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One Girl's Outlook On Life

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Mixing it all again

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 31, 2014

A fresh batch of homemade buttermilk scones.

A fresh batch of homemade buttermilk scones. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

E had a day in Liverpool with some of her group’s members on Sunday. Evidently there was some sort of event down in the dock area. She took along a small wheeled suitcase which meant she had things in there to give away or she was using it to collect any freebies that might be on offer. I think it was the latter but didn’t ask. Late on Saturday afternoon our youngest son came over once more. He was going to stay the night after he and his girlfriend had gone to the wedding reception of one of his friends. They all seem to be getting married except him! After E had left the house around ten o’clock all was quiet for an hour or so until my son came downstairs to eat the bacon sandwich I had prepared for him. He generally eats a bacon sandwich when he gets up after sleeping over. After he had a shower and got dressed he was off out for an hour or so to meet with some friends before returning to collect his things then driving home to Manchester to watch his favourite football team who were playing the team that is top of the premiership just now. He said he didn’t think they would win and at this moment of writing I cannot say one way or the other. Anyway for much of the day I was home alone again which seems to be a regular thing lately. I was talking about mixing concrete on Saturday and how much like it is to mixing ingredients for a cake or similar and how it is that I never use a food mixer at home but do it all by hand. Well I was at a bit of a loose end late in the afternoon on Sunday and suddenly thought about mixing the cement screed I plan to cover the newly built step when my mind turned to thinking about mixing the ingredients for a cake. However after giving it more thought I decided to make some scones instead, which is what I did. It has been a while since I did any baking at home, I think the last time I did anything was when I made some doughnuts for the first time earlier in the year. They turned out exceptionally well for a first attempt though I will have to bake some more before I become anywhere near as proficient as perhaps I ought to be. As for the scones? Well I have baked them many times so by now I think I’ve gotten the hang of it! E will be my judge no doubt this time around and as usual will give her candid opinion.

Shirley Anne

Posted in Cookery and baking | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Remembering and doing

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 30, 2014

You Can Play These Songs with Chords

You Can Play These Songs with Chords (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Many years ago, twenty-four to be precise, I had recently become a Christian, the year before in fact. It was now 1990 and I became involved in children’s ministry at church. The group of children I was working with ranged from about seven to about thirteen years of age. When I took on the role there had been two women working with the children so my presence allowed each of us to take a break on a rota. Neither of the women were musical in that they couldn’t play an instrument so in order to introduce the children to Christian songs they used taped recordings. I couldn’t play an instrument either but after joining the group I decided to learn to play the guitar. I had an old instrument at home which was really a beginners instrument but it sufficed for me to learn to play a few chords. I soon learned a few simple songs using less than six chords but I was determined to learn more and so over the next year I began by buying a proper instrument and teaching myself as many chords as I could. If anyone reading this has experienced the learning curve themselves or have endured the endeavours of someone else they will know what I am talking about. For a younger person learning to play an instrument is a much easier affair, I was around forty-five years of age when I started and it took some time accordingly. I became reasonably good when after a year or so of playing I was invited to join with the other musicians in the church services. I spent almost ten years with them and learned much. However I left the church and for five years didn’t pick up my instrument.

Shirley Anne

I began to play once more for personal pleasure about ten years ago and ever since I have improved much. I can now play many chords and especially those which, though basic, can be difficult to master, some of the ‘barre’ chords like E flat at the first fret for instance took me a while to get to grips with. Of course some chord shapes are so involved it is a wonder how anyone can play them but as I said the younger one is when learning, the better. One area I have found difficult is in remembering songs and I mean by that which chords. Gradually over the years I have built up a reasonably sized repertoire most of which are the songs of Lennon and Mc Cartney but of other artists too. I have also written many songs myself, around fifty of them but those of course I have no difficulty in remembering. I play as often as I can which is usually every day for at least a half-hour but more often an hour and I vary what I play each time. I try to learn new songs occasionally and those I once thought I would never master or play reasonably well are not the impossibility anymore. It takes time and practice and dedication, lots of it though if one likes music it isn’t a chore but a pleasure.

Shirley Anne

Posted in Music, Guitar | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Bit of a mix

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 29, 2014

I have never used a mixer in the kitchen though we do have one. I have never had a reason to use one, always mixing by hand instead. I have the same attitude when it comes to washing dishes too, I always prefer to wash by hand though E generally sticks everything inside the dishwasher but not all of the time. Perhaps the reason I prefer doing things by hand is that it is only relatively recently in my lifetime that I bought a dishwasher. Probably two-thirds of my life has been spent without one. I also like having my hands in water! In my early years as an adult most all of the mixing I have done has been by hand but certain things done manually can be very exhausting aside from being time-consuming. When E and I talked about laying concrete some time ago when we decided to reconstruct the steps behind the garages and the need for a ramp behind one of them it meant that we would need a lot of concrete to do it all. When I was younger it wasn’t a problem to mix concrete or mortar by hand as I was then much fitter than I am now and could do much more in the time given. Not so these days though I can still do many things by hand. So it was we decided to buy a concrete mixer to mix the concrete to do the steps and the ramp and to mix the mortar for laying the bricks and paving slabs we worked on behind one of the garages last year. Mixer 2Over the last couple of days I have been constructing a large step to lessen the height of the existing step into the boiler room and yesterday, that is Friday, I filled the space within the brick containing wall with hard-core material ready for laying concrete on top. Today, Saturday, E and I dug out the concrete mixer from the garage and set about mixing the concrete. Once everything was set up it didn’t take long to mix the amount we needed, in fact one mixer-full was all it took and soon I had it laid over the hard-core. A few minutes later we were cleaning the mixer and returning it to the garage. The whole job took a mere forty minutes or so but would have taken much longer had I done it by hand and I would have been quite tired for a while after doing it! As I write this on Saturday evening all that needs to be done is to apply a smooth concrete screed to cover the rough layer of concrete we have laid and to cover the bricks containing it too. A bit like icing a cake only bigger! Mixing concrete or mortar is very much like preparing the mix for a cake. It is simply done with different materials that’s all but more of it. Whilst we were outside and clearing everything away I suggested we gather the leaves that had gathered around the back of the large greenhouse and the path we had built earlier in the year and there were plenty of them. We were joined by our friendly little red-breasted Robin who seemingly was waiting for the opportunity to eat whatever we had disturbed when clearing the leaves. Every year is the same, the price we pay for living near so many trees. Ideally we could do with a large vacuum cleaner though E tells me that the leaf ‘blower’ she won a couple of years ago (she’s always winning prizes) can be used to suck as well as blow. I somehow forgot she’d mentioned that.

Shirley Anne

Posted in Construction, DIY, Domestic Projects, Garden | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

End of a very busy working week

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 28, 2014

Now Get Busy

Now Get Busy (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I had three jobs to do on Friday in two separate houses. One was reasonably close to home whilst the other was around ten miles away. The easier single job was the furthest from home. I have to say that by the time I returned home at 1 o’clock I was completely whacked! All I wanted to do was sit down and have lunch but soon afterward I was rearing to go again! I decided to empty some hard-core material into the brick surrounded ‘well’ I had constructed in the cellar the day before. I wrote about this yesterday. We need an extra step into (or out of, of course) the boiler room as the existing step is too high. The bricks had set hard  in place overnight (see picture posted yesterday) for as they are in the boiler room the conditions there are nice and dry. We have plenty of hard-core material in plastic bags which we had dug out of the ‘mound’ during the summer along with all those bricks and natural stone slabs. Nothing gets wasted around here! Soon I had the ‘well’ filled and ready for the concrete ‘topping’ I planned to lay on Saturday. Once that is done and set I will be able to apply a final screed to complete the step. Again no doubt that will have been done by the time you read this. I have been kept busy all week with electrical work and whilst at home I wasted no time and got on with work there too. Before I went along to my first job I had to call in to my electrical supplier to purchase some materials and when I arrived the place was full of people doing the same and I knew most of them. Many asked me how I was doing and if all was well with me. That was nice. They’re all good lads. One guy in particular was actually my apprentice for a while in our younger days working for the electrical supply company. I am about four years his senior so at the time I had been qualified four years when he came on the scene. We got along fine but he did have his moments as they say. He was quite a cheeky young rascal at first but steadily grew out of that. On seeing me in the store, he often sees me there, he remarked, ‘Bet you didn’t think all those years ago that we’d still be doing this work at our present age’. I had to agree with him but when we are younger we seldom give these things a thought do we? He has aged a lot since those days too and looks far older than his years. I suppose he’s had a hard life. We talked about other guys we had known from those times and wondered if they were still around too. It must be a sign of age when we reminisce like this!

This is what I have observed to be good: that it is appropriate for a person to eat, to drink and to find satisfaction in their toilsome labour under the sun during the few days of life God has given them – for this is their lot. (Ecclesiastes 5:18)

And I do!

Shirley Anne

Posted in Work | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Nothing to do?

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 27, 2014

I had Thursday all mapped out as free time for myself as I had no electrical work scheduled that day. I didn’t stop in bed however and was sitting having my breakfast well before nine o’clock. I spent a little time on my computer and around about ten o’clock there was someone at the front door ringing the bell. I went to see who it was and found that it was the men from the environment agency contractor come to survey our waste water systems and pipework. We had been expecting them to call a couple of weeks earlier but they told us there were thousands of properties in our area to survey/ They had called previously but we weren’t at home. I opened one of the garages to allow them access to the rear of the house and answered a couple of questions asked of me. Unfortunately I  then received a call to do a small electrical job, one of three jobs I was asked to do that morning. I made arrangements to do the other jobs a few days later but in the meantime just attended the one. I was back home an hour before lunch which for me is around one o’clock. E goes out on Thursday afternoons to do the weekly shopping with her mum so I was left at home alone once more. I couldn’t bear the boredom so I made inroads to building a step in the boiler room which we have been threatening to do for years but never seemed to get around to actually doing it. Here is a picture of the preliminary work I did…28 The existing white step is quite deep as the boiler room floor is sunk relative to all the other cellar room floors which are all at the same level. We have never understood why this should be so as it is an original floor and was laid many years before the house had central heating. The central heating boiler is in this room and I suppose if there was a major leak the sunken floor would act as a reservoir. I don’t think it was laid with that in mind. Anyhow I laid some bricks as you can see and once they have set I will fill in the resulting space behind them with hard-core and cement both of which we have plenty. By the time you read this that may well be done. I have spoken about re-lagging the central heating pipes of which there are many down in the cellar rooms. Here are a couple of pictures to show what we have done thus far, there being much more to do yet as we haven’t purchased the insulation to date. I explained about that in a previous post. I hope to purchase what we need shortly. It is all about the cost of course and disposable income.

 

2931

3233

3431

30026

 

 

The grey insulation is that which we have fitted, the black and any other coloured insulation is still to be replaced and of course there are one or two sections of bare pipes to lag too! The next-to-last picture shows the new heating pump supplying the heat for the water storage tank upstairs in the bathroom which I installed last week. You may also notice that the heating system is being controlled by a ‘Sangamo’ time switch on the extreme left of the picture, a mechanical device which is very reliable. I have left it in circuit quite deliberately for that reason. Electronic controls are far less reliable and in fact are not necessary for the type of installation we have. On the left-hand-side out of sight in this same picture is the central heating pump. Compare picture number five with the last picture and see how the old insulation around the pipes has been vastly improved. Picture number four shows the continuation of the same pipes in picture number two from the boiler room to the laundry room (the one with the freezers in it!). Slowly things are improving in the cellar rooms and now that we have had the survey I can decide what alterations I need to undertake if any with the drain pipes. That is for the future though.

Shirley Anne

Posted in DIY, Domestic Projects | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Now it’s Wednesday

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 26, 2014

English: TV and mobile phone mast on Torlum Hill

TV and mobile phone mast on Torlum Hill (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Late last night I discovered I had received a text message on my mobile phone earlier in the day but had not noticed. It is often the case that I miss calls or texts during the day either because I don’t hear the phone or more likely I am in an area where my phone is shielded from the transmission signals. Whatever the reason I miss the calls. This particular message was from a young lady who had called me on Sunday because her power circuit kept tripping off. I explained to her over the phone what she should do to re-instate the system and that if she still had the problem I would call round to assist, for a fee of course! Evidently she had managed to reset everything because she didn’t call back that evening. The message stated that she had in fact had a recurrence of the problem on Tuesday afternoon and had tried to contact me but failed. She therefore left the message. As it was 11.30 at night I simply replied to the message indicating that I could be there in the morning, that is Wednesday as I write this. I arose a little later than I usually do and on checking my phone for any messages or missed calls I discovered she had replied saying that her sister had found someone else to check out the fault but she thanked me anyway for replying. You get some and you miss some. As it happened I was glad in a way that I didn’t have to do the job because I had intended to do some more pipe lagging at home if I had the time. After a very small breakfast of yoghurt and fruit E asked if I could give her the electric mouse trap I had constructed some months ago as her mum had been having rodent problems at home. I explained that it needed some modifications before I could let her take it away so I took some time doing that before starting on the insulation. Both E and I then set about doing what lagging we could in the boiler room with what was left of the insulation. Unfortunately we couldn’t do all of the pipes in there as we would have liked because we needed at least twenty more metre lengths of the insulation, half of which needed to be a size larger to cover those pipes in there which are greater in size. We will also need at least one more box of the same sized insulation we have just used up. I know this will cost me probably another £150 at least as the first box cost more than £100 for the 48 one-metre lengths of insulation it contained. By the time we had finished and cleaned up it was approaching 1.30 so we had a late lunch and watched TV for an hour. I took the rest of the day off from work. My phone rang a couple of times with requests for estimates for electrical work but I turned down the jobs knowing that they would be too much for me to take on. It is a matter of what I could expect in payment for the time I would have to put in. It just isn’t worth the effort. I can afford to be selective and can earn quite a substantial amount for very little effort only working a couple of hours each day leaving me plenty of time for myself and my own projects at home. I can only do this because I have income from my pensions. I no longer have to slog my guts out to earn extra income which is nice. I can sit here with my cup of coffee writing this stuff on my computer on a lazy Wednesday afternoon. Meanwhile E is visiting her mum taking the mouse trap with her.

Shirley Anne

 

Posted in Activity, DIY, Domestic Projects, Telephone | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Just our luck!

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 25, 2014

As Luck Would Have It

As Luck Would Have It (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

E and I haven’t dined out much over the last two months except for the time we went to Liverpool a couple of weeks ago and found the pub/restaurant we wished to dine in had stopped serving meals for the afternoon leaving us little choice but to dine somewhere nearby it which just wasn’t the same. I wrote about it in a recent post. Well on Tuesday last I had been busy working in the morning and decided I wanted to eat out. I asked E if she would like that too and her reply was,’Do you really want to dine out?’ It wasn’t a satirical question but she asked because the weather on Tuesday was foul to say the least. We were experiencing the tail end of the tropical storm called Gonzalo that had ripped through the eastern Caribbean. It was very stormy weather with heavy downpours of rain, not really a nice day to go out and about in but hey, we cannot let the weather spoil our enjoyment of life! In real terms we were only subject to the onslaught whilst getting in and out of the car and the destination. By the time we had left the restaurant it was very sunny but still windy. The sunshine was short-lived and it resumed raining soon enough. The wind lasted well into the evening, as did the showers. E asked the usual question of me and that was where we were going and I replied in the usual way that I didn’t know leaving her to make the decision. She suggested two places and we chose the one furthest away, about 15 miles distant shall we say. Now we have been there quite often and never had any problems in the past but on this visit we were let down. The establishment had recently decided to close the kitchen on Tuesdays as a cost-cutting exercise seemingly due to a general lack of custom on that day. We returned to the vehicle and drove back towards home to the second place of choice which was en-route. We have never been disappointed there either but the difference was that this establishment is open all hours. As it was quite late in the afternoon by now we didn’t wait long for our meals to arrive at the table and most enjoyable they were too. We chose to have a dessert and whilst I had a Cappuccino with mine E chose to have a cola instead. Most unusual for her as she likes Cappuccino. On the way back home we drove through the town’s main thoroughfare and the rain came down so hard we could hardly see where we were going. By the time we reached our house it had eased off a little. I set the central heating thermostat up a notch and soon we were feeling cozy again. It was still an enjoyable day despite the weather.

Shirley Anne

Posted in Dining out, Weather | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

And not just Muslims…………

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 24, 2014

No wonder he was selected by Forbes as the most powerful person in the world!!

This is one time our elected leaders should pay attention to the advice of Vladimir Putin. I would suggest that not only our leaders but every citizen of USA should pay attention to this advice. How scary is that? It is a sad day when a Communist makes more sense than our LEADERS but here it is !!!!

Vladimir Putin’s speech – SHORTEST SPEECH EVER.
On August 04, 2013, Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, addressed the Duma, (Russian Parliament), and gave a speech about the tensions with minorities in Russia:

In Russia, live like Russians. Any minority, from anywhere, if it wants to live in Russia, to work and eat in Russia, it should speak Russian, and should respect the Russian laws. If they prefer Sharia Law, and live the life of Muslim’s then we advise them to go to those places where that’s the state law.
Russia does not need Muslim minorities. Minorities need Russia, and we will not grant them special privileges, or try to change our laws to fit their desires, no matter how loud they yell ‘discrimination’. We will not tolerate disrespect of our Russian culture. We better learn from the suicides of America, England, Holland and France, if we are to survive as a nation. The Muslims are taking over those countries and they will not take over Russia. The Russian customs and traditions are not compatible with the lack of culture or the primitive ways of Sharia Law and Muslims.

When this honorable legislative body thinks of creating new laws, it should have in mind the Russian national interest first, observing that the Muslims Minorities Are Not Russians.
The politicians in the Duma gave Putin a five minute standing ovation.

Shirley Anne

Posted in Politics | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

Alright for some…..

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 24, 2014

I had been out working on Monday morning and on my return E told me that she had received an email from my youngest brother, I talk about my brother in ‘My Journey‘ page above. He is the youngest of my four siblings, two boys and two girls, though of course none of us can be called that way now. I am the eldest, I have a brother about eleven months younger than myself and two sisters younger than he. As I recall the eldest of my brothers retired some time ago but I can not be sure about that as he doesn’t keep in touch. The same applies to my sisters who are both past what would be considered retirement age but they too don’t stay in touch so I cannot be sure if they are retired. E told me that my youngest brother had mentioned in his email that he is about to retire and evidently is looking forward to it. He had contacted her because he had forgotten her birthday date which was on the eleventh of this month and wanted to wish her a belated happy birthday I suppose but I guess he wanted to let her know about his forthcoming retirement too. I must therefore be the odd one out in my family who, by my own admission don’t really wish to retire, at least for the foreseeable future. I am often asked if and when I shall retire but the answer has always been that I have no intention of doing so. The usual reply is that I should continue as long as I am able and as long as I wish to, both of which are true. I wish my brother all the best for his retirement and my other siblings too if they have in fact done the same, it just isn’t for me at the moment. I suppose it is just as well for my youngest brother to stop work and take things a little easier since his unfortunate illness earlier in the year when he suffered a stroke. At least he will not have the same amount of pressure to face each day once he quits work. The title of this post would naturally apply in my brother’s case and maybe for my other siblings too but for me, I prefer the pressure, to a point that is. I find I work better under a little pressure. I am being more sensible about things nowadays and am declining many offers of work that I would normally have taken even recently. I am also refusing to be pressurised into accommodating people when I know I need the rest.

Shirley Anne

Posted in Family | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Something much better

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 23, 2014

Philippians 3

No confidence in the flesh

1 Further, my brothers and sisters, rejoice in the Lord! It is no trouble for me to write the same things to you again, and it is a safeguard for you. Watch out for those dogs, those evildoers, those mutilators of the flesh. For it is we who are the circumcision, we who serve God by his Spirit, who boast in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh – though I myself have reasons for such confidence.

If someone else thinks they have reasons to put confidence in the flesh, I have more: circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; in regard to the law, a Pharisee; as for zeal, persecuting the church; as for righteousness based on the law, faultless.

But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in[a] Christ – the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith. 10 I want to know Christ – yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.

12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining towards what is ahead, 14 I press on towards the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenwards in Christ Jesus.

Following Paul’s example

15 All of us, then, who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you. 16 Only let us live up to what we have already attained.

17 Join together in following my example, brothers and sisters, and just as you have us as a model, keep your eyes on those who live as we do. 18 For, as I have often told you before and now tell you again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. 19 Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is set on earthly things. 20 But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Saviour from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.

Footnotes:

  1. Philippians 3:9 Or through the faithfulness of

Are you an enemy of Jesus Christ? Are you putting all your faith in earthly things which cannot save? All that you possess, all that you have in the bank, all your belongings count for nothing once you are dead. Nothing can be taken with you, you will be alone and naked before your Creator. What excuse will you give for your unbelief? No doubt you will say it doesn’t matter because you don’t believe in God, Jesus, Heaven and Hell or in the devil himself but even the devil believes in these things. His fate is sealed, is yours? You have the time to turn your life around and invite Jesus into your heart. You have the time to seal your fate too but only whilst you take in breath. Who knows when their time is up? Don’t wait until it is too late. What have you got to lose? Your possessions? You will lose them anyway. Your life? You will surely die one day. Your future in Heaven has to be decided upon today! Your future in Hell is a definite possibility but why take that chance? Make it an impossibility now, come to Jesus!

Shirley Anne

Posted in God, Gods love, Gods love through Jesus, Jesus, Jesus Christ and The Holy Spirit, Salvation | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

There if I want it

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 22, 2014

I've Got That Old Feeling

I’ve Got That Old Feeling (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have been feeling so much better today, Saturday, than I have felt all week. It looks like I’ve shaken off whatever it was that ailed me. Now I usually do not work in my capacity as an electrician over the weekend but it hasn’t stopped people calling me to do jobs for them. One call I got was from a middle-aged man who explained that he couldn’t do work that entailed working with his hands, DIY projects and such things as in his own words he was useless. He asked tentatively if I could fit a wall bracket together with the television on his kitchen wall. A straightforward job that only required a drill and some hand tools and would probably take a half-hour or so. I said I would do it for him as he lives less than two miles away from me and I could be back home within the hour. I was back home an hour and ten minutes later with some extra cash in my purse! I wanted to replace some more pipe lagging at home so after lunch I set about doing that. E had gone out for the afternoon and our youngest son who had come over for the weekend had also gone out. I like it when I am left alone to get on with things because I work faster that way. The pipes I wanted to recover I succeeded in doing but what a mess to clean up afterwards! The old insulation was so fragile it crumbled as soon as it was touched and it got everywhere. Whilst it was on the pipes it wasn’t a problem and it did provide a decent level of insulation but it really did want replacing. There is still much left to do but gradually the pipes are beginning to look much better. I may decide to splash out and redo all the pipes, not because all the insulation needs replacing, though much of it does, but it will be better all round if I do it anyway. Whilst I was in the cellar working I received several requests for my services, some even asking if I could work for them that day. Like I said, I don’t work weekends! I have taken on some of the work for the week ahead. The work is there if I want it. Must be approaching Christmas! I am now finished for this week both working for others or for myself at home. Tomorrow is Sunday and I shall be doing nothing whatsoever unless it can be done sitting down on the settee.

Shirley Anne

Posted in Ability, DIY, Domestic Projects | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Rest

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 21, 2014

The Hunters at Rest 1871

The Hunters at Rest 1871 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On Friday morning I went to do a small job for an old lady living locally thereafter paying a visit to my electrical supplier before returning home. E was in the shower when I got home and I fixed myself a cup of coffee. I sat at my computer to check emails and visit a few sites but after a short time E came in and asked if I wished to fit some more lagging to the heating pipes in the cellar. I said, ‘No, I just want to sit and relax thank you’.  The previous evening before bed-time I had taken a ‘Beecham’s Powder’ to counter the effects of what I thought I was suffering with, a cold. Although I was feeling alright after a good night’s sleep I was feeling a little tired and especially after doing that job. I simply needed a little respite from work. I sometimes feel E thinks I am a machine until that machine breaks down. I haven’t been at my best these last few weeks with one thing or another affecting my well-being and with the weather turning more Autumnal there is a drain on my energy levels. It is a passing phase and I know all will be fine soon enough but I don’t wish to overdo things especially if I am not feeling completely at my best, that would be silly. As my dad used to say, the work will still be there tomorrow and he was right. My problem is I often want to do everything all at once giving myself little time just to do nothing and simply rest. I have to deliberately make the decision not to work sometimes as opposed to procrastinating when I know I should be working! It is now almost Friday afternoon and I am determined to rest for the remainder of the day. Fitting the lagging can wait until Saturday morning.
We are still waiting for a visit from the surveyors who wish to inspect our drainage systems around the house. They did call earlier in the week but by the time either of us could get to the door they had moved on. I have made plans for re-arranging our sink and bath drains but some of that work may be unnecessary depending on what they say. They have paid a visit to my next-door neighbour and it appears they are satisfied with her installation. I don’t understand that because, according to the literature we received from them, certain pipe connections were not allowed. Some of my neighbour’s pipes seem to contradict that rule. So I am keen to know what they will say about some of the pipes in our installation which are connected in the same way. Without that information I cannot proceed with my project. That might be a good thing at the moment, I need the rest!

Shirley Anne

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Busy but ……

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 20, 2014

I have found that my electrical services have been in great demand this week after a spell of getting few requests. I didn’t mind getting little work lately as I haven’t been well enough to do much anyway. Today, that is Thursday, I  had a job to do in the afternoon and everything went well enough until that is I got back home. I felt awful and had to take a couple of headache pills. At this moment I must be still under the influence of some bug, a cold maybe and don’t feel I am 100%  with it. It will pass though and I am taking work as it comes along. One of the tasks I had at work today was to replace a single power socket with a twin version which meant digging out the wall to accommodate the larger box for it to screw to. I attempted to isolate the power supply before beginning the work. I removed what should have been the right fuse (it was an old board not fitted with circuit breakers) but the circuit remained live. Replacing that fuse and removing another made no difference, the circuit remained live. I removed the only remaining fuse that could possibly supply the circuit and still the circuit remained live! Someone had split the power circuit wiring in the fuse board so that two fuses were controlling the one circuit. Dangerous! I corrected the problem and finally I could isolate the circuit with just the one fuse, as it should be. I have come across this kind of fault on a couple of occasions in the past and I shudder to think that there must be other households with the same problem unbeknown to the householder. I had that job done quite quickly and did a couple of other things before I left to drive the ten miles back home. So my working day was over and I was trying to relax at home nursing my headache when checking my mobile phone for any messages I discovered I had missed a call though I know for certain my phone hadn’t rung at the time when the caller had called. They left a message though and I was able to call them back. It was too late to do the job I was asked to do and I made arrangements to do it the following morning. I seem to get this problem fairly often with my mobile service, people call me and have to resort to leaving a message because my phone didn’t ring when they made the call. Obviously my phone is unable to connect with the system in each and every location I find myself in and I miss calls requesting my services that I could easily accommodate. I sometimes wonder why I pay for a service that isn’t 100% available. Fortunately my customers do leave messages or call me later on my house phone.

Shirley Anne

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Lagging behind?

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 19, 2014

English: Copper pipes with and without insulat...

Copper pipes with and without insulation, above ceiling tile.

A few weeks ago I purchased a box of insulation material with which to re-lag as much of the pipework in the cellar, most of which is suspended from the ceiling or near to the ceiling but on the walls. I haven’t had the time to use it since then until now. The box contained 48 lengths of pipe lagging each one metre in length which would be enough to re-lag that part of the insulation that was practically falling off through deterioration. Last year I managed to replace much of the old insulation with some lagging I had acquired years ago that I had stored away for use in the future. Unfortunately there wasn’t enough to do every pipe in the cellar so I had to purchase some. I did want to purchase two boxes and replace everything but one box alone cost me over £100 and at the time I couldn’t afford to buy two. I usually use my disposable income when buying things for the home but I had spent quite a lot during the weeks prior. Anyway I was at a bit of a loose end on Wednesday having no scheduled electrical work so I asked E if she wanted to assist me in fitting some new pipe insulation in the room we call the laundry though there are three chest freezers in there besides the washing machine! The circulation pipes which heat the water cylinder in the bathroom run through that room on the ceiling and two other pipes associated with and part of the central heating system also run through the room at ceiling height. All the insulation on these pipes required replacing. The hardest part in some places was that of removing the old insulation but fitting the new insulation was difficult in places as the pipes are located too close to one another. We spent about two and a half hours before the job was done but that is only one room, five other rooms need attention, two of them have a lot of pipes to re-lag and three not as much. This is one of those jobs that always seem to take a back seat in the pecking order of jobs to be done with me but when E is there to help we get them out-of-the-way. After we had finished what needed to be done in that room I gave the carpet a treat and vacuumed it! It isn’t often the carpets in the cellar get vacuumed. Only two rooms and the hallway down there are carpeted. The boiler room and the workshop room have bare floors. We will get around to re-lagging the rest of the pipes in the next couple of weeks, time permitting, though I may have to purchase another box first.

Shirley Anne

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One down but a few more to come……

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 18, 2014

Laughter

Laughter (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On Tuesday morning I went to look at a job but when there I discovered it was far more involved than what I was led to believe, I turned it down. In reality I could see the problems I would have had, the time it would have taken and the price the customer was prepared to pay and it just wasn’t worth the effort. The problem was a lack of power outlets in a very small kitchen crammed with appliances which had not been catered for when the kitchen was refurbished a few years ago. There was a boiler which didn’t have a dedicated supply and was plugged into one of the only two twin sockets in the room. The cooker hood was plugged into the other half of the twin socket. The other twin socket across the room had a multi-outlet socket plugged into one half and an extension lead plugged into the other half! Then there was the washing machine which although had been plugged into a socket beneath the units that socket was wired with an underrated flexible cable that had to be plugged into the first twin socket by removing the cooker hood plug. Whoever had wired the kitchen hadn’t a clue as to the amount of power outlets that should have been provided. The room walls were tiled of course so any additional circuitry would necessitate their removal in places, that is if access to the walls was possible. Built-in units prevented access beneath the worktops and much of the walls above were covered with cupboards too. Adding to the problems of course were a laminated floor covering and a bathroom in the room above which made it almost impossible to install extra wiring. It isn’t easy being an electrician working in a domestic situation sometimes and this electrician wasn’t prepared to get involved. Even for a young person the job wasn’t easy, let alone someone of my age who is supposed to be semi-retired. Now you know why I only take on small jobs. It meant I had to return home as I had no other work scheduled for the day. The day wasn’t wasted though and after a cup of coffee and a chat with E I set about doing one of the small jobs at home that had been niggling me to get out-of-the-way for some weeks. That was duly dispatched within an hour or so and then it was time for lunch. I took the rest of the day off. Whilst preparing my ‘late’ lunch our next-door neighbour telephoned and asked this question, ‘Have you had yours done yet’? I immediately responded with, ‘Yes, I had mine done twelve years ago’. It was all she could do but break down with laughter. She even hung up accidentally because she was in stitches laughing. She called back a minute later and explained the reason for the question. She was referring to the survey we are expecting by the local authority with regards to our domestic waste water. They are checking that our (and everyone’s) pipe system is connected to the correct drains. We have been expecting a visit but they seem not to be in any hurry about it. I am always making Pam, our neighbour, laugh. Little did she know that I was referring to my gender surgery which I had exactly to the day twelve years ago when I answered her question. I did subsequently mention that no, we hadn’t had the survey done when she called. There’s never a dull moment in our house. I am now thinking about the other jobs that need doing.

Shirley Anne

Posted in Domestic Projects, Electrical, Laughter, Safety | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Beginning of a better week

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 17, 2014

An extension lead/multiplug.

An extension lead/multiplug. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Well after last week’s episode this week is beginning to look far better. It is late Monday afternoon as I write this and I have not long returned home after finishing work for the day. I had two jobs the first of which was a part-rewiring of an extension to the side of a house. It was one of those jobs which had been done by someone who had a very basic understanding of electrical circuitry and safety. Lights and extension sockets wired in flexible cables not suited for the job. It was a case of ‘we’ll run an extension lead to supply another outlet out of which we’ll plug-in another lead’. It all had to come out and be wired correctly. The job took about three and a half hours all told. I then had to drive a few miles into the countryside to a little village in order to replace a lighting fitting in a kitchen and found that the switch controlling it required replacing too. It didn’t take me too long to complete those jobs after which it was then time to return home for a snack that would tide me over until our evening meal. Fortunately I do have a decent breakfast, most often of porridge and fruit which keeps me going throughout the day. I often miss lunch when out working so it is well that I eat a breakfast. No sooner had I arrived home when I received another offer of work. This job was to re-site an under unit power outlet for a washing machine. Evidently the existing one is liable to or has been subject to water spillage recently and consequently is dangerous to use. I shall know more in the morning when I go there. After my recent dry spell of work and I beginning to get more. As long as the jobs are not too involved and I can find time for myself I will be happy. At this point I am not sure what the rest of the week will have in store for me but at least I now feel fit enough to cope with it. There are some minor tasks I wish to get out-of-the-way at home too, the little things that will play on my mind if I don’t do them soon. Once those are out-of-the-way I will be ready to restart work on the bigger projects, a little at a time of course and some of that work is good weather dependent so it may take some time to do! There is nothing worse for me than knowing that jobs need to be done and not being in a fit state to do them because I am ill. Thankfully I don’t fall ill too often.

Shirley Anne

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End of a bad week

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 16, 2014

Last week was bad and only got better at the end. Regular readers will have read my previous posts as to the reasons why so I won’t repeat it here. On Friday afternoon I had to make the journey into Liverpool again, this time to have my sutures removed. The plan was to have that done and then go to a favourite place in the city to have a late lunch. E drove me there, which is just as well for I was taking her out to lunch too! The nurse arrived at 2 o’clock, about ten minutes after we had gotten there. It took her some time to remove the sutures for there were more than forty of them! Now you know why I was glad to have them go because they had made combing my hair somewhat difficult. It also meant that we left the clinic a little later than we had expected. We were finally able to leave just after 3 o’clock and we drove through town to our destination not far from the Pier Head and the river.

The Three Graces, Liverpool as seen from the M...

The Three Graces, Liverpool as seen from the Mersey Ferry. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

E hadn’t dined in this particular pub/restaurant previously and I guess she was looking forward to it, however, by the time we got there they had stopped serving meals. We learned that we had only missed their closing time by a few minutes. The staff apologised but showed us the location of another eatery close-by so we walked the short distance and entered a completely different kind of establishment altogether, one very much more basic. Both are located a short distance behind the famous buildings in this picture and about a mile from the clinic beyond and to the right of this picture. As we were by this time rather hungry we decided to stay anyway and eat. The place was full though I have to say and many were eating. It was obviously popular. The menu was surprisingly very good  and whilst E found us a table I placed the order at the bar, We had both chosen sirloin steaks. We waited but fifteen minutes and the food was served. It was delicious. I wouldn’t normally have chosen this place to dine in and probably won’t visit again. Our place of choice is a far nicer establishment. After finishing our meal we went to a local coffee-house to have a Cappuccino as we had plenty of time left on the parking meter. We could have had a coffee in the pub but E wanted somewhere quieter. The pub had been rather noisy but not overly so. We stopped for fuel on the way home but E had chosen a station only a few miles out of Liverpool where the fuel prices were much lower than nearer home. It didn’t much matter for when it came to pay I gave her my debit card. The day had been nice despite everything. Now if my readers will remember that on the previous Saturday I was going to install the replacement hot water pump and extend the existing wiring for the tank thermostat to control it. E and I did both on Saturday, that is I installed it all and she helped me here and there. At last then things are getting back to normal and maybe I will be able to get some of the other projects completed soon. There is no hurry to do any of them and I won’t be overdoing it when I resume working on them. This weekend has been much better than the previous one.

Shirley Anne

Posted in Dining out, Domestic Projects, Health, Plumbing | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Arachnids

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 15, 2014

‘I saw a mouse — where? There on the stair
Where on the stair? Right there
A little mouse with clogs on — well, I declare
Going clip-clippety-clop on the stair – oh yeah’

Words from an old song called ‘A windmill in old Amsterdam‘. I did see a mouse, two of them but they weren’t on the stair or even in the house, they were disturbed when we were digging in the garden removing the mound earlier this year. (Search ‘mound’ to find post). We had discovered evidence of there having been a mouse in the cellar though and the event prompted me to construct an electric mouse trap. Actually it was designed to kill any rodent quickly and humanely if they entered it. As it turned out we never had further problems and the trap was never triggered. Since then other work I have done prevents any mice from being able to enter the house. That work was blocking the old doorway with bricks a few weeks ago, work that is part of the garden toilet project I hope to complete one day! This post though is not about mice but about spiders, spiders that are almost as big as mice! I was sitting quietly at home one evening this past week watching the television and I notice out of the corner of my eye what appeared to be a shadow moving along the floor in front of fireplace and disappearing beneath the television glass table. At first I thought it was a mouse but on investigation it turned out to be a huge spider. Now our house is full of spiders, especially in the cellar and though we see them from time to time in the upstairs rooms they are never usually very large. This one however bucked that trend. I called E into the room to see it hiding under the television table. Catching it would be awkward but catching it was preferable to killing it for we normally catch them if we can and put them outside the house. The cellar ones don’t get that consideration and are dispatched quickly if we see them. I had to resort to using the vacuum cleaner to get it and when I opened the cleaner I discovered it hadn’t survived the experience. It wasn’t the largest spider I have encountered in this house but the prize has to go to one that appeared in our former home which really was something to see. It could have filled and covered my hand if I had have been that way inclined to let it. During certain times in the year we are constantly having to remove webs from furniture and walls but we never seem to see the spiders weaving them. I guess they do it during the night. Recent news reports state that we may expect an invasion of foreign spiders who, not like most of our native varieties, are able to bite and cause injury if cornered. Not if I can get them first!

Shirley Anne

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Wanna larf ?

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 14, 2014

The best Ryanair complaint letter we’ve ever seen

on in Travel

Because having a relaxing holiday doesn’t have to cost the Earth…

Ryanair Complaint Letter

It’s no secret that we think Michael O’Leary is a complete tool. And we know we spend a lot of time harping on at you to  ditch the plane and take the train instead. But this hilarious letter from James Lockley to Ryanair really does sum up how frustrating and stressful taking a flight can be. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did…

Dear Sir/Madam,

I am writing for the attention of your customer experience team. I am definitely a customer, and believe me, you didn’t fail in providing us with an experience.

My wife and I had booked to fly from Stansted on the Thursday 17th April, evening flight to Bratislava. After 2 hours of fun, fun, fun, stuck on the M25 doing 20 mph, we arrived at Stansted check-in with just one hour until the flight. Knowing the strict Ryan Air policy on ‘check-in closes 40 mins before the flight’ as you are the Low Fare Taxi of The Skies, we went straight to the Ryan Air assistant and explained our plight. She said we were still within the time and all would be fine but we had to make the attendant at check in aware and he would assist from there.

We approached the attendant as instructed and explained. Unfortunately, in the main part, due to him being a child, and forgetting to bring his mother to work, he heard only half of the words before his brain fell apart like a wet cake. He led us to the line for closing gates, advised we should wait and all would be ok. We stood patiently in the line for 20 minutes. We got to the front of the line and the lady, who we shall from this point refer to as Vacant, explained that she had literally just that second closed the flight and we had missed it. We complained that we had done as instructed and she said it was the child’s fault because he should have advised her that we were trying to board a closing flight and that because he hadn’t told her it was therefore our fault we had missed the plane.

Confused by this process of blame apportioning, another check-in clerk, who we shall refer to as Not That Bright, tried to blame us for not responding to the last call for the flight as we should have made ourselves known. I argued that the last call had not been made. Not That Bright then questioned Vacant on whether she had done a final call. Vacant did what she does best and looked, well,…… After establishing that the child had not informed Vacant we were here, and Vacant had forgotten to do a last call and that all of this was irreversible, and my fault, Not That Bright and Vacant conferred to agree this was not a problem they wished to deal with and told us to get in a very, very long line of very, very unhappy people at the quite wrongly titled ‘Customer Services Counter’ as it was in fact a Customer Shouting Desk. We complained and requested the attention of a manager.

Out came Colin, a man so angry all his hair had literally fallen out. He was so aggressive I can only assume he had accidentally inserted something sharp into somewhere private and been unable to remove it before he came to work. He was definitely a middle Gimp. I know this as Vacant and Not That Bright were clearly quite scared of him, and he can’t have been a Big Cheese as he was talking directly to customers and we all know from the papers that no-one in Big Cheese management at Ryan Air has ever seen, let alone spoken to an actual customer.

Middle Gimp had clearly listened hard at Ryan Air Middle Gimp school as he managed to take two perfectly calm and sane adults and in a matter of seconds reduce them to angry people considering violence.

‘Check-in opens 3 hours before the flight’ he barked repeatedly as if it was the answer to every question in life. We tried to ask Middle Gimp direct questions about why it was necessary for us to miss the flight because the Child had forgotten to do his job, and Vacant had forgotten to do hers.

‘Why is this our fault, and why should we miss the flight because Ryan Air staff have admitted they made errors?.

‘Check-in opens three hours before the flight’

‘Do you acknowledge we have just cause for complaint as we tried to do the right thing and the only reason we are not on the plane is because of communication failures with Ryan Air Staff?’

‘Check-in opens three hours before the flight’

‘What colour are my trousers?’

‘Check-in opens three hours before the flight’

‘Do you think economic sanctions on Russia will diffuse the escalating situation in Ukraine?’

‘Check-in opens three hours before the flight’

‘Were Man Utd right to fire David Moyes?’

‘Check-in opens three hours before the flight’

‘My tinkle is hurting, could you take a look if I promise not to tell anyone?’

‘Check-in opens three hours before the flight’

Middle Gimp then conferred with Vacant and Not That Bright, and agreed that this was all our fault as we should have noticed that Child had made an error and we should have called the flight ourselves to assist Vacant in doing her job because she was clearly busy being, well,…… Middle Gimp then insisted we go to customer the Customer Shouting Desk, as he was definitely not going to do anything else. This was handy as the queue was very long so that by the time we would reach the front the plane would be half way to Bratislava and the problem would be solved.

We waited patiently in line as customer after customer stood at the desk to hear the same song;

‘No, no, I can’t do that, no, there are no Middle Gimps available, no, no, sorry, no, give me all your money’

We got to the Customer Shouting Desk and explained our plight to the lady there (who was actually very nice and clearly should not be working for Ryan Air as a result). She apologised but explained that Middle Gimp had finished being angry for the day and had returned to his padded cage and there were no other Middle Gimps around. We would have to book in to the flight for the next day and we would have to pay £110 each to change the ticket. When she tried to re-book the flight she said that the flight we had tried to get was actually delayed by 1 hour and still at the air port and that what we should do is run to the gate with all our luggage, she would call through and they would check our bags into the hold at the gate. We ran as fast as we could, which is not very fast because I am fat, to security to do as instructed. Security advised us that because our flight should have left, even though it hadn’t, the ticket machine would not open the barrier for us and we would need to return to the Customer Shouting Desk.

We waited patiently in the very long queue yet again for about 40 minutes to discover the nice lady had also gone home now so we had to explain the whole thing again to a new lady that looked like all the joy had been removed from her life at birth. She recited the Ryan Air customer services song with a sterling level of apathy and dreariness, I am surprised she could muster the will just to breathe and stay alive.

‘No, no, I can’t do that, no, there are no Middle Gimps available, no, no, sorry, no, give me all your money’

She recited it with perfection, Middle Gimps across the world would have been in awe and the effectiveness of the techniques taught in Middle Gimp School. Seeing no other option but to hand over all our cash and come back the next morning we happily paid and got new flights.

As the new flight was at 6.25am in the morning we decided to get a hotel, we paid £79 for a room and got a taxi.

So, our customer experience was insightful and liberating. From the incompetent Child with a brain so full of girls and Vauxhall Corsa modifications he couldn’t actually listen or speak, through Vacant and Not That Bright who decided on reflection that anything they did wrong was our fault for not pointing it out to them, right through Middle Gimp who made a Tasmanian Devil look calm and Zen like, and the sad one, oh so sad, having every last drop of life sucked out of her by her chosen career at the Ryan Air Customer Shouting Desk. I very nearly jumped over the desk just to give her a cuddle and tell her everything would be alright if she could just muster the will to leave the Ryan Air Customer Shouting Desk and find a more fulfilling job, like starting the very first Israeli pork pie factory, or being a parking attendant in Tower Hamlets, or in fact just resigning herself to a slow and uncomfortable death would have been indistinguishable from the current position and would require much less effort.

The net result of this ‘experience’ was;

New Flights – £220
Hotel £79
Taxi x 2 £50 
Worlds most expensive sandwich in the only hotel we could get £35

1 x significant breach of Tort Law (2008 as quoted by Lord Atkin) by Ryan Air, Google it, it’s a cracking read. I will leave you to decide the monetary value of this.

1 x very angry and upset wife, in particular with Middle Gimp for being so unbelievably rude.

1 x Missed wedding reception for our Slovakian family (sorry, forgot to mention this nugget earlier) who all turned up from all over the country to see us for an event we were forced to miss, because Child and Vacant are clueless at best and Middle Gimp has anger management issues.

So, thank you Ryan Air for a comfortable and enjoyable experience. I have watched a program called the news so I fully expect this to land on the desk of the customer services team underneath the empty bottles and sandwich wrappers that you also file there. You treated us badly, you cost us money and made us miss our wedding reception through a display of incompetence I have not seen since Greece was allowed to have money and a cheque book.

I sincerely doubt you will do anything about this, compensate us, apologise, or even respond according to the news, so I have sent this recorded and sign for delivery to absolutely confirm my opinion of Ryan Air and that it is not just ‘lost in the post’

Regards

You bunch of…………….

DJ Lockley

P.S. Maybe Middle Gimp in particular, but Child, Not That Bright, and Vacant should purchase one of your reasonable priced tickets and go to Slovakia (assuming they were actually allowed on the plane. The Ryan Air employees there are smart, clever, bilingual, helpful, and polite and they should in my opinion experience an example of how they should do their job. The Slovak staff could explain it to them, but they wouldn’t be able to understand it, so it may be a waste of time after all.

End of article

The mind boggles though I have to add E and I have had similar experiences but nothing anywhere near to these. I am sure many others will have had some too.

Shirley Anne

Posted in Behaviour | Tagged: | 6 Comments »

Life after death

Posted by Shirley Anne on October 13, 2014

Is There Life After Death? Study Suggests

Consciousness Continues After Heartbeat Stops

Posted: 08/10/2014 11:27 BST Updated: 5 hours ago

Is there such a thing as life after death?

While this was once a question pondered by philosophers and religious groups, scientists are now seriously considering the possibility that consciousness can continue after a person has been clinically diagnosed as dead.

A large-scale study involving 2,060 patients from 15 hospitals in the UK, USA and Austria has found that patients experience real events for up to a three-minute period after their heart has stopped beating.

Dr Sam Parnia, assistant professor of critical care medicine and director of resuscitation research at the State University of New York and a former research fellow at the University of Southampton, said it was previously thought only hallucinatory events were experienced in these circumstances.

These are normally described as out-of-body experiences (OBEs) or near-death experiences (NDEs).

The Awareness during Resuscitation (Aware) study, sponsored by the University of Southampton, used objective markers to establish whether the experiences were real or hallucinatory.

The results showed that 39% of patients who survived cardiac arrest described a perception of awareness but did not have explicit recall.

A total of 46% experienced a broad range of mental recollections, 9% had experiences compatible with NDEs and 2% exhibited full awareness compatible with OBEs with explicit recall of “seeing” and “hearing” events.

One man in particular, a 57-year-old social worker from Southampton, was reported to have given a “very credible” account of what was happening in the room during the three minutes that he was “clinically dead”.

The man could describe the movements of the doctors and nurses in the room with uncanny accuracy. He told the researchers he felt he was standing in the corner of the room, observing the medical staff resuscitate him.

Dr Parnia said: “This is significant, since it has often been assumed that experiences in relation to death are likely hallucinations or illusions, occurring either before the heart stops or after the heart has been successfully restarted, but not an experience corresponding with ‘real’ events when the heart isn’t beating.

“In this case, consciousness and awareness appeared to occur during a three-minute period when there was no heartbeat.

“This is paradoxical, since the brain typically ceases functioning within 20-30 seconds of the heart stopping and doesn’t resume again until the heart has been restarted.

“Furthermore, the detailed recollections of visual awareness in this case were consistent with verified events.

“Thus, while it was not possible to absolutely prove the reality or meaning of patients’ experiences and claims of awareness, (due to the very low incidence – 2% – of explicit recall of visual awareness or so-called OBEs), it was impossible to disclaim them either and more work is needed in this area.

“Clearly, the recalled experience surrounding death now merits further genuine investigation without prejudice.”

Research psychologist at Nottingham Trent University Dr David Wilde, is currently gathering data on out-of-body experiences in an attempt to discover a pattern.

Speaking to The Telegraph, he said: “Most studies look retrospectively, 10 or 20 years ago, but the researchers went out looking for examples and used a really large sample size, so this gives the work a lot of validity.

“There is some very good evidence here that these experiences are actually happening after people have medically died.

“We just don’t know what is going on. We are still very much in the dark about what happens when you die and hopefully this study will help shine a scientific lens onto that.”

The study was published in the journal Resuscitation.

End of article……………..

Paradise: Ascent of the Blessed

Paradise: Ascent of the Blessed (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The problem I find with this argument is that it speaks about the conscious mind and nothing is said about the spirit which is the essence of the being. Conscience and spirit are two separate things. Conscience is linked to the physical whilst spirit is not. There can be no definitive proof of life after death unless somebody rises from death to live again as Jesus did and was visible proof to thousands who saw him after he had arisen. Anything connected with the brain dies when the brain dies but the spirit within the body, the person, rises for it cannot be destroyed by physical death. Only one person can destroy the spirit and that is He who made it, our heavenly Father. I firmly believe this to be true and was discussing this very thing with someone recently. My argument is this, if I am wrong I have lost nothing but if I am right I have gained more than I can imagine. However if someone doesn’t agree that I am right they too have lost nothing if I am wrong but have lost their soul, their spirit and are condemned for eternity if they discover that I was right. Some choice isn’t it? Some choice it may be but certainly one that should be seriously considered whilst the opportunity to do so is still possible.

Shirley Anne

 

Posted in Belief, Death and mortality, Faith, God, Gods love through Jesus, Heaven, Hell, Jesus Christ and The Holy Spirit, Life, Salvation | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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