Tag Archives: Gout

The Doctor. Who? Appears and Hugging Visitation.

Sunday 4th January 2015

It was a 3.28 am start this morning which was just as well since there had been a fair amount of activity by the scribes overnight. I was quite happy plodding along bringing the numbers down until I realised that they were all being replaced at the same rate so I had to up my pace. My Sunday morning body and brain weren’t keen on this idea and made me feel tired. I decided I’d lie down for a while once the fish were seen to at 7.00 am but it seems Somnos had other ideas. I’d been through and faced some kind of lecture from Big Al. The other fish carried on with what they were doing but Al parked himself at the front of the tank and mouthed off at me. It’s his own fault if the food landed on his head when I opened the flap. Oddly enough, just as the food hit, Big All jumped like he’d been shocked and I swear I caught a glimpse of Porcinus rushing off on his tatty cloven little tootsies.

I took my meds ( maybe they’ll clear up the visions) and made myself a coffee which I took through  to the lounge. I often have more luck nodding off there than in bed. I was trying to nod off but every time I shut my eyes the sight of a young child, a baby almost in a formal 3 piece suit appeared behind my eyelids. He was smoking a cigar which you just knew had last been touched by a dusky maiden as she rolled the tobacco on her thigh (sigh) and he was enjoying every draw. I tried to open my eyelids to banish the sight but he just clicked his pudgy little fingers and they stayed shut. I was sort of getting an idea who this was but why should a god of lovers and wishes be dressed like some mafia lawyer, and what could he want with me? The answer was forthcoming as he spoke in a Texas drawl with a baby’s voice. It sounded a bit like an accident with the helium. The party of the first part (Somnos) wanted his contract fulfilled ( I said he looked like a lawyer) and he , an interested party in this contract expected to see it expurgated forthwith or even fifthwith.( Lawyers humour there).  He had some growing to do and was anxious to start. “Oh, and by the way, as  I’m the god of lovers” he said, “make sure you paint my image with lots of pastel colours.” While I was still trying to work that one out, he vanished.

I decided to go back to work for a while and catch up on anything new in . I was obviously delirious. At 9.05 am though a wave of tiredness came over me and I did one last message then lay on the bed and was gone. Next thing I know I hear the loo flush. I came awake with a start and went through to the lounge. Mike was up and drinking a coffee he’d made himself ( and I’m sure I never showed him how). It was 9.30 am. I asked how long he’d been up and he told me since 9.15 am. He’d seen my light on and stuck his head in. According to Mike I was laying on my back, mouth wide open and snoring like mad. I was an idle beggar still being in bed at that time.

We really took our time getting ready and it must have been 11.00 am before we were on our way out. We headed for Prestatyn where I got a plumbing pack with a radiator key in it. Considering I’d gone into the £ shop just for that I came out £9 lighter. From there we headed for Rhyl and after parking up on the street and finding it had gone midday we went for lunch to a place all locals call the Red Caff on account of the internal colour scheme and red plastic seating. It was OK. After that we had a general mooch looking for a case for a 10″ tablet and finding another pack of radiator keys for me. We ha a look round a store looking for a car coat for Mike without success but I fell in love with a jacket down from £75 to £30 in the sale. No I didn’t, I behaved. Last stop of the day was the aquarist shop where Ju and I used to buy a lot of our fish and our tanks. I got my Pangasius called Zippy from there. Today Mike saw a couple of fish he wanted for his tank and I saw some synodontis I couldn’t resist but I only bought two as it’s almost my birthday and I’ve been promised fish then. Anyone who knows fish will have seen a pattern emerging here. I just adore catfish.

Aren't I beautiful.

Aren’t I beautiful.

We shot off home so I could start preparing them for the tank, 20 minute in their bag in the tank water, 20 minutes with some tank water added to the bag and then gently release them. Mike loaded the car, strapped his fish into the front seat and set off for Rugby to do the same with his fishy friends. It was just 3.40 pm so I was set for the first 20 minute stage. I started to work since I’d been away from my screen for almost 7 hours. There was just so much of it. At 4.00 pm I went through and added some tank water to the bag to acclimatise my new pals and then went back to work. I remember seeing 4.15 pm then nothing.  at 5.05 pm I woke up.I knew I’d been to sleep as the imprint of the keyboard was in reverse on the palm of my hand. Fortunately my forehead had been resting on my arm. The screen was just filled with pages of capital G’s.  OMG, the fish! I dashed through and released them. They were fine of course just having had longer to adjust than usual. I returned to my screen and started deleting all the G’s so I could get back to where I’d left off. Thank heavens I hadn’t sent it to someone. I wasn’t sure if the sleep was a present, a punishment or just a reminder from Somnos so to cover myself here is my promotion.

Fed up with your old household gods? Need a new breed for the New Year? Say hello to the bright young things of today who can serve you for tomorrow too. Start saying your prayers to the leader of the new Pantheon, Somnos. Offspring of an older god and who knows what, Somnos is the bright star in the heavens and can turn his hand to anything. A young master of life’s mysteries.  Give it up for his brothers, young Porcinus who is god of household and not so household animals and Brother Jake who though the youngest is still a bit of a bright spark. Apart from being responsible for lovers he is also responsible for wishes.Not worth asking for Lottery Numbers he tells me, the elder gods have that tied up for years.

I had to take a half hour break to get something for tea as I’d only had one set of tablets today but after that it was right back nose to the grindstone ( it’s OK my beak can afford it). I’m making real headway now and hope to be in bed by midnight.

Monday.

Negotiation can obviously be rewarding. I was allowed until 4.47 am this morning. It was a bit of a blow to find no-one had arranged for their to be no post during the extra period so I could wake up relaxed but I suppose it’s my own fault for not getting the i’s dotted and t’s crossed. I’ll know for the future and squeeze harder than a lemon press. Once I’d come back from the loo and switched on I’d been disappointed but what the heck, I had time. I worked till 7.00 am and went through to the kitchen. I had to be quiet, my new catfish are very small and quite shy often hiding away during the daylight hours. I turned the light on and there they were enjoying the extra space in this tank. Where the others came flying over when the food was in they didn’t of course but I’m sure they’ll soon learn. That’s if Sharkey behaves anyway and he certainly wasn’t this morning. He was trying to chase everyone away from the food and even managed to startle Big Al this morning. It couldn’t happen often though as nothing can move the tank that Big Al is. He seemed in better humour today and didn’t even glance in my direction. That could be a bit worrying as though an event is due to happen and he’s distancing himself from it for when he secret police arrive…..and that’s despite the fact he probably orchestrated the whole thing. I may need a word with Porcinus to see if fish come under his purview.

I watched for long enough to see my two synodontis disappear inside an upturned ship and stay there. I decided there and then whatever I have for my birthday will be bigger…too big for holes like that. Maybe too big for Sharkey too. A couple of real battleships. I took my meds to get me down from this high and mad myself  coffee to take back. I couldn’t be bothered getting dressed as I wasn’t going anywhere. By about 9.45 am I was happy with what I’d done and where I was so took a few minutes to head to the lounge and my chair. The first thing I aw was my repeat prescription request from Friday. Damn. I had to get dressed after all. It was such a pain getting a tiny sock on this big fat leg that when I was dressed I slipped a pair of summer deck shoes on. Even that was a small problem but I managed it and getting my jacket and crutches went out, locking the door behind me. I had to manage like Long John Silver, just putting one foot to the floor and swinging along on the crutches. It works well but is tiring.I got there and back without problems. Back inside I slipped off the shoes and put my slippers on and dealt with the actual mail from the postman.

Back to work. Still not too much in but enough to keep me going until lunchtime. I broke off at 11.45 am to start lunch and then found a Time Team to watch while I ate my shepherd’s pie followed by chocolate cake. At 1.00 pm I went back to work until 2.15 pm when the new series of Father Brown started. I have vague recollections of having enjoyed the books as a child and wanted to see what they were like. Not bad really. Then back to face the afternoon rush until 6.00 pm when I had Eggheads.( no, not personally, it’s a programme not a disease). After that I just had to shut my eyes as they were closing anyway and I stayed that way for 35 minutes before coming back through. Since then it’s been a slight struggle to keep up to date because certain personal messages I save till this end of the day to deal with and sometimes they’re long. But, I shall manage an early  night I hope as I want to see my beautiful daughter and my grandson tomorrow. She’s threatening the doctor on Thursday.

Tuesday.

I had a 2.51 am start this morning. That’s approximately two and a quarter hours sleep if I slept the minute I turned the light off. I didn’t. Whatever AC Flory says,I’m not prepared to go down the photograph of a chocolate cake yet. And don’t even suggest prayer, I already feel preyed upon. Maybe I should have had a closer look at the small print in the contract. My leg was painful when I put it down so I hopped to the loo, reminded myself I’d made a mistake buying the Loo purple instead of the Loo Bloo, resolved to correct my error, and hopped back. There was quite a lot of mail to be dealt with and I’m currently open to suggestions as to how to cut it down. At 6.00 am I’d reached the end of the main ones and also of my tether. I felt tired.  I needed something to brighten me but the buses weren’t running yet and my daughter wouldn’t be up. I settled for second best and went through to the kitchen. When the lights went on I was delighted to be able to see the new fish flitting back and forth. They have real speed and really are beautiful with their streamlined moustaches.

Morecambe and Wise came to the top to await their flake and most of the others moved into position ready for the pellets. Sharkey was being very annoying and I had o speak sharply to him but as usual I was ignored. Big Al was a worry though. No insults, no tellings off, no glaring. He sat towards he back of the tank , little gimlet eyes as wide as they’d go and looked shell shocked. I have no idea what- or who- happened to him. I did in fact feel rather sorry for him as I think he’s getting old now and I’m sure the synodontis won’t be interested in his lectures. I get the feeling they’re all rap and hip-hop. After watching the activity for a few minutes I fed them and left them to eat in peace. I did see Big Al move towards the food area before turning away. I took my sprays then put milk in my mug and took the tablets, leaving enough milk for my coffee. I sat and drank that in the lounge and considered shutting my eyes but was afraid of missing the bus.

I washed the  now empty mug, picked up the gifts for Yvonne, Ugo and Reuben, switched the lights off and headed back to my bedroom. I got washed and dressed and started on the lesser messages and notifications until 7020 am when it was time to get my shoes on and prepare to leave. I allowed time in case I had problems finding the right shoes. At the moment I could do with a pair belonging to a clown though I dare say Mike would say I already have. I left the house at 7.30 am and started walking toward the bus stop. It started raining and then the bus went right past me. So that was the way the day was going to be. I reached the bust stop and climbed aboard. The driver, my regular, said “If I’d known it was raining I’d have stopped for you back there.” Luckily I hadn’t quite got my breath back so just said “Thanks.” On the bus Yvonne sent me a text to ask if I was coming and let me know she was waiting for young sleepyhead to wake up. That’s a first. I just sent a text saying I was on the bus.

When I got to Chester I saw Yvonne pushing the trolley out of a shop towards me. The plastic cover was down because of the rain and she was just telling me that Reuben wasn’t very well when he started smiling and pointing at me. I guess I had something stuck in my teeth. The joy didn’t last long and tears accompanied the siren as we walked round the first shop. It improved a bit when he was given a book to read and we headed for the coffee shop in the next place. Yvonne fed Roobs his breakfast which he took well. He did feel a little warm. She passed him the books I’d bought while she checked out the other gifts and loved the cardie and little jacket I’d got him. While we were having coffee she told me that Ugo is having Reuben confirmed in Church soon.  I just nodded as this is their child and my opinions won’t count on this subject. But, I always thought a confirmation followed a Christening/Baptism and was for the subject to agree to follow the life of discipleship? As far as I know he hasn’t been baptised or if he has I wasn’t invited ( probably for good reason) and I’d say since he can’t talk yet, he’s far too young to be making any commitments. As I say , it’s their business, their choice but for me, I’d much rather this kind of malarkey was left until a child is old enough to know what they’re doing and can make an informed choice. Some people seem to need the community of a church but it’s not for everyone. CORRECTION. with apologies, I’m now innformed it’s a dedication and not a confirmation. This just welcomes him into the church and his parents and god parents attend to confirm they’ll teach him about god.Personally I’d rather he was just tauiught about people and how he should treat them. How he should protect the vulnerable regardless of race, colour,culture or creed.Humanity is One  and we need to work together without divisions to learn tolerance. Rant Over.

We left the coffee house and headed for another shop but Reuben was obviously very unhappy. Neither books nor looking at his favourite toys would stop the siren in my ear. I suggested as it was 11.30 am Yvonne should take him home. Se said once we finished this last shop she’d do that and cool him off and let him sleep if he needs it. Lucky for me, this last shop was close to my bus stop and there was a bus due at noon. We said our goodbyes and she apologised. There was no need. I knew she needed to settle Reuben down and be happy that he’s OK. As for me, I get home an hour early and can start work again that much sooner. I’d have been out almost 6 hours by then.

When I got off the bus I dropped into Pauline’s for some supplies and my next TV mag. I found some chips in a mild and fruity curry sauce which I decided to have for lunch. It was lovely.I had bread and butter to make sure I lost none of the sauce. I did half an hour’s work then skipped off to watch an episode of Father Brown again. When that was over I piled into the work like a madman. After a while I must have looked like one too as I kept yawning so my eye were watery, they kept closing in an attempt to grab an after-food sleep and my head looked like either a nodding dog or one of those Ostrich things that used to dip their beaks in your drink. It got to the stage I had no idea what I was doing so I allowed it to happen. When I woke 25 minutes later all I had was a stiff neck. By 7.50 am I’d finally caught up and had an hour with the TV watching a celebrity quiz show for charity. They put up a good show but didn’t win.

9.00 pm meant back in here again and another session of catch up before I was able to start the blog. I will be in bed for midnight.

I keep seeing an advert on TV which has someone driving an elephant like a car. The tune keeps popping into my head so tonight I’m going to play it on here an hope it gets out of my head completely. Sorry about that, I hope no-one catches it.

Wednesday.

I made my midnight bedtime last might- just. I couldn’t cope with reading for very long and so the light was out by a quarter past. Sleep came quickly, and having delighted me with whatever dream left me smiling, it left just as quickly as well, at 2.38 am. You know at the time if you’ll get away with just snuggling back under the covers or whether you’re really awake and ready to create a new formula for world peace. I swear the powers that be keep sending the wrong people to do that job. Anyway, once up I did the Olympic Hop to the loo and the Olympic hop back afterwards. Times almost took a turn for the worse when the first hop was taken on the wrong leg. If anyone asks later whether I heard that strange sound I’ll just say no, what strange sound? I settled in my seat and turned the computer on. Straight away I wished I’d taken the other option which was packing my hankie and running away to parts unknown with no computer access. Actually I suppose I could just go camping up the road and have that happen. Warmer climes appealed but where? It has to be somewhere that isn’t trying to kill me from the moment I arrive via snake, spider or even mosquito. One of the South Sea Islands maybe. While waiting for my  ticket to arrive I might as well do some work.

First job is to check my lottery ticket. I know things are looking grim when I see it’s a further rollover. Grimmer still when I see that damned machine didn’t even give  me one number let alone the Millionaire Maker code. Ah well ( big sigh) maybe the weekend. I worked until 6.00 am and cleared both talktalk and gmail addresses. In celebration I decided to feed the fish a bit early again. I turned the kitchen light on followed by the tank light. Big Al blinked and as I opened the hatch he flew over and stationed himself underneath. No-one was getting food before him today. I dropped in some pellets. He wiggled his moustache, perhaps in thanks and tried to pick up one of the pellets whole. Others came to join him now including Sharkey who was trying to grub for food and chase everyone else off at the same time. The was no sign of my little synodontii though.( my guess for the plural as synodontisses doesn’t quite have the same ring), they were having a lie-in it seemed until suddenly I spotted a head moving about on the underside of the pump. Of course, these are often known as upside down catfish. I replaced the flap and left them to it.

I decided to have breakfast today so the first thing i to take a pre-food tablet then mess around for 15 minutes before eating.  I had my sprays then took half my tablets and lit a cigarette. Then I took the rest of the tablets, took an empty plastic bottle to the recycling bags, took a book to the bookshelves in Mike’s room before returning to the kitchen to put some bread in the toaster, put my cigarette out and made a coffee. I got the butter and a knife out and a plate to hold the toast which soon signified it was ready by shooting a couple of inches in the air. As soon as breakfast was eaten it was time for the post-food tablets and I returned to work. Only about ten piece of post which were soon dealt with so it was time for 40 winks in the lounge with my foot up.I slept for an hour and found I’d been reading at the same time, or at least turning the pages of my book without taking anything in. To be honest, I wasn’t taking in much when I was awake either. This book hasn’t gripped me yet. That could be because there are a couple of books in my pile that I really want to get to grips with one of which is a John Grisham.

I returned to work and found a message telling me a doctor would be coming out today. If it’s my own doctor it will probably be after lunch. That was fine, I sent a message back thanking Yvonne only to get another requesting I let her know everything the doctor says and not just the finer points. She’s most untrusting. I grabbed some carpet fresh for the hall and then hoovered the lounge and lit a febreeze candle to overcome (?) any smoke smells but I should be OK as I’m never in there long enough to smoke much. After my mini work-a-thon the postman arrived bringing with him a request to write to one of the House of Lords about the Dignity in Death bill due later this month. I did that with pleasure. One piece of mail from my Causes group was from  Portugal asking for some computer equipment for a Breast Cancer Support Group. It seemed little enough to ask for so I did a small blogpost on it.I’m hoping as people spread it, maybe it will just hit the right person who can donate the equipment needed. I’m not sure it’s something one individual can do unless they have the money to donate for buying fromnew. But there may be a firm out there who could sponsor such a cause and if so, I’m sure one of my friends will know. Otherwise I may have to see if the request can be given to one of the larger computer manufacturing companies. Any bright ideas would be welcomed.

I worked up until midday but didn’t eat in case the doctor came. I watched my antique show and made every effort to stay awake. Eventually at 1.45 pm I saw my doctor approach. I stayed where I was as she let herself in and came through. Out of manners I raised off my seat but she waved me down. he spent a few seconds playing with my upper leg to see if there was any pain ( no, but there was pleasure) in case there was a blood clot. Instead it appears I have cellulitis which is a deep infection of the soft tissue, usually strep. It started like gout but has stayed hot and swollen for far too long. To cut a long story short, I have to look out for other problems which might result in hospitalisation, but otherwise four to five weeks of antibiotics should do the trick. Next week we have to phone and describe the foot/leg to see if the swelling has gone down. If so, she’ll prescribe the next batch of antibiotics, if not she’ll come out to assess it again. At least my body temp and my blood pressure were good. She left me a prescription when I assure her I had someone to get it then she left. I put socks and shoes on an went out to pick it up. You might know there was none at the chemist but it was due in so they’d deliver it later. I went home again. I reported to the boss and she let me know poor Reuben’s problem on Tuesday was Hand, Foot and Mouth disease which I’ve never heard of before now. Poor little mite has a rash.

Back at work I tried sitting sideways on to the computer and stick my leg up on the bed. That was very uncomfortable so I had to make do with the floor. I worked until 4.30 pm them went to watch the Antiques Road Trip which I missed when they took it off over Christmas. After that I sorted the mugs ready for the appearance of Dil and Matt. I’d just sat down again and lit a cigarette when they walked in so I had to ‘Hop It’ again and make the drinks. As usual we watched the end of a quiz before getting the games table out. Yahtzee first which was a resounding victory for Dil tonight. Matt  and I won just one each of the six games. We were going for Nomination next but delayed it to play the new game I got for Christmas. It seems everyone likes it despite us teasing Yvonne about buying it for her old dad. Matt won that and had a really good laugh at the same time. Then we played the Nomination whist. Things were going really well for me, I was well over 100 when Dil was just under 100 and Matt was struggling in the forties. As things carried on Dil won a few, I lost a few and Matt more or less stayed put. The poor lad could not win a break. It looked like this was going to be my game though even though Dil edged nearer. Then the last hand Matt shouted 4 and got them, Dil shouted 2 and got them and I shouted 3 and got 4. Dil and I were even so I was even deprived of a game in my own house by my guests.

They left at 9.35 pm and after clearing up, washing up and taking the night meds I came through. There were over 120 messages of which I only managed half before giving up to deal with the blog. The rest will have to wait for morning if I want to get to bed tonight.

Thursday.

It’s been a funny old day. I got up at 4.13 pm, almost luxuriously late and after the long haul one legged to the loo I came back prepared to face the hell on the computer. I didn’t, it was way worse than that. There were 87 pieces of yesterdays post to deal with before I got to today’s stuff. Have you people nothing better to do with your time? What made it worse for me was that most of it was interesting so I couldn’t be smug and just delete it. There were no attempts to part me from my money either so I can’t even try and entertain you.

Given the way my days are the best way I’ve been able to break down times to toke these new antibiotics are 6.00 am, 11.00 am, 4.00 pm and 9.00 pm or thereabouts. So 6.00 am saw me creeping into the kitchen so I didn’t disturb the fish (??? lunatic) and then creeping out again capsule in hand to take it from my drink in the bedroom. At 7.00 am I went back to the kitchen turning the lights on at the wall and at the tank too and chatting to the fish as I dropped food in for them. Big Al was boycotting me, Little Al was dithering between that and missing the food. Sharkey was his annoying self. Morecambe and Wise came for a chat as they like the timbre of my voice ( or is it timber as it’s wooden?) The plecs were happy climbing walls as usual but of my two new friends there was just an occasional glimpse as they darted from hiding place to hiding place. By 9.00 am I was up to date with last night’s post but decided to get dressed before doing any more. Needing a break I sat in the lounge for what I thought was a minute but in fact turned out to be 11.40 am. OMG, I’ve been abducted by aliens, but perhaps not as I hadn’t unlocked the front door this morning. I quickly checked my phone in case Lis and Charlie had been in touch about a visit but even though my phone was for once fully charged, there were no messages.

I hadn’t put socks on today but had to quickly slip some soft shoes on and go for bread so I could have lunch. I’d decided upon bacon with chips and bread with butter. That was very enjoyable and was over and done with by 1.00 pm. Time to stop skiving and get some work done. It was almost as bad as at the start of the day and I now have my proof that neither you nor I can find anything better to do. At 3.30 pm Mike sent a text to say he was on the way to me so I expect between 5.30 – 6.00 pm and then Lis sent a text at about 3.45 pm to say they’d be here about 4.30 – 5.00 pm.  I ceased work at 4.30 pm to be ready ( and also to see my antiques show I admit) and they arrived at 4.45 pm. Hugs and kisses all round thoroughly enjoyed by me, so much so I went back for seconds but they beat me off. I got to hear all about Christmas and the New Year and Charlie had made me some dark chocolate gingers. Mmmm. They had to leave at 5.35 pm and not because I couldn’t keep my hands to myself. More hugs and kisses ensued. YAY. I finished watching one quiz and started watching another. Mike arrived about 6.15 pm after some annoying and typically expensive car troubles. We sat and chatted after I’d made a drink then watched an episode of Big Bang.

I made us both some tea an hour after my last antibiotic and then stayed with Mike a while until it was time to come to work. He’s watched an episode of Endeavour, the young Inspector Morse. I’m finally up to date (for now) but will check again once this post is finished. Who knows, I might make it by midnight again.

This song is a recommendation by my nephew Matt. I found myself enjoying it.

Friday.

This morning was a joyous 5.12 am, but only because I threw a real strop at at 2.08 am. Admittedly I enjoyed a cigarette at that time and made sure my rant lasted long enough but I absolutely refused to get up at that time again. I put my foot down with a very firm hand. The deal was off if I was going to be treated in such a cavalier fashion was rapidly followed by begging “Please let me have an extra couple of hours and I’ll mention all three of you tonight”. So, to show that I haven’t broken faith, allow me to reintroduce the Great and Uppity Somnos, his mediocre, but animal, loving ( and smelling)  brother Porcinus and the almost nonentity Brother Jake. Follow them at your peril, admire them if you must but be sure to go through any contracts with a fine tooth comb.

The mail first thing wasn’t too bad after I’d caught up a little more before bedtime last night. It was still 1.00 am before my light went out though. I remembered to break off for my 6.00 am antibiotic. Talking of which. To remind me when to take them i’d written on the box, 6.11.4.9. When Mike came into the kitchen ( don’t be daft.it was never going to happen at that time this morning) last night he asked me why I’d written it and when I explained he said “Don’t you realise, you’ve written my birthday.” I don’t know how I hadn’t seen it. Plus it was confirmation that he admits to being 14 months older than me. I returned to work after the pill and carried on until 7.00 am.

Big Al had the weight of the world on his shoulders this morning. He was mooching round the front of the tank and kept throwing glances at me. I’m not sure If I was supposed to feel sorry for him. I decided to let them have one of the algae tablets this morning so after giving Morecambe and Wise their flake, I broke a tablet up and scattered it. Big Al latched his mouth on to the biggest piece as it hit the bottom leaving everyone else top find their own much smaller pieces. I’m not sure if it’s a perk of size or seniority. I left them gobbling and turned to take my own meds and prepare my drink. Once that was done and my tablets taken it was time for the weekly filling of the boxes and refilling of the drawer from my new drugs stash. That took a good half hour and so it was 7.45  am before I made the drink.Then I decided it might be nice to have some breakfast this morning so took a pre-food tablet, got the after food ones out ready and lit a cigarette. It should have been an extra five minutes but I went ahead anyway. A small pack of Frosties, just right with a piece of toast. Once finished my coffee was cool enough to take the two tablets with. I returned to work again. By 8.45 I’d done and got myself washed and dressed. As 9.00 am arrived I made a coffee and took it through to Mike who sat up and thanked me. I told him I was going to Pauline’s and wouldn’t be long.

At Pauline’s there was quite a queue. When it came to my turn I had quite a few lottery tickets to buy so I let a few people behind me go with just one or two items. When one elderly woman with a newspaper and a pint of milk appeared I told her to go because I needed a few tickets. She lay down the paper and milk and then rummaged in her handbag and preceded to bring out a winning scratchcard for her son who then wanted lottery tickets with the winnings and a winning scratchcard for herself and she also needed lottery tickets. I thought this was just enough cheek and took my turn straight after. She never even said thank you for the courtesy. So, it was 9.20 am  when I got back home. I took my own milk to the kitchen and was surprised not to see Mike in the lounge. He was still in bed asleep. In a tone that implies deep disappointment I woke him to say he’d forgotten his coffee and reminded him what time it was. He shifted himself.

Sitting in the lounge with Mike I started to feel tired so when he went to the loo I just settled back in my chair for a minute.He decided he might as well get ready to go. That woke me of course, not that I’d done more than relax for a minute and I said goodbye noticing that he’d got up later but left on time compared to previously when he’s up on time and I can’t get the beggar out. Anyway, I went to see what messages had come in.  One was an invitation to have a free birthday meal at The Bells of St Mary’s ( with another paying customer) which sounded good but I had the devil’s own job trying to print it out. There was no print option, just one to scan by phone. After a very long time I managed a screen dump of the part of the page showing the code. Then came three or four emails with Yvonne trying to figure out where to eat for my birthday. Despite it being my day, it looks like the options aren’t mine whether we go or not. She”s trying to work her way up to a biggie next year which I’m determined to have at home. I hate it when people are invited to meals like that and feel obligated to buy a gift and have to buy meals on top.

At 11.00 am I took my next antibiotic then carried on with the mail until 12..00 am when it was time for lunch. Another one of the infamous shepherd’s pies. I’d just finished when there was a knock on the door. It was the warden come for her weekly check on me. It was lashing down outside and the wind was picking up. Just as well she was wrapped up. We talked about the forecast of snow for tomorrow and she wasn’t keen on that at all. She gave me company for about 15 minutes then had to go to her next call. I didn’t envy her that rain. Worse still, I didn’t envy her the wind which was picking up in speed. I watched the remainder of the antiques show and shut my eyes for one of those thirty minute minutes. So it was 1.30 pm before I got back to work. That meant working hard in order to see the last episode this week of Father Brown. I was five minutes late. When that finished at 3.00 pm I made Mike’s bed before coming back through. Whatever happened I was determined to be done by 4.30 pm so my bed can wait.

At 4.30 pm I was temporarily up to date and went through to watch the Antique Road Trip’s last episode of the week. It had just started when my phone burped. I expected a message from Mike to say he was on his way back. I was 50% right, it was Mike only he was in a hospital in Manchester with his dad, just where he’d been 2 weeks ago on Christmas day. His wrist is broken after the fall after all. Today he’s having temporary strapping and has to go back Monday afternoon to have the job done properly. Mike needs to stay over Sunday night now. Oh good, an extra day’s B & B from him now. He’ll be back late tonight as he’s having a mel with his sister once he’s fed his dad and seen him off to bed. His carer will be with him for breakfast.( Dad not Mike ). At 6.00 pm I went through and made my bed then went to take a shower. After that I put in a little,work until an episode of Who Do You Think You Are with Gary Lineker. A fascinating programme. I wish we could all get that kind of help with our family trees. Having said that, if you need help try WWW.CT-RESEARCH.COM (lower case) . Connie and Tony are two of the most competent and helpful people I know. They’re good with puzzles and are really friendly.

I took my next antibiotic at 9.00 pm and realised somehow I’d missed the 4.00 pm one. I thought I might as well take my evening ones at the same time. I stayed in the lounge watching a comedy just in case Mike arrived back but at 9.40 pm as there was no  sign I came to make up for all my skiving. I’m sure no-one heard me scream. There were quite a few in both mailboxes and it was difficult to catch up. But, being a veteran of these wars now, I gave it my best attempt. I an knocking off at 11.50 pm and Mike has just returned.

Saturday.

I  went through to make Mike a cup of coffee and get the full saga of his day. And what a day it was too with carers, doctors,  x-rays, bone settings and throughout it all having to deal with his dad whose mood was not the most helpful. The story took a while and I went to bed at 1.00 pm and Mike headed for his bedroom still jumping with adrenalin. I’m not sure when I went to sleep but 2.24 am was today’s prize time for getting up. Granted my bladder wasn’t helping much either. As I went to the loo I noticed Mike was still awake and reading. Once the deluge had finished I went through and we talked for a few minutes until I actually saw him yawn. I left and came through to the computer. At 3.00 am more than a little frustrated I went to get some painkillers and noticed sleep had claimed Mike.

When I got back to the computer I turned off and back on to start afresh. Every time I’d tried to like something so far, or pressed comment I’d been taken to the Blogs I Follow, WordPress page. I’d had to do a search on each blog to enter it and do what I intended. It was just taking an age doing it that way. The reboot worked and I sailed through the remaining posts finishing at 4.45 am. I celebrated with a drink of squash in the kitchen then a prowl through ebay at the catfish available there. I was so surprised to see small pangasius there ( Like my favourite fish ‘Zippy’) since anyone taking those was going to need a massive tank since some can soon grow to a metre. They’re known as shark catfish because of their look but I found zippy to be intelligent and to have a very passive nature.

Beautiful Pangasius. shark catfish.

Beautiful Pangasius. shark catfish.

I think I’m attracted ( in the right way ) to these fish because of their spectacular moustaches. At 6.00 am I went through to take an antibiotic and though I crept very quietly I felt eyes on me the minute I walked into the kitchen. It’s not even as though I turned the light on , my torch stopped me needing to do that………….        I gave in and turned the tank light on. Morecambe and Wise were watching me from the top of the tank, with Big Al, Little Al and one of the plecs watching me from below like the Codfather and a couple of wiseguys. If I’d have seen a violin case at that moment I’d still be running. Though officially it’s non-feeding day I was taking no chances and just tipped a full box through the hatch. Mind you, they’ll have the devil’s own job of getting the lid off. Hah.! I took the antibiotic and went back to my room. Another 30 minutes saw me up to date and I was feeling cocky enough to re-approach the kitchen.  OK, I’d taken my dressing gown off hoping they’d think it was someone else. This time I took my normal morning meds , prepared a cup for my coffee and started to get the rubbish and the recycling waste ready to go out. Trouble was it was persisting down and blowing a gale out there. In the end I took it out and planted the food waste bin on top of the recycling bags to try and hold them down. When I came back in. I was amazed to hear Mike’s alarm go off.  To be honest I fully expected him to turn it straight off but I saw him sit up. I asked “Are you going back to sleep bro, or do you want a drink?”  He told me he’d have a drink so I put the kettle on while I made mine and when it was ready I made one and took it through. He was asleep again. “Coffee’s up” I called not really caring if he stayed asleep. I went outside and added something to the rbbish and when I came back in he was actually up. Honest, really, and he was awake and actually hitting his mouth with the drink.

It was a later start but not by much really as we left the house at 8.10 am. We were at the Supermarket by 8.30 am and in shopping mode. Within the first ten minutes I’d got some potatoes, Ju’s flowers and some clothing from the sale for myself. Well, you can’t NOT get a cardigan and a pair of jeans at £4 a peace can you? Please don’t answer that.  OK, OK, there was a shirt too at just £3 but that’s it honest. After that we honestly put some food in the basket. Mike was doing some shopping for his dad today, washing powder etc so if there wasn’t as much room for food in my trolley ( technically his I suppose as he paid for it)  as usual it’s all his fault. After going through the checkout we went for coffee.

When we’d packed the car and had a cigarette it was decided we’d go to Flint but on the way there was a slight detour via Pets at Home so I could see the pet rats and we could both view the fish. We didn’t buy anything and resumed the journey. Today Mike needed another coffee before anything else so we went in and had a Happy New Year hug from Ceri, had a laugh with Sian and tried not to upset Kyle’s hangover. Mike had his usual teasted toecake then threw the biscuit from his saucer straight into his coffee to soften. Oops, error, it was a change of biscuit this week and was already quite soft. It almost disintegrated in the fumes before it touched liquid. He had to fish it out in bits. He didn’t make the same mistake with my biscuit. I thought we were going to check one shop out for an ice pack when we’d done, but it turned into two, three, four as well as a minor detour inside the pet store to look at, you guessed it, fish. Tonight I’m writing begging letters to the Gettys, The Gugenheins, Bill Gates and Madonna to see if they’d like to buy me a 12 foot tank so I can keep adopt some large homeless catfish.

We realised it was now gone 1.00 pm and I’d forgotten to take my 11.00 am antibiotic and also I needed some food so we headed straight off to the Ivy. Angie gave us a kiss (each) and got me a glass of water so the first problem was solved. We had to share our seats today as interlopers had dug themselves in despite the reserved sign. Angie had got our drinks so we ordered lunch and I was able to take my pre-food tab. Young Rob came over to say hello as he passed by with some food deliveries. It was fairly busy again.  We took the opportunity to nip out for a cigarette and moments later Tariq came flying out to say hello. He knew who it was as soon as he got the food order, double bacon sandwiches with a bucket of chips between us. After we’d gone back in, lunch wasn’t long in arriving and then Shella came out to say Hi too. It’s like coming to eat with family. He’s even given up arguing with me over payment these days.

Lunch over and hugs goodbye out of the way we headed for home. One we’d put the shopping away, I was allowed on the computer, well he is OLDER than me. In what I thought was a gross mistake I found 144 outstanding messages. I was within about 25 of the end when he called me through to watch TV with him. It had taken from 3.15 to 5.25 pm to get this far, and that was more luck than judgement. I stayed until 8.40 pm then he saw me twitching and let me come back. It’s been another long haul but I think I’ll make it before midnight- just.

Another Welsh one tonight.

Have a Wonderful New Week everybody.

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Sunday Pleasantry & Nutter Magnets

Sunday 28th Dec 2014.

When I swung my legs out of bed this morning at 3.09 am there was a wee tug between groin and left butt but I was able to put both feet on the floor without howling. It’s a Christmas miracle! The size doesn’t seem to have become any less though so getting a slipper on my right foot wasn’t easy, but I did it. I managed to shuffle from my bedroom to the loo without use of crutches or stick and with my foot flat to the ground. There’s a small background niggle but heck, he’s still in bed. Actually as I came out of the loo the background niggle was just walking in with the kind of look Might of the Living Dead tried to achieve. He was hardly aware of me at all until I wished him good morning for a joke. “Ohyesyespleasantry” was what I received in return.

I smiled and walked back to my room to turn on the computer and log onto my talktalk mail. Yay, it was still up. I dealt with that then signed into my gmail account to do the same. That one required a few full answers and took a bit longer. But I was up top date by 5.45 am and thought I might just rest my eyes in my chair, in fairness, there had been less that 2 hours sleep so far. I was trying to come to terms with differential calculations or something when sleep took me and I stayed out until 7.05 am. I found out just how good my ankle was a I ran to the kitchen and turned the tank light on. I don’t know if fish celebrate the seasons or have created new holidays based on me and my fickle moods. Lategod Day, Cheerfulgod Day etc but I’d be willing to bet that Forgetfulgod Day came about weekly. I might even have caught them mid-service this morning as they were sort of semicircular on Big Al who has no doubt convinced them he’s my mouthpiece. You could just imagine him intoning ‘And he’s a Vengeful god and will take away the light if you shall transgress’. ‘And he can be a kind god and the food shall rain from above when he wishes ‘ which is as good a get-out clause as you can get. This morning the food rained from above as I wished it and landed on Big Al’s head.

I took my sprays and my morning meds and made a coffee. ( also bad for gout Mike says along with caffeinated drinks like Pepsi max). He’s evil. I went back to work. Once I had the emails under control again I went to Ancestry.co.uk to carry on with the ‘hints’. It can be quite fun finding an ancestor on someone else’s site and realising he two of you may be related. That happened last year with someone in Australia. We had a great, great grandmother in common. At 10.00 am Mike shuffled his way into my doorway and gave a little wave as if to say “I’m here”. “Good morning again” I said.                                                                                                                   “What do you mean again?” he asked. I explained about our meeting in the early hours. He turned and shuffled off to the loo so I went and made him a drink. We sat in the lounge chatting about not a lot until I put on an interesting programme on Hampton Court Palace, the most complete palace of it’s age in the world today, the favorite palace of Henry VIII. So interesting I didn’t consider getting dressed mainly because I nodded off for the last half hour. When I came to again. Mike was dressed and had gathered together all his luggage and his gifts and was wondering if they’d go in the car. I had to get washed and dressed quickly. We decided to go for lunch but to save time later Mike would bring the car up to the house and pack it now. I gathered everything by the door and waited, and waited until eventually I went to see where he was. He was scraping a thick frost off the car. Even in the bright sunshine of midday it hadn’t enough heat to melt it. The car said it was 2 degrees.

We traveled to the Ivy saying how nice it would be to have some bacon and were really looking forward to it but when we got there we found they were doing Sunday lunches and both ordered a roast beef dinner. Angie  came for a kiss, Rob called hello, Tariq came for a hug. All had liked their gifts. Shella was cooking as usual but Angie told us that Shirley’s husband had died suddenly yesterday at 57 and so Tariq was helping in the kitchen today. We still ate. We were both sorry for poor Shiela who is a lovely lady. After lunch we drove home a little subdued. Mike went off to see his Dad before heading home to Rugby and I attacked the full mailboxes until 6.00 pm when I went to watch the Golden Compass. I was sorry they never made the next movie in line after that one.

At 8.00 pm I came back through and have been battling with mail then the blog to make sure I get to bed tonight.

Elf and safety Executive

Elf and safety Executive

elf service line

elf service line

 

Xmas Dream of Reuben

Xmas Dream of Reuben’s

 

Christmas Dream Mike

Xmas Dream of Mike’s

Monday.

At 4.11 am when I woke I found myself already sitting on the edge of my bed trying to put a sock on. How I didn’t fall off I don’t know. I stopped what I was doing, slipped on my slippers, put my dressing gown on and visited the loo. The long flow made it seem I hadn’t visited in ages and gave me pause for thought. I was sure I’d been having a dream. I’d been visited by Porcinus who’d brought along a child and introduced him as little Brother Jake. He told me it was time to start earning the favour the gods were showing me. I pointed out that all I’d gained at the moment was sleeplessness and cold feet which made me wonder if that’s not where my foot problem started. A group of goats came up to him and the smell hit me where I was sitting. It was at that point I’d woken up. It was at that moment I realised the flow had stopped and I was still standing at the loo looking faintly ridiculous. I put myself away, washed my hands and returned to base. Yet again I have fulfilled my part of the bargain set and mentioned the gods in order for them to grow. I know Somnos is the god of sleep patterns, Porcinus is I think the god of lost causes ( creating them probably) but I have yet to discover what Brother Jake manifests as. I shall work on that.

The computer gave me a treat today by keeping the mail to a minimum on both mail carriers. By 6.20 am I was done. Not wanting to try for a sleep before the fish had been seen to, I decided to see to them then. The kitchen light went on first today so they knew I was coming. Kind of like a false dawn for them. Then the tank light went on and they knew a new day had started.Morecambe and Wise came to hover round the opening ready for breakfast. Little Al and Sharkey were having a face-off or more likely a tail off as they swam in a small circle trying to see each other off. Big Al was displaying the roots of his problems by flying back and forth end to end of the tank as if chased. Perhaps that’s how the others think he gathers news of the great outside he regales them with. Still, he was leaving me alone so I closed the flap and turned away.Breakfast wasn’t an option this morning as I didn’t feel like eating yet so it was straight on to the meds then making myself a coffee.

I took the drink back through to my room, maybe I could try for a nap after I’d drunk it but for now I might as well do some work as I drink. The end of the drink coincided with the end of the work at about 7.30 am. I got dressed and unlocked the front door before going through to the lounge in case a miracle happened and Somnos sent me a cleaner. I didn’t get one so maybe that’s not withing his purview. I did however get my nap and nodded off until 8.35 am. I spent some time tidying up and dusting before going back through to my pit. There were periods of mail to be done and periods where I was able to add some more leaves to the family tree. There seems to be a branch of my Rogerson side settled in Cook County ,Chicago and boy have they spread out. I worked like this until lunchtime then opted for an easy shepherd’s pie and a film on the box.  When that was over I went in search of my phone after realising it hadn’t been seen in 24 hours.

The message that greeted me was “Plug me in, my battery is low” but you could sense an undertone where it was calling me a name for forgetting it. The battery was practically nil and I think I just reached life support in time. There were 4 messages. One from Mike yesterday letting me know he’d got home safely. One from Tariq saying he was sorry not to have seen more of us but explaining about poor Shirley. One from (possibly) Shella as I didn’t recognise the number saying much the same and one from Dil asking me if I’d be in tomorrow afternoon. As I wasn’t sure when he’d sent it I didn’t know if it meant today or tomorrow. It’s Tuesday. It wouldn’t be until I got back from Yvonne’s but that got me to thinking about going to Chester tomorrow. The pain has almost gone from the foot but the swelling is still very much there. Getting a shoe on and keeping it on long enough to do some shopping just may not be possible. I’ve had to email Yvonne to cancel for this week. That won’t make either of us very happy since we both love the sales.

I did some more work to bring me up to date before finding myself nodding off over the keyboard. I went to the lounge for a power nap and got involved in a programme on TV instead. At 5.00 pm I had some of the cake Muriel made for my tea then had some Big Bang Theory before going through for what I thought might be the last time. Not so, there must have been a lull while all you good peeps went to get your RSI’s seen to and by 7.15 pm I was yet again up to date so I went through to see if there was anything good on the goggle box. I ended up watching something about repossessions done through the courts and evictions . The sympathy is often on the side of the evictee but it’s obvious they are not always the innocent parties and yet they’re still handled with some sensitivity by some of the bailiffs. Then I watched the World’s Strongest Man competition to see how the British contestant did. Amazingly well is the answer. I was going to sit through what I thought was a Countdown celebrity special but it wasn’t. It was a comedy version run by an odious little man that gave me an excuse to turn off and come through despite there being some good comedians on there.

Obviously the mail had built up again during my skiving break and I had to work at getting the numbers down so I could do this and still stand a chance of hitting bed before midnight.

Tuesday.

My good friend A.C.Flory tells me I don’t treat Somnos very well. She gets better results with him bribing him with chocolate cake. As I woke this morning I thought it was nearing 3.00 am and considering I’d got to bed early and turned my light off at 12.15 am I thought I’d done alright. But when I was up, threading my arms through my dressing gown I looked again. 1.36 am. He’d allowed me just over an hour and has the cheek to moan I don’t treat him well. Why, I’ve given birth to the rogue and helped him grow and this is the thanks I get. How about I just forget Porcinus and my Brother Jake now. If I can’t cope with one how am I expected to cope with three of them? Anyway , I was up and a gentle throbbing told me the reservoir needed emptying.

Once back I turned the computer on and found that there were quite a few messages I’d missed last night. It took me some time to clear them. By the time I was clear on my main ISP and then gmail it was almost 4.00 am. My foot hurt. I decided to go and sit in the lounge in my chair and contemplate my navel. It worked, I got another 2 hours. So pleased was I that the fish were given a treat, early breakfast. I was in and out like a ninja, before they knew what had hit them. I did notice that it was Little Als turn to go doolally tap today though, charging back and forth so maybe everyone’s attention was on him. I turned to get the milk to fill my mug and then started to take my meds. I’d dealt with the sprays easily enough and put the first batch of tablets in my mouth. I added the milk and the gag reflex kicked in. I had the devil of a job to prevent myself from decorating the wall again and swallowing them at a point where the gag was relieved, before I just threw up and lost them all. I made it though I had milk trickling through my fingers and I was gripping the sink to stop myself falling over. It seems my brain couldn’t cope with gagging and working out I had a sore ankle. Yes ladies, men eh! The second and third tablets were no problem at all though I decided against breakfast just in case.

I took my drink back to the bedroom and set to work on the mail that had come in while I slept. I only worked until 8.30 am then forcing a shoe on with my last remaining shoehorn I went over to the One Stop opposite Pauline’s. I wanted a large trifle and was pleased they had one so I picked up a couple of other things as well. It had been well less than zero degrees last night and a thick icy frost lay everywhere. I tried to be so careful. As soon as I got home I remembered I’d forgotten some ham o had to go out again only this time to Pauline’s. I almost came a cropper on her step but managed to get home intact. I forced my shoe off before I started unpacking and putting away. A huge ridge across my instep was aching. As soon as the job was done I came back to start on the mail again. I managed a break from 9.45 am till 11.00 am and then from 11.45 until 1.00 pm. I knew Dil was due about 3.30 pm so I wanted to be as up to date as possible. It was as well that I’d just managed to get up to date and walked through to the kitchen at 2.35 pm as that’s when they chose to arrive. There were two little calls of hello from the front door  and I started to get their drinks ready.

We had a little chat about our respective Christmases and Dil wondered how I’d got on with the card shuffler they’d bought me. I said I’d saved it until we played and put batteries in. A little noisy but it does a great job. Matt spotted the new game Yvonne had bought me Cards Against Humanity and asked if I liked it. He plays it all the time and loves it…typical. Dil thought it looked good even though I explained how rude it can be. We decided to give it a go. In the end everyone was enjoying it so much we played 3 times and I won three times without having to play a dirty card once. Phew. After that we played Yahtzee and it’s not worth me mentioning how I did, though I will. Out of 6 games I was joint winner once. Dil came first will 3 full games. That was a blow but nothing new.                                                                                  In Nomination Whist I showed them a clean pair of heels and felt untouchable. Then we decided to play Chase the Lady and this was with a vengeance, no holds barred. It was a fairly evenly matched game and the accusations of being evil flew from all of us but in a last flurry we managed to get Matt over the line while Dil’s score and mine was equal. That just left us with Crazy 8’s and all the duckin’ and divin’ that’s a part of that. I was caught a couple of times towards the end playing a scoring card that accumulates points from card pick ups but despite not managing to call last card and go out on a 2 or a 3 so someone had to pick up I still managed to win. The discomfort I was in sitting so long with my leg in one position was worth it. The home team came out ahead.

Dil and Matt left just before 9.30 pm and I spent some time tidying up and washing the pots before taking my meds and coming through to work. I could see there were 231 messages in my main mail box. I worked until 11.00 pm but there was no way I would finish tonight and I’m tired. So, I had done what I could up to that time and then started the blog. I’ll just have to work harder on the post in the morning.

 

Tower of Babel destroyed.

Tower of Babel destroyed.

Wednesday.

2.00 am on the dot this morning. I was actually glad to be awake because of the dreams I was having. Somnos has mentioned he can turn his hand to anything as befits the offspring of an older god, we know Porcinus is in charge of the sheep and goats for a reason which isn’t as I thought because he’s thick, but because he cares for animals. Jake has been a problem until now but in the dream I discovered he”s the god of lovers and also wishes. So far all he can do is put the wishes in a goldfish bowl ( minus the fish), give them a good shake and hope the one he pulls out will say “I hope it’s liver and onions for tea” as he can manage that. If that’s the best he can do for wishes, heaven help the lovers. They’d be lucky to score a kiss.

Another reason I was glad to be awake was because of the messages I hadn’t been able to deal with last night. There were so many I needed an early start. Well I got one, maybe that was one of Jake’s wishes come true. It was actually gone 5.00 am before I was seeing daylight- in the literal sense as it was still pitch black outside. I decided to carry on till 5.30 am and take a break. In the end it was a few minutes after that and I was up to date to 5.00 am. I went and sat in my armchair in the lounge glad I wasn’t outside where there was a thick frost on the ground. Somehow, without any encouragement, I nodded off. It was 7.20 am before I came to again.The fish became the focus of my attention. As I turned the light on Big Al led a deputation towards me consisting of little Al and one of the smaller plecs. The bubbles of air went completely over my head but I could tell there was real rhetoric in them. No doubt I was being told that gods must stick to timetables where the sun coming up and going down are concerned and that food must be on time too. I put all my acting skills in place then and said sorry which seemed to mollify him. Privately I was thinking it wouldn’t take much to crush you mate so don’t push your luck. If only the agencies knew I’m the natural successor to the great Sir Alec Guinness.

I took my meds, decided on not having breakfast and instead just made my coffee to take through to the bedroom. I managed to get dressed before restarting work so I at least looked professional and not someone with too much time on his hands. I’d set to work and was going well when I was interrupted by the arrival of the postman who made the delivery of two books and a catalogue sound like the outbreak of WWIII. They hit the floor one after another with a resounding BOOM. After opening the books I went straight to ebay to leave feedback and found myself ordering something for Reuben. I took a small break from 10.30 am to 11.00 am to glance through the catalogue and then I broke off for lunch at 12.00 pm. Sausage, sweet potato mash and beans today which I’ve fancied for a while now. After that I slept again until 2.00 pm which put me in a panic of course. Before rushing back to work though I remembered my phone which was on charge in the kitchen. I thought I’d better check for messages. Oops, there was one form Ugo’s mother and one from Mike to say he was setting off to come here.

I battled with the new post and bit by bit got it under control. The frauds weren’t working bank holidays but the advertisers surely are. I could have bought all next years gifts by now if I’d had the cash handy.Oh, found a tweet from Sexy Molly again, I wonder if she’s on double pay today.  I finished at 5.15 pm and went to put the kettle on. My guesstimate was that Mike wouldn’t be long. He walked in a 5.30 pm just as one of his favourite quizzes started. I made a drink as he settled in. We saw that, then the news then back to another quiz with Celebrity Mastermind. There was a little difference of opinion after that but I put my foot down ( quite lightly) and we had Indiana Jones until 9.00 pm when it was time for me to leave him to his own devices and come back to work. I paid a heavy price for the skiving and catching up is proving hard tonight. I’ve broken off at 10.30 pm to do the blog as I don’t see why you lot shouldn’t suffer too.

Thursday New Years Day 2015

I’m not sure my body and my mind were in full agreement today. The body swung out of bed at 3.03 am but I’m pretty sure the mind stayed where it was in the warmth and tried to grab a couple of extra Zzz’s. The body followed the usual track, heading straight for the bathroom then came back and turned the computer on.  I felt the usual two fingers stiffen up preparatory to typing and away we went. I’m guessing that my eyes must have defected to the other side since I haven’t received complaints so far of gobbledegook messages, but I couldn’t tell you what a single one said. By 6.15 am I was up to date and lay down on my bed near the recalcitrant brain. I woke up at 8.50 am. Yep, you read that right, more that two and a half hours later and nearly two hours late for Big Al. Worse still, almost so late that Mike could have caught me.

Given that I could actually only put one foot on the ground it’s a miracle I reached the kitchen intact. Once there my only form of defence was to ensure Big Al had no chance to react. I opened the flap, threw in one of the large tablets then switched the light on while it was falling. There was so much activity from the others Big Al would have struggled top reach me. I turned away in relief. Next job, kettle on while I took my meds. When it boiled I started the machine making my drink while I made Mike’s and took it through. I’d already decided if he didn’t get up I’d leave him a I hadn’t given Yvonne a time of arrival. “Coffee’s up Bro” I called, loud enough to wake him. That was it. I picked up my drink and returned to work. Heck, there was a lot. At 9.15 am I heard Mike get up (gasp) and make his way to the lounge. I did a few more messages and went to join him.

We made decisions about where and when we’d meet Yvonne.11.00 am by the precinct, sent her a message and waited for a response. That was OK. So, next job, we needed to get ready. Mike finished first and came through to help me put my right sock on and then to get a shoe on. What a bloody performance. They’re like Chelsea Boots with very soft gussets and I was close to losing another shoe horn.Talk about a tight fit. Still. Mike managed it and at 10.15 am we were on our way.

When we arrived in Chester Mike dropped me off before going to park the car so I didn’t have a long walk uphill. While waiting I found the precinct wasn’t open and had to walk towards where Mike would appear so we could walk round the block. Mike had to get into conversation with someone who wanted to tell us about his pending court cases against the police and against the County Council over parking and speed cameras. There are times he should have a scold’s bridle applied. We just about made it to the front of the precinct in time to find Yvonne was late. We soon found her and paid a visit to W H Smiths’ a big newsagent and stationer to see if Mike could find a case for his 10″ tablet. Answer NO, but Yvonne and I found plenty of books to spend our money on. Reuben was getting restless so Yvonne let him out of the pushchair. Mike took the pushchair and the shopping to see if he could get it to sleep. Outside the shop we met Ugo and his delectable sister Janet who had kindly brought me Christmas gifts. We hugged and kissed before Ugo and she took Reuben home for a nap and Yvonne had a few n more shops with us.

Yvonne left us to go home when Mike and I went to have lunch. Or brunch as the choice appeared to be. The only time I’ve ever had bunch where we’ve has to pay separately for the fried eggs. It was poor, it was luke warm but it was filling. When we finally came out of there we decided to head back for the car. I thought I remembered a gentle slope to where the car was on the river front but I misjudged and we ended up at the top of a massive set of steps. It’s raining, it’s slippy and I’m on crutches with a bad foot. Mike said “Come on, let’s go into the park and take the slope.” Did I mention I’m stubborn and stupid too. With a lot of effort we made it but towards the bottom I see someone talking to no-one, then talking to Mike, then talking to me. I swear we’re like nutter magnets. If I was the only person on a bus and a nutter got on, he’d sit next to me. Or maybe he’d sit next to the nutter? Who knows.

We eventually got to the car and drove home. It was 3.00 pm and I went straight to work until 5.00 pm. I didn’t finish the work but as it’s a bank holiday I thought I deserved a day off. I had tea with Mike and stayed to watch a very clever John Grisham film but at 9.00 pm there was no avoiding it any more. As I signed into gmail the count was 284. I’ve done an hour of personal emails and then broken off to do the blog as it takes some time. I’ll return to the mail in a minute.

Friday.

I slept until 4.27 am. It may not sound much after turning my light out at 1.00 pm but it’s definite progress over the two o’clocks. I rose gingerly as my leg was hurting a bit. Not vicious pain as it started but more a gnawing ache and the swelling rather than having gone down has started an upwards creep. Like I’m now wooden top and bottom and it’s just filling in the in between bits. That’s how Mike puts it anyway.

I started work after my usual visitation to the porcelain.  There was a fair bit but I’d every confidence I could finish. I did, just before 7.00 am so went straight off to feed the fish. As I put the light on Morecambe and Wise swam up to the hatch. I dropped flake in for them and proceeded to drop pellets in for the rest. Sharkey was first at the trough as usual and started flying at anything that came near. He wouldn’t do that at Big Al of course but all I could could see of him this morning was a disinterested nose sticking out from under the bridge. I was grateful as Friday is the day for doing the fresh medicines. First I had to take the last dose from the container. So, getting myself a glass of milk I did just that. Once I was done I could bring my medicine drawer to the kitchen and start work. As I emptied a carton I’d turn round and get a replacement from the newest delivery. I also needed to not down the things I needed on a prescription request  so my  hands were going in every direction. Fast enough to sweep the container off the counter. As I searched for the tablets on the kitchen floor I was so grateful I hadn’t done too many. I still had to work out which was which and whether they were from the morning or night end.

It was 8.05 am before I finished and returned the drawer to it’s place and took my drink back to the bedroom. I quickly got rid of the outstanding post and as I had time I was thinking about something a friend had reminded me yesterday about a review he’d put on Amazon which had been shared with other Amazons. I think this was a hint to do some marketing. I thought “Why not.” Does anyone have a loaded pistol I can borrow? I did a very small piece saying I tend to forget promotion, added a link to this wonderful review and others that are there and promptly forgot about it. The time was fast approaching 9.00 am so I left the bedroom and went to put the kettle on for Mike’s drink. As soon as it boiled I took the drink through to him and with my usual battle cry, I woke him. Knowing it would take a few minutes and a bloody great miracle to shift him, I went back to the bedroom and got dressed.

The miracle happened and Mike moved through to the lounge under his own steam with no second curtain call. I joined him there and as usual we traded insults. I tried to get mine in early before he woke up but wasn’t having much joy. I asked him if he’d be kind enough to follow me in to the kitchen and spare he laughter but I wanted to drop my trousers for him. He just about managed to restrain himself but agreed my leg is not a pretty site. Not that it ever is he reminded me. He suggests I give the Doctor’s some serious thought. I will.

At 10.20 am Mike was going out to travel to his Dad’s. Before he left he helped me get a shoe on so I could go to Pauline’s and pick up the new lottery tickets. I’m not sure what came over me momentarily but while there I asked about the price of the stop smoking kits with the liquid refills. Luckily I fought the urge to buy one and won. Back at home I found quite a few message and just started work without thinking. At 11.30 am a knock on the door and what I hoped was a parcel was the warden for our  weekly chat. That lasted a while so I just carried on from there and made my lunch and found something to watch on the box. Once that was over I fancied 40 winks so closed my eyes and didn’t open them  until 2.05 pm. Not what I’d normally consider a problem until I got back to the computer. There was just so much mail it was unbelievable like the World has decided to write to me all on the one day.  When Mike returned at 5.30 pm I had only just passed to midday mark. It was all to do with this morning’s blog post. People I’ve never heard of liking it, befriending me, commenting. Wonderful and so scary at the same time.

I came back through at 8.30 pm and by 10.30 pm when I stopped to do the blog I had only just reached 2.30 pm in the mail. I won’t work longer that midnight as it’s shopping day tomorrow and I value Mike’s company but if I haven’t made real progress this is going to be a terrible weekend for trying to play catch up. Wish me luck.

The Reader

The Reader

Saturday.

I did go to bed around midnight and turned my light off a little before 1.00 am. Nothing I could do could get me to sleep and at 2.20 am I gave up trying and turned the computer back on. By 4.45 am I’d cleared all last night’s outstanding post and by 5.25 am all of the morning’s too. I went through to the lounge, took a small padded chair for my leg and dropped into my armchair. I don’t know when I fell asleep but I did. I only woke up when I heard Mike’s alarm go off at 7.00 am. I went through to the kitchen and turned the light on. The fish all broke out into such activity it was like Big Al was directing the performance at a circus. He was at the centre while the others raced round him. That stopped the minute food was dropped in. Big Al with Little Al in tow came to the side of the tank as if to ask “What’d you do that for”? I didn’t have an answer for him so I smiled for a moment then turned away.

I put the kettle on while I took my meds and heard Mike’s alarm go off a second time. I carried a coffee through in one hand and the padded chair in the other , falling over the big new candle stand in the hall. Ha, you should have seen him move then. Fair enough, it was out of concern for me falling but as soon as he realised I hadn’t, he asked why not. I shouldn’t waste his time. Wt a beaming smile I passed his coffee over and went to make mine safe in the knowledge that he was up to stay. I nipped back to my bedroom with my drink so that I could just check something out on ebay then I joined Mike in the lounge for a few minutes. As soon as my coffee was drunk I went to get dressed. Mike had been talking about putting something more supportive on my ankle so when I reached that stage I called him through and we battled to get my foot in the new blue desert boots Yvonne had got me for Christmas. It really was a struggle and we almost couldn’t get the shoehorn out once my foot was in, the laces were straining to meet but it was on. Mike finished getting himself ready and at 8.00 am we left.

At the supermarket Mike got the trolley while I raided the cash machine. Then after having a cigarette we went inside. First stop was flowers for Ju. We found some but the choice wasn’t great. Then we flicked through all the sale goods and Mike found a pair of jeans he liked. Of course they didn’t have any trousers or jeans in last week so I’d ordered mine online and couldn’t remember what I’d ordered. I did find a couple of really nice things for Reuben which was good. We must have wandered a bit because time seemed to slip away. I got the food I wanted and we headed for coffee. Mike decided he really needed to eat so was going to order a breakfast. I’m not sure he remembered we were in McDonalds. He had a breakfast bap which was double sausage, double bacon and an egg on a bap with a funny potato thing on the side. The bap looked like polystyrene, the bacon was real enough, the sausages like beefburgers and the egg like rubber. He was fine till we got outside then started deciding it hadn’t agreed with him. We loaded the car and set off.

In Flint we needed to pick up a particular size of watch battery for Mike so we headed off to one of our shops. Halfway round Mike decided the food wanted to pay a return visit and had to leave me with the basket and disappear- fast. I paid and followed slowly behind him. When I reached Temptations he was just coming out to get the sweets from the car after having visited the loo. We went in together and gave the sweets to Kyle who took our order. It was to be a bit of a double upset for Mike. Our usual seats were taken and he couldn’t banter from where we had to sit, and Ceri was off. Still, we got over it. After coming out of there we were going to head for home to put the shopping away but realised it was already 12.30 pm. Easier to go straight for lunch and then get back early for me to go to work Ha! The plans of Mice and Men eh. We arrived at the Ivy just after 1.00 pm. Mike almost had to carry me across some of the paving slabs as my crutches were sliding everywhere. Rob had seen us arrive and by the time we got in the reserved sign was sitting on our table right next to the log fire. Glorious, after two minutes my left side was done to perfection. Our drinks arrived and we went straight back into the cold for a cigarette. Coming back in Mike decide what he wanted to eat, settling for a baked potato and beans ( with cheese) ad we already knew I was having the bacon sarnies I’d promised myself last week.

Tariq said his hellos but was cooking today and it was getting busier. Angie was on the run flat out as was Rob and we knew Shella was cooking in the back. There was no news of poor Shirley, not that we expected much this soon. Lunch eventually came and we really enjoyed it. Things had calmed a bit and Shella came out for hugs and to say goodbye. It was hugs all round and some of the other patrons made a point of saying goodbye too. It’s becoming quite a community of huggers. No, put your hearing aid in dear, I said HUGGERS. We came home. I was in for 3.00 am and had put the shopping away and opened my parcel which proved to be more formal trouser than jeans. Ah well. I started work trying not to let the quantity scare me. By 6.00 pm I was over half way there and ready to take a break with Mike and eat a doughnut.  At 7.00 pm we were going to watch a film but it was chronically bad so by 7.15 pm it had been abandoned. I came back here to work and left Mike with some kind of Frank Sinatra talent competition. As he knows I wasn’t a fan he couldn’t complain. It paid off as by 9.00 pm I was up to date and able to go and see to supper. Then Mike and I swapped the camera between us to take very poor shots for here.

Dragon in the house

Dragon in the house

Pixie feet or twinkle toes?

Pixie feet or twinkle toes?

 

 

 

Milk, Coffee and cafe au lait.

Milk, Coffee and cafe au lait.

Thanks for sharing with me. Have a wonderful week and enough Hugs to hold you till next Weekend.

 

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Middle Finger Extension & Shirley’s Drunk!

Sunday 21st Dec 2014.

I was allowed to return to some kind of normality this morning with a 5.04 start. I think even the gods know when we mortals hold the upper hand. Push me too far and I’ll forget about them and they’ll ‘fizzle’ out of existence. Existence is about all they have at the moment since I certainly don’t worship the little perishers. If they want the next step I suggest they concentrate on my lottery numbers.

There was a fair bit of post this morning. I was in a good mood, but not good enough to open ‘Sexy Tina has tweeted you with a link’. I doubt my blood pressure could take it and my arteries would burst under the strain. Skirting round that one I carried on with the rest and worked until 7.00 am.  I walked through to the kitchen and flicking the light on the tank invited Big Al to do his worst. Perhaps remembering that they hadn’t been fed yesterday prompted a little discretion and they all just carried on as though they’d heard nothing. I opened the flap and fed them. As I closed the flap and started to turn away Big Al came up to the glass at the front and looked at me. The thing is, I couldn’t translate the look and I’m sure puzzlement must have run across my face. That was enough, he turned tail in glee and swam away. He knows which one of us is boss and it isn’t me.

I took my morning meds and made a coffee to take back through with me. Once there it was time to get washed and dressed and carry on with the mail until it’s time to wake Mike up. That’s what I did. About 8.50 am I was up to date and ready to make his coffee. I took it through dead on 9.00 am and called him “Time to rise and shine.” Very slowly a hand appeared from below the covers with middle finger extended. Well, at least I had his attention. “Coffee’s here,” I said. From my bedroom I was listening for movement but by about ten past I’d heard nothing and went back through. “Coffee’s going cold Mike.” I told him and he sat upright and said “Oh heck did I fall asleep, fall asleep, asleep again did I”? That was enough, and a couple of minutes later he was on the move. Since I was up top date again I joined him in the lounge. I didn’t bother telling him how heartbroken ( cough) I was about the finger as I’d just have got another one. While he drank his coffee I went and started bringing through the gifts we were taking through to MuJo this morning. ( or this afternoon if he didn’t get a move on). By the time he’d finished doing what he needed to do it was 10.00 am but we were actually going out the door.

It wasn’t too bad a run and took just about an hour to Cerrigydrudion and Ty Nant.We smoked our first cigarette in the new car on the way, every window open and freezing to death but it was worth it. MuJo had said they couldn’t meet us for lunch as their eldest daughter was coming up. We planned to stop for lunch on our way back. We had a coffee and mince pie with MuJo while Mike admired their 15 foot Christmas tree and the decorations. I placed their sacks by the tree ready for Christmas morning, and put Yvonne’s bag for them with it. Mike had also bought them some chocolates which joined the pile. By 12.30 we had to leave as Mike still had deliveries to do today before he went home.We wished MuJo goodbye and set off back stopping in Denbigh on the way back at a Morrison’s to try and get individual cereals ( the branch is too small) and Mike suggested lunch there. Normally it’s a good , filling meal. Today it was a disaster. We ordered lamb shanks with mash and peas as the alternative seemed to be turkey dinners.We got drinks and I took my pre-food tablet. It was then someone on the next table had a roast beef dinner delivered and there had been nothing to indicate this was an option. (Grrr) then after half an hour ours still hadn’t come so Mike went up to ask about it. Just being dished up he was told. It was hot at least from the microwave but the meat seemed very chewy and a bit dry like it had been done twice. The potatoes were pure stodge and Mike said he could still taste the powder in his. The peas were great though. I hope that’s not my only Christmas dinner this week.

We gladly got out of there and headed for home where Mike helped me wrap the Christmas presents for Ugo and Yvonne. That’s it now apart from two I have to wrap for Mike and no way was I asking for his help there. The car was loaded up with gifts for Yvonne’s family from MuJo which Mike was going to deliver on his way home for me so they had them for Christmas day. They’re not part of the boxing day opening. I waved goodbye to him a little after 4.00 pm. Then I almost scorched the carpet getting to my bedroom to see how bad the post was. 281 on the main mail service and that was to 2.57 pm. I daren’t refresh. The trouble was by about 6.00 pm my eyes were shutting and I had to go sit in the lounge and sleep for half an hour or so. 6.30 pm and it was back into battle though it seemed never ending by 11.05 I’d caught up. On the second service there were only 38 that weren’t duplicates so that wasn’t too bad. Now I’m cream-crackered and ready for bed and any new messages can wait for the morning.

Monday.

Despite it being a 1.00 am bed last night it was a much more expected time of rising this morning at 4.12 am. Perhaps I’m to be left alone now while the gods move on to pastures new. I did pinch myself to make sure I was awake in my own reality first. That’s a bruise owed to them now. There not having been a great deal of time before retiring and rising again I was able to take a more leisurely stroll to the loo this morning. I was really glad  not to be outside as the wind was really whistling through the grille above my front door and as it suddenly blew hard it cracked like the sound of a sheet being folded and flicked to remove creases. I’m pretty sure there was rain as well. It was grim but I was toastie inside. Time to look at the mail.

Having done so much last night the mail wasn’t too bad at all. And this early stretch had no stupid spam messages either for a change. There were some that required proper responses though and they took me some time so it was approaching 6.45 am when I was up to date. It was time to face the fish. Here was I expecting a big showdown and at first I got nothing. They just carried on like I wasn’t there until I put some food in the flap. Then there was a feeding frenzy and they were barging each other to get at the food.Even Morecambe and Wise who have no competition for the flake at the top of the tank were embroiled in the writhing mass at the bottom of the tank. It was as though they were desperate for food though that wasn’t the case. It took me a minute to realise Big Al was not part of the action and was lying on the bottom at the far side watching the goings on. It looked from his slight movements as though he disapproved and was tut-tutting. He swam forward in a very deliberate manner and found a pellet that had drifted further than the rest and started eating. I could see there were no problems for me today so shut the flap and turned to get my meds.

I took my coffee back to my room and saw the small box on one side that is one of Mike’s gifts. Now he’s out of the way and not due back until possibly late Thursday I could wrap it and take it through to the lounge where the other gifts are. I also needed to stop avoiding wrapping the very big box that contains his dragon lamp. I decided I might as well do everything at once. Obviously for the box I needed to use a roll of paper since the individual sheets wouldn’t do. That means unrolling and cutting to size in an approximation of a straight line. I managed it without wrapping myself or covering myself in sellotape. I also wrapped a gift for one of my nieces by marriage and then realised that I wouldn’t be able to deliver hers or my brother in laws before Christmas. I hate that but the sleigh is out of commission at the moment. The rest of the gifts I took through to the lounge ready for Christmas day and boxing day.

That messing around had passed a fair bit of time. I’d win no prizes for speed, tidyness or even legible handwriting these days.I went back to refresh my screen and catch up on the emails again. I need to keep on top of them all day today.I took a few minutes to get washed and dressed even though there was no chance of the cleaner turning up now. Since no-one has phoned to say she’s been taken ill I can only imagine I’ve been abandoned now. I’ll have to start looking again in the new year. Once I was dressed though I decided to take some little gifts round to my neighbours. Some of them seemed to be out while others seemed anxious to chat. It isn’t that I don’t care, but I was freezing and the wind was quite bitter. I needed to get back home and get warm. Once back inside I carried on with the mail and before 11.00 am I was clear. I went to the lounge and turned the Christmas lights on and watched a film. To be more accurate I watched some of a film as I nodded off for half an hour and then had to go and start lunch. The film came to an end at 12.50 pm so I washed the pots and went back to work.

Things weren’t too bad by any means and there were still no spam messages, instead as I opened an email to see someone’s post I found myself mentioned and she had gifted me a new award. My friends are just so kind to me. I kept going steadily until 4.30 pm then went back to the lounge. None of my usual programmes were on TV but I found something to tide me over in the right spirit ie. Not a war film or a Cowboy. For tea I had some more rhubarb tart that Mike had forgotten while he was here ( so sorry bro’) and which because of that I obviously didn’t enjoy at all, cough. I decided to stay there until 8.00 pm and just catch up when I came through. When I finally made it back after studying my eyelids from the inside again until 8.45 pm there was a bit to catch up on. But, that seemed to be pretty much done by 11.00 pm. Anything else can wait till tomorrow.

Tuesday.

Sure enough, the anything else that can wait for tomorrow was waiting this morning when I got up. It proves there’s no such thing as an early night, just a lengthened next day. I got up at 5.08 this morning and as soon as I saw the emails waiting, I wished I’d just stayed in bed. It’s not that I’ve got any objection to work you understand, it’s just that if the guy on the late shift last night had done his job, my morning might be starting a bit better. I did have two ‘Your Natwest statement is ready’ which I could delete out of hand since I don’t have an account with them. Minutes later I also had a ‘Your Co-operative Bank statement is ready for viewing’ which went the same way for the same reason. Bear in mind that the odds are there ,spammers will strike lucky sometimes and get your bank right. If the message does not use your name then it’s fraudulent. If you have any doubts, then go into your bank account via your own links  and view any messages they have sent. Likelihood, they won’t have sent any. Bear in mind, Do not go into your account via any links in the email.

I had not caught up but seemed to come across a natural break when I could see four messages that could be deleted straight away. That was at 6.40 am. I decided to see to the fish and sort breakfast out early. As I turned the light on in the tank I could see all was not well. Everyone was congregating in one corner. Either Big Al had called a Union meeting again or they were at a carol concert. I noticed though that the air pump was pumping water into thin air as the water level had dropped without me realising how bad it was. I had to get the fish bucket and mix some ‘Water Safe’ with some fresh, slightly warm water, and top it up a bit. Once the flow of water was circulating into the tank from the pump the fish came over to play. A I opened the flap to feed them another snail came flying off the flap and caught the edge of my mouth, ugh, if my mouth had been open at that moment I could have been French. I moved away and went to get my meds.

I started with a pre-food tablet then moved onto my sprays then finally my main tablets. I got the five smaller ones in my mouth and took a drink of milk but couldn’t get the thought of the snail out of my head.  My throat constricted and I went into a gag reflex. The damned tablets were dissolving before I could force myself to swallow. I had to go through it again twice as I took the two large tablets. My throat was not co-operating. Eventually I was done. I lit a cigarette which is always the perfect timer for when to have food. As it came to an end I put two slices of bread in the toaster and put my cup in the machine and pressed for my drink. The toast and my coffee were ready together. After applying lashings of butter I ate my breakfast and took the two after food torpedoes with some coffee.

I took what remained of my drink back to my room and carried on working.It was 10.00 am before I saw daylight and another twenty minutes saw me virtually up to date. Going through to the lounge after I’d dropped my dirty mug off in the kitchen I sat in my chair and within moments my eyes were shut tight. Zzzzzzzzz. It was 11.10 am before I came to and none of the expected guilt was there. I turned the TV on to some innocuous Christmas film until it was time for lunch. Yet again it was pre-food tablet followed by smoking a timer then making lunch which was a bing meal, beef stew with dumplings. I washed up and at 1.00 pm nipped out to Pauline’s to deliver a card and to pick up cigarettes for myself and for Matt who would be here this evening. I returned home and went straight back to work and was up to date by 2.05 pm. My pop supplies having run out in the bedroom I went through to the kitchen and had a drink. I turned TV on again and came across the British version of Judge Judy. The judge was an odious little man who spread sarcasm with a broad knife. Trouble was it was fascinating. For some reason I glanced out of the window at 2.30 pm and saw Dil and Matt approaching. I thought I’d been to sleep and missed the afternoon but no, Dil had closed the firm at lunchtime and sent the staff home till January. He’d picked Matt up and come straight here for an early games night. While I made drinks Dil got caught up in the judge too and said it was terrible, but you had to see it out. TV stayed on until it finished at 2.00 pm.

We started with a game of Yahtzee which is six hands. I won just one. Things went rapidly downhill from there. Nomination- Dil won. Chase the Lady, Dil won. Cribbage, I won, YAY. Then Matt offered to teach me Poker (Texas hold ’em?). We all started off with plenty of money but all I could do was watch my ile dwindle and Dil’s get bigger until I was skint. We finished up with cribbage which I also managed to win after an early struggle. That brought us up to 9.20 pm and home time for the boys. We all wished each other a Happy Christmas and they left. I tidied up and went through to start work. I had to stop doing mail at 11.00 pm to deal with the blog so it looks like tomorrow’s mail is going to be bad. Oops.

R.I.P Joe Cocker.

Wednesday- Christmas Eve.

4.18 am Today. That’s a little over 3 hours again. I suspect Somnos has settled into a pattern now and may have give up the idea of me being Publicity Agent for the gods….though not for long probably. I don’t think gods are used to arguments and expect to get their own way. As any man with a sister is likely to tell you, it doesn’t work like that. We practice war from a very young age, especially if the sister is older. Maybe I didn’t win too often but I always fought a good fight. Getting up at that time didn’t seem too bad , as always it gave me chance to attack the mail which I did as soon as I came back from bladder duty. I’m in agony this morning though it actually started last night. Perhaps a reaction to losing at cards? It’s my right ankle. It’s swollen, red, the skin is very tight and the pain is continuous. It’s just below the pointy bit that sticks out on the outside of the foot that’s most tender. Very difficult to walk and I’m using my crutches indoors. It can’t be broken or a certain person in Australia has threatened not to forgive me and may not speak to me again. I think it’s gout, and before anyone asks, No, I haven’t been overindulging in port and stilton.

At 6.30 am I broke away from work to surprise the fish. That proved to be a flop as they obviously heard the crutches and the cursing as I walked to the kitchen that they were all lined up at the front of the tank like an audience. I dare say some of them enjoyed the spectacle of me walking like that but I noticed that Big Al wasn’t in the line up. Maybe he actually cared. I opened the food flap and found out how far that care went, Big Al had swum to the top which was very unusual. With just one flip of his tail he started downwards again, but that flip sent a spurt of water right into my glasses so I couldn’t see. I get the idea how the snails have been coming out like torpedoes now. I stood on my dignity, dropped some food in. lowered the flap and hopped away dejected.

I cleaned or rather wiped clean my glasses before taking my meds in case I took the wrong ones and sent myself loopy( who was that called ‘Short Journey then’?). I had a miniature packet of cornflakes and took my cuppa to start work again. It was heavy going still but by 9.15 am I was clear of the worst of it and able to get washed and dressed. At 10.15 am Yvonne sent me a text saying they were dropping in on someone and would come to me straight afterwards. She’d text again when they were leaving. I took the opportunity to refresh the screen, perform a silent scream and start reading again. The next text came at 10.40 am to say they were on their way. Since I hate shopping late and fear crowds I feared the worst. I managed to clear the work by 11.00 am, grabbed my coat, put my shoes on ( gently) grabbed some bags and went outside to wait. As I reached the end of the path they arrived. As we got to the first Supermarket we drew into a disabled bay. The car park was quite full but the shop wasn’t too bad at all. I got part of what I wanted but not all. Yvonne got most of what she wanted too and Reuben kept us entertained on the walk round with his antics. We headed off to the second Supermarket where again I got most of what I wanted but not all. I had to settle for what I could get. At the till a fight ensued between this woman and her aged father when he offered to pay for her shopping. The battle was short and sharp but I  he won.

Ugo had spent almost the entire time we were out on the phone to gas companies and debt collection agencies over a bill his mother had had, and paid. After 9 phone calls covering a lot of different people and companies he won the refund due and an apology. It was the first chance of a proper conversation with him and as usual it involved food. He said he’d take me anywhere to eat but after all the hassle and completely forgetting my frozen food, we settled on going to MuJo’s favourite Chippy. It was great as I was starving. Reuben just wanted a drink so his sausage and some fish from his dad just ended up decorating the floor. They always bring wet wipes so they can clean up after him. We went home and Yvonne helped me get my stuff inside. Ugo stayed in the car with Reuben as he was ready for a kip……Reuben was, not Ugo. I said my goodbyes and they left. I unpacked the shopping and put it away and then ploughed into my work as it was 2.30 pm. I got about half done when I realised how tired I was. Giving myself a break I parked myself in from of the TV with the original Scrooge. I couldn’t nod. This film just draws me in every time.

It was about 4.00 pm when there was a knock on the door. Scrooge was still on but I answered it anyway. It was Jonathan who you may remember from last year is a young man I used to work with. ( If not, why not, don’t you read the blog?). It may only be once a year but it’s ever a delight to see him. He told me he’s finished with college now and earned a First which is really no surprise. I remember him starting work at 18  and for some reason thought him about 25 now so it was a real shock to find out he’s now 32. Anyone about that age who’s after a non drinker, non smoker but who is the nicest of people, apply here. Not a bad bone in his body. He stayed until 8.00 pm at which time I had to rush back in here. Ouch, the mailbox was bowing under the weight. I haven’t left here since except to take meds at 10.00 pm. At this rate I’ll be up to chat with Santa while he has his mince pie………… if he’s coming of course.

Reuben settling down for Santa

Reuben settling down for Santa

Santa's gift for Reuben.

Santa’s gift for Reuben.

 

Thursday. Christmas Day.

I went to bed at 12.15 am and managed to read until 1.00 am. Matthew Shardlake, Lawyer is hot on the heels of a religious killer during the time of Henry VIII who has just proposed to Catherine Parr. Maybe the story was on my mind and I didn’t want to be the next target of this killer or maybe I was just excited about Christmas but the wake up today was at 2.34 am. The mince pie had gone from the plate but I’m sure I remember having it for supper.

For once the mail was laughable and I actually ended up hobbling down the passageway and looking for something on TV at 3.45 am. I even stayed there until 5.00 am then went to see if there was more mail. There was but it looks like most people are enjoying the break and the incoming is sporadic. At 6.00 am I went to give the fish an early morning wake-up and catch them unawares. I put two of the larger tablets in so there would be plenty for all, as well as a little flake for Morecambe and Wise who despite appearances are only supposed to eat that. Nobody bothered me and I was able to get on with my meds and making a coffee without problems. I manoeuvred  my crutches using an elbow on one to carry my coffee through to the lounge. I wasn’t going to try and reach the bedroom with it. The foot has swollen more and even my slipper feels tight now. I nodded off in my chair until 8.40 am, dropped my cup in the washing bowl then headed back to work. There was still very little to do. Since I’d be on my own I saw no point in getting dressed. It would be very uncomfortable.

At 9.30 am I’d been patient long enough and went through to open my Christmas presents. All kinds of beautiful things. A book from a friend in Germany, a mind puzzle from ‘young’ Jonathan, scarf and my special biscuits from my friend Lis, a card shuffler and some special chocolate from Dil and family, some really special and unusual chocolate from Lee and Jen. My nephew David and family sent hair products and a photograph of their daughter. MuJo sent a book on collectible watches, a beautiful candle stand and a dragon wine bottle rest. I’ve been thoroughly spoiled and have to go through it again tomorrow with Yvonne and my nieces. I spent the morning between the bedroom and the lounge trying to work and trying to rest. Relief was hard to find. I had a ‘bing’ roast beef dinner at lunchtime which wasn’t too bad. Early in the afternoon Mike sent me a text to say he was going to Manchester to take his Dad for an x-ray because he’s hurt his wrist in a fall. It could be very late tonight before he’s here. That’s OK but a shame about his Christmas dinner.

At about 4.00 pm I had another text to say he’s on his way here. It took him just an hour from Manchester. The wrist was bruised but not broken and his Dad was OK. We sat and exchanged gifts, I received some wonderful old money in notes which were wonderful. I also got some cigarettes which will prove very useful, a fantastic cardigan and a silver broach with the Welsh Dragon on it. Mike seemed equally happy with his stocking giifts and his dragon lamp as well as his Welsh Gold ring of the Prince of Wales feathers. He lived so long in Wales, he talks of it as home and is an honorary Welshman. I felt very guilty that I couldn’t make his dinner but I did have all the makings and stood in thee kitchen with him while he made it. I had a couple of very small pork pies for my tea at the same time. Afterwards Mike did the washing up and let me catch up on emails before joining him again in the lounge. Getting between the two rooms is hell and I stumbled against the alarm, the sound catching Mike unawares. He helped me up  and Mike had to explain what had happened when they answered it.

Once I’d caught up again which took half an hour we sat and watched TV together. He set a stool and cushion for me to place my leg on and to be honest it did help….. at least until I moved. At 10.00 pm I left him watching an old b & w movie, The Lady Vanishes ,as I came and caught up again and also did the blog. Let’s see what tomorrow brings with the foot and whether or not I can get it into a shoe.

I’m not a religious person but that doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate a good song. After all, they say the Devil writes the best tunes. Anyway this seems to fit the bill for being appropriate for the day and also to allow the golden tonsils of Harry Belafonte to let rip.

Friday. Boxing Day.

It’s a 4.34 am day which I didn’t think was too bad despite having not turned my light off until 1.00 am. When I swung myself out of bed the pain in my ankle wasn’t as bad and testing my foot gingerly on the floor it seemed I might be able to put a bit of weight on it. I shuffled to the loo and shuffled back again. It hurt but it could be done. Once back the computer went on and I dealt with my emails.2 cons this morning both claiming to be from my phone/isp provider and both saying they’d had a problem with my payment his months. Even though I knew that couldn’t be true as I pay by direct debit, the fact I wasn’t named would have been warning enough.

By 6.10 am I was up to date and I went through to feed the fish. Today it was Big Al waiting at the drop off point. Because it was the small pellets he didn’t seem to know what to grab first. Both Morecambe and Wise came to the bottom again and it was odd to see Wise swimming about with a pellet stuck in her mouth while Big Al was still scrabbling to find the now settled pieces. I left him to it and went to take my meds. Sprays first and then the morning tablets. Next I took a pre-food tablet and went through to get my meds draw to renew the week’s supply in the case. Once I’d done that I was able to have some breakfast- cereal today- and take the post-food tablets. I went back to work for a while.

At 8.00 am Mike’s alarm went off so I knew he wanted to go out. I shuffled to the kitchen and made a drink which I took through to him. I told him it was there and he acknowledged me in his own way.”Uh, yes, OK”. As expected I was there again at 8.15 am. A little louder I told him not to forget his coffee. “YessorryOK, I’m having trouble with Shirley being drunk” he told me. “Wuh” I replied, “which Shirley?” “You know” he said pausing, “that one.” None the wiser I packed in asking. At 8.30 am I was just about to go through and say Shirley was waiting with a coffee when I heard him get up. Fair play he made up for the reluctance to leave his bed by really getting a move on and we ended up being ready to leave at 9.00 am. He brought the car up towards the door and we loaded in all the sacks of gifts. We were at the ASDA sale by 9.30 am. It would be fair to say that  compared to the web site I was very disappointed. There were Christmas jumpers and cardies for men at good prices but very few shirts and not one pair of jeans or chinos. I managed to get a bargain with some bedding but that was it. The only other thing I bought were some gift boxes which are always useful. Mike had a look to see if he could find a clothes steamer but had no luck. We went to a self service pay point and coughed up for the goods then went towards the cafe. The queue there was longer than at the sales so we had to bypass it and head for the car.

It was raining outside and Mike made some comment about snow being due soon. I said yes, they’d predicted it for today but they’ve been wrong every other time. We got in the car and Mike decided to break the no smoking rule this time. As he headed out of the car park I sent Yvonne a text saying we’d be there in half an hour and to get the kettle on. She texted back she would. When we finally got there, Ugo and Reuben were just arriving home from the shops and my two nieces were parking up. We had so much stuff we parked on the pavement to unload then Mike went to find a parking space. Jo put the bags for her boyfriend Mike, who wasn’t joining us, and my brother in law whose gifts she was delivering on the way home straight into her car. Reuben was in his Dad’s arms smiling and pointing at me, or laughing at me, I’m not sure yet. We went inside and found Yvonne hard at work in the kitchen. Jo made Mike and I a cup of coffee. The lounge seemed the best place to sit so we all congregated in there as soon as Yvonne put the bread in the oven. Since it was still so early we decided to open gifts. As I’d got there I’d given Reuben a little barrel in which was a toy.  It turned out to be a Dragon in 3 pieces which brought it up to a nice size. When it came to opening prezzies we decided to start with him. He tugged at the paper on the first couple and then plonked his botton down in the chair Karen and Jo had bought him and played with the dragon. No sign of interest in anything else.

Everyone else took their turns more or less and we were all thrilled with our gifts. I got some blue desert boots, a Welsh Dragon onesie a lovely jumper and so much more. There was so much stuff Mike had to go and load the bags back into the car to give us room. When he came back we all went through to eat. Loading up at the buffet and then to out assigned places in the dining room. Reuben had gone ( been taken) upstairs for a nap. The food was lovely and very plentiful but I paced myself to make sure I’d have room at the end. Some silly things happened before that point like Jo asked if she could have some beetroot jelly followed by Mike asking her if he could have it after her. Ridiculous, like I’m ever going to share it and if I did, like Jo would have any left. They were so sulky I actually left a spot at the bottom of the bowl and got a fresh one. I had trifle to follow.

Afterwards I stepped out for a cigarette before going to have a game Yvonne had bought me which she said she’d heard good things about. The gift tag to me had read for nasty people to play so I was able to make her feel guilty. Well, the room got very warm. One person ‘A Tsar’ asks a question and everyone else put’s in a car from a selection they draw which gives a funny response to the question. Some of the answers were downright dirty, not just near the knuckle but actually perched on it. Everyone else took pleasure in saying “You never bought THIS game for your Dad”? She carried a permanent blush and kept trying to stutter an excuse about not knowing. Eventually we had to declare Karen the runaway winner. It was time to pack up and take our leave. I had work to do and I wanted a shower Reuben was back downstairs by this time and was falling all over my bad foot. I sounded like a timber wolf howling. He was as good as gold at waving goodbye tonight.

We hadn’t got very far into the journey when the rain changed to snow. Great big flakes that were sticking. The speed of all the traffic went right down and Mike’s BP went right up. We got home safely eventually but it was getting thicker. We were glad to get all the stuff indoors again. I worked from a while then had a shower about 6.00 pm. watched TV with Mike till 7.00 pm then came back to work. There wasn’t much chance of catching up but I needed to do the best I could. I needed another break about 10.00 pm so went back through till 11.00 pm then came to do the blog before going back for a last go at the mail.

Present Opening

Present Opening

On Train.

 

 

Saturday.

After finishing the blog last night I headed back through to talktalk to have another go at emails only to find the site down for updates. Because of that I let out a silent cheer and went to gmail where I deleted most things to deal with wen talktalk is back, and concentrated on the items which come through to gmail alone. I was finished there by 11.30 pm and settled on an early night. First I had to find my bed under the layer of bags containing presents from the last two days. That was no fun, storage being at a premium unless I start filling the loft again. I got to bed at 11.45 pm and read until 12.15 am. Out went my light. Out went I as soon as I found a comfortable spot for my foot.Heaven forfend I find my night disturbed, yet t’was so. I don’t know how far into sleep I was before I was made to travel. I found myself in a field of green with stone walls criss-crossing it. Perched on one wall was a large almost man-sized figure with what appeared to be an adult look. It took me a moment or two to recognise Somnos. He greeted me with a nod. “Well met” he said.                                                                                                                                                            “Hello Somnos” said I, always ready with the witty retort, ” where’s your compadre Porcinus?” I asked.                                                                                                                             “Alas he is diminished at the moment” he answered, “but belief in me grows and I age and grow accordingly, I suppose I have you to thank for that.”  Not wishing to accept I’d played a part in his creation or growth I changed the subject. “What brings you here now, or perhaps I should ask what brings me here now since it seems I’m the one to travel?” I asked.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   ” I really must have an answer to my question about you becoming my our publicist. I acknowledge you’ve made a fine start with me but I require that someone promote belief in my brother Porcinus and in my other brother Jake.I require their assistance.”                                                                                                                                                                                               ” Wow , what a pantheon ” I said. “Somnos, Porcinus and Jake. OK ” said I growing weary, “I accept, but you must leave me to do it in my own way and my own time.” At that point I felt the flight of my return to bed and the reality of snow outside my door. I slept. I woke, it was 4.18 am Hours later writing this blog I am forced to say there are three gods by name of Somnos, Porcinus ( of the pigs and goats) and My Brother Jake of who knows what. I have fulfilled my part of the bargain and hope to be left alone now.

I woke at 4.18 am and paid my first visit of the day to the loo. Then I logged on to the computer and found that talktalk is still down for maintenance and nothing fresh has been able to hit my gmail account because of this. Even an early start doesn’t help me keep up to date it seems. I spent until about 6.45 am playing on Ancestry.co.uk updating ‘hints’ on some very obscure relatives. I’m sure there was Count Vald the Implier in Transylvania who went round dropping vague hints about people all the time. Strange people. Actually I was getting hints about Ju’s family after heaven knows how many years. I have two separate trees for us and when it sends me a hint it tells me it’s from me but a different me????????? Not that I wouldn’t be different if I could of course. I went through and took my meds and then made myself a coffee.  I also boiled the kettle up in case Mike had decided to put his alarm on with the intent of going out. I turned round to get his mug ready and realised I hadn’t done he light in the tank. I qulickly corrected that mistake with loads of apologies though I didn’t once face the tank while I made them and gave nothing to eat. I picked up Mike’s mug and turned back to the kettle.

Just then the alarm rang which coincided nicely with the kettle boiling. I made a drink and took it through. “Coffee’s here bro” I called, expecting the usual grunt.      “Is the weather fit for going out ?” I heard and looked round to see who’d spoken. I confirmed the snow had been driven back and that though it was in fact wet outside, shopping could still go ahead as planned. I went to start getting dressed, Mike went back to sleep. Ten minutes later the alarm repeated. I can’t repeat what I heard but he got up. Needless to say it was not a usual morning and by the time he’d grunted, farted ( ‘scuse my bum), coughed and drunk his coffee then finally got dressed it was nigh on 8.30 am. As i didn’t want much in the way of food due to the skint diet we weren’t going to our usual supermarket but heading for Broughton Park so we could look for a clothes steamer and a 10″ tablet for him. We made our way there withnthe rain and sleet beating down on us but still made good time as the roads were relatively quiet. We parked outside Tesco’d and went upstairs to look at the gents clothing sale ( one waistcoat in the whole lot and it wouldn’t close round one of my thighs) then went for coffee. You have to start an outing off right don’t you.

We went downstairs and shopped for the little food on my list then as Mike took the bags to the car I had a cigarette outside. Next door is a British Home Stores where I used to be able to use a store card from another shop. After hearing the card backers wouldn’t be running the cards again late last year and I didn’t believe a big group would do without a store card I thought I’d better ask. No problem I was told so I picked a few thing out I wanted including a clothes steamer and took them to the counter. The card was rejected 3 times. So embarrassing. Mike said leave the stuff and come away but I couldn’t do that and paid cash instead. Next move was to take a walk round the complex to the shop whose card it is to ask questions where I find the card has been replaced by a credit card based on the group. Very annoying, but I signed up for it. It was granted straight away by their backers over the phone. Since coming away from their I’ve decided I probably won’t use it and will just pay the little I owe on the existing store card and forget them. We walked a little further and went round another store where we had our next coffee and thn on to a last store where I wasn’t impressed with their sale prices at all. £11 for a box of chocolates that contained 8.

On the way  home we stopped for lunch as it was getting on for 2.00 pm and I was overdue on the tablets. I had quite a nice roast beef dinner while Mike had lamb. On the way out my crutches slid on some of the snow still hanging about and I jarred my groin trying to keep my balance. I must have made an Oops sound because Mike turned round and grasped one of my arms pulling me upright. He was trying to tell me to get my eight on my left leg but was laughing too much. He hoped maybe I could repeat it with him looking this time. Instead I just made my way to the car walking like John Wayne, one strained groin and one ‘gouted’ ankle.       Then to home where we unpacked and while Mike did Ju’s flowers I came to work. There was a lot since I had to do everything I’d missed since last night but at least I was back up again. I worked from 3.00 pm until almost 6.00 pm hen I needed a break and Mike needed annoying company.  We watched the box until 7.00 pm then made some tea. At 7.30 pm I returned to work while Mike kindly washed the pots. By 9.00 pm I was up to date ( without refreshing) and went to watch a bit of The Hunger Games in case I ever have to compete. By 10.30 pm much as I wanted to stay I knew I needed to keep on top of the post and also deal with the blog.

New Driver

New Driver

 

 

Trio of Foodies.

Trio of Foodies.

 

May I take this chance to thank you all for your help in the last year and for all your kindnesses. I hope you all have Fantastic starts to the New Year and only go upwards from there. I consider myself honoured to know you and count many of you as friends.

 

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