Well, I started this once and something went funny, the screen blanked out and I lost the lot before I could post it. I’ll try again.
I’ve never left the site, just wasn't posting. I’m not going into all the reasons just here. Over the weekend I popped by and read a few posts, and replied to a couple. A few people have asked how I’m doing so I thought I may as well post an update.
I’ll start with the bad news first. My Dad passed away last August. He had suffered for some time with Lewy Body Dementia. In his final year he was in a care home. To start with he was able to go out now and again and knew who was who. Sadly, he wasn't able to walk any more so had to be hoisted and wheeled about. He got worse and ended up in bed all the time, curled up, his bones fused in that position. It was no life for him and we think he just gave up. He hadn't been the same since Mum went in April 2012. Since then I've lost two more aunties, all of my Dad’s side of the family in that generation are gone now. My brother and I know – we are next
I know my own condition is getting worse, I recently had a full spirometry test and the results were well down on previous. I puff and pant a lot more, I wheeze, I walk slower and everything takes longer to do. I'm just at the end of one of my regular chest infections with a swine of a cold thrown in for good measure. My wife knew it was bad as I confined myself to the sofa with a quilt for four days. Today I’ve got up and dressed to stop myself going mad. Not going anywhere, I dare not go out of the door. I just gave myself a shock as I coughed up some gunk. We’re told to look at it and check the colour etc. I saw some dark red flecks in it and wondered where the blood was coming from – then remembered I’d just been drinking Ribena…
I’ll quickly try to catch up on other things. I got my central heating installed in September 2013 and have had three great winters where the house has been warm and comfortable. Before I was sleeping in an armchair wrapped in sleeping bags and fleeces and was still cold. Our old gas wall heaters got condemned and taken out, we still have the gas fires but very rare we have them on now.
I finally got my DLA mobility component after the third application and appeal merry-go-round. I have a small car and can get to hospital appointments etc. Not only can I get around but my confidence has increased too. Sometimes I use taxis and trains, especially if I am visiting a beer festival. I’ll come back to those later. I’ve been encouraged by the wonderful assistance people at most rail stations. If I book in advance they help me to the platform or to change trains, really good and I usually get my connection too. I have to plan these days out well in advance to allow the time for all that of course, but that’s become normal for me now. Gone are the days when I’d just turn up at the station and hope I could get a train somewhere.
Yes, I still do my radio shows. They are all done here at home, pre-recorded then uploaded to the station to play out when they want them. That means I can take my time in preparing them. If I am recording I can stop and re-do a bit if I cough (or muck it up) or gasp for breath. I was a DJ for many years so have a heck of a music collection. Each show I do has its own format and jingles and it’s a bit like shelling peas finding the material then a jigsaw putting it together. I need to keep occupied, I’m not one for sitting watching TV all day. I can’t do gardening and there’s not a great deal else I can do that interests me.
If you are in East Yorkshire you can hear me on Vixen101, 101.8FM from Market Weighton. You can also hear the station via the website at vixen101.co.uk or on your smartphone and tablet get the TuneIn app (free) and look for Vixen101. I do the Sunday 70’s show from 2-3pm every Sunday afternoon and I also do alternate Saturday lunchtime from 11am to 1pm there.
I’m also on Internet radio station WRFN1025. Use the TuneIn app on tablets and mobiles and search for WRFN1025 or on computer go to wrfn1025.rocks to hear the station. I do three shows a week on there, Gordons Goldies, The Connections Hour and Remember When. This last week has been repeats and emergency backup shows as I’ve not been well enough to record any.
Because my wife works funny shifts we sometimes go for a pub meal as there isn’t time to cook by the time she gets in. I like a pint or two of real ale and we have a few favourite places although we’re finding others now I’m happier going further afield. I tend to drive there and the wife drives back, she does not drink alcohol unless she’s at home.
I joined CAMRA, the Campaign for Real Ale a couple of years ago and have now taken on a role with them to protect pubs from being converted into supermarkets or whatever with little warning. I’ll be doing the paperwork to register premises as Assets of Community Value. Nearly all done from home, mostly by email or phone. I can get to visit a few of them if I have to and I do have help within the branch if I can’t go myself. Again, it’s as and when I can do things, I don’t have to jump up and run out to stand in front of a bulldozer or anything like that.
And, being a CAMRA member, I like to visit beer festivals if I can. This goes back a few years to when I ‘met’ Warwickstag (David) on here and we arranged to meet at one such beerfest. I’m happy to say we’ve met many more time since then, along with a couple of other friends who enjoy the same sort of thing – good beer. I appreciate that David is worse than I am and he carries oxygen to these events. It’s a target to reach, finding a suitable venue that it’s possible to get to, planning the trip, getting the tickets and best of all, enjoying the day out. I’ve had a couple of late arrivals back home but it’s better to take my time and not rush, especially if I fell asleep on the train.
I'm sure there were bits I wrote before I've forgotten about now...