Sunday, 30 August 2015

Giving In and Getting On

If you have been reading my blogs and/or the Raven Newsletter, you may remember me writing a piece bewaling the perversity of knees which refuse to do the things they were designed for i.e. bending and straightening. Well this year things were not improved in the 'walking about' field when I managed to snap a tendon in my foot/ankle.

Of course it is improving, but as you get older you notice how much more slowly these things get better than they did when you were younger. It has meant that getting round a small supermarket has become a BIG achievement, and any visits anywhere have to be planned like a military campaign as basically I can go 20-30mtrs then I will HAVE to sit down. It also means we have to do a kind of 'plea bargaining' when Graham and I want to do several shops in one go, such as: well if I don't go round that shop, I should be able to get round the next one, but that will knacker me for anything else.

It has also meant that I can't go into pedestrian areas if there are no seats within easy reach, or if I do manage it, by the time I get to a seat I will be knackered and won't be able to make it round any of the shops. It is annoying and frustrating.

Incidentally there is NOTHING wrong with my mentality, my brain has not been switched off and I have not reverted to childhood. So why do people speak to me sometimes as if I am retarded or need to be humoured?

A few times recently we have attempted to go to a Boot Sale - I love finding treasures! But unless we are parked right next to the stalls, I cannot make it from the car to the stalls and back again. Which has meant Graham having to go round on his own - and you never know what that will lead to (well actually I can tell you what that will lead to now, he will find another exercise machine!).

This weekend Alford Craft Market is on. A great place to visit, as you might imagine a whole market full of fab hand made stuff, from pottery and cushions to paintings and jewellery. For many years we had a stall at the market, selling a variety of goods starting with hand made cosmetics and creams and ending up with hand painted glassware, and we still try and go to have a look around and meet up with old friends.

But this year, there was no way I could make it to the Manor House grounds from the car park, so Graham had to go on his own.

So we are thinking about getting a wheelchair for me.

I have been fighting this for a while as to me it feels like giving in. I should be able to walk, and if I could walk a bit more, I know eventually I would get better at it - but in actuality it is meaning that I am going nowhere, I am spending hours just sitting in the car waiting for Graham to do stuff and the pair of us are missing out on doing stuff together.

'Sounds just like my mum,' said Maggie on the Craft Market, 'She wasn't having a stick to walk with, then she had to have a stick. Then she wasn't having a wheelchair, now she has a wheelchair and it is so much easier for everyone, and she gets to go places with my dad.'

To be honest, now I have allowed myself to start thinking about the possibilities, I am starting to think this might not be a bad idea.

It may even give me more exercise as I shall be pushing myself around at least some of the time, and if I can wheelchair to a shop, then I can walk around the shop and know I won't be stuck at the end of it.

Wonder if I could do Robin Hood's Bay ? ....

Monday, 24 August 2015

Gang Aft Agley

The best laid plans of mice and men ... and even Witches too!

So this was the weekend of printing folding and stuffing. The mail shot was written - well nearly, I actually was finishing off the Newsletter while already starting the printing of other parts - and we were settling down to a weekend of getting all the various parts printed and folded then stuffed into envelopes ready for posting on Monday (today).

Because I do not trust technology, I always make sure that rather than printing all of one section, then going on to another, I actually print a hundred of each for a start, so that should anything go wrong, at least we can get some of the mail shots out. Not that I expected anything to go wrong.

So while I was finishing the Newsletter and printing, Graham had started sticking address labels on envelopes and folding the printed parts. This one is quite a complicated mail shot with several different sections including a new Book Shop, a section with tarot cards and divination sets, limited stocks of new books, a special Sale section, plus of course the Newsletter and order form. So quite a bit of printing.

So  I had managed to print out everything, except the main bit, the Book Shop, which I had just started on. When all of sudden the photocopier did its frantic 'I need attention' beeping. It does this for a paper jam, if it needs more paper or a new toner cartridge. So nothing too worrying until I saw a new message on the touch screen 'Waste Toner Bottle full, send for service.'

I duly made a note of the message and told it to carry on printing, which it said it would after it had warmed up - and then refused to have anything further to do with me.

Of course the photocopier service people do not work at the weekend. So there we were stuffed.

So thanks to my mistrust of technology, we did have some complete sets, and have managed to send out some of the Mail Shot, but there are still a lot which need printing.

So this is an explanation of where we are currently up to, and the rest of the Mail Shot will go out just as soon as the engineer has been and seen to the photocopier. Sorry if you are one of those in the 'delayed' section, but hopefully all will be sorted out within the next few days.

Saturday, 1 August 2015

What Did You Do at Lughnassadh This Year?

It is a beautiful Lughnassadh morning, the sun is actually shining, which makes a change this summer. And I have already made some milk bread for us, which we had hot from the oven with breakfast.

I am currently upstairs keeping out of the way while Graham tackles the downstairs with wire doggy brush and vacuum cleaner.

Having two very hairy dogs, we have tried all sorts to get hair out of the carpets. A good tip was to use a rubber broom, and this does indeed work, but is an extremely physical muscle building exercise. Then one night when the dogs had had enough of the wire doggy brush, Graham idly started using it on the carpet as a joke. To our amazement it brings loads of hair out plus a surprising amount of grit. Yes you do have to be on your hands and knees to use it, but you can clean the carpet amazingly quickly, then vacuum around afterwards to pick up the grit.

Today, however, the carpets are getting a particularly thorough going over, as last night when Graham was reading his book, a full stop suddenly leapt across the page, then onto the carpet, then my foot and bit me on the ankle.

Yes it was a mini traveller. A dog flea.

At this time of year it is almost impossible to be sure you are a flealess household as, even though the dogs have been flea-doomed twice this summer, they only have to walk somewhere out in the woods where a flea might be lurking to be in danger of bringing a visitor home with them.

So the dogs are currently hiding under the bed behind me as they fear they might be getting the blame for the amount of noise and swearing going on downstairs. And I am likewise staying out of the way of the man on a mission.

Have vacuum, will get traveller! (We hope)