Friday, 21 August 2015

A visit to the seaside

Since I last posted we have been to the seaside. It was not the seaside as we know it here in the UK. This is not a British beach or even a Mediterranean one. The trip was unplanned and turned out to be quite an adventure. There was no Punch and Judy, sticks of rock or kiss me quick hats. The beaches were almost empty. The scenery was stunning and the wildlife was fascinating. My next post will fill in the gaps.

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Life goes on

I had not intended to neglect my blog for so long, but I simply have not had the time to get to it since I wrote my last post. In case any of you thought that my trip on February 13 was terminal - it was an inconvenience which left me feeling rather sorry for myself for a couple of weeks, but since then I have been fine. I am really not sure where the time has gone, but then I am always busy. We have just returned from a week in Ireland, which was enjoyable but a bit disappointing after last year's visit when we had glorious weather. To write about it  would make a rather boring post. Instead I thought that I would bring you up to date by posting about the events of the last few months.

A few years ago now, we had a leak through the ceiling of our study, which meant that it would need to be replastered. It was not due for redecoration so we put off doing anything about it until recently. We did get the leak sorted out at the time. So the second week in February found us starting to empty the study in preparation for having the ceiling replastered. My view was that everything needed to come out. Husband thought that we could get away with taking out as little as possible. In the time since the study was last decorated it had morphed into cross between Aladdin's cave and Steptoe's front room. The replastering of the ceiling was booked for the beginning of March and  it took us until then to empty the study. In the process we shredded reams of old papers, through out a stack of old magazines and all sorts of other things. For several weeks our paper recycling box was bulging to overflowing. We had donated the old study furniture to the local hospice for them to sell in their shop, but they could not collect it until after the ceiling was replastered.  It was a minor inconvenience, which we got around. We ended up with the various contents of the sudy secreted around the cottage - in the hall, in the conservatory, in bedroom 2 and in bedroom 3.

My aim was to get the contents back into the study as soon as possible. Once the ceiling had been replastered we had to wait a few a few days for it to dry out before we could decorate the study. Then the new carpeted could be fitted. I had worked out the time necessary for the decoration and booked the carpet fitting. Timing was tight, but we made it. The following day the first of the new furniture was delivered. The final piece of the jigsaw was for husband to put up new book shelves. Four months on and the cottage is still not straight. It is no surprise that we have been here eleven years now and the cottage is still not finished.The whole experience has been worse than moving house. Yesterday morning whilst husband was out I put back into the study, four boxes of books from bedroom 3 and some files from bedroom 2. I also had a go at tidying it up. Husband is determined to recreate the ambience of the study pre-decoration. it contains two printers, two computers, three laptops and a tablet computer. Why so many? Well he is trying to sell some of them, as they have been replaced and are now surplus to requirement.

In the middle of all this upheaval husband gave me two weeks notice that he was going to retire four months earlier than he had planned. I should have seen it coming. The writing was on the wall. I had expected  him to work until the end of August, but in the end I had no say in the matter and he retired at the end of April. Since then we have been concentrating, not very successfully, on getting the study back before making grand plans for our retirement. At the momemt I am taking things as they come and have not tried to impose any sort of routine on him. When it all gets to be too much I escape to the garden.

Friday, 13 February 2015

Friday the thirteenth comes early

Are you superstitious? Do you live in dread of Friday 13 and avoid walking under ladders? Friday 13 normally does not bother me. It is usually just like any other day. I have to admit that I try to avoid walking under ladders, especially since I accidentally walked under a ladder about 18 months ago. In the following weeks all manner of things went wrong. Maybe it was simply coincidence, but my experiences certainly gave some substance to the old wives tale. Today, Friday 13, has so far been a normal day, but yesterday most definitely was not.

In the early hours of Thursday February 12 I woke as I often do and got out of bed to go to the bathroom. Something that I must have done, quite safely, literally thousands of times, but this time was different. I caught my foot on something and before I knew it the chest of drawers in the corner was speeding towards me with a Maori greeting and it was not friendly. I know what you are thinking - she was drunk. Well I am afraid that you are wrong. It was three days since any alcohol had passed
my lips. Before I could indicate that the feeling was not mutual my nose had made contact with the chest of drawers. Suddenly there was blood everywhere, on my PJs, on the bedclothes and the carpet, although I have to say that it was not as gory as Wednesday evening's episode of Wolf Hall when Anne Boleyn's miscarriage was depicted in graphic detail, which I am sure was not necessary.

Half asleep, shaken and shocked, panic set in as the blood poured out. Thankfully I quickly realised that I needed to get myself to the bathroom and put my pharmacist's hat. Then I quickly managed to staunch the bleeding. I considered waking my husband who was fast asleep, blissfully unaware of what was going on. He could sleep through an earthquake and in any case he does not like blood and the last thing that I needed was him passing out. I cleaned myself and things up as best I could and took myself back to bed. I knew that I would not sleep for some time, so read and debated whether to take myself to A&E or my GP in the morning. Had I broken my nose or was it just bruised? My mother had broken her nose as a child. I remember her telling me how it had been painful and tender and had bled for a long time. Her parents didn't take her to a doctor and her nose set itself crooked. As she got older her nose became even more crooked. I did not want to suffer the same fate. Eventually I managed a few hours sleep. By the time that I got up I had changed my mind about going to see anybody. As a result of the lack of sleep I really did not feeling like dragging myself anywhere. I reasoned to myself that my nose had not bled for a long time. It did not look or feel broken and was more uncomfortable than painful. My diagnosis was of a bruised rather than broken nose. Once up and dressed I consulted Dr Internet as most people do today and found this page which set my mind at rest. My symptoms did not fit those necessary for a visit to my GP or A&E. In any case the last thing that I needed was to mix with coughs and sneezes, which could result in my bruised nose having to cope with a streaming cold.

Thursday 12 was a write off of a day. I spent he morning clearing up the aftermath of the night's events and booking the carpet cleaning wizard who lives in the next village, to come and remove the blood from the carpet for me. In the past he has successfully removed red wine from our off white, living room carpet. In the afternoon I pottered around the cottage. My plans for the day in tatters. It seems that for me, at least, Friday 13 came a day early and the worrying thing is that it could all happen again next month. Then a few days later we have the Ides of March.