After a day or so of suffering with cold symptoms I began to feel much better by late Monday afternoon. Even so I remained at home and indoors though outside it was calm and reasonably warm. I didn’t expect the weather to stay that way, just typical I thought especially as there remained a leak on the garage roof. E’s nephew was supposed to return and check it out on Monday but as seems to be the norm these days he didn’t turn up. I mentioned to E that I supposed he thought it would be a simple case of applying a little more fibreglass infused paint to patch it up. It would take far more than that especially as the chipboard beneath the paint was by then wet. More on that when it gets the repair it shouldn’t have needed had the work been done as I’d asked. Did it really matter in the great scheme of things? Not really I suppose. Our next-door neighbour on our right (depending from which standpoint you take) has had some tradesmen working in his garden removing the existing concrete posts and wood panels to replace them with the same posts and new panels. He has had many problems with this panelling over the years. In the first place the original installers of the ‘fence’ didn’t align the posts correctly. They were either listing or unevenly spaced or both! Whenever there was a high wind the panels would get blown out or be damaged in the wind. As I write this on Monday evening the workmen have completed most of the work and will presumably return in the morning to finish it. So far it is all looking good. The new panels have a latticed portion at the top which will dampen the effects of the wind besides looking much better than the old ones.
Picture taken from inside through a window. The problem we have around here is that the wind is predominantly from the west, the right in the picture, so the fence takes the full brunt of any high winds we have. There are things I want to be doing outdoors too at the time of writing but until I am feeling much better they are shelved. I haven’t been able to go for a walk for a few days either so I am keen for things to get back to normal. We often fail to appreciate our good health until we fall ill don’t we?
Out-of-Sync (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Not very often is it that I complain about being unwell and for reason, I am seldom unwell. That is a good thing and I am happy I can at this time be able to say it for many folk have the misfortune of having poor health. In that respect I am fortunate but it isn’t to say I never get ill or feel ill, at times I do. On Friday I began to feel a little ‘under the weather’ as they say but I soldiered on and stuck it out. I had though I was suffering the beginnings of a cold for I was beginning to feel the symptoms, dull aches and pains in my upper body, arms and back. No headaches but a general feeling of being drained of energy. I plodded through Saturday, staying indoors for most of the time except when E and I were examining the leaking garage roof (see yesterday’s post) and effecting a temporary repair until Monday when her nephew would come and check it out. Incidentally, the guys who were supposed to return on Saturday to install the free alarm unit on the new garage door didn’t arrive. I received a call on Sunday morning from one of them who apologised. Evidently his brother, the other fitter, had been involved in an accident whilst carrying out work on the installation of another door elsewhere on Saturday morning and he had been taken to hospital. It was arranged that they would fit our alarm later in the day. The alarm would be fitted one day in the forthcoming week. Anyway my routine for Saturday evening was to simply relax and watch television then have an early night. However after a couple of hour’s sleep I awoke with severe stomach cramps. Trapped air. After some time of sipping water and burping I felt more at ease but couldn’t get myself off to sleep again. I finally did get some sleep after a toilet visit at six o’clock. That meant I didn’t arise on Sunday morning until almost noon! By the time I got downstairs it was one forty-five. I felt awful and didn’t want any food. E told me to take a pain-killer but the one thing I do not do is to take medication of any kind unless it is absolutely necessary. I would rather suffer a little discomfort than take a drug which only masks the problem anyway. Obviously I would and have taken acute medication in the past and will continue to do so for chronic illnesses. So Sunday was again spent relaxing indoors trying to get my body back into sync.
After an unintended sleep-in the previous day I was determined to get up early on Monday morning to go for a walk so it was that by eight-twenty I found myself pounding the streets on my way doing just that. Over the last few weeks I had been suffering with a persistent rash on my back and couldn’t shift it. It was similar in appearance to that shown in this picture though I doubt it was the same condition…
Vesicular rash of Rickettsia australis (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
It wasn’t so much the rash that was the nuisance but rather the itch that accompanied it. For a time I thought I had it under control but on Sunday the itch got worse and I had to do something about it. I took my walk to pass the doctor’s surgery with a view to arranging an appointment and to my good fortune I was accommodated that same morning at 9.50 . It meant I had to cut the walk short but it was more important I got to see a doctor. I returned at the appointed time but as usual I had to wait an extra ten minutes or so. Twenty minutes later I was at the pharmacy collecting the ‘Betnovate’ cream prescribed for the rash. Soon after I returned home E walked through the front door. I said, ‘You’ve been to the doctor’s haven’t you’? I didn’t know that, just had the feeling but the amazing things was, I was right! She must have driven there whilst I was at the pharmacy so our paths didn’t cross. Neither of us knew the other intended to see the doctor that morning as the decisions were made on the spur of the moment. She had been suffering with a possible hair-line fracture in her foot and an appointment for her to see a specialist at the hospital was made. Anyway the pair of us were making sure we were getting our problems sorted. We both remained at home until later in the afternoon when I was asked to fit a couple of replacement lighting units for someone a couple of miles away. It was almost time for our evening meal by the time I returned.
Subject to Change (Switched album) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Some things we humans do are never spoken about to others unless they are our doctor, surgeon or nurse in which case we open up and tell them like it is. ‘Too much information’ is often the response if we make the attempt to describe ‘a personal problem’ and yet these ‘personal problems’ happen to us all. A mark of civilization it must be that we hide away our bodily functions and intimate functions when paying visits to ‘the little girls/boys room’. We cannot even say out loud, ‘toilet’ or ‘lavatory’ and use synonyms instead which is rather pointless as everyone knows exactly what you mean. How does the name change alter the way we respond? Strange beings we are. So now then I might wish to relate an unfortunate experience I had on Wednesday morning but how do I go about revealing the details without offending? If I use synonyms you will understand because you will be re-arranging the information in your thoughts to visualise what is revealed. If I tell it like it was you may just think the worst of me. For some it doesn’t matter one hoot. I arose early on Wednesday and was showered, dressed and make-up on before eight-thirty. I thought I might go for a walk before breakfast, just taking a little drink beforehand, though I always take water with me. It was a very wet morning and that didn’t change until mid-afternoon but I was covered up with my new waterproof jacket. I returned home before eleven o’clock and prepared a coffee and a cup of tea, the coffee for E and the tea for me. I just wanted a change for a change! I sat in the rear lounge with E who was doing some craft work on her lap. Suddenly I felt the urge to go visit the lavatory and for more than just a wee. I sat there for ages thinking ‘here I am broken-hearted, paid a penny and only **rted’. Nothing happened except that I began to feel abdominal pain as if constipated but I also felt nauseous and light-headed. I sat down for a minute but had to go upstairs to fetch something. As I got upstairs I dashed into the toilet there and gave it another go. Again nothing so I went to my bedroom to fetch what I had gone up there for but as I walked into the room my legs became like jelly (jello) and I collapsed to the floor. I had fainted. E came upstairs to see if I was alright but by then I had risen and was on my way to the toilet once more feeling very sick indeed. Have you ever felt that no matter which position you try you still remain uncomfortable? Eventually I asked E if she could bring me some honey and a spoon. After taking a spoonful I began to lose the nausea but was still in pain having not passed any solids (okay poo) yet. After what seemed an age it finally happened and everything went back to normal, or so I thought. I needed some sustenance but found I couldn’t eat anything except a spoon-full of jelly or jello. I hadn’t been constipated by the way, it was just the first part…..if you know what I mean! Hopefully I will have described my bad experience without causing offence though I know that even those remotely offended know full-well what I meant.
For once I was first up on Saturday morning though by the time I had showered, dressed and put on my make-up to go downstairs E had beaten me to it. Our youngest son had stopped overnight but he didn’t get downstairs until much later. The post had been delivered early and strangely there were three letters, one for each of us. I opened mine to find enclosed a cheque for an over payment on an insurance I had made. Although it was my money and not a windfall or prize it was still a nice surprise. It meant however a trip to town in order to bank it. I was going for a walk anyway so it wasn’t an inconvenience. E opened her letter and read it before giving it to me to read also. She had won a cash prize of two hundred pounds ostensibly to spend in a Michelin starred restaurant for two people with a further one hundred and fifty pounds to cover expenses in getting there. A cheque for three hundred and fifty pounds made out to cash. She could spend it as she wished. The third letter turned out only to be a bank statement. I congratulated her on her win, something I have done many times over the last few years as she is always winning prizes of one sort or another. I took the walk into town and after depositing the cheque I stopped at a church café to have a coffee before walking back home. It was after twelve o’clock when I got back and E was eating a couple of items of fruit and she was now dressed to go to her group’s monthly meeting. She had been complaining over the last few days about a pain and the swelling of her left foot. I had advised her a day or two earlier to see the doctor in case it had been broken but she had insisted she hadn’t had an accident to cause it. I suggested she didn’t go to the meeting but rest her foot but she had decided by then to visit the hospital to have it checked. The doctor’s surgery isn’t open on a Saturday afternoon so it had to be the hospital. Naturally I drove her to the hospital but I didn’t wait there. I drove out of the hospital to park elsewhere to avoid paying parking fees and waited for almost two hours. She was to call me when her treatment was over. I drove off to the garden centre to spend an hour there and still she hadn’t called me so I drove back, parked up and walked into the outpatients department to see if her treatment was over. The waiting room was full, the average waiting time for minor problems was three hours and for major problems two and a half hours! More than three hours had passed since I had dropped her off and fortunately her treatment by then was just about over. I walked back to collect the van and she was outside waiting. They had X-rayed the foot and found it wasn’t broken or fractured but couldn’t say with any certainty what the problem was though E had mentioned she had been bitten by an insect. Perhaps it was just the reaction to that but it put her on crutches until it clears up. She is having a bad time of it with her other condition (spina-bifida) without now having to put up with this inconvenience too. I had missed lunch, something I am well used to, so by the time we arrived back home at five-thirty I was rather hungry. We ate our meal and that was the day almost over.
A few days ago one of our next-door neighbours asked if she could dispose of her ‘green’ waste in our wheelie bin. We have two bins as quite often they both get filled between collections. One we keep in the rear garden and the other in the front but as the rear garden produces more waste we transfer it to the front when it gets full and replace it with the one there which isn’t. It all depends upon the time of year if we need to switch them around. As it was when she asked the bin in the front garden had nothing in it whilst the one in the rear garden was half-filled. It meant she could put her waste in the front bin. It wasn’t a large amount and only filled the bin to a third of its capacity. She brought the waste in two black bags though neither of them were full. E had answered her call, she phones us even though we live next door, I was in the front lounge and I opened the window as she arrived with the bags. After she had emptied the bags she tried to thank me but was gasping for breath. I apologised for not collecting the waste myself but I doubt it would have made much difference as she probably would have still moved it herself. The bags were not heavy as it turned out. Our neighbour suffers with emphysema and has to use an oxygen bottle for sixteen hours in the day, though eight of those hours are taken whilst she is sleeping. Her condition was brought about because of her smoking habit and though she was diagnosed with the condition several years ago she continued to smoke. In more recent times she has made an effort to stop and as far as we knew she had stopped but quite often we would see her in her garden with a cigarette. E tells her off but it seems not to have made much impact, at least until a week or two ago when I had occasion to call at her house only to find her sitting on the bench smoking! E was livid and once again had words with her. So far it seems to have worked but for how long? I know it is difficult to stop the smoking habit for many people and whether their life depends upon it or not makes little difference. My own mother died with cancer through her smoking and I remember she found it difficult to stop even after she knew she had cancer. It is easy to talk about overcoming addiction if you’ve never been an addict yourself and in today’s society there are many things which are addictive. Educating young people to encourage not taking that first cigarette or drug does not always succeed. Some people are hell-bent on self-destruction even when they know the possible consequences.
It was unusual for me to have had a dream on Sunday night, nothing to do with the day of course but for some time now I don’t recall having had a dream. Perhaps it was because I had written a post about dreams earlier in the day and had reminded myself about things. The very short dream I had involved an old friend or two, a bar, two strangers and a dark confined place in which it all took place. The barmaid was a friend who had moved out of the area a few years ago and has since stopped communicating. She never was a barmaid but worked as a safety officer for a large biscuit manufacturer so why she was serving drinks I have no idea. The other friend who has also moved away was socialising with me in the dream. We often socialised in the short time we knew each other, about six or seven years but she too has stopped communicating. In the dream she had put on some weight whereas she had been tall and slim. Behind us in the cramped space were two strangers who in the dream seemed not to be. The male was trying to attract my attention to his friend or partner’s face which appeared to have something wrong with it though I hadn’t noticed. On my right higher up and sitting on a bench were two more people who spoke with me but I couldn’t understand what they were saying. The rear of the bar was dark and empty, devoid of anything tangible. That was it, the end of the dream.
I had planned to walk into town early the following morning so I retired to bed early too but couldn’t drop off to sleep for some time. It had been very windy for a few days and was to continue that way for another day. I dislike the wind but was determined to take the walk anyway as the plan was to buy some toiletries. I wanted to walk all the way there and back simply for the exercise which is what I did. There was no hurry, I had no appointments and had nothing to do at home that I was in the mood to be doing so I took my time. I took the more sheltered route to keep out of the wind as much as possible by walking the back streets. I like walking there because I take in the scenery, the buildings (I like architecture) and also the private gardens along the way to admire the plants. Surprisingly I was only away from home for an hour and a half.
‘I’ve had to book my appointment two weeks in advance, so we’ll both sit here until I feel unwell.’
I was sitting in the lounge when the house phone rang but I didn’t answer it. If it was for work they would call my mobile phone. Well my mobile phone rang a minute later and it was the doctor’s surgery asking if I would like to receive a vaccination against shingles. At first I declined but then changed my mind and accepted the offer. It is free anyway. I would receive it late in the afternoon. I only accepted the offer because as a child I had contracted chickenpox and could therefore be at risk. The virus which causes chickenpox can lay dormant deep in the nervous system for years and if it re-emerges can cause shingles. The vaccine is offered to adults over the age of fifty……………I just squeezed in………Ahem…….(I was born in 1945)
Then I received a call for my electrical services despite my still not advertising! It was a small job I would do on Thursday.
For some apparent reason soon after I arrived downstairs for my breakfast on Wednesday morning I began to feel chest pains. Now immediately you might be thinking, heart attack, angina or some other debilitating symptom but I am glad to report it was none of those things. The pain was over my right breast, on the surface, that is it was emanating from my muscles there. They were sharp and intermittent, one minute all was well and the next it wasn’t. After a while the pain moved to the centre of my chest as if it were indigestion. I was tired too because I didn’t get to sleep until after two o’clock and even then it was restless. Anyhow I realised the pains were due to a digestion problem of one sort or another and typical of a reaction to certain foods or even trapped air. I had eaten a breakfast consisting of mainly fruit however so that might have triggered a reaction though I don’t usually suffer eating fruit. A toilet visit helped and I deliberately skipped lunch except for a warm glass of milk sweetened with honey. Gradually over the day things improved and by evening I was as right as rain as they say. That was the not so nice part of my day. As I hadn’t been feeling too well I did no work but spent the day relaxing. I was looking out of the kitchen window admiring the flowers on some of the shrubs we have planted so I went outside and took a couple of photographs. I had already taken some a few days earlier too. This was the lovely part of the day, being able to see some of the new shrubs flowering for the first time since planting…
Because the shrubs are infants I didn’t expect too many flowers and especially with the ones only planted in the Autumn last year. I am hoping there will be far more as the shrubs grow larger. I was happy to see the results of all my hard work over the last eight months.
Stopped from gardening that is. I had a couple of electrical jobs to do on Tuesday morning (21st) though the first one turned out to be only an advisory visit for which I levied no charge. The work to correct the customer’s problems would be too much for me to do. I have worked for the customer before but only to do small jobs, basically what I advertise I do. As the house wasn’t far away and as I was there only a few minutes I didn’t ask for payment, though it was offered. I drove on to the second job which turned out to be more awkward in its execution than I had expected but it paid well. The house was occupied by an elderly couple and the man, who was 86 years old, was bed-ridden due to a physical deterioration but who was also suffering with dementia. He just lay there in the rear room watching television whilst his wife, a few years younger, did all the running around. She was however in good health which was just as well. My work involved replacing lighting fittings and to check out a loose wall power outlet (as shown above). The lighting part of the work was the troublesome bit, wall-mounted units, but as usual I managed. The power outlet was supplying the power to the television and to the bed on which the man lay. It powered the vibrating mattress on which he lay. It vibrated to relieve the pain in his inactive muscles. When I see things like this I am not upset but a little saddened. I realise however that it could happen to any of us. I get annoyed when I see people moaning and groaning about their problems when there are others who are unable to do anything about theirs. I think people who think everything should go their way all of the time are missing the point, at least they are in a position to do something about it if it means so much to them. There are always going to be people worse off than ourselves and we should be grateful for what we have got, especially good health. It was around noon when I drove back home in the glorious sunshine. The day was also very windy however with rain by late afternoon to follow and much the same had been forecast for Wednesday. It would be Friday and Saturday before I could consider working in the garden as those days promised to be dry and sunny. I would be dining out on Thursday with E together with my youngest brother and his wife. Thursday would be a less favourable day for working in the garden anyway.
Relaxed rabbit (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
This post is really an extension to the previous one in a way. Over the last three months I have done extensive work in the garden in removing bluebells by digging them out one by one, sometimes a few at a time and it has been hard work. There are no other ways to remove bluebells other than by digging them out for they are very resistant to herbicides and cannot be removed that way. I have nothing against the plant itself, they are nice flowers but the problem with them is they spread themselves all over the garden which earns them the same status as weeds. As we don’t want that sort of takeover bid in our gardens I’ve had to spend a lot of time removing them. In the week preceding my writing this post I have succumbed to the effects of that work, muscular pain in my upper legs and buttocks due to them being stretched whilst I have been in a kneeling position. It got so bad I could hardly walk at times and it was uncomfortable whenever I sat down. I was reluctant to stop the work because I was keen to get rid of the bulbs but the weather turned wet and windy which stopped me anyway. That was a good thing for I began to realise that it just wasn’t worth injuring myself because of some unruly plants especially as they would still be there to dig out another day. I decided therefore to slow down the process and be less uptight about getting the work finished. My problem is that once I get the bit in my mouth I can’t wait to rush in and get the work done. So since the previous weekend things have slowed down considerably and at the time of writing this on Monday I have done only an hour’s work in the rear garden. I mentioned that in the previous post. Today, as I write this on Monday I have spent only a half hour digging out a few bluebells in the front garden flowerbeds. As much as I wanted to do more because the weather turned bright and sunny I resisted the temptation. In any event my muscles had not fully recovered and I didn’t want to prolong the healing process. My electrical work has been slow in coming in but I have some work in that area yet to do. I am finding it difficult to slow down and spread the work out but it is something I need to do else burn myself out! It is harder too because I am doing the work alone at the moment. I need to become a more relaxed bunny!
‘I’ve had to book my appointment two weeks in advance, so we’ll both sit here until I feel unwell.’
I had a lousy weekend, especially on Saturday. I was suffering with aches and pains and although I had been sweating a lot I felt cold most of the time. I was well-wrapped up but that didn’t seem to make much difference. I went to bed around ten and a boyfriend called me in response to a text message I had sent him. I had to tell him I was in bed and about to go to sleep so the conversation didn’t last long. The following morning I was as right as rain (odd expression that one) and rearing to start my day. I felt so much better so I guess the warmth of the bedclothes and my seeming strength and ability to shake everyday illnesses off did the trick. Anyway the point was I felt great. I had an electrical job to do for the guy in whose house I had worked the previous week but didn’t have the time nor the inclination to do it on the same day. It would have meant working all day and I was tired after I had finished the job I had been doing. I went along at nine o’clock did the work and finished around noon. I had received another call while I was there. It was from an old guy living in the next town who had a problem with his kitchen light and switch. I did the work and drove back to my own town to do some shopping, nothing special, just toiletries which I buy in bulk so that I don’t have to shop for them often. I drove home but left again immediately without getting out of the vehicle. I had forgotten to get diesel fuel for my van. I arrived back home fifteen minutes later and during that time E went out somewhere for the afternoon. When I got indoors there was the package containing the new shoes I had ordered late on Sunday! Now that’s what I call service. Strange thing about this is the fact that I had been experiencing problems with the company’s signing in pages when ordering. See yesterday’s post. More nice high-heeled stilettos. I opened the box and put them on to walk around in them to check they were the correct fit. They were perfect, so much so I didn’t want to take them off because they were so comfortable to walk in. Now these are high heels and yes they are over five inches but they really are comfortable. I have to add though that I am used to heels. Just a couple of pairs of my shoes are higher and they are hard to walk in but I will soon correct that with practice. Over the years I have tended to wear heels at four and a half inches so was never happy wearing anything higher but that is slowly changing. I used to think I would never wear high heels as I got older and most people my age wouldn’t think of it but I don’t look my age or feel my age either. After I had put everything away and sorted out my business paperwork I went outside to dispose of the cardboard and plastic waste and noticed some more bluebell shoots poking out of the flowerbed. I went inside to collect the keys for the garage then came out with tools and kneeling stool to begin digging out the bulbs. There were more than just a few but I persevered and dug them out, well all the ones that I could see. There will be more I’m sure of it but if there are they will show up soon enough. I returned indoors for something to eat as I had missed lunch. I’d had a very light breakfast too. It was only four o’clock so too early for my evening meal. I decided to have a bowl of fruit but gave up on it after only two mouthfuls. It seemed I wasn’t hungry so I put the bowl in the fridge to eat it later. Even now at six o’clock as I write this I am still not that hungry but I will eat. A text message had arrived but I hadn’t noticed. It was from the boyfriend asking if I was feeling better. Ah, that’s nice.
By Appointment Only (2007 film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I had to pay a visit to see the doctor on Thursday morning due to the rash I had on my both my arms and one leg. It appeared several weeks ago and at that time I thought it would disappear by itself for it seemed to do so at first. I had been treating it with a few different ointments but then after another couple of weeks it began to worsen again and was on occasion very itchy. I had to make an appointment with the doctor else it would never go away. Now the problem with many surgeries these days is actually getting an appointment in the first place, at least one reasonably quickly. Obviously emergency requests are honoured but this wasn’t an emergency by any stretch of the imagination. I had to wait almost two weeks or take a chance on there being time to see me in the meantime. That wasn’t going to happen as I had been very busy up until then so I took the earliest appointment they could give me which was eight-thirty in the morning. The surgery opens at that time so I was the first patient for the particular doctor I was to see. Five minutes later and I was out of the surgery and on my way to the pharmacy not far away in the village shopping centre. The pharmacy opens at nine so I had a twenty minute wait. I could have waited in the vehicle but I had parked it at a distance and besides there was a bench outside the pharmacy on which to sit. I sat there and watched the village get busy as people began coming in. It is amazing what you see if you have the time and I had plenty of that. Soon the pharmacist arrived and said hello as she entered the shop but it wasn’t yet opening time for customers, I had to wait a further five minutes. Because I was so early I had to inform the pharmacist that the doctor had only just sent my prescription as she would need to look up the details on her computer. She informed me it wouldn’t take long to sort my request but I still had to wait a further ten minutes. Finally she came over to the counter and apologised for having only one of the two prescribed items in stock and that I would have to call later to collect it. I asked if it could be delivered instead, a service which they do provide but it meant I would need to wait-in at home to collect the afternoon delivery. I wasn’t going anywhere anyway. I took the other prescribed item with me and went home. The delivery came later in the afternoon. It would be the first time I’d taken advantage of the delivery service but E however has all her medication delivered. Mind you she does have a lot of it. I am often the only one in the house when it arrives too so I am used to having to sign for it. Thursday afternoon was sunny, a nice time to go for a walk but that would have to wait till another day, I had to stay at home instead.
A sedentary person, or “typical couch potato” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I was watching the day’s news on television today (Wednesday) and smiled when I heard about an elderly widower who has been advertising for a job vacancy. He is just about 90 years old, his wife died two years ago and he says the boredom of not doing anything each day is driving him crazy. I know many his age who find it difficult to get up from the couch being as they are self-confessed couch potatoes! I admired his pluck and his obvious energy, even at his age, no, especially at his age. The newsreader went on to say that a local restaurant owner has invited the man along for an interview with the prospect of work to follow we assume if he is successful at the interview. I wish him success too. Not everyone wants to stop working as they get older it seems so I am in good company. I find it difficult to sit around doing nothing for any length of time but I don’t wish to spend my time doing useless things either. I like to be productive which means creating improvements in anything I do. It is good to spend time out of course but not for too long or too often. I know people who just flit away the hours going from place to place but actually getting nowhere, their time is spent looking at things or sitting in pubs and restaurants every day which would bore me to tears. Each to their own of course but I want to leave a lasting legacy that hopefully others will be able to enjoy when I’m gone. This is one of the reasons I like working for others or working at home on the house or especially in the gardens. I was looking out of the window in the wet room which overlooks the side of the house where I had been working during the summer, the ‘Plot’. I look at my achievements both there and elsewhere in the garden and am satisfied that what I have done is lasting. Whenever I look out of the windows at home my thoughts centre on what other improvements I can make. I am limited at this time of year as to what I am able to do simply because of the weather but I like making plans, in my head at least, for any future projects I’ve a mind to do. If I reach 90 I hope I will still have that same attitude and not resign myself or consign myself to a life of idleness.
Checking the blood pressure by using a sphygmomanometer and stethoscope. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I pay a visit to my doctor’s surgery every six months to have a routine check-up though that usually means only a blood pressure check. I receive what is termed ‘acute’ medication which in essence means they are an essential and long-term prescription. As my body doesn’t produce hormones I have to take them in pill form, though there are other methods too. Taking these hormones (estrogen), or too many of them for too long can be detrimental to health. Increasing the possibility of the chances of developing heart disease or breast cancer are two risks cited by some doctors. Naturally, having high cholesterol develops high blood pressure which further increases the risks of taking hormones. It is therefore necessary to have check-ups now and then. My own cholesterol levels border just above what is considered average though as my doctor kept telling me in my case the risks are lower because I am relatively an active person. I do take Aspirin regularly which is beneficial too. However, even though my records are on display to any doctor or nurse who is tending me at the surgery, there is no consistency in the approach because at each visit I am treated by a different person. The doctor I had for many years retired some five or six years ago and since then I have never seen another doctor on a regular basis. There are usually five doctors and a couple of nurses at the surgery but only one of the doctors has been practicing there since I moved into the neighbourhood way back in 1988. This time I got to see a foreign doctor who I think is an eastern European guy. He was very polite and efficient and I spent only a very short time with him. He prescribed a further six-months supply of my medication which I collect from the local pharmacy a couple of days later. My next visit, unless there is another reason to visit beforehand, will be in May.
Year of the Gentleman (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I wasn’t feeling well later on Tuesday. It began soon after my return home from a walk. Though the walk was enjoyable I suppose the cold wind had gotten through to me. I went to bed feeling a little miserable but felt somewhat better the following morning. All I wanted to do was to rest for the day and get myself back to normal but just after lunch an elderly gentleman called to ask if I could check a faulty light or him. I use the term ‘gentleman’ because I discovered on meeting him that he fitted the description very well. He was polite, chivalrous, well-mannered and well-spoken and well-dressed too, something sadly lacking in many guys these days. The light was fixed to the ceiling but behind a suspended ceiling beneath. He claimed it had been working for twelve months and perhaps it had but the connections weren’t good and it had been barely hanging from the one screw which had prevented it dropping from the ceiling altogether. For a small light that wouldn’t have been a problem but this was a twin-lamp six-foot long fluorescent unit. The lamps had not been installed properly either so they would never have worked. I removed it from the ceiling and tested it. There was nothing wrong with it and I returned it to the ceiling, this time fixing it there properly. That was it, the only work I had done in a couple of days. I was paid my minimum fee and I returned home. I was still feeling a little under the weather. Just before my evening meal one of my regular customers called to ask if I would check out the light in her kitchen as it had ceased working. I had fitted the unit a couple of months ago so I wondered why it had failed so soon. I arranged to check it out the following day, after I had done the other work I had scheduled elsewhere. The other work entailed checking out another faulty light unit! You could say therefore that I am on light duties (forgive the pun) which is just as well I suppose given the way I have been feeling lately.