13 July 2012
As I promised yesterday I did search & find the anecdote concerning golf which is and can now be found at the end of the anecdote index under the title of My Introduction to Golf. This is well worth a read if you want to have a good laugh at my expense.
Our first visitor today was Diana Zurlinden (Di) who bought me a beautiful pineapple. Pineapples were rare and expensive in the 18th and 19th century and many a stately home has a carved or moulded pineapple on each of the columns supporting the main gate as a sign of welcome and hospitality. Somewhere in this blog I recounted how I had eaten my first pineapple, after the war, in Singapore, on the way to Australia in 1955. I had never tasted pineapple before and greedily consumed a whole one, sitting around the pool at the British Club.
It must be remembered that rationing in the UK was not lifted until 1952. I have no doubt that after that. Pineapples were available for some exorbitant price. Certainly they were something I would not be have contemplated buying on my limited income. You can imagine therefore the excitement I felt as a 21-year-old, flying out to the New World-which took two days with a compulsory stopover somewhere, in this case Singapore -during the stopover we were allowed to go into town and that’s how I found myself sitting on the pool in the British Club and observing a whole fresh pineapple being delivered to another couple sitting close by on their sunbeds. I boldly ordered one for myself without having any idea what it was going to cost me. We can all laugh today over such a trivial matter, but exotic fruit was terribly expensive at this time. The only evidence I have of this is the six strawberries I bought at Fortnum and Mason’s in early 1963 as a gift the matriarch of the family, Alice’s grandmother, on my tour of introduction to the family. I can remember to this day that they cost 11 shillings (55 p) which was quite a lot of money by today’s standards. This all might sound ridiculous in these times of plenty, but in 1955. this was entirely another matter. I forget now how much this pineapple cost me. In didn’t break the bank but I seem to remember that it was equivalent to the best part of weeks wages.
My favourite way now of eating a pineapple, is to cut it up into chunks and eat it with a ripe brie -cheese and pineapple make a wonderful contrast of taste.
Our second visitor today was’ Paul the computer ‘for a babysitting’ stint whilst Alice went out on some of her day-to-day missions – the bank;; the post office; Waitrose’s etc. during the three hours that Paul spent with me. Today we managed to create an index of all of the Anecdotes, Instead of having to scroll through page after page of anecdotes to find the one you wish to wish to read, you now merely double-click on the anecdote in the index and it will take you straight to it. This is something I’ve wanted to do a very long time and I’m delighted that that is just another refinement on my blog which makes it easier for the reader. Having made the process of pulling up specific Anecdotes, I thoroughly recommend these to the reader, which will give them a greater insight of what sort of person I am than perhaps the daily diary of what is going on 40 to 50 years later.
The other the shocking item in the news today, was at the conclusion of the trial of people involved in the tragic death of a young man.. The central figure in this tragedy was a 26-year-old young man who had a problem with his kidneys which required a constant topping up with water. He I found himself in hospital needing a drink of water. I am not aware of all of the facts but, as I understand it, he was getting no response his alarm to the nurses station and became desperate, telephoned the police and ask them to chase up the nurses to bring him some water. Sadly, it transpired that there were too late. Although got his water. He died two or three days. later. A terrible and totally avoidable tragedy.
It is for this reason typically that I live in fear and dread of being taken to hospital as I do not believe I would get the same instant response from the nurses that I get from my night carers. Every now and then, at night, I wake up with a pain which if left for 5 min. will have grown more and more intolerable.
At present I am fortunate enough to just press the alarm and within seconds, the carer is there to firstly, turn me on my back and then a few minutes later on the opposite side to that which I was lying on previously. The outcome, from my point of view, is that I have almost perfect nights and am certainly sleeping a lot longer than I have many years. If for some reason I was carted off to hospital. I can imagine the nurses responding to the first and second call for turnover that then making me wait If my alarm call was to close to the earlier one, during which time the pain may have come become unbearable. I know that the nurses would get away with any claim on the grounds that I wasn’t the only the patient they had to attend to in an a hectic period other activity and I had to be more reasonable in my demands..’ My lovely’ has promised that she will not allow me to get into this position and would come with me in the first instance. if it became absolutely imperative that I went into hospital. She would make sure that I was getting the treatment and the attention, that I needed. I trust her but it does not make me feel less anxious.
All of my regular readers will know that this anxiety is fairly new. Perhaps emanating from that first disaster when the air pipe became unattached from the pump and I found the respirator planted on my face cutting off any external air supply and I felt as though I was going to black out. I’m pretty sure that my anxiety stems from that incident.Before that I was more relaxed about the whole business. Apparently, in the emergency ‘just in case’, kit provided by the hospital, there are some pills which are specifically designed to calm d down an anxious patient , or, as it says on the box ‘for agitation’. These are Lorzepam 1m.g and it is recommended that has taken three times a day. Whilst I refuse to be sedated like a zombie. I have agreed to try out these pills and see what difference they make. I had the first this morning and will report back on the effect in a day or two.
For your diversion today I reproduce an e-mail I had entitled Sleeping with Mick which is meant to illustrate the wisdom of old age. Click here and see for yourself