Which way to go?

14 04 2012

Is there a good way to die? I have just finished reading a great book ” The time Travelers Wife” and if you haven’t read this or might be planning to stop blogging now, in which a guy called Henry flits to and fro through time, popping in and out of his soul mates life. Henry’s soul mate Claire first meets Henry when she is about six and he is a grown man, there must be a reason why Henry is drawn to her as he has no choice where his time travel takes him ,so it must be some kind of Kismet. Their relationship ,purely platonic at this time, twists and turns along untill they finally meet when they are both in real-time and are adult. Their love, although encapsulated in this bizarre scenario is so believable that you naturally expect a happy ending. During a recent bout of insomnia I decided to read the next chapter of this romance and was surprised to find myself sobbing into its pages, never has a book moved me so. Henry has realised that he has never time traveled and met Claire as an old woman, he realises, and you would need to read the book to truly understand how likely this is, that during his travels he has died. He knows the year, which is some time off but is unable to tell Claire! I can’t begin to tell you how unbelievably sad this part of the book is but it did leave me with a burning question, would I want to know when I Was going to die so I could prepare for my own demise or would I like to just slip away unexpectedly?

Oddly while at the hairdresser’s today this subject came up. My hairdressers father had recently died from leukaemia and she was about to run the London marathon in his honour, this is going to be tough for the poor woman as she hadn’t expected to be accepted on her first application and is now training like mad. Had he been ill for long? No she said, he had only been diagnosed about six weeks before and wished he hadn’t known what he had.
On the other hand the mother of a close friend died last year of a heart attack, Carole had been fit and active, a non smoker and appeared to be in the best of health. Her family were devastated! So many things unsaid, so many gaps in their lives that Carole usually filled and they had not had time to consider the impact that her leaving them would have. But she would have hated a long slow death, so I suppose we should rejoice that she was spared that and remember her vitality and how she shaped the life that we still live in her memory.
In contrast, some people battle on with long illnesses for what seems like a lifetime. My sister in law Sue was diagnosed with a terminal tumour on her kidney, she was very brave and struggled on for many months. Unfortunately, or so it appeared to me, she was unable, even though she knew her time was short,to enjoy the remainder of her life as she was totally absorbed with looking for a cure, strange Australian herbs, visualisation, spiritual healing, hoping for not the impossible but the unlikely. Perhaps understandable as she had a young daughter who needed her, but very sad that her final days where so….that she could not have had more fun.
A good friend, Verinda, was cured of breast cancer, but I felt she was always waiting for its return. Unfortunately she was right and many years later it has returned. Verinda however seems relieved, I saw her recently and it was as if all her cares had fallen away, she looked so well and vibrant, full of life she seemed to have looked death in the eye and challenged it to spoil her fun. She will be missed, I hope I am as brave when my time comes.
Like many I have seen elderly parents fade away, I think welcoming an end of days. So many ways to leave, so many different paths and doorways, which one will be chosen for each of us? If you could choose , How would you like to go?


Falling Down 1.

22 10 2011

Funny old thing Falling down, if you do it often enough, which I do you don’t seem to hurt yourself. I watched Miranda Hart on the Jonathan Ross show tonight demonstrating her skill at the comedy fall and was reminded of the many laughs I have had while falling A**e over t*t.

Award winner: Miranda Hart swept the board at the British Comedy Awards for her partly self-deprecating show, Miranda, about a single woman who runs a gift shop

Over the years I seem to have made a habit of falling over. One minute I am walking along chatting ( sober I might add) and the next I am on the floor. Where it not for the fact that my falling is accompanied by sound effects I am sure my companions would just carry on walking leaving me un noticed lying on the floor.

I have to date fallen over a crack in the pavement, My own feet and a small pebble. I have while on a weekend break to Bath with friends skated down a field loosing all the loose change in my pocket and landed in a cow pat, Hubby and friends, Jenny and Eddy, could hardly stop laughing long enough to help me up.

Whilst walking home from Our Local Indian Take away I Managed to trip over a puddle, practically somersaulted before hitting the deck, accompanied by my traditional ooooooooo! and ended up seated on the pavement while hubby picked up both myself and our Curry supper, both remarkably in one piece.

While walking home from work with my friend I have fallen so many times that tonight when I stopped to rearrange my bag with a small ooh Sarah automatically whipped round expecting to find me on the floor.

I am not sure how I end up on the floor, funny knees, weak ankles, problems with my ears or just plain top-heavy but I just can’t stay on my feet. I think that maybe I too have turned falling down into an art form.

Luckily, thanks to my teenage judo classes I am sure, I have learnt to roll.

New Visitor.

21 10 2011

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We have a new Lodger, we were asked by an old friend to home Jade, a one year old Staffie Girl. After some deliberation we decided to bring her home on a weeks trial to see how she got on with Monty. A big mistake, she is adorable. She was at first very nervy, growling at poor Monty every time he moved, but he calmly rerouted where possible and continued to be his usual good-natured self. Now one week on she has helped herself to his bed, his toys, his food bowl and anything else he once considered his own and they now seem to be joined at the hip. I think they will be good house mates.

Jade must now be spayed as soon as possible as the last thing we need is puppy’s, which has set me thinking maybe the way forward in dog protection is a fund to neuter  bitches or possibly pay people to have their dogs spayed? This would reduce considerably the number of unwanted pups looking for homes and increase the chance of finding loving homes for older Dogs. To have Jade spayed is a huge expense and I am sure an unaffordable one for many people. I am sure many people who take on a cute little girl puppy even think ahead to the day when she will be mature and have no idea how determined to be mated they can be. Each day I receive a list of homeless, desperate  dogs from  http://www.dogsblog.com/  I am sure that Doggy Birth control is the answer. I have searched the Internet and can find many charity’s that help with vet costs but all stop at neutering, why?

Huston, I think We have a Problem.

11 10 2011

Does my bum look big in This

Poor Doris had a prolapse, in layman’s terms her bum fell out!

I let the hens out of the coop for a run and her bits had fallen out of her vent. My first reaction was oh my god, what on earth is that because she had  a swelling the size of a Golf ball hanging out of her. Ahhhhh the internet must have the answer? After much surfing I came across http://littlehenrescue.co.uk/after.aspx and this seemed to have all the instructions I needed.

Admittedly I was a bit short on some of the Materials

*Flexiguard bandage (equestrian product), or any bandage that sticks to itself and has elastic material? Nope but I do have a crepe Bandage and a safety pin

*Haemorrhoid cream, thats ok big tube of Preperation H upstairs

*Surgical pad? Oh dear, Sadly I seem to have a rather inadequate first aid kit. But… i do have a panty Liner.

*Surgical gloves? luckily I am good at improvising so one of the dogs poo bags worn over my hand will have to do.   Poor Doris, Her bum Fell out!Right equipment gathered, what next. It seems I must stick my finger in Poor Doris and poke her prolapse in. OOOOOH I am not sure I can do this,but what are the alternatives? Another hefty Vet bill or Wring her neck? Not sure I can do this either, so back to the internet. After some lengthy research and having read many smallholders forums it would seem that this is not an  uncommon event in the chicken world and  many have home helped their hens.

Don’t worry Doris I will be very gentle.

So there  I was, Knelt on the lawn on an unseasonably Warm October day.Hen between my Knees with its head up my skirt so she doesn’t struggle, Poo bag, generously lubricated with the preparation H on Hand with Nurse Monty happily leaping around eager to assist.                                                                         Monty thought he might like to helpRight, Gently push the prolapse back in inserting your finger a few centimetres. I took a deep breath and went for it,. Doris wriggled a bit but actually it wasn’t too bad, nowhere near as gruesome as i had expected. Doris did her damdest to push both the lump and my finger back out which was a bit weird, but I began to feel quite confident that I could do this, but every time I took my finger out the prolapse came back out.

Back to the little Hen instructions, if only I had fully read these in the first place. Push it in then hold the vent closed for five minutes.

OK back in the kneel, Chicken, Skirt formation, I poke Poor Doris’s  bits back inside her and hold closed the vent, Which from this position I can only describe as looking like A female Chicken Foreskin, if you get the picture? Stage two requires that I put more Ointment on the pad hold it in place over the vent while securely bandaging it in place so that the prolapse is unable to escape. This, the web site suggests is a four handed procedure, I unfortunately only have Two and a very unhelpful Canine Nurse. Now as anyone who has tried it will tell you, Bandaging a chicken is not easy. The Bandage unravelled all over the place, Doris was doing her Squawking best to escape my clutches and me two hands short when Nurse Monty decides to chase an imaginary cat out of the Garden, pulls a muscle in his leg and Joins the cacophony, Yelping and squealing in pain. Summoning as calm a voice as I could manage I persuaded him to lay down until I could get to him. Having secured Doris’s  truss with a big safety pin I stood back and couldn’t help but giggle as she staggered about in her new Pants! It Would seem that without Her wings for balance she cant stand properly and every few steps resulted in her laying on her side unable to get back up. For her own Protection I put her in a Big Cardboard box and the next Morning took off her bandages in case she needed to lay an egg. Not quite healed but improved we kept her on her own for the day in case the other, somewhat brutal hens, decided to peck at her. Any wound or scratch seems to be fare game to them.

I am now pleased to report that after a repeat procedure the next night Doris is now Fixed! Monty is still Nursing a sprained leg as he will Not stop charging about, but now is on a course of very expensive anti-inflammatory  stuff from the Vet.

Today I am a Chicken Fixer! Maralyn

Seagulls Show (January, 2011) « photographyofnia

23 09 2011

Seagulls Show (January, 2011) « photographyofnia. Once again I am reminded of an everyday thing that I take for granted. Why have I not seen the Charm of these birds before? Pay a visit to this site to see stunning views of a beautiful city.

My New Guitar and I will play it if it kills me.

12 09 2011

Well I finally have a guitar, it has been on my Christmas list for about three years and clearly nobody was going to buy it for me so I bought it for myself.Now those of you that don’t know me may be thinking go for it Answer-seeker, but this purchase was met by my friends and family with much eye rolling. Even my eldest son who is normally  very encouraging expressed doubts about my staying power.

Now I admit I do have a bit of a reputation for starting new projects and once I have set my mind on having a go at something I can’t rest untill my curiosity is satisfied.I have grown veggies, spent hours watercolour painting, knitted , sewed clothes toys and soft furnishings, sketched, embroidered, and kept Chickens, Baked Pizza  but stopped short of building a pizza oven in the back garden. I have tried my hand at writing, poetry, photography, icing craft, yoga and aerobics, I also joined the gym briefly. I have tried catching crayfish, I actually temporarily gave up on that one, too much red tape! I have combed the beach for Razor clams, scoured the woods for Fungi and have filled the house with home-made chutney and am currently planning cheese making with my brother.  I was explaining my new hobby to a friend the other day, she said she was the same but wasnt very successful at many of them assuming that I was the same, she seemed quite taken aback when I said that I hadn’t yet found anything I couldn’t do as in my mind I haven’t yet given up on the crayfish and the elusive Razor clams.I did go to the Gym several times a week busting a lung on the cross trainer and Rowed from Egypt to Saudi Arabia on the rowing Machine as well as many other very successful projects. My problem is that once I have succeeded in my challenge, it is no longer as attractive. There is always some new experience on the horizon. I keep searching for that one thing that is so fulfilling that I don’t want to stop, something I can excel at. I don’t want to leave it too late, to suddenly look back and wish that I had tried new things, I don’t want to waste a single opportunity to find the one thing that makes me feel complete.

But I am determined to prove them all wrong, so have enlisted the help of a very nice young man at  http://www.justinguitar.com/ . I have had my Guitar a week now, having “won” it on , http://www.ebay.co.uk/ in itself a very exciting experience. Driving to Folkestone in a terrible storm and fighting  my way through Operation Stack to collect it, I did begin to wonder if even the gods and police where trying to prevent me learning Guitar. Well I finally got my prize home and waited for a solitary moment to have my first try. Having already hunted him out I loaded Justin on my PC and found that I could actually tune my new best friend (sorry Monty, second best friend).


After one week I can almost play D, A and E chords by feel, although not completely tuneful and today I have managed a chord change! I have fingers so sore that they are almost numb,I have kept my back straight and my shoulder relaxed, I have taken the ridicule in good spirit and have practiced daily following Justin’s instructions. But you know what? I think I might be able to do this. Watch this space doubters!


26 07 2011

Margaret thought she was a mermaid,

A Siren of the Ocean.

Her womanly curves and flashing smile,

Many a heart had broken.

A mermaids charm lies in her laugh,

A flirting girlish Giggle.

In Margaret’s  case this was replaced 

By a deep and salty chuckle.

Margaret Thought she was a Mermaid,

As she strolled along the beach.

The sultry sounds of a mermaids song,

Did not compare to her piercing screech.

Her piercing voice so highly tuned,            

That only dogs could hear it.

Rang long and strong in a tuneless song,

As along the sand she tripped.

Margaret thought she was a mermaid,

A woman of the sea.

Her eyes where bright, her hair was long,

but alas had feet where her tail should be.

She wanted pearly glittering scales,

And a bra made of crustaceans.

And Glistening, sparkly, shiny gems,

That had been polished by the jetsam.

Margaret had no tail to flap about,

It really was a sin.

But what a waste one would have been,

she’d never learnt to swim.


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