Tuesday, 19 September 2017

In a similar vein

I was really looking forward to a treatment and having my tea cooked last night...and I give thanks for that as it's always good to think you have something to look forward to even when you're wrong! I give thanks I had a fishcake in the freezer...

I give thanks for getting some sleep in between the dread and the dreams. For waking up early enough to make the flat spick and span enough for the estate agent to take some more (more appealing?) photos and get the bus for my hospital appointment. For the journey being so scenic... And the frequency with which I'm making it making it possible to see the subtle seasonal changes. For the astonishing variety of colours in the stubble fields...

For putting my game face on for the vascular access clinic, trying to make the staff feel better about the fact that they really don't know what to do, and that there may be a few more attempts yet...but no guarantees. The other day it came to me I'm a bit like the Yul Brynner android in the original Westworld film. Break bits...Yep, still going. Chop bits off... Yep, still going. Knock me when I'm down... Ah, that finishes me. No, wait...I clamber up and get going again. I know I can't keep going on forever though, and I give thanks for that.

For Evelyn Glennie playing Vivaldi on the xylophone at the proms. Phil Collins on the radio in the hairdresser reminding me you can't hurry anything at all... For a snack lunch in a churchyard in the sun thinking I'd like to go for a walk when I got home, before realising both the sun and the energy would be gone by then.

I give thanks for bad news about something non medical on my return, so I could be upset about a different situation instead. For lots of lessons in not relying on stuff over the last twenty four hours...I clearly need lots of practice! I give thanks I *think* I'm going to make a cup of tea and turn on the TV, take the game face off and do some serious grieving this evening...but who knows, maybe that's not the way it'll turn out at all...

Monday, 18 September 2017

Strange daze

I've been in a bit of a strange mood today...kind of dazy and not quite switched on. I give thanks I didn't have much to do requiring a great deal of focussed attention or interaction.

I've been giving thanks in my head for some stuff not really appropriate to share with all and sundry here. Not that all and sundry read my blog...but you never know, they might...and might not want to hear all of the meanderings of my mind! For getting on with household chores and catching up with the in town ones in the mild weather and occasional sunny spells. For a takeaway tea and a slice of cake, the quietness of the beach and the stillness of the sea, the sigh of relief feeling in the air as locals can reclaim them. For the little blue butterflies of lobelia flowers. For cleaning windows and taking care of business matters.

Sunday, 17 September 2017

Dressing down

My heavens I needed that break away... I give great thanks I got it! A year ago the sciatica was just settling in, and as I was due in hospital for hernia surgery I imagined a few day's rest and I'd be fine. I give thanks for my optimism, innocence and ignorance of how very unhappily wrong I was about to be on this and many other matters. I give thanks for feeling some optimism again...and for maybe being a bit better at just enjoying that and not expecting anything more.

While I was away I kept meaning to note my gratitude to Jan for minor but much needed nursing assistance, changing the dry dressing on my arm and applying and removing the waterproof topping which would be impossible with just one hand I think. I remembered while having to clingfilm myself last night for a bath. I give thanks I can do that one-handed though not easily...

I give thanks for a good firm mattress beneath me again, for the early sunlight at my window. For a pleasant day pottering about with various tasks of varying degrees of necessity, in between reading a book and catching up with recorded TV.  For giving the fridge a really good clean...including scrubbing the folds of the door seal, and disposing of ancient inedible items lurking in the bottom of bottles and jars. For not needing to do my hair or wear anything for anything other than cosiness and comfort. For the poignancy of autumn...the chill behind the sunshine, and the mournful cry of crows.

Saturday, 16 September 2017

The girls (and boys) on the train

I give thanks the hen party on the train (and the sauce) this morning were not travelling with us for more than an hour...and for remembering to be happy for their pleasure in equal measure with other less compassionate thoughts.

I give thanks for saving my Portuguese custard tart from AMT until they'd disembarked and I could enjoy it in peace. It was the most nutritionally acceptable breakfast dish on offer and way nicer than the English sort...I wish I'd known this in advance as at £1.60 I would have bought two!

I give thanks the 'theatre trip' women drinking in the corridor were able to open and share a bottle of Asti in the swaying corridor without damaging or dampening me as I waited to use the loo! For crochet and garlic rich hummus keeping the seat next to me free for some miles after Jan got off, but that in the rowdy crowdedness after Bristol I was joined by a stunning eyed and friendly A level lad who'd been to a uni open day and was open to discussing his options with me. He was thinking about chemistry or maybe medicine in a hospital but not surgery...and said his mum had a friend who was an anaesthetist and might be able to get him a placement. The mind boggles!

I give thanks for he and an older lady with a view to the vestibule working out when it was safe for me to run the gauntlet of a boozy boys birthday outing for another toilet trip, and at the one change, not only arrival and departure being on schedule, but the pink bunny eared group of girls who tumbled into the station not heading for the same train. I give thanks for one of the on board staff being an old work friend and stopping for a chat...and for a pair of passengers who'd come down from oop north too having a laugh at the coincidence of us having the same final destination.

There's a lot to not be happy at coming home to, but I give thanks for the perennial delight of the last few miles of track, the communal cleaner having done his stuff and NO scary post or phone messages. In fact at the last blood test I'd slipped back into double figures...just...  Great! Better get the washing on and start planning another trip :-)

Friday, 15 September 2017

Rock chicks

I give thanks for finding on line a vegan cafe in one of the places we were planning to wander to today. This was for Jan alone as nuts and seeds and so on are full of things I'm already more full of than I should be. We'd already had delicious vegan Thai last night and 'afternoon tea' at noon (ie a jam and cream scone for me) so I was on a mission for a bit of battered fish and a bus to the lighthouse end of the wide beautiful bay while she munched plant food delights.

I give thanks though I found neither, I did eventually get to the lighthouse, and though I was too sore kneed to climb up the stairs I loved it anyway. I've a soft spot for islands and part time ones are especially magical. For the singing rocks (ie cunningly camouflaged birds on them) For meeting some ladies at the bus stop back who'd already seen us elsewhere and were able to tell Jan when they spotted her later that I was on the way via a fish shop they'd directed me to. Strange but true... Clearly we are quite distinctive visually which might explain why we've not seen any clothes or jewelry shops we've had to go in!

I give thanks for visiting the most lacy station I've ever seen in my life... And I've passed through or stopped at many. For a fascinating small towb museum that included an exhibition of local landmarks in Lego. The museum was the only one I recognised though!

Thursday, 14 September 2017

Short on curlews

I give thanks for seeing some of a windswept coastline I thought I never would, as you either need a car or to know someone who has one and likes you enough to take you! I was aware the train didn't pass very close so I was delighted it went close enough for glimpses...and that the town that was our destination had a chunk of it of its own to admire with great delight.

I give thanks for the big Northern skies. For the graceful wind turbines doing their stuff. I give thanks for hearing one of my favourite sounds in the wholest widest world ever, long lost when I stopped walking in the wilds of Wales - the curlew's call! It is such a yearned for aural treat, I wondered at first if I was imaginatively constructing the sound from other bird noises, whistling dog owners etc. But it was true! For a lovely cliff top walk in bright sunshine, unintended as the map was misleading but very welcome anyway...

I give thanks for feeling in better health today than I did yesterday. For having my stitches out at a small friendly local hospital...and finding somewhere I could eat boring but necessary eggs on toast (my body making it clear I've been a bit too lax with the dietary restrictions lately). That Jan could have a lentil soup more pleasing than the ambience of the venue suggested it might be. For the French pâtisserie being out of the most forbidden concoctions when we went there for me to have a spoonful of sweet post suture tugging reward. Oh and for buckwheat crêpes for breakfast too, when we went to the market for that paella pan first thing...

Wednesday, 13 September 2017


I give thanks I'm still going, albeit weakly not strong... Never mind energy, even enthusiasm has been in short supply for me today, so I've been giving thanks for grim thoughts of what's waiting for me at home reminding me early departure is not the soft option.

I give thanks Jan had places she wanted to go and see so I could follow her plans and ambles. For spells of bright sunshine and missing showers when we were inside... For one of the being insides being in a cathedral while a very nice seeming lady vicar said prayers for the troubles in various parts of the world from a pulpit to rows of empty pews. That seemed a rather poignant moment to witness.

For managing to find things I can eat vaguely within the renal rules and within the vicinity of vegan menu items. For getting a heater for our chilly room. For resting my weary body on the bed this afternoon even though there was too much going on in my head to actually sleep...

For the layers in this photo

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