After all the high flown language concerning the Queen and her Diamond Jubilee I hate to start this entry on a low note. But having promised my readers that I would be entirely honest about my condition, I have no choice. if I am to honour that promise. Last night was the most painful night I had spent since his condition was diagnosed. I had severe pain in my right shoulder, 10 out of 10 on the pain scale and then, in addition, both hips and both knee joints were painful but less than the shoulder except that for a short period one of the hips reached somewhere in the order of 9/10 on the pain scale. This, despite the significant amount of painkillers I take every night. Fortunately, I have an appointment at the pain clinic in a couple of weeks time. to have a nerve block injection in my shoulder, so hopefully will be able to discuss the other pains at the same time. The odd thing is that the pain in the shoulder could be relieved by being turned so that I am lying on it but the hip and heel pain were only relieved when there was no pressure on them.
Having got that out of the way, I can record that today is the 200th anniversary of the birth of Dickens. As a young man I was a voracious reader and to my mind Dickens is the greatest writer this country has ever produced. His skill, in a few words, to vividly bring a character to life; his skill in developing a storyline which turn his books into the page turner category and his skill in blending into these gripping tales enough social history to recognise the significant difference between how they live then. and now. Ironically, Dickens was acutely aware of the disparity between the rich and the poor and many of his books have this element woven into the story. Although the conditions in which the poor live today in this country would have exceeded even those of many of the rich in Dickens time, the gap between rich and poor is as wide as ever..
I have always loved Dickens and believe I have read almost everything he has ever written. As a young 15-year-old I spotted a set of his works in a local second-hand bookshop I plucked up my courage and went in and enquired how much they were. After the shopkeeper told me Â£15 I begged him to keep them for me and I would go and earn sufficient money to buy them. As a result I took on a paper round and a few months later became the proud owner of this wonderful set of books which still grace my bookshelves today..
If I were to be offered the choice of one book that I would be allowed to take on a desert island., other than the Bible and the full works of Shakespeare, I would try to persuade the organisers let me switch to Dickens in instead of Shakespeare, as my book would be the complete Oxford dictionary, all 39 volumes of it! A feast of information.
I have no idea what celebrations have been arranged to mark this auspicious occasion but, despite the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the Olympics. I trust that our greatest writer will not be overlooked.
Smiler and Kimberly dropped in today for a quick lunch on the way to a funeral for one of the friends with whom Smiler had grown up. A very sad occasion. It’s all about funerals for us at the moment with’ my lovely’ leaving on Thursday morning for the Memorial Service in Wales for her mother. I would like to have attended both funerals but it’s quite impossible for me to travel now unless it’s in an ambulance and then, when I get to the other end without the hoisting equipment and other bits and pieces, it would be impossible.
Paul’ the computer’ came at lunchtime to continue to assist me to overcome my Dragon problems as well, as to set up an infrared control that will allow me to play my music through the Bose speakers and control it from my laptop. He is a clever lad and I’m very fortunate that he is prepared to help me.
With our unemployment figures at a record high level and we must all retain a sense of humour, even in adversity . Click here for a joke entitled Welfare.