Tuesday 31 May 2016

67 and still counting

Another milestone reached, my 67th birthday, against all the odds and Leicester hospital. Yet another light at the end of seamless tunnels. 
I have real hope and a new determination.
Thanks for all my messages of support, much appreciated, and very special thanks to Lynne, Margaret, Chloe,Katie, Tom,Joel,Bob (family) and Steve (friend), for all their support over past months and years.
By sheer coincidence our new car arrives today ( gift wrapped ? ).       
We enjoyed a great celebratory meal at Sampora Italian restaurant just around the corner from home. 
The weather today is very cold and very wet.

Monday 30 May 2016

A day off

For the first time in ages I have a day with no commitments. No hospital appointments.Gymnasiums.doctors. Dentists................Nothing.I had a bracing walk which lasted far longer than intended and resulted in me collapsing into bed on my return,with aching muscles where I  didn't know muscles existed. Lynne woke me for dinner and I spent the evening trying to break up a large, surplus suitcase and stuff it in a dustbin for collection tomorrow.

Sunday 29 May 2016

Four poster bubble.

We attended friend's 30th wedding anniversary at the bubble inn,and inherited a "spare" hotel room, which gave me the chance of an occasional break from the music and conversational hub-bub. The room included a grand four poster bed of massive proportions and proved extremely comfortable.
A good breakfast and a speedy journey home where we met 2 ex-work friends of Lynne, Sue and Greg for lunch, quickly and efficiently prepared as temperatures plummeted.

Saturday 28 May 2016

Cooler temps/restful day and party.

The title says it all. The party was at the Bubble inn,where we were given a vacant room for the night
Stensen's Marina has changed hands ( oh dear, how sad ) so it seems Tardis Two was their last boat. We got our money back just in time.

Heavy gym

My first trip to the gym since our trip to London and I found it tough, although the girls are planning to raise the bar (so to speak) over future weeks having assessed my current fitness levels, which I think are much improved.
A blood test at Glenfield hospital proved interesting as they failed to get anything out of either arm  for some considerable time.I think my veins are shot after frequent tests over recent weeks.

Wednesday 25 May 2016

Clean flat, happy cats.

The last day of our "holiday" in Chessington.the cats have adopted us and the flat is spotless. Anything that failed to move got washed. We have a late night trip to Gatwick airport tonight to collect a suntanned and relaxed son  plus near daughter-in-law, before heading north to Leicestershire. Whilst anything but relaxing for us we have "caught up" with several long lost friends and relatives.

Tuesday 24 May 2016

Thunder,lightening and rainbows.

Today ended with an extremely loud thunder storm, accompanied by the heaviest rain I have ever seen and two fabulous rainbows.

Social whirl continues

After a restful day we were back in our social whirl again,meeting more long-lost old friends in the area and buying me a new much needed new wardrobe in M & S using our extensive personal vouchers and a further "today only " 20% discount.


Despite my worst fears I felt better this morning than I ever hoped, given my extensive exercise yesterday, but it caught up with me later in the day.

Monday 23 May 2016


Chloe became my minder for the day,taking me for a glorious trip to Howletts wildlife park near Canterbury, where I caught up with all the latest news. During the trip I managed to walk 4.5 kilometres  according to Chloe's "magic watch", something of a new record I guess.

Saturday 21 May 2016

Easy rider and Zeppelins.

A much quieter day,  thank God. My biggest task being hanging yet another load of washing on the line, not as easy as it sounds in a very lively and chilly breeze. Tom and Hayley will return to a spotlessly clean flat, including everything washable, including me, having taken advantage of the new shower, infinitely more useable than the previous antique thing.
I had an interesting tour ( honestly ) of Gravesend yesterday by long-term resident Ray, including sights first bombed by German Zeppelin airships. They were aiming for Tilbury docks but missed by a considerable distance.
We spent some time watching Gravesend Rowing club practicing on the River Thames, which resembles a small ocean at this point.
The other "highlight" was seeing the first sheikh temple built in Kent ,a somewhat understated building by current standards.      

Thursday 19 May 2016

The full Monty

Yesterday turned into an unexpected social whirl.from Gatwick to Tolworth Bowl, Mark's for a chat and coffee,Tom's for lunch then to Kingston Grammar School Boat club for a glass of champagne and slice of Gerry's 60th birthday cake, followed by a "session" in the "Old swan",just like the old days, bringing back many happy memories. I was stunned at my welcome,flabbergasted in fact, strengthening my resolve to return once a little fitter. Several members offered to take me out for a gentle workout and I promised to take them up on their offer. Heartwarming stuff and altogether a very rewarding day, especially given the social whirl in which I was unexpectantly embroiled. Once again I am indebted to Lynne for the taxi service. A brighter future beckons.

Wednesday 18 May 2016

Arctic rain for Tom/Hayley departure

We dropped Tom and Hayley off at Gatwick airport in lashing rain and low temperatures, hoping the weather will improve by the time they land in Fuerteventura. ( Canarias ) On the way back we called in on a couple of  my old rowing team mates  and got invited to the club house this evening, which should be enjoyable. 
Healthwise I am doing OK, even the coming and goings over recent days have had little effect on my mental state, which is encouraging.
The cats are doing well and seem to have accepted us as foster parents already.

Tuesday 17 May 2016

Cat sitting

We are now ensconced at Tom's while he and Hayley jet off to sunnier climes (hopefully). We have a very full programme of meeting old friends in the South London area.

Sunday 15 May 2016


Checking the paperwork regarding our flight to France in a few days time I realised they had mis-spelt my name on the boarding pass. But Ryanair only deal with customers online so getting it changed is not easy. It appears I have to re-book my ticket, but with time running out for exchange of details and replacement boarding pass ( Lynne's is fine ) she may be travelling alone !  The original plan was to meet Derek at his French cottage,spend a few days there before touring chunks of France and Italy in Derek's swish new Mercedes.  Time will tell.

Friday 13 May 2016

Loughborough hospital.

Yes, yet another hospital in the area, much smaller and specialising in feet. The staff are very, very friendly and seem generally pleased to see you, a nice change from the " I wish I wasn't here" brigade at others.
You may recall I saw a physio several long weeks ago at the General who recommended I needed a left foot support, but unfortunately "only doctors" are allowed to fit it. Hence our trip to Loughborough today.  In the event a physio fitted it within seconds. It seems to work and is very comfortable.

Family get together

Following a good gym session and the obligatory walk we made our way to see Margaret and Bob and  Chloe at Ashridge, where we went out for dinner at the Bridgewater Arms in Little Gaddesden,an old coaching house and hotel but of no particular merit, although the food and staff were good.
It was an exhausting day but thoroughly enjoyable. Somehow we made it home and collapsed into bed.

Wednesday 11 May 2016

Oh what a beautiful morning, oh what a beautiful day

That line from an "Oklahoma" song was stuck in what's left of my brain when I woke up and remained until lunch, when my mood and the weather speedily deteriorated.

Friday 6 May 2016

Gym and sunshine

Having missed my last gym session ( clash of dates/times ) I am quite looking forward to my next one today. In the event event my muscles refused to comply with my refreshed mental condition and we decided to shorten my routine. A glug or two of Lucozade reunited muscles with brain but I still opted to return home for a short relax, which inevitably ended when I fell asleep for the remaining afternoon.

Thursday 5 May 2016

Not a good day.

One of those unexplained rough days. It started with a headache which carried on all day.  I had a session with my neurologist which went well. She will tot up my scores and hopefully give me the results next week, which should guide us on a treatment regime. I Escaped to bed lunchtime and dreamed we had a party, reason unknown. By teatime I emerged from bed minus my headache and non-the wiser regarding the party.

Traffic jam and scan

We left Reading early for my appointment at St. George's hospital for a scan check on my brain tumour but arrived late due to a humongous traffic jam in Tooting, which had also caught hospital staff, so things evened out. Apart from my veins refusing to accept a cannula ,resulting in lots of loose blood and pain, all went well. My tumour remains unchanged from 12 months ago and we learnt a lot about gist's, or at least what very little the NHS know about them. Our lateness ejected us out into rush hour traffic, the London version dwarfing our Lecester ones. Hence our very late arrival at a very cold home.
We slept well.

Tuesday 3 May 2016

Clean car and red kites

We took the car for a hand wash. It had become plastered in dirt and road salt, making seeing where we were going difficult at times. It looks immaculately clean now and back to its rightful colour.
Leicester won the Premier league ( originally quoted at odds of 5000/ 1) and Arsenal managed third ( as usual ).
We spent the early evening watching 3 Red Kites and 2 Buzzards feeding off cooked chicken carcasses in Marlene's large rear garden. Both species are on the "danger list" so are not a common sight, particularly at such close proximity.
Tomorrow we are off to St. Georges hospital in London for a check-up scan on my brain tumour and I will take the opportunity to seek information from the doctors  on my stomach "gist", if possible. Better late than never.

Monday 2 May 2016

Bradfield Mayday Fayre

 Another sunny day and a trip through impressive countryside to a very old fashioned village Fayre at a
very upmarket village called Bradfield. Pig racing, maypole dancing, tombola and all the usual old treats, including ice cream cones. All good fun

Stoner house

A fabulous sunny, warm day. Brian and Marlene took us to one of the largest, still lived-in old mansions in England, Stoner House. The gardens are unspectacular but the house is wonderful and still lived in by members of the Stoner family. On the way there and back we passed wonderful scenery and a number of great pubs, one of which we stopped at, "The crooked Billet". We sat in the sunshine enjoying Persecco with rhubarb liqueur when Lynne demonstrated lightning reactions by saving her drink from sliding off the sloping table without spilling a drop.