I went to bed at about 1.00 am last night and though I’m sure I didn’t sleep well all the time and was quite restless, I was still rather surprised to wake up in my chair this morning in the lounge. Not having my glow in the dark, light the room up clock I had to turn the light on to find out the time. 5.20 am. It’s OK, I’m not on holiday, it was just a Sunday treat. Though I was near the kitchen and the fish I decided to leave them and my coffee till later and just concentrate on messages for now. There was no rush as Mike wouldn’t have set his alarm. Ha, if it went off on a Sunday he’d probably blame me and crown me with it. Er, just forget I mentioned that please in case he gets bright ideas.
There was as usual a fair bit of post, but as I was in no rush I took my time and wrote slowly for anyone who read slowly. I broke off at 7.00 am to feed the fish and found Big Al’s behind banner is getting longer. I think when it gets to a certain length he’ll use it to do like sky writing to me. ‘Fair Play for Corys’ or something. I’ll leave the something to your imaginations which judging by your blogs lack all sorts of boundaries. I gave as near as I could get to a look of contempt which probably meant a sickly grin and turned away. I saw to my meds and made a coffee to take back with me, painkillers at the ready. A few of the messages were responses to last night’s blog. Thank you to everyone who commented, your cheques would have been in the post but I sealed the envelopes before I remembered. Double up next month? I remind everyone that if there’s any music you want to see in the blog just let me know. ( Don’t seal your envelope before including the cheque ). It’s actually funny when someone tells me they remember so and so coming out and I realise it was in the 60’s and I thought they are about 30 years old.
There were no stupid messages today for a change. Perhaps the crooks are on strike for shorter hours. I was down to my last dozen or so messages at about 9.15 am when I heard Mike get up. I did first go to check it wasn’t late burglars, but no , amazingly it was him. The sarcasm was dripping ever so slightly from my chin when I said “I didn’t expect to see you up at this time.” I got a different response to the one expected “Yes, I’m not usually up before half past eight am I”? Had I been drinking coffee at that point I’d have choked. (Sorry no, I’d left it in my bedroom). “Half past ten you mean though it’s currently only half past nine.” He looked a little befuddled and I almost felt guilty about the sarcasm. Almost but not quite. I made a coffee and then left him while I came to finish the mail. Before I’d done he’s come too and realising what I’d said had come through and clipped me round the ear. Talking about something on screen I’d made a comment about not wanting to look the fool. “Better steer clear of mirrors then” he told me. I’m not the only one who uses a tissue to wipe my lips, where sarcasm is concerned he needs a bib.
Time moved on and he stayed to look at a couple of things on screen with me. That’s how I get so far behind. He suggested we go to the old Sunday Market ground to see what’s going on there as we see a few cars there when we pass by on a Sunday morning. We both got ready and left about 11.15 am intending to carry straight on to lunch afterwards. As we pulled into the car park of the market we could see it was in a bad way but there seemed to be a couple of stalls at least. It was once a vibrant market with a variety of stalls including a very large clothing section from a major clothing store . As we got closer it was obvious the first couple of stalls we’d seen were of the car boot variety with mainly second hand books. Oddly enough there was a fast food stall doing a good trade and a meat trader selling joints, chops etc. We moved round the back and found a stall doing composite/concrete figures for the garden which were quite good, a pet food stall and a cheap tools stall. Then an Everything £1 stall, one selling a small quantity of cushions and pillows, a stall with a few nice figures but many more awful ones and then a great big and very good plant/fruit/veg stall. I wasn’t tempted. We’d spent some time walking round so it was now 11.45 am and time to head for lunch. I’d remembered to put chocolates in the car. When we arrived there it looked fairly quiet. Tariq was serving someone at the counter so we waited until he was free before saying hello. He came for the hugs so didn’t disappoint though young Rob who came through a few minutes later still needs training up . We knew Angie was off today as it had been her Silver Wedding Anniversary yesterday and there had been some celebration. That was also apparent by the absence of Shella at that point so she wasn’t doing the cooking.
Tariq made the drinks for us then left to go to the kitchen. Rob stayed out making drinks for new customers. He’s a pleasant enough lad to talk to but seems to lack a little confidence unless it’s just Mike being overpowering as it’s not possible I could be. Tariq came and took the orders and I settled on BLT’s for a change you understand. A double round with a small bucket of chips to share with my bro. After we’d eaten we relaxed with our drinks ( non-alcoholic since neither of us drink and Tariq doesn’t sell booze). Tariq came over when he could but it became busy so I paid and we put our coats on to go. We both waved at the counter as we left and we were halfway down the front of the building when with a rush of footsteps Tariq appeared for a goodbye hug. I’m changing the world for the better one person at a time. Mike dropped me off at home, picked up his suitcase and left. I went straight into catch-up mode and kept going until 5.30 pm when it was time for a sandwich and a break. I watched a reasonable film until 7.00 pm then came back through. I’ve been here ever since and it’s now 11.00 pm.
4.41 am this morning. It feels quite crisp out there but I’m putting it away in case it snaps off. I turned the light on in the bathroom so I could check the angle of the dangle was correct before releasing fuel. Of course when I turned the light off as I came out again my eyes took a moment to adjust to the dark and I stubbed my left foot little toe on the leg of the console table in the hall. It was no fun trying to hop and curse all the way to my bedroom to turn the light on. To be honest my biggest fear was that I might have disturbed the broadband router which likes to go down if you just look at it sideways. I signed into the computer and all was well. Feeling very sorry for myself and my poor tootsie, I logged into my emails and started work.
Last night a dear friend and great writer from the U.S. called SJ.Sprague ( http://goo.gl/DoJf9H ) told me of a friend in trouble. It seems a public water main in the street had burst and not only flooded her back yard but also put 5 ft of water in her basement which ruined the heating system completely.
The job won’t be cheap and as she helps run a pet rescue centre it’s going to be very difficult for her to bear. What made the story more ludicrous for me is that the Water Department say they can’t be sued (Why not?), the City say they are exempt from being sued (How?) and her own insurance company won’t pay because the water constitutes a Flood and not an accidental release of water???? As the American’s say “What a crock” and rightly so. I’d suggest that unless they have something written into the policy that denies liability for this kind of damage specifically then they have a liability. And for people/organisations to have an exemption from being sued is patently ridiculous as that gives them cart blanche to always cut corners, use inferior materials and build shoddily knowing they can’t be touched. Who’s going to stand for that?
The last thing that made me grit my teeth a bit was the press. Two newspapers had given this some coverage, but the local paper refused to. Why? Are they afraid of upsetting City Hall or something. One of the stories is here http://digital.olivesoftware.com/Olive/ODE/CoastalJournal/ … and there has been a GoFundme account set up if anyone can offer a little help. If that happens to be you and there’s a spare £ or $ this month, please go to gofundme.com/esgczo I know many are feeling the pinch these days but with Winter almost upon us no-one wants to be without heat. (Blogged on Monday 13 th October 2014)
At 7.00 am I went through to the kitchen. It was getting lighter but I still needed the light on. When I approached the tank to feed the fish I could see Big Al in the front corner and not moving at all. I was fully ready to accept I’ve lost him until I saw a twitch.There was no sign of the plecs until I noticed that Al was actually lying on top of one of them. I’m now very worried. Is this a case of bullying, a case of lousy eyesight or has something untoward been going on so that I may find myself with a whole new species swimming round the tank at some stage? A colec maybe? I took my morning drugs and made a coffee to bring back to work.I worked steadily as I felt under no pressure but at 8.00 am got dressed as I didn’t want to be thought as inviting a woman into the house while I wasn’t dressed decently. See, I managed to avoid all jokes about opening the door in my dressing gown this time. My cleaner was due at 8.30 but she was 10 minutes late, I’m sure she’ll adjust to find the right walking time soon. Using the Stutter and Nod method of communication I managed to convey that the large bedroom, the hall and the bathroom would be the targets today.It was a bit of a surprise to find the lounge being hoovered but as long as the other jobs were done. I went out to deliver my prescription request while she was here which was good and I did manage to get a fair amount of work done. I filled the mop bucket so the bathroom floor could be done as I know it’s heavy having to lift it out of the sink in the kitchen. She left ten minutes late which was good and the work all seemed to have been done though there were things left on Mike’s bed that had come off the floor that maybe I should send up to the loft now. I didn’t feel up to it today though.
The postman came and brought screen protectors for my tablet and also a copper magnetic bracelet for Muriel’s birthday. That brought me up to date ( until I selfishly won a waistcoat tonight). I worked until 11.40 am and then went to prepare some lunch. Braised steak with herby baby potatoes today which I ate watching my Antiques programme No 1. After I’d washed up I sat with a drink for a few mins and nodded off for 30 of them. Back into battle then for the afternoon finally cooling the keyboard at 4.15 pm so I could go for Antiques programme No 2 followed by No 3, Eggheads, Big Bang Theory and finally No 4. I have to confess that it was a real fight to stay awake the whole time. At 8.00 pm it was time to come back through and hit the accumulation of the last nearly four hours skive. Amazingly I’ve done very well and it’s only 10.30 pm with not much post waiting (for now). I may have an early night before my outing tomorrow.
Being a long time favourite of the small gods ( I sometimes get invited to staff parties, don’t go if Belch and Fart are there at the same time) I got two chances at a good morning today. The first was at 2.17 am when I decided one of them was playing a joke on me so I had a cigarette and went back to sleep. The second was at a more reasonable 4.12 am though I still think Impractical Joker needs a humour transplant. After ridding myself of a small lake it was time to start on the emails so I was clear for going out. I see one or two that start We’ve noticed an error on your account with………bank which only makes me think that the small gods have progressed to the digital age now. At 6.00 am I went to feed the fish and found Big Al almost in the same place he was yesterday though not quite in the same position since the plec is no longer underneath him. He turned almost 45 degrees when I placed food in the tank and offered me a lazy eye, he looked up but decided I wasn’t worth looking down. When I said “Love you little fishy” he got a startled look and darted behind some weed. By the time I’d taken my meds and made a coffee it was fay approaching 6.30 am so I got washed and dressed ready for the off.
By 7.15 am my email box was empty, apart from not having been refreshed since I got up, but having cleared 70+ emails was pretty good I thought. At 7.30am I made my way over to the bus stop and the bus wasn’t far behind me. The journey was a reasonable one without incident and despite some heavy traffic on the last stage we still drew into my bus stop at 8.45 am. No sign of Yvonne and Reuben so I lit a cigarette and stood out of the way to wait. I almost wet myself when she appeared from behind me having been into a shop already. Since it was a branch of Boots the Chemist I looked after baby and sent her back in to get me some tablets for my toothache. Reuben was full of smiles for me and was very talkative. Shame it didn’t make any sense or it might have been an enlightening conversation. I asked him to say Mummy which he did but he wasn’t having anything to do with saying Pops.
When Yvonne came out we crossed the road to our first shop where we intended to have a coffee but also to get Yvonne a pair of boots for Christmas. I needed a couple of small items too. We had drinks with toast and jam and Yvonne fed Reuben some Weetabix too. We got what was needed there and headed off to our next shop which was for me to get some bread, after which, despite it being a bit cool we took Reuben to the playground for a go on the swings and the slide. At first I stood outside and had a smoke but was soon co-opted into being a swing pusher. He’s a fearless little beggar. We called into a new shop and picked up a few items including a shoe horn/ backscratcher for me where the hand was almost human sized. We saw a few things in different shops Yvonne liked but I was offered a flat NO whenever I suggested she pick one up as a treat. We decided to go for a drink to sort the bags out but our usual place was packed. Instead we found a Cafe Nero with some outside seating and settled there. While Yvonne went in Reuben sat on my knee but the moment she was out of sight he was down on the ground. Everything had to be investigated and questioned with an Uh? He was walking aroung so well I had to keep an eye in case he disappeared. When we stopped for the toast earlier he’d attached himself to an elderly lady who was returning to Canada today. He grabbed he hand and walked her round the cafe. I could see he was quite content to go with her. One minute of not watching carefully and we’d have been getting postcards with pictures of Mounties till he was 18. One other surprise while sitting there was someone appearing in my peripheral vision and asking how I was. I turned with dread but found myself looking at an old friend from work. One of only two who’d visited me during my illness. I was even able to talk to her though a little haltingly. After she’d gone I felt really happy that someone had remembered me with some affection and stopped.
Once we finished at the cafe they walked me to the bus station. I needed the loo but we noticed the bust had arrived. I thought I’d take a chance so leaving my bags with them I darted off. As I reached the loo a voice said “Let me get the door” and it swung open for me. I turned to say thanks and there was my bus driver so I knew I was OK. No tears today, I felt quite grown up. Reuben was waving to me continually as I got on the bus and sat down. The journey wasn’t bad again and I got home a little after 2.00 pm. Straight into battle as I found over 180 messages. At 4.30 pm I went to watch my programme but fell asleep before the end and missed the next one too. Time for some tea so I had some soup with some bread and butter. No extra programmes tonight so at 6.30 pm I came back through and have tried to whittle the post down as much as possible. I’ve had a text from MuJo saying they’ll be coming tomorrow if that’s OK so I said “Great”.( I added a thought to myself that it would be great if I ever got the post finished).
This was a 3.55 am day. By the time the post was finished and I’d had a short read in bed it was 1.00 am.When I got up this morning the mail was horrendous and I knew I’d be chasing my tail all day. I started work as soon as the bladder was registering empty again. Tough there was only one stupid mail from yet another ‘bank’ telling me my non-existent account was in trouble there was plenty to occupy my time. My son in law has a friend who is an employment expert and who has created a statement intended to guide people towards employment. It was sent to me in the hopes I had contacts to publish such a piece. I had to read it of course which took me ages. I know of no-one who could actually publish it except for interested news publications but I have no contacts there. I suggested press releases or if he’s permit, perhaps I could blog the message in the hopes it would help someone suffering unemployment within the ranks of my followers and who would perhaps re-blog it letting it spread to help as many as possible. I’m waiting to hear back from them.
I fed Big Al and his compadres at 7.00 am. No reaction from any of them. I wonder if Al is not well, I’m not prepared to believe he’s suddenly ‘Chilled’ and become relaxed towards me. I continued with my usual routine, meds and coffee. Since I couldn’t face breakfast I took my drink straight back to my room. I continued working until 8.00 am then decided I’d better get washed and dressed ready for the visitors. Though I was hard at it again by 9.00 am, I seemed to have made little headway. At 10.10 am the postman called and I was in the process of reading the garbage he’d brought when the door opened and MuJo arrived. Work had to cease. I made drinks and we sat talking about how things had been since we last saw each other. They were both delighted with their gifts, John a case for his ASUS tablet and Muriel a herb cutter and chopping board.
I showed John a couple of watches on ebay as they were looking for two for their grandsons. Unfortunately there was only one of the specific one they wanted. At 11.30 am we left to go for lunch at their now favourite cafe in town, The Bells. I settled on a roast beef dinner and to be fair it wasn’t bad at all today. Maybe I need to revise my opinion a bit of that place. After lunch we left and went for a short walk up the High Street so John could visit his beloved charity shops. Much to Mu’s chagrin he actually found and bought a plate he liked. We got back in the car and headed for Flint.
I persuaded them to shop first and coffee second so that I could buy some chocolates to take in for the girls. It was quite a successful shop as I was able to pick up a cardigan and a jumper to go with the jeggings I’d bought for Mu’s birthday. Coffee next and since MuJo insisted on paying today since I’d got lunch, I didn’t get to talk to the girls other than a quick Hello, how are you? when I passed the chocs over. When we’d finished there we got in the car to come home. Mu dashed off to pick up a lottery ticket while John and I came inside. I found a not to say there’s been a delivery and it had been left in the cupboard. I wasn’t expecting anything today and it turned out to be for Mike anyway so I’ve left it on his bed. Mujo left at about 4.30 pm so I quickly got changed into something more casual and readied myself for the next influx of visitors, the cardsharps. Lee and Matt were a bit later than usual appearing at 5.45 pm. I made drinks and then set up the card table and tonight’s games. I’d just sat down when Dil told me he’s seen Lee approaching past the window. I got another drink, and we settled to play Yahtzee first. We had six games of which I won two, Dil two and the others one each. It had taken quite a while because of the nattering while we played so that when it came to Nomination Whist we started quite late. I don’t know how I managed to win that as I had a really bad start, not winning any of my calls, but I did win and bad sports that they are all I got was yah, boo, sucks from the others. I suppose the fact that I was crowing may have had a little to do with that though.
Everyone left at 9.30 pm and I spent some time tidying up and getting pots washed. Since I’d only eaten once today and therefore only taken one set of tabs I made myself some sandwiches for supper and caught up. Once that was cleared and I’d had my night meds it was time to face the music again. I checked ebay first and found I’d missed a couple of things I’d forgotten about. Then on to the post. I had to pick myself up from the floor. Over 200 sitting in my inbox. I had to stop working on them at midnight in order to see to this post so tomorrow will be no fun.
A late night last night so it was a 5.33 am start today. I was still working on yesterday’s post first thing but once I reached the end at about 6.15 am I went through to the kitchen before starting on today’s. I switched on the light and glanced over at the tank. Big Al was in his corner. I put the tank light on expecting some movement but there was nothing. Even when I opened the slot and put food in he didn’t move. I’m more convinced than ever that his time is coming to an end. The plecs seem totally unconcerned and like placid cattle just eat their way through any algae on the glass. They’re real grazers and nothing seems to flummox them. I’ll keep an eye on Big Al but there’s nothing I can do for te malady of old age.
Once I’d taken my meds and made a coffee I went back to my bedroom to start work again. I’m getting a lot of messages from the postmaster saying a message couldn’t be delivered, messages that I’ve never sent to people I’ve never heard of. My nephew says it may be an attempt to get me to open one of these posts to let a spammer in so I’m making sure I just delete them as I find them. There were two messages from Building Societies to inform me of problems on accounts I still don’t have and a message from someone who suggests I look and see just what they know is coming my way. I wonder whether they saw what was coming their way as I didn’t even open it. The rest of the mail was the usual joy to deal with, just plenty of it. At 9.30 am I got washed and dressed and walked round to Pauline’s for my lottery tickets, a magazine and some bread. I also picked up enough cigarettes to last me until shopping on Saturday. On my way back I bumped into the postman coming out of Bert’s. “You could have been a minute sooner and saved my ink ” he told me, turning round again and picking up a package he’d just left there for me. I thanked him and came indoors to find another smaller letter box sized packet on the floor. Woo Hoo, the shopping has started in earnest now. Some more tomorrow I hope.
I re-started work and stayed with it until lunchtime when I made myself some sweet potato mash to have alongside a lamb shank with peas and carrots. As usual I put the TV on and watched while I ate. After I’d washed up I sat don to complete the programme and didn’t quite make it. I slept from just before 1.00 pm an 1.45 pm then woke up with no idea where I was. Back in the bedroom I refreshed the post and played catch up until the boxes were empty at 4.15 pm. With a sigh of relief I went and made myself some tea and sat down to wait for my antiques show No 2. I stayed in the lounge until 6.30 pm before coming back through to look at a message on my phone. “On way” it said. I allowed 3 hours for the journey and piled into the new post.
Mike appeared at 9.00 pm which means he used the new route his son showed him or he drove at 100 mph all the way and can expect a ticket next week. I stopped what I was doing and went to make a coffee for him. He turned the TV on to a programme about ow the West was really won with all the hardships on the wagon trains. the sod houses, the slaughter of 31 million buffalo and the short time span of the actual cowboy era. Like the Native Americans I couldn’t believe the numbers of buffalo that were killed. I’m not even sure of that vast number because I heard them say the herds were estimated at approx 60 million but at the end there were about 1000 left. All because of a need for leather. Tragic.
At 10.00 pm I cam back through and left him to his programmes so I could catch up and do the blog before bedtime. It’s hard going.
1.00 am turn off the light for sleep. 3.07 am turn on the light as awake again. I don’t know whether it’s because I’ve been dreaming that I’m awake or not but for once I remember some of it. I was driving in New Jersey or maybe it was Noo Joizy I’m not sure. I was a little surprised to be driving anywhere since I can’t drive and have no license. Anyhoo, a car as long as my street pulled out from a side road and hit my rear end, or more specifically that of the car. It was a very minor bump and only damaged a tail light as I found when I pulled in and stopped. The other vehicle was so long it took half an hour to come to a stop, pulled up behind me. Out of the front stepped a man who made Godzilla look small and I swear the ground vibrated as he walked over to me. He had a very pronounced forehead that spoke of living in caves and a very long jaw. I don’t know what I was expecting as I rolled my window down but it certainly wasn’t ” I say, we appear to have done your vehicle a little damage. My Consiglieri and I are most distressed and wanted to ascertain if you yourself are unhurt.” I assured him I was fine and he asked at that point iof it was possible the damage could be dealt with by cash rather than through our respective Insurance companies. Since I was fairly sure I had no insurance I said that would be fine at which point he took out a wad of cash thick enough to choke a horse and handed me £25,000. ( Hey, don’t blame me, I didn’t write the script so don’t expect it to make sense. He execute a perfect half bow then turned and left. Reaching his car, he walked for half an hour until he reached the rear passenger side window and leaned in and spoke for a moment. Then walking round to the driver’s side of the car he opened the door and pulled out the driver and shot him twice. He climbed into the car and drove away leaving the driver on the sidewalk.( I was born for jargon like this). I dashed over to see if there was anything I could do but I could tell he was fading fast. I leaned in when I heard him try to speak. “Sorry about your car,” he said “you can get a good deal at Angelo’s on the next block, tell him Mario sent you” then he died. I woke up at that point and don’t know if the car ever got fixed.
My day didn’t start improving at that point either because when I logged into my mailbox I had an ‘Oops’ message to say unfortunately due to a problem it wasn’t available, try again later. I’m not sure an ‘Oops’ message is quite appropriate for such a life and death event or non-event. As it happens, for once I was grateful for the fact that my main email account and my gmail account are linked so that gmail picks up most, though not all (?) of my mail. I just don’t like working from within the gmail account unless I have to. I don’t find it user friendly. Anyway, that’s where I headed at 3.30 am. I was aghast to find well over 100 at that time of the morning. I think even the kangaroos are sending messages now. One I had no hesitation in getting rid of was one I mentioned a few days ago.