Sunday. I’d been working from 5.10 am his morning and was just starting to think I might manage another 40 winks when Mike’s alarm clock went off. 7.30 am ON A SUNDAY!!!!! I shot through to the kitchen and fed the fish, put the kettle on though I couldn’t hear any movement took my tabs and started making my own coffee. I was just starting t think the alarm had been an error when death walking arrived at the kitchen door and walked past me to drop his dirty mug in the sink. Since there wasn’t even a grunt and my mouth was still open in shock, I thought sleepwalking was a possibility. But, as he walked past me on the return journey to the lounge he snorted and carried on through to his chair. I heard his lighter click and that first big intake of cigarette smoke soon followed by the hacking cough of a dedicated smoker. I took his coffee and put it on the little table between our chairs. ” Thanks Bro, I’m half awake now” he said. I had a couple more messages to finish from this set so I told him I’d be back in a few minutes.
Returning from the bedroom with the rest of my drink I asked Mike if he was intent on killing me since he’d nearly given me a heart attack. He cackled and told me “Probably” before saying he’d got up early to surprise me and see if there was anything I wanted to do. We still hadn’t managed t get a poker or brush for Tariq yesterday so I suggested the big car boot in Chester. Just at that moment the weather reminded us why that might not be a good idea. It came down by the bucketful. “Perhaps not then” I said. A short discussion of anything indoors led nowhere until I remembered an Antique shop close to Wrexham at Gwersyllt called Acorn Antiques. You gotta love that name ( Victoria Wood sketch was in Acorn Antiques every week some years ago). It was agreed we’d try there and would leave about 9.15 to be there for 10.00 am opening.
We had to go past the place where we’ve carbooted twice recently and the pitch was empty which shows our choice of not going to a car boot sale was wise. We arrived at Acorn at 9.55 am and enjoyed a cigarette before going in. The place seemed huge and was a rabbit warren of dealer stalls. The owner spoke to us and when he realised we were first timers there, offered to instruct the cafe staff to give us a free drink when we were ready. That was a really nice gesture.We found a poker which was part of a set which was quite expensive and we already had some of the items from out expedition yesterday. But I managed to buy a small set of bellows and Mike found another gurgle jug so he was pleased. We left there after a coffee about 11.30 am and set off back to go to lunch. The gannet wasn’t too worried as he’d had another teasted toecake ( for which he hadn’t been charged) to hold him, but I was getting peckish. When we reached Holywell we decided to go straight to the Ivy and give Tariq the gifts and chose to go a way we hadn’t tried before. A few country lanes zig-zagging everywhere and we eventually hit the coast road at Ffynongroew which was not where Mike had hoped. Still it was fairly close.
The Ivy didn’t seem too busy and our table was free. The lovely Angie told us Tariq had just popped home but she came for a hug and a kiss quickly followed bu ‘our’ Helen. Mike laid out the fire dogs in the hearth and laid the long shovel and pincers across them. He then stood the companion set up and attached the brush, poker etc on the other side of the hearth. We’d just sat down when Tariq came bounding in to shake our hands. Believe me whatever I say about Tariq will never give you a true picture of his energy, his smile and the great friendliness he exudes. Angie brought our drinks over and we ordered lunch. More peple came in and we saw Shella flash past behind my back but a quick hello was all we could manage. Lunch came and was great. Mike and I went outside for a cigarette and Tariq showed us round the annexe which has a stage and which will soon be used for functions. Maybe small birthday parties as he doesn’t want to get a liquor license. Time to go back in and pay which means the usual arguments. I can’t get Angie to take payment as she doesn’t want to upset the boss and you almost have to fight him to take it. It was hugs all round before we left again with them asking if we’d be in next week. For once I had to say I don’t know.This is already starting to be a bad week for me . Helen already knew why and said she understood so I had nothing to explain. This is why I value the friendship received in my regular watering holes.
Mike dropped me at home and then toddled off on the next part of his journey. I started work straight away and was disappointed to find 102 messages in my box. I was at it until almost 5.00 pm when I broke for tea. I hung around to watch a film called Rio I think, a cartoon based on a blue macaw. I really didn’t enjoy it very much. Still, it was better than work just then. When it finished at 88.00 pm I had no excuse and had to come back through. Another 86 and so I’ve been here ever since. It’s now 11.20 pm and it’s time for a read.
Monday. 12 months ago today Ju was transferred from hospital to the hospice. She’d been in the hospital just 2 days and already they were having problems keeping pace with the need for morphine. The hospice was a nice place and she’d already had a respite period there so everyone knew her. We were settled in a different room than before, without the view of the horses she loved so much but the angle of her bed would prevent her seeing that anyway. Ugo, Yvonne , myself and my nieces Karen and Jo moved from the hospital 24 hour guard with Ju to a 24 hour guard here. Some had to go to work but came back when they could. Today will be a post that you’ll appreciate as it’s very short. Got up, worked, saw to fish, took meds, brought coffee back to desk and worked some more. I couldn’t even be bothered to get dressed as I’d no intention of going out, nor of having anyone in. Worked throughout the morning, had lunch and gave up for a few hours till 4.00 pm. At 6.00 pm I gave up again until 8.00 pm then came through to have a last blast at emails. I’m having a lot of problems with pop-up adverts and with mail returned undeliverable. I’m wondering if it’s time to close down altogether as the machine never seems to be protected for very long before some other beggar tries to infect it again. It gets quite frustrating and i’s not like I’m actually serving a purpose these days. I’ll have to give it some thought.
Tuesday. Another pleasingly short post for you. As yesterday I got up, worked, saw to fish etc, etc, etc. The mail kept me going most of the morning. Every time I thought I’d done, a little more would arrive. I knocked off at 11.00 am anyway. I sat around in my dressing gown until it was time to think of lunch and the settled on easy beans on toast. After washing up I saw there was a film on about 1.00 pm so I went back to the computer until then. I was hoping short bursts would mean no great big postbag before the end of the day. One of the gods on Mount Olympus was chuckling already. At about 5 .00 pm I went back again and was delighted to find just 38 messages which I cleared in time for 6.00 pm when Yvonne and Reuben walked in dodging the rain. They’d left Ugo picking up my chips and his kebab.Hugs all round then I went to prepare for drinks when Ugo got here which was about ten seconds after I’d put sugar in his cup. I carried on and made his drink after a quick hug. I buttere bread as Ugo took his kebab through and added it to my plate of chips with a sausage which had sneaked onto the plate. Reuben was throwing me lots of smiles which I’m sure were meant to tell me what would happen to my chips the minute he could walk. I has a couple of chip butties and knew I’d had enough. I washed the plate and my butter coated hands and then took Reuben from Yvonne to sit with me. Smiles and giggles galore were my treat.
They had to leave just before 8.00 pm to get Reuben home to bed. It appeared he wasn’t very happy about leaving me and according to Yvonne was looking for me over her shoulder all the way to the car, and howling ten to the dozen. I wish I’d bothered to get dressed so I could have carried him to the car as usual. I’m not quite thinking straight. I headed straight for the bedroom and ran down the last pieces of post and commented on a few blogs. Nothing too arduous. Then I remembered Yvonne had said the new series of The Mentalist was on tonight so I shot through to watch it. I’d missed the first ten minutes but enjoyed the rest and I can always repeat it at the weekend if needs be. As soon s it was over I took my night tabs ( well remembered for a change) and came through to hear the Greek god chuckling away at my 83 messages. I’ve done half and come to write the post before continuing or I might put the post off till tomorrow ( it almost is tomorrow) and maybe forget things. So, I’m off to finish the mail off now and wish you all a Happy Good Night.
Wednesday. I’d fully expected today to follow the same line as the last two days but it wasn’t to be. For a start I didn’t manage to get up until 6.15 am. There was a lot of post so I hadn’t finished before going through at 8.00 am to see to the fish and enjoy my regular breakfast of meds and coffee. I came back to my desk to finish off but found myself wandering off to get washed and dressed first. The remaining messages took me up until just gone 10.00 am and a refresh brought me up enough to take me through till 11.00 am. I was getting towards the end when I came across a message from Care2 one of the cause and petition sites I use. It had an article about a Danish Zoo that came to my attention in February when it killed a healthy giraffe and then dismembered it in front of the public to feed to the other animals. I was truly angry over this because other zoos had offered to take the giraffe. Now they have killed 4 healthy lions including 2 cubs. Lions are a threatened species in the wild and yet we can afford to kill them in zoos. I had to blog about it. As it was a mid-week blog which I rarely do I expected a small reaction.
At 12.00 pm I stopped for lunch. Braised steak and mashed potato with petit pois. By the time I’d finished eating and washed the pots I felt tired and sat in the lounge away from the temptation of the computer and had a nap. It was 2.30 pm before I woke up. I went through to check the computer and Wallop, there was a flood of post. Many surprisingly were to do with this morning’s post. There were ‘Likes’ and comments galore. At the bottom of my post I have a flag counter that shows me the visitors from each country, but only once I think, not repeats of the same person. It’s been going wild and shows 350+ visitors from the US alone over the last month or so. At 4.30 I left just a couple and went back through to watch TV before my visitors come, and to have a little tea. Just before 6.00 pm I saw them walk past the window and I hopped to the kitchen to make drinks.
I heard Matt shout first as he came through the front door rapidly followed by his Dad who also called out. I answered both and brought drinks through as they answered the last couple of questions on a quiz show. First off as usual was the scrabble which went quite well for me and I won the first game. On the second game the tables were turned when Dil got a 7 letter word (Defrags ) which also got him the 50 point bonus for using all his letters. Thereafter Matt and I were playing catch-up and Matt more successfully than me. Needless to say I lost that game. Next up according to ritual was Nomination Whist. Matt and I started off well and Dil was dragging his feet. By the halfway point Matt had quite a lead over both of us and Dil was still well behind me. The gloves came off, I was trying to make Matt lose his call and he, innocent faced as he is had been doing it for ages and I’d only just caught on. By the time the game was over he’d already written THRASHED across the bottom and was thirty points ahead of me.
Time was getting on and it was easier to play Crazy 8’s than try for cribbage . It started off OK with me going out the first round but neither of the other two amassing many points. The insults started flying thick and fast as we each dropped 7’s on each other ( automatic 2 card pick up) Jack’s ( next player misses a go) and worse still, saving their 2’s and 3’s for the end ( accumulative pick up cards) so that Matt laid down a 3, Dil laid a 2 and shouted last card, I had a couple of 2’s and a 3 so thought I was safe and laid a 2 down, Matt laid another three on top and I expected Dil to scowl and pick up 10 cards, but no, Dil had a three which he laid down as his last card and I collected 13 cards which with those in my hand added up to 79 points. Matt’s score was about 7 making his score 12 and Dil had just the 12 he’s scored in the first round. After the next hand my score was 132 and Matt was almost wetting himself laughing so much. Even my most malignant stare/scowl didn’t make him bat an eyelid. I lost that game and Matt had won his second. It was time for them to go and I asked Dil what the chances were of dropping Matt at the bus stop. He didn’t. I tidied up, checked if Matt had left me any biscuits ( a couple only) and came through. There were 102 messages. By the time I picked myself up off the floor there were 112. It seemed the animal post was still attracting much attention. Good , it shows people are very caring. It took me until 12.40 am to finish those before I could write this post. So now as it’s well gone 1.00 am on Thursday I’m off to bed.
Thursday. Another late start this morning. I got up at 5.30 am and jumped straight into the post after my visit to the loo. These days my bladder holds enough to water a lawn and seems to take as long to do as well. The annoying bits are the stops and starts like someone’s playing with the taps. The mail was still quite high so the blog on the animals has proved more popular than that on my life. I always thought people had good taste if you let them. One nice thing is that I’m not getting as much of the nuisance post as usual except for the constant reminders that I should sign into my bank account for various bits of info needed. I’m not sure whether the con-men are thick or whether they think I am, in that I wouldn’t know which banks I have an account with. They do make an effort to be very convincing though. I went out to see to the fish at 7.30 am as I know it takes a half hour to do my meds on a Thursday and I didn’t want them staring at me while I worked, wondering why it was day for me and not for them.
I took my coffee back to continue with the messages until about 9.30 am when I got dressed and finally left the house for the first time since Sunday. I needed my lottery tickets again as somehow those fools at the Lottery HQ seem to have mislaid my numbers . Once back I ate the kitkat that had somehow fallen into my pocket and continued with my mail. I was reading someone’s blog which contained the following link. It was not what I was expecting but was a real treat to watch. http://www.wimp.com/bigsecret/ I forwarded it on to mt daughter thinking both she and Ugo would like it and would find it a bit inspiring. OK, OK, I confess, I guessed it would make her cry too, well, It almost had me so why not. What did catch me though was her response which I’m going to share only because it’s an example of how other people see us . “You ARE that father!!!! Do you think I forget you buying little old dears a dessert? Paying forward a coffee for people who can’t afford their own? Starting a ‘hugging’ movement? The world is a better place because ur in it daddy.” xxx So beware people, kids are like elephants, they never forget.
I have some music to dedicate as usual .
http://youtu.be/KOEZMjuoIEY Muse- Feeling Good To Yvonne, Karen and Jo. Stop worrying about me.
http://youtu.be/7rkgm1yGgbM The Moody Blues- Nights in White Satin. To All my Friends because I love this record.
After a lunch of two ham baps I had a snooze in my chair. I turned the TV on for company but it wasn’t very convincing since it neither hugged nor cuddled. The sleep didn’t last long but I couldn’t bear to return to work yet. This has been a 7 day a week job for a long time and even if I take a day out it waits for my return. I needed a little time for my own thoughts that have been overwhelming me all week. I waited until 5.00 pm before giving in. I’m sure that I’m taking a break at 10.00 pm to watch the new Person of Interest and may turn off the computer early. I’ll just wait until Gerry Rafferty finishes singing Baker Street then I’m off….Right, I’m off.
Friday. A 5.00 am start and so many emails I think the delivery man must have a hernia today. In all fairness a fair few of them were from after 10.00 pm last night. I suppose it serves me right for going part-time like I did. By 7.00 am I wasn’t making a deal of headway so the fish got an early treat as I went to make myself a coffee. I may have been distracted as from the taste of it I’ve doubled up on sweeteners. I returned to work and was dusting my hands of at 10.10 am. I got washed and dressed because I’ve no idea what time Mike is arriving and I daren’t look as though I’ve just got up when he arrives or I’ll never hear the end of it.
I had a break from the computer for a while and pottered around aimlessly until lunch time. After lunch it was straight back to work. I wanted to check the date of my insurance and request duplicate paperwork. I’ve requested it twice this week and had two different answers to the date and no response at all to my request for new documentation. Today was the third attempt so I’m hoping it’s lucky. For some reason it occurred to me that I’ve never told Lulu that Ju died. Since I want any royalties from her book ( Hello, my name is Cancer ) to go to charity I thought I’d better let them know today. But how? I had to email them in the end for instructions. Both of these jobs took a while and when I refreshed the mail there were a few there again. It was about 2.30 that I had a text from Mike with his usual ‘On Way’. I had time to finish the mail and watch a bit of TV before he arrived at 6.00pm complaining about the traffic and the bad weather. I hadn’t realised the weather was bad and had just relied on the forecast which had earlier in the week predicted a nice weekend.
I made drinks and we watched an antiques programme until it was time for me to take a shower. I made an effort to shift my behind because there was a second programme and I wanted to be back in time for the auction section when we see whether the experts make a profit or loss. They start the week with £200 and any profit over that over the week goes to charity. Then came a fascinating programme on Wales which changes a lot of perceptions about our history. It started with showing a burial from 30,000 years ago, the oldest human burial in Western Europe which had wonderful grave goods showing human life was considered to have a value. It showed proof of trade 8000 years ago with exquisite trade goods, and showed a wonderful 8 mtr high enclosure into which 8 millenium domes would have fitted, which was used for celebrations. We saw the oldest copper mines in the world and the tools that had been used which were of bronze. Th invasion of the Romans about 40 AD I think, showed the various tribes fighting to keep the legions at bay and the King of the Ordovices ( Caradoc) being taken to Rome in chains where his speech was recorded and earned him his freedom. Of course the Romans wiped out the society of Britain and as the Romans accepted Christianity they forced that on the natives before leaving between 300-400 AD. As more invasions of England followed by the Anglo Saxons the old gods returned except to Wales where Christianity remained. Saint Illtid created a form of educating church where supposedly St David and St Patrick were taught and they went on to create more teaching churches with other early saints which kept Ireland, Scotland and Brittany Christian and all speaking a form of Welsh.
At 10.00 pm it was time to come through to catch up on the evening’s missives and to bore you with this post. Now I’m done and going to bed for a read. I hope to find a new book tomorrow as I’m not enjoying the current one at all.
Saturday. 4.55 am today and such a pleasant surprise to open my mail and find just 52 messages. I was able to take my time and even refresh once without stress. I was finished just before 7.00 am and went to see to the fish and take my meds. I found that somehow, despite following my usual routine yesterday I’d forgotten my morning meds, yet I know I’d taken the sprays I have to take. Maybe I was just so anxious to get to coffee that I skipped a beat and yet I always put milk enough in my cup to take the tabs and still leave enough for coffee. Puzzling!! At 7.00 am Mike’s alarm went off and I prepared his cup for when he got up, then I almost fell over backwards when he walked in. I know there would have been a malicious smirk on his face if he’s been awake enough but as it was he just dumped his bottom in a chair, leaned forward and went to sleep again. I took his drink through and put it on the table next to him then left it to the smell to bring him round. I’d cleared the kitchen food waste and the recycling outside ready for the bin-men when a little voice said “I’s awake now”.
We left at about 7.45 am and decided to call in to the local supermarket for some of my favourite baps and some coffee pods before going off to do the shopping proper. We weren’t much behind time when we got to the main supermarket I like and within ten minutes had selected some new flowers for Ju and found a female member of staff making some whopping reductions to some children’s clothing. Don’t they say something about not looking blind gift horses in the donkey’s mouth, or something. I got 5 outfits for Reuben even though one of them is a duplicate of one he has. It’s a Taz one and a favourite, and as I bought the matching hat last week I thought it worth duplicating for when one’s in the wash. Doing the shopping didn’t take long today so we had time for a coffee before w left to search out a suitcase for Mike.
When we reached Flint there were four shops that kept suitcases but needless to say we couldn’t find the exact one the fussy beggar wanted. We stopped for coffee where Mike had his usual insult session with Ceri and the air dripped innuendo. Daniel checked the blog on his phone when I mentioned Temptations was in last week and liked the photographs I’d used. After coffee as Mike and I left, I found a mug with Daniel’s singing brothers on which I bought for my niece. ( Don’t read that bit please Karen). We headed for the frozen food centre to get some pizzas and microchips and somehow about 20 lollies ended up in my basket. Fresh orange juice ice lollies, all we need now is some sunshine. We came out and there it was, sunshine galore. We headed home to unpack.
I did some work when we got back and Mike had a look at some things on Ebay. He reminded me of the time and that I was due to eat. I hadn’t thought about it and wasn’t too bothered but that didn’t sit well with him as he decided on The Ivy. There were no complaints from me as I got my jacket on again. Mike even suggested as the sun was shining I wore my sunglasses. Good idea as I get headaches in the sunshine. We had a wonderful lunch, wonderful for m because they made what I wanted even though it wasn’t on the menu. It’s not too strong to say I love going there and I love my friends there. Tariq, Shella ( who wasn’t there today) Angie ( my sophisticated lady) Helen ( my fabulous crazy cat lady) and Dot who I only met today but who I know has helped make my meals but is very shy about coming out. The minute we arrived there Tariq came out to shake our hands, the minute we left he was there with hugs, of which I got two today and for which I was grateful. Talking to Helen I was almost in tears today as she’s knows the strain of this weekend.
We headed off to Rhyl to try for suitcases there but as we left sans suitcase decided to go home the pretty route. Part way Mike suggested a trip to Jackson’s which is a nursery I’ve mentioned before. Our ghast was flabbered when we got there at 4.30 pm and found the cafe closed. Aargh. Time for a quick look round and then homeward bound again. It was 5.15 pm when we got in and I came straight through to work in the hope of getting to the lounge by 6.00 pm. There were huge sniggers when someone checked and found there were 62 messages. Well, I finished them in record time and refreshed ( idiot) to pull up another 42. With fortitude ( fiftytude if you allow for inflation) I pressed on and was done by 6.20 pm. I was puzzled though as I’d been making some comments in red on some of my mail and thought it looked a very subdued orange today. I wasn’t keen and wondered what the hell was wrong with my computer now. For some strange reason I even checked my printer wasn’t turned on???? Not able to solve the problem I left the computer and turned off the bedroom light and headed for the lounge. Heck, I hope it wasn’t going to rain but it was awfully dark. Finally I proved what Mike has always maintained. The light’s on but no-one’s home. I was still wearing the sunglasses. Someone thought it hilarious.
I watched TV with Mike and we demolished a BFG between us, no not a giant, a black forest gateau ( diabetic approved of course). Much later on we even found room for egg custards. I just ate to keep him company of course. About 10.00 pm hee was complaining of a headache and feeling a bit cold. Since I’m far too mean to turn the heat on I sent him to bed and repaired back to the bedroom for the last shot at the mail and the blog. Here it is. I hope you all have a fantastic week………………………Hugs…..