursday. What wonderful kindness some people show…..except me that is because I already have the subject of next Saturday night’s Blog so pictures of the new arrival ( slow down, I mean the hall stand not the baby…pay attention at the back will you !) will not be until after that, if ever.

Thank you Kate and Simon for being so kind and restoring my faith in humanity. Thank you also for providing a new home for my sticks. My brother-in-law would send his thanks also if he knew that he’ll inherit the stick stand I currently have that I recently bought in desperation. ( That’s a state of mind and not  place nearby).


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Six Degrees of Desperation.

You’re going to laugh now. I know you will. Last night I found a few minutes to spare…… See, I said you’d laugh. I’ve got a prison pallor from sitting at the computer so much answering emails and maybe a ten second stint on ebay buying a few coins. Anyhoo, with this few minutes I thought I’d take a look at the family tree again on ( The same as except for the accent). I’ve been making remarkable progress  working my way backwards. Julia’s went back to Adam and Eve and a certain apple seller but I’d been making good headway on a certain part of mine. It’s funny that sometimes things just fit together.

Some of you will no doubt be on the Ancestry site and will know that when you go on a person’s profile it allows you to check the relationship between you and that person. Please believe me when I say I used to have a very high IQ but I’m going to admit here and now I find certain relationship very confusing. For instance…..My great-grandmother had a sister. I could probably work out that she’d be my Great, Great Aunt? OK, with me so far?   So this person has a child who then becomes my grandmothers first cousin. What relationship is she to me? Well it seems she’s my first cousin two times removed????? And if that person has a child, what are they to me? Pass the aspirin please.



My Mum, whom I found to be first cousin once removed to half of Cooke County , Illinois.



Again with my Great Grandmother’s family. One or two of her sons who would be my first cousins  twice removed, then removed themselves from the UK and settled in the US. Everyone seems to have taken ship from Liverpool to Canada and then entered the US from there. They seem to have settled in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois. Judging by the success I’ve had these people seem to have married Swedes ( not the vegetable), people from Germany, Russia, the US itself and also some fellow Brits. They’re spreading out so much I think there’s a chance that Chicago may one day come back to the Commonwealth.

I’ve had one friend in my life and apart from a few minor hiccups we’ve known each other for about 36 years. He’s so close we say the same things at the same time, have been called an old married couple, the Brothers Grimm and probably a few other choice epithets as well. Because of our closeness we’ve often referred to each other as brothers. At my nieces today he got into a conversation about 6 degrees of separation, whereby if you speak to anyone, anywhere in the world, in 6 moves you’ll find something in common, or words to that effect. He said how strange it would be to find we’re actually related. He’s Jewish and his father’s family originated in Poland. A lot of the family were lost to the Concentration Camps during WWII and many records relating to the family were destroyed or lost when ‘Dad F’ had to flee Poland for his life. (OK don’t rush me, I’m getting to the point as quickly as I know how now). Mike wanted some help with a family tree, knowing he wouldn’t get too far but he wanted something for his children and grandchildren.  I created one for him on my Ancestry pages and set to work starting with him. It’s been difficult but fun in it’s own way. I watched one group of his family set up in Manchester quite close to where part of my family had a section of tree. Tonight he was cracking the whip a bit and  I came across a name that seemed to ring bells. I wasn’t sure why and while checking some new ‘Hints’ I Followed her to a marriage in the US. Would you believe it’ s in Chicago, Cooke County, Illinois. There are quite a few of his family there now. We had a laugh about it, I finished what I could ( I mean what I had patience for) and before signing out, just nipped back to my own family tree. There, I found a name so close to the one of his relative I was taken aback for a moment ( I’m not sure where to) it  was almost the same name as one of mine. No wonder it sounded familiar. He rolled on the bed laughing ( shame he didn’t roll off the bed but you can’t have everything and I want the lottery instead). It was true that we could almost have been related after all. Maybe this 6 degrees of separation is actually true.


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Top Tenners

The ever Wonderful Paula Acton is doing a Blog Challenge on her site. I don’t normally take part in TOP TEN challenges mainly because I can only ever count up to nine as I need one finger to do the counting and my memory is crap. But this week her challenge was her TOP TEN favourite films and I decided to take part. I still haven’t figured out why. Anyway, I copied them for my site as it gives me the perfect excuse to post again and also to suggest you maybe ‘strain the brain’ and come up with your own TOP TEN challenge for your followers or see if you can find your own TOP TEN favourite films to share here.

Here are mine and I freely admit I pinched No’s 1 & 2 from Paula’s list because I like the films.

10. Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Iconic film and Audrey Hepburn at her best.

9. Silence of the Lambs. True horror in that everything seems so normal. Who couldn’t listen to Anthony Hopkin’s accent all day?( Not that I’m biased)

8. To Sir with Love. Brilliant film with Sidney Poitier playing the teacher sent to a down at heel school in London’s East End. He has to win over the pupils, teach them respect for each other, and get them to learn. Stars Lulu who plays an excellent part.

7. The Inn of the Sixth Happiness. The Gladys Aylward story starring Ingrid Bergman who has to lead a group of children over the mountains in China to get away from the Invading Japanese.Amazing film. No dry eyes when Athene Seyler falls from a balcony or when Robert Donat ( The Mandarin) sends Aylward to safety with a catch in his voice. Curt Jurgens is the love interest.

6. Guess who’s Coming to Dinner.  Back to the very talented Mr. Poutier who stars alongside my favourite acting duo ( and the woman I have drooled over all my life) Spencer Tracy and KATHARINE HEPBURN along with Katharine Houghton. The story of two people ( Poitier and Houghton) who descend on her parents and announce they’re going to be married. This is a big test to her parents Liberal attitudes as this would be an interracial marriage and they’ve never met him before. This is an amazing film but then anything with Katharine Hepburn in it is.

5. The Lion in Winter. Henry II (Peter O’Toole) won’t commit to naming his heir to the throne and all his three sons want it. His wife Eleonor of Aquitaine
( Katie Hepburn again) wants it to go to Richard but they are all plotting against Henry together and separately. Well scripted and played historical drama also stars a young Anthony Hopkins.

4. A Man for all Seasons. Starring Paul Schofield who had made the part his own in the stage play, this is the story of Sir Thomas More who refused to sign a letter asking the Pope to annul the marriage between Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon. .The story of a man of conscience standing his ground and paying the price.

3. Braveheart. The story of William Wallace who led the Scots against the tyranny of King Edward I of England in an effort to gain Independence for the Scots..Some fanciful dream scenes in the film but not enough to spoil the action. Edward I is brilliantly played by Patrick McGoohan ( Just watch how he deals with his son’s boyfriend ).

2. Ghost. Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore., What a pairing. After being killed during a botched mugging, a man’s love for his partner enables him to remain on earth as a ghost. There’s a nice twist at the end. Great also for the fantastic music.

1. Goodbye Mr. Chips. A film based on a short story by novelist James Hilton. The Magnificent Robert Donat beat off people like Clark Gable to win this part. He plays a schoolteacher devoted to his school to the expense of his social life. So much so that he’s passed over for promotions because he’s regarded as mousey. Bring on the school holiday and a hiking trip in Eorope with the German Teacher ( Paul Heinreid- a German) where he bumps into Greer Garson. One thing leads to another and they marry. It’s a New Mr Chips with a sense of humour and a pretty wife at school now. Then comes a sad bit when his wife and baby die in childbirth.Keep your tissues handy. Hitler casts a pall over Europe and Paul Heinried goes back to Germany to fight. Mr Chips is made temporary headmaster when so many teachers go to fight and causes a minor uproar when he remembers the death of an old colleague, yes, The German Master, killed in action.
I won’t spoil the closing of the film but believe me even the men will need tissues.

See how you can do……


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Inspiring, Me????

Yet again I’ve been caught on the hop this week by the kindness of one of my fellow Bloggers. Barbara of My Un-Puzzled Heart ( ) saw fit to honour me with the  Very Inspiring Blogger Award. I can only say thanks so much Barbara- you must have been desperate.



The award ( above ) comes with the usual rules and regs some of which I’m afraid I have to bend if not break in the interests of not boring you poor readers to death.#

I’ve fulfilled the first condition which is to thank my sponsor and link back to their blog. This I have done gladly. Secondly I must  post the award to my blog- Done. Following that I must write a post about the award, tell you 7 things about myself and finally nominate 15 other blogs deserving of this award. The post is a here and now hing and t a rough guess you’re about half way through unless I choose to write a lot quicker to speed things up for you.

1. Yesterday I had two meals out despite forgetting to take my diabetic medication with me. I had to pretend to take it or face ridicule ( again) about my memory.

2. I bore no resemblance to either parent and would have been accused of being a changeling ( amongst other things) had I not all the characteristics of my maternal grandmother’s, father’s line. ( go on, see how long it takes you to work that out- it took me long enough).

3. I was the middle child of three and hereby claim the right to say that’s why I’m twisted and warped.  My sister being the first child was spoiled and when I came along didn’t like me ( such good taste). My brother being the youngest was spoiled, even by my sister who had by then adjusted to not being an only child. Sob’

4. I’ve decided that should I kill myself I’m going to do so by eating smoked haddock which is the only fish dish I think smells amazing but I’m no less allergic to.

5. I never learned to add up ‘pence to pounds’ in columns as a child and preferred ‘pounds to pence’ which I still often do.

6. My wife said I made the best sweet short pastry she’s ever had. I think it was just an excuse to force me to make the mince pies at Christmas.

7. It’s 10.05 am and my ‘bro’ Mike is still in bed 5 hours after I got up. I think a cup of water is levitating in his direction and I don’t know where it’s come from. Oops !

Now for the part I like but find most difficult, choosing nominations. I’m only going to choose 5 instead of the 15 I should but please don’t take it that there aren’t many more deserving ones out there. There are, but laziness and time constraints win out today.

1. Rarasaur

2. Shawn Bird, poet and writer.

3. Marylin Warner of ‘Things I want to tell my Mother’

4. Jennifer Scoullar

5. Mark Moore- for the budding artists among you

I hope they’ll each accept their nomination and join in but Please folks don’t feel obliged, I know how time consuming it can be.


A nice weekend to you all.



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Mouth Open Incredulity.

Sorry folks this is a more serious post this week though I won’t deny there’s humour ( maybe) to be found in it. A week and a half ago my ‘bro’ informed me a friend had been taken to hospital with a stroke. Mike said he was coming up to see me so we could visit together. I’m not going to say the stroke was a major surprise since our friend has had heart problems, has angina, diabetes and atheriosclerosis. I won’t tack a partridge in a pear tree on the end in case you think it’s his Christmas shopping list and I’m jealous. Anyway, a week last Thursday evening Mike arrived and before we went to visit our friend on the Friday he filled me in on the saga.

It seems our friend has woken on the Wednesday morning feeling a bit under the weather but wasn’t able to put a finger on the reason. ( hardly a surprise since I think one arm was affected). He’d gone off to DRIVE to the supermarket to shop, despite having done his shopping the day before, had reached there safely but stood in the doorway with no idea where he was or why he was there. He then decided to go home, unfortunately he couldn’t remember where home was. The God of ‘Crazy’ was looking down that day and reminded him that his sat-nag system would hold directions home. Amazingly it did and DRIVING again he actually made it. Still feeling unwell he decided to go back to bed.

A while later he got up and realised there must be something wrong as he still didn’t feel right. How someone’s brain functions under these circumstances I will never fathom but he decided to phone the doctor. He got through to the receptionist. For those of you who don’t live in the UK there is a breed of receptionist who regard the doctors as their cubs and protect them accordingly. They ask innumerable questions regarding your need to see a doctor which includes a questionnaire as to whether you have ever, do now or will in the future,  harbour any ill will towards said doctors. The end result of this phone interview was ‘Come In’.

Embolic Stroke









This wasn’t what I expected to hear. My reasons for this will become apparent. He DROVE to the surgery after once again getting the whereabouts from his sat-nag. Had it not been for the fact he has to go quite frequently he could still be driving around now. Anyway the doctor took one look at him and listened to him, sathim down and sent for an ambulance to rush him to hospital. Our friend asked about his thrummer and the clever doctor advised him his car would be well taken care of while he was away. That’s mainly the reason I was incredulous at the receptionist asking our friend to come in rather than arranging a home visit ( yes folks out there, we still have those over here).

On the Friday Mike and I visited the hospital and though out friend was able to stand unsteadily he was suffering from aphasia. (  a disturbance of the comprehension and formulation of language caused by dysfunction in specific brain regions. This class of language disorder ranges from having difficulty remembering words to losing the ability to speak, read, or write ).  The visit was a shock. It was frustrating for our friend seeing the lack of comprehension on our faces when he asked Mike how his flimflamgorgle was. I was ready to suggest the cream he’d used was taking the swelling down , but Mike himself was playing twenty questions trying to guess what the actual word wanted was. A three-minute conversation took at least an hour and our friend was becoming more frustrated and excitable the longer it took us to guess. When he said he remembered my frit it wasn’t a French fry he’d once seen me eat he meant but my Ju. Ah well, she’s been called worse things.

By the time visiting was over we were all worn out. Mike and I left promising to call in and sort out the dog before we went home. That meant travelling a good way further away from home to do so and to check all was well before heading for home again. The entire car journey in both directions was spent talking about how lucky he, and all other road users, had been on that Tuesday. Saturday was pretty much a repeat except our friend’s sister was there at his bedside. She was sharing our doggie duty by seeing to the early shift. By a series of sign language, gestures no woman ( especially a sister) should ever see, and guessing games with dromfangfoodles we managed to get through the afternoon after which we went to  supermarket for dog food, cigarettes ( yes, he was smoking in the hospital) and a quick look for a gift for my son-in law in the sales ( I’m physically unable to walk past a sign that says SALE or I’d be poorly), we ran his sister home and went to see to the dog. That done we headed back to the hospital to drop off the cigarettes and some pastilles to stimulate the salivary gland ( don’t even ask how we worked that one out), then headed home to eat. On Sunday morning Mike had to head off home again. It’s a couple of hundred miles as the crow flies but since our roads don’t do the straight lines that crows do, it takes him a while.

My bro and I keep in touch, so when I had a message on Wednesday it was nothing unusual until he told me that our friend was home. WHAT !! (No, I’ve not gone deaf, that was showing a new round of incredulity). What happens in stroke cases is that before the patient ( impatient) is discharged a doctor will decide he’s well enough to go, the social work team will take the patient ( impatient) home for a few hours to assess them. Can they manage stairs, can they make a cuppa without scalding themselves, do they know who they are etc. We had left our friend knowing this would happen and hoping that the assessment would show that he’d need a warden controlled bungalow or something smaller he could manage. However, we hadn’t taken into account our friends predilection for being a very impatient patient and leaving before that happened. So,  today Mike is here again and we’ve been over to visit our friend at home. His aphasia has improved remarkably so that now we can catch almost every swear word. He hasn’t informed his doctor he’s home( his sister is away and doesn’t know), he can’t manage his stairs easily but at least he can still make a coffee though he made mine too strong and didn’t put enough sugar in Mike’s. We think he’s come home too early since his memory is obviously affected too. He should stay there till he knows how we take our drinks and can serve them without spillage.

It’s obvious that our friend is really much improved but that his impatience could cost him dear in terms of help since he left early. Now we have to liaise with his sister to see if those assessments can still take place and he can be found a more suitable place to live. Some folks don’t help themselves do they~?



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