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January
1 - Up real late. Just another day/year. COLD! . . .walked and took some photos with the digital and then came back and spent hours trying to stick five of the shots together to make a panoramic view of the field - worked out ok in the end I think. . .ate and fell asleep for ages! Woke with what seems like a delayed hang over - nasty headache! . . . walked in the freezing dark of the night . . . PS popped round for chats till early. . . couldn't sleep till rediculously early. (4/10)pasd
2 - Woken around 9:30am by Dad leaving an ansaphone message! Uh oh! Mum'd had the doctor in (bet they'd had rows to convince her to do that!) - her leg problem was not what they thought and was in fact an infection and 'cellulitous'! Dad called Auntie BJ who turned up as we were talking, to go get the prescription of painkillers and anti biotics for her. Bloody hell - seems like their lives are falling apart all of a sudden! Dads 'dummy run' radio therapy tomorrow - Mum may not be able to go with him! . . .walked up the shops and put in the SLR photos for expensive impatient one hour developing. Wasted time walking round in Kingswood park and then got Sally a huge marrow bone in a butchers. . . PCd the pics . . .tried calling LG but still no answers on her phones. Tried calling JB and DS but only ansaphones so left appropriate messages. . . fell asleep for ages and woke feeling a bit unwell with a big headache I couldn't shift . . . walked . . . called CW who confirmed LGs 'pre cancerous cells' results were 'good' so no nasty operation! . . . TVd . . . briefly PCd but soon early to bed feeling iffy. (3/10)paa
3 - Woken around 8am by Sally being sick again!!! Seemed to be a huge peice of bone that she had just swallowed without crunching up - thank goodness she 'ejected' it!! I'll have to be more careful what I give her! Not sure I'm feeling too good either - difficulty focusing?! Think I need glasses!!! . . . beautiful red morning sky - tempted to take photos but rapidly changed to all sorts of different colours - impressive . . . another BIG phone bill in the mail - Ouch!!! . . . walked but wow did it feel cold in the wind . . . sat around and did nothing except feel cold . . . got a bee in my bonnet (and no I don't know why!) and walked up the road with Sally (constantly on the lookout for cats) and took some digital picks of the street. Spent HOURS sticking them all together - cause I could I guess. Huge file - put it on my Cable webspace - but probably too big for anyone to see! Sally seemed to be in a strange mood and kept on pestering me for attention? . . . walked late! Stopped for sausage and chips on the way back. . .lots of heartbreaking stuff on the news about a woman appealing for help in catching the killers of her husband - he'd instinctively run after some guys trying to steal his car from outside his house and been stabbed and beaten to death for his trouble!!!! There but for the grace of god go I?!!! Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit shit! . . . felt exhausted and went to bed real early. Sally hopped up on the bed next to me and literally fell asleep in my arms for quarter of an hour or so complete with dreaming - extraordinary experience. Thankfully she then returned to the floor and I got to sleep. (4/10)p
4 - Up late after in excess of ten hours sleep!!?. . . got a 'disturbing' but well meant e-mail from RJ talking about M/Ds situation. Think I'd rather not think about it all!! . . . took Sally in the car and drove to Snuff Mills and walked her down the river. Still some ice and frost about. Saw a hat on ice in the river and couldn't resist having a go for it - precariously leaned out after having torn a branch from a tree and succesfully got it, although on inspection not worth the bother! Walked over the footbridge and slipped over spectacularly on some ice - felt a right idiot but no one saw - had to laugh - quite a lot actually! Sally paddled and chased squirrels and had a good time as usual. Took several pics but not a single one worked out worth the bother . . . touched base with M/D and tried as best I could to recomend that Mum take ALL the pain killers as the doctor had pescribed them. She HAD taken two and was convinced they dont work and was adamant that she was taking so many tablets now, some before food, some after, etc, etc that it was all too complicated and not worth taking the pain killers. Dad had obviously been having arguments with her about it all too!!! (-/content removed post 19th April 03 /-). . . Sally seemed off her food so made up a weird mix of it all with some gravy and stuff on the stove - did the trick. . . fell asleep after some bacon sandwiches - not so much because I was tired but perhaps because I just enjoy being warm and wrapped up (foetal?) and falling asleep!! Funny how napping suits Sally who seems delighted when I announce "I'm gonna go and lie down for a bit" and who follows me up and takes her favourite nap space on the sofa across from me in the PC room. We sigh in unison! . . . walked and stopped for sausage and chips again because I was just too lazy to do all the washing up and cook. Weather has warmed up and the ground has thawed so lots of mud!! . . . called RJ and JB to touch base . . . TVd/PCd briefly before bed . . . BB called to touch base and say she had safely arrived at the hotel where she is gonna be training for her job . . . difficulty sleeping until early. (4/10)ps
5 - Up around 9am after not enough sleep . . .walked and Sally did a devil dog act on some weird guy - before I could apologise he got all agressive and abusive!!!!! Asshole. Unwillingly replayed the incident in my head over and over with what I could/should have said/done!! Hate it when my mind does that!! Popped in the newsagents and bought a 'be-lated' birthday card for Sis2. Wrote and walked back round the post office and posted it . . . took down the christmas decorations and packed them all away. Sorted out and threw away all the old christmas cards I received I have had stored for goodness why?! Spent a rediculous amount of time with the chriistmas tree lights taking each bulb out one by one and testing it on the multitester to try and find the one that had blown - wouldn't you know it, the last but one!!! Grrrrr! Popped in the spare I'd found in the box and all fixed and working ready for whatever year I next decide to get them out. Stashed everything back up in the attic. Miserable weather and SO dark all day! Touched base with M/D and patiently listened as they argued!!!! . . . fell asleep for ages . . . walked . . . had a go at trying to salvage M/Ds old vacuum cleaner but only succeeded in burning and cutting my fingers! Weird how concerned Sally seemed by my bloody fingers but didn't want to lick them! Decided it wasn't possible/worth the bother so salvaged the wire and screws and binned the rest. Felt strangely warm and even turned the central heating off! . . . TVd. (4/10)paa
6 - Up after about 8 hours sleep. Nasty drizzly morning . . .walked in the mud! . . . balanced my accounts and called M/D to touch base and confirm their Xmas gift money had cleared . . .PCd a bit starting on a Grandma page - but dunno where I'm going with it or why!!!! Dug out the video we'd made when Dad retired looking for the bit we did of Grandma but didn't get very far - ended up sitting watching some of it for some time amazed at how young everyone looked and feeling - um - weird? Right in the middle of watching Dad very closely he called on the phone and asked me about stuff he was sorting out in his garage! Very weird feeling. Felt lonely and in need of being alone alternately and all at once! Needed to be unconscious lots - fell asleep for a few hours. . . woken by Sally barking at who knows what . . . PCd a little more . . . Sis1 called to touch base and couldn't avoid discussing the 'parental' situation. (-/content removed post 19th April 03 /-)What can you do?!!! . . .Finally, at last got round to easing my conscience and amending my feedback form to explain that personal replies are 'unlikely'! Whatever that phase was that saw me rampaging around the internet 'chatting' to whoever would chat to me early last year - it's over. Avoidant + Prozac = Schizoid (lots!) . . . walked . . .TVd. All of a sudden Sally stopped chewing her bone and disappeared into the kitchen and then came back and presented herself all ears down as though she had done something wrong? She'd been into a bag I have in the kitchen and had brought a potatoe into the living room???? Strange behaviour!!! I eased her conscience and asked her what she was doing and then picked up the potatoe and gave it back to her asking if she wanted it - she then set about eating it!!!!!!!!??????? How VERY weird. I got another small one, asked her if she wanted it and she ate that too!! Is that normal? Am I feeding her the wrong stuff - not a 'balanced' diet maybe? Or is it cause she IS pregnant? Worry, worry, worry! (3/10)ps
7 - Woken far too early by the bin men emptying the bins . . .brief snuggles with Sally on the bed . . . walked . . . touched base with Dad and said good luck etc. . . left Sally at home and walked up the shops. Impulsively stopped in an estate agents on the way back and arranged a free valuation of my house! No point in dreaming about moving until I have an idea of what the place may be worth if I sold it in it's current 'run down' condition . . . PCd . . . touched base with BB - minutes later the doorbell rang and the long lost parcel she'd sent arrived. Yayy . . . TVd . . .walked and Sally did a devil dog act on a poor guy riding past on a bike!!! Lost my temper a bit and put her back on a very short lead and was not accepting of any disobedience!!! Dunno how but somehow I have to stop her behaving like that - maybe a really long lead I can 'yank'! Walked up the kebab shop on the way back and got a kebab and chips . . . touched base with Dad - the first radio therapy treatment had all gone ok. . . TVd . . . ended the day feeling real down?! 'Early' to bed. . . The chancellor Gordon Brown's premature baby died today.(3/10)p
8 - Brief snuggles with Sally on the bed . . . took Sally in the car and headed for Vassals Park. Half way there Sally's previous owner called on the mobile to say she'd seen the Sally pics on the website but was concerned the Kennel Club registration number was still shown. Carried on and walked Sally across the park and down along the river. Up in the woods and all of a sudden the mobile went again - CW calling to touch base and say her last day at work would be next Wednesday - really weird place to have a phone conversation! Finished walking Sally and drove home . . . touched base with Sis2 to wish her happy birthday. Think I woke her up in the middle of a nightmare about Mum and Dad!!!! Bizarre! . . . put a tiny bit of filler on the half painted wall just inside the front door . . . just about to nap and ML called to say he was passing on his way to his bank and was thinking of popping in. ML popped in for chats and coffee and was growled at badly by the devil dog! She seems to be getting worse!!?. . . tidied up a little and sorted out a few things for the charity shop. Badly need to get rid of more stuff - need to be more ruthless about silly things I want to keep . . . bit more up moodwise. No point in just sitting and popping prozac - exercise and regular meals (which I'm not good at - the dog eats more than I do!!) and sleeping patterns seem to be a necessary part of the deal I suspect. Ate three 'meals' today more or less - two more than yesterday! . . . walked as what was probably a stolen car drove about like it was on a race track!! . . . M/D called to touch base - both 'sounded' ok-ish! . . . PS popped round for chats till early.(4/10)ps
9 - Up late - another cloudy, very dark, miserable morning! . . . walked . . . CW called to confirm that LGs 'pre cancerous cells' test results were ok and she had returned to work! Really should call her and say how ya doin and such but really, really in a 'not wanting to be in touch with anyone' mood?!! . . . slapped a quick coat of paint on a bit of the wall by the front door just to make it look not quite so bad . . . BB called to touch base . . . fell asleep after corned beef and cheese sandwhiches and did loads of dreaming . . . walked without incident . . . PS dropped off the papers CW had given him to return to me . . . TVd the night away . . . descended into a weird mood after watching a program all about a family who had given up the 9 to 5 existance and bought a farm in Spain. Kinda brought home how I am in a lucky, lucky, lucky, unique financial position what with my small pension income and how if I was a different person I could move and 'live' anywhere - maybe - just! If only I wasn't me!!!!! Dunno what to do, where, or why! (3/10)pss
10 - Up late after snuggles with Sally. More grey drizzly day . . .estate agents called and rescheduled the house valuation for tomorrow because of some excuse or other. Surprise, surprise! Grrrrr - guess it gives me some time to clear up a bit - actually I guess it WAS a surprise actually being told he wasn't gonna turn up before the event . . . drove Sally in the car down to the Conham River Park and walked along the river a bit. Sally is definitely not well - didn't touch her breakfast and then ate grass and made herself sick!! Decided to explore a bit and took some of the higher paths up into the woods. Very beautiful and calming despite all the 'hand of man' stuff lying around. Passed a total of three push bikes that must have been stolen and had the odd part removed and then dumped - a couple of them nice mountain bikes!!! If I collected all the bikes and parts I see dumped like that I'd have a real good quality mountain bike by now!! The world has gone mad - left them where I saw them. Ended up climbing up the steep hill and walking along the top next to the river. Never been that way before - fantastic views and so close to the city?! Followed a track down the cliffs between the trees trying to get back down to the river path - BIG mistake!! Even Sally with her 'four wheel drive' had trouble - I had BIG trouble!! Slipping and sliding crashing into trees to stop myself falling and trying not to break my neck. Haven't done anything that stupid since I was a kid. Eventually reached the footpath at the bottom in one peice and laughing out loud at my sillyness. Sally chased rabbits - and trapped a squirrel up a tree - that or a rare lesser spotted tree climbing rabbit! . . . drove back home and exhausted almost immediately fell asleep for the rest of the afternoon!! . . .slapped another coat of paint on the living room wall near the front door. . . Cooked up a Sally meal with gravy browning which did the trick and was soon whoofed down almost all at once. Sneakily threw her ageing bone away in case it was that causing her stomach problems. Walked and Sally seemed unusually good walking nicely to heel and even 'almost' perfectly waiting in a sitting position where I told her to, as I disposed of the poop scoop bag in the bin. Walked an extra block on the way home just because it was a nice misty not too cold evening and the devil dog was having a night off. . . TVd . . . VERY early to bed around 10:30pm feeling tired despite having slept most of the day. (4/10)paa
11 - Up a little earlier than of late woken by Sally climbing on the bed for her morning snuggle . . .walked over the field and played ball a bit trying to tire Sally out a bit . . . spent the whole morning vacuuming and tidying up just a little. Forgotten how hairy a house gets with a dog in it-everything absolutely covered in Sally-down. Sorted out a pair of soft souled deep tread charity shop shoes I haven't worn yet that were perfect for 'de-hairing' the carpets. By scuffing my feet along the carpets in a backwards direction all Sally's hair would roll together into a ball and could then be picked up and popped in the bin - that followed by a good vacumming saw my carpets the cleanest they have been for ages even if I ended up all sweaty and achey legged. Funny how having this valuer coming is putting me in the mood to start doing lots of odd diy jobs around the house and finish off a load of those things I never got round to. I think maybe the master plan for this year should be to try and get the house up together so either it is nicer to live in or is worth more to sell - still really want to have a go at putting a room up in the attic!!!!!!?? Wish I could pick my house up as it is and just put it down somewhere else! Wasted time till the valuer or 'sales negotiator' called at 2pm as agreed. Quick breeze around the house with Sally locked out in the garden. Asked him loads of stupid questions but he seemed quite happy to answer them all. Seems like it is surveyors that will really 'devalue' the place when they are called in due to the roof and the damp and the timbers etc, etc!! Bottom line after forcing him to be realistic - 72,000 'is acheivable'. . .did a little maintenance on the PC and yet another bloody trojan virus - this time from a website so it seems!!!! Surfed a few property sites - wow - I could sell my house and buy a small pond in Wales complete with wildlife and trout!!! No house but what a neat thing to own - perfect for a nature loving avoidant/schizoid . . . touched base with M/D - everything okish and Mums leg seems a little better - they went shopping with Uncle TJ . . . walked . . . TVd . . . bed before midnight ignoring the ansaphone! (4/10)pss
12 - Up with a bark before seven as the postman delivered a postcard from BB. Snuggles with Sally . . .walked and played ball in the litter covered mud of the field . . .surfed Amazon.co.uk with my gift certificate from DS in mind, but couldn't find a single thing I wanted to buy!!!!!!!!? Oh dear - what can I say!!!! . . . fell asleep until early afternoon (!!!?) and snoozed through three phone calls without messages - from BB maybe?("The last call was from a network that was unable to transmit numbers") Made coffee and missed another call!!!? Ooops - volume down on the ringer and ansaphone!!! Called BB to touch base . . . left Sally at home and walked up to shop. Large bunch of loud crazy people on some sort of pub crawl or other all dressed in weird clothes and coloured wigs and hats and such - in their drunkeness they shouted out I should join them cause I was already dressed up!!!!! Do I really look 'that' weird to people - I guess so!!! Bought some compound or other for a couple of pounds that should maybe be worth having a go at fixing the leak in the pond. Bought Sally a flea collar!! Can't see any fleas but I am sure BOTH of us are scratching more of late!!! . . . back home had a gentle look in the pond but figured it was too late in the day to start tackling it. VERY upsetting to find a very stiff, dead toad in the remaining water!!! Guilt, guilt! . . .PCd a bit and added a couple of links to my links page and then left the PC on for about an hour downloading Acrobat Reader 5 so I could read the online manual about brain tumors at Brain & Spine Foundation . . . walked and got sausage and chips on the way back . . . TVd. . . actually sat for a while with headphones on listening to one of my old cassette tapes! Haven't done that for ages - used to do it all the time - didn't last long before having to trim my nails and pick up the guitar and make awful noises . . . some sense of being happy with my lot for a short time - need to get rid of more of my possessions - less is more - think the motorbikes will have to go! . . . to bed in the early hours . . . just dropped off and the phone went at around 1:40am!! Ansaphone took it - sounded like a VERY drunk LB - Grrrrrr!! . . . doorbell rang!!!!! LB stumbled in with something she'd made for my freezer and drunken mumbling until around 3am at which point I ran out of patience and suggested she should go home to bed!! Felt extremely 'distant' to her and her 'petty concerns' and had very little to say!!!!!!!!!!! Unfortunate end to what was on the whole a 'pleasant' evening of being alone (with Sally of course). (4/10)ps
13 - Up late without enough sleep and with a big headache . . .walked over the field which bore the scars of another night time joy rider having taken to the grass!! . . . in sombre mood buried the dead toad in the garden. Sally showed her respects by sitting on the freshly dug grave!! Baled out a few more buckets of water and had a go at patching the crack in the pond with the 'Plastic Padding Leak-Fix' compound. Troweled over some roof tar stuff I found in a long forgotten tin, for good measure. Sally helped by eating mud, chasing a spider and eating the chopped maize bird food on the bird table!! Rain stopped play - finally found a use for that old broken fishing umbrella I keep on meaning to throw away but never do just in case it will come in useful some time - put it in the pond to keep the rain off the repair overnight. 'Just' managed to resist filling the pond straight back up to see if it worked. Terribly impatient about such things these days - probably because if I'm in the mood to do something it has to be done real quick cause I know the mood wont last!!! Put some more 'Mind Your Own Business' in a brass pot in the living room . . . ate and fell asleep for a couple of hours . . .walked . . . Sally seems to be very tired - not even interested in chewy things or her bones? . . . TVd. Heavy TV program - and update on the couple that had adopted a Rumanian boy and then battled on to legally adopt a Chinese girl - I saw the original program - this update promised 'unforseen' events!? Wouldn't you know it - the woman died of a brain tumor!!!!!!! Tragic. Seems like I can't put the TV on these days without having to watch something about brain tumors or terminal cancer!! . . . STILL avoiding replying to outstanding e-mails!!!? Just cant bring myself to talk to people right now - dunno why. (4/10)p
14 - Yucca and 'Mind Your Own Business'Uh oh - spent a large part of the night cuddling a dog on the bed!!! Bad habit to get in to - but it's SO nice! Incredible that a different species should be so 'comfortable' with me . . . filled the pond back up - guess it'll be a while before I know whether or not the repair will fail. Signs of life as I cleared out some of the frost damaged reeds - definitely a frog- Yipeee - thank goodness! Weird how lots of the 'Mind Your Own Business' has died off and turned black with the recent freeze. The bits in the house around the Yucca are doing great - first time I've managed to keep any house plants alive - guess my strategy to remember watering is going ok - Sunday is plant watering day - a coffee mug of water (at least) in each pot! . . . walked . . .sat in the conservatory with coffee nervously watching the muddy pond settle . . . fell asleep and slept away most of another day! . . . PCd just a little on grandmas page - remarkable how few photos, artefacts and knowledge I have of any of the 'family'. . .walked . . . TVd . . . quick check in on the PC before bed but - uh oh - wouldn't boot without warning me there may be bad sectors on my hard drive!!!!!! STILL haven't gotten around to making any backups of anything - scary that I'd lose it all!! Spent hours copying files to hard disk number two as a safety precaution and then doing a sector scan on the disks. Everything came out ok? Suspect it was a quirk of that damn twitchy OCR 'Textbridge' program I was using earlier which seized at one point. Fingers crossed. To bed in the early hours. (4/10)p
15 - Woken around 6:30am by Sally sticking her nose in my face and then leaping on the bed! Managed to get back to sleep until around 9:30am . . .pond is still holding water . . .drove to Snuff Mills and walked Sally along the river and around. Very muddy dog!! . . . back home and fell asleep for a couple of hours - woken by PS calling to say 'tonight?' . . . touched base with M/D - all seems 'okish' although Mums leg still seems bad - thank goodness they are taking T&BJ up on their offers of help! . . . PCd briefly and scanned in the old photo of grandpa I found when looking through my photos and stuff yesterday. . .walked . . .spotted a toad in the pond still holding water . . . PS popped round for chats till early. (4/10)ps
16 - Up a bit late the second time Sally woke me . . .property paper in the post from M/D together with a small collecion of plastic food bags ideal for poop scooping . . . walked Sally round the field and saw a load of 'stuff' littering the rugby club car park? Walked over and had a prod around - nothing of any value but obviously the debri thrown out from yet another stolen car by the look of it - cassette tape, baby seat, sweat shirt, golf shoes, ring binder, paperwork and a stack of business cards for the director of a 'Storage Engineering Services Ltd.' Seemed likely it was his so called the firm's number on my mobile and whoever answered the phone (in a totally different part of the country!) confirmed someone'd had their car stolen! As I was talking what I am sure was the police helicopter seemed to take a great interest and hovered nearby overhead!! Told the guy on the phone I would collect up what was there and take it home although made it clear there was nothing of value. Collected all the stuff and wrapped it in the baby seat cover and struggled to carry it home with the helicopter circling overhead-ish! Decided I may aswell tell the police just in case they WERE watching me! Called the police and told them and was asked to take the stuff to a police station and quote log number 392 - they said the helicopter was not theirs!!? Bloody nuisance - left Sally at home and drove the car round to the field and picked up the metal storage things that I'd passed on the way back and assumed were maybe part of the deal? Too big for the car so had to drive with the hatchback open! Dropped everything off at Staple Hill police station although the person behind the desk was less than enthusiastic and seemed to be almost complaining that the owner hadn't arranged for the stuff to be picked up from me!!!!!!! It's a mad, mad, mad, mad, world! Didn't bother phoning SES Ltd. back - figured I'd done my bit - police could do theirs! . . . read through the property paper wishing I could win a big premium bond and afford some of the really expensive places. Maybe should avoid looking at such things - just serves to fuel discontent for little reason . . . fell asleep. Woken by ansaphone message from the estate agents asking if I had decided about using them. . . bit of Sally brushing and definitely spotted a flea! Big brown thing the size of a horse! Ewwwwwww!!! So much for the flea collar! Decided not to put it off any longer and read all the instructions on the expensive scary spray I'd got from the vet. Put on my waterproofs and rubber gloves and took poor old Sally out into the well ventilated conservatory and patio and set to her with the spray. Poor old woofer - she was really good as I sprayed and rubbed her all over - almost seemed to enjoy it!! Not sure I did a very good job - not happy about spraying chemicals around like that - and lets not forget - the fleas have a right to life as well!! Oh dear. . . Sally seems to be scratching loads (me too!!!). Is that a good sign? . . .took the fleas Sally for a walk. Gave Sally the other bit of marrowbone I've had in the freezer for a while - that was her sorted for the rest of the night . . . touched base with M/D who seemed ok but both(?) feeling real tired. Me too - always these days!!? . . . TVd . . . touched base with M/D again saying an interesting TV program was on but they'd gone to bed already - 9pm - and why not. Good on them . . . TVd/PCd briefly before bed. E-mail from PS saying "CW has left the building." - end of an era. (3/10)ps
17 - Up very late. Walked in the lashing rain and wind! Uggh! . . . couldn't raise the strength to do anything! Slept for another four hours!!! . . . walked . . . PS popped round for chats till early. Popped off an e-mail to SES Ltd just letting them know I'd dropped the 'stuff' off at the police station and all. (3/10)pas
18 - A letter in the post from the police?! Said thank you for reporting a crime, they were sorry I was the victim and I could read the enclosed 'Victims Of Crime' booklet - the booklet was NOT enclosed!!! My perception after recent events is calling the police about anything these days is pointless!!! That's bad! . . .nice sunny morning but the forecast is absolutely awful for the next few days!! Drove Sally to Snuff Mills and walked along the river . . .ansaphone message from Sis1 - hard to make out the message on my cheap phone but think it was something like she is off work again after having been assaulted by the kids yet again and is seriously thinking about leaving - tried calling her back but no answer and frankly I didn't want to have to think about such things!!!! Lay down to nap but couldn't sleep so pretended to until I did!!! . . . walked in between rain storms. Stopped for fish and chips on the way back . . . TVd till early. Received a reply to my e-mail from DM at SES Ltd. - "My vehicle was stolen on tuesday evening from my office car park, the thief strolled into the building then removed my keys from the key safe and walked back out un noticed and stole my car. Hows that for cheek!. The car to date has not yet been recovered." Outrageous - wonder what sort of car it was? Such a shame that a security camera or two couldn't be put up covering the road next to the field - sure that would reveal quite a bit of goings on . . . Pretty tough 'down' day - really seem to be stuck in things at the moment fighting the desire to withdrawl and kinda disappear! Guess it is my 'normal' winter mindset! (2/10)ps
19 - Walked . . .shopped. Stopped in the estate agents and said I was gonna sit tight for the time being. The butcher I got the last bones for Sally seems to have closed down!!! Typical . . . touched base with Sis1 who is on two weeks sick after being assaulted by one of the kids where she works-AGAIN!!!! Seems pretty obvious she should get out of the job! She is in a position to do so and survive quite comfortably if not for her desire to maintain a 'certain lifestyle'!! I wasn't a very good listener. . .LB called in and wanted to gloat over her 'new' car - a traded in two litre Cavalier with all the electrics for only 250!! Said appropriate oohs and ahhs (and disapprovingly bit my tongue over the fraudulant use of her old car's tax disc - "only for a couple of months") and then used the rain as an excuse to return home . . . slept . . . walked . . . TVd . . . Sally did that weird 'stealing a potato from the bag in the kitchen and then presenting it to me ears down as though asking if she could have it' thing. Think I'll start making it a habit to cut up a potato and add it to her food . . . Very in need of being alone/hermit like - Feel like I'm losing the plot a bit right now. Weird how I am uncontrolably driven to seek solitude and how I feel that extended periods of TOTAL solitude will somehow offer up some 'answers' to me . . . difficulty sleeping and weird goings on with someones car outside around 3am? Probably being stolen but seems pointless taking any notice! (2/10)ps
20 - Up late . . . dreadful weather with rain and gales and the same forecast for the rest of the week!! Oh joy! Walked in the rain in waterproofs and wellington boots. Wet dog day. Chopped potato in her meals seems to be a success!? . . . sat around quietly . . . TVd . . . slept . . . walked . . .TVd . . . read a bit until sleep. (3/10)p
21 - Walked in the weather!! Found 6p in small change today - 4p yesterday I think it was - 2p the day before? Guess I walk back from the field looking at the ground. Had to put the hose to Sally out on the patio to wash off some of the layers of mud. Pointless since the whole house is already covered in splashes and grime!! . . . took the car and drove to 'Rajani's' and bought myself a venetian blind for the front bedroom window to replace the net curtains - seems like a neat way to be able to let Sally look outside easier and only 10 so worth a go . . .touched base with M/D who seemed ok and even managed to persuade Mum to admit her leg is 'slightly' better . . . Sis1 called and suggested visiting M/D on Thursday! She'd forgotten about the dog so I said we'd better use 'my' car. . . Fitted the blind which seems okish despite the wonky window surround - feels neater and brighter than the net curtain but of course wont last as long - better keep the nets in the cupboard . . . my episode of 'down mood' seemed to be lasting forever - until I realised my watch battery had run down and my watch had stopped!! Feel a 'bit' more up today but still real unwilling to be in touch with anyone - just dont feel as though I have anything to say worth saying. The prospect of the effort is overwhelming!? . . . slept . . . TVd . . . walked and found a penny . . . TVd . . . early to bed. (4/10)pa
22 - Woken real early by Sally climbing on the bed for a cuddle! She ended up with all the duvet and I ended up cold so I got up before 7am! . . . More dreadful weather . . .drove to Snuff Mills and walked along the river in the rain playing with the SLR camera! Flowing fast high and brown. Sally got SO muddy had to hose her down - she really doesn't like it and who can blame her. . . developed a nasty headache that no amount of anadins would shift and even a couple of hours sleep didn't!? . . . walked - small detour to see what was on fire - couldn't tell but looked like an overgrown bonfire in someones garden - HUGE amounts of smoke - poor neighbours!! Popped in the small friendly shop for milk - as has become his habit the guy behind the counter couldn't resist Sally's pleading face and actually went to the back of the shop to get some meat out of the fridge and then cut off a few slices on his machine and tossed it over to Sally! Lucky dog - guess I should really do more shopping there whatever the prices - the last remaining 'open all hours' shop anywhere near . . . TVd . . . VERY early to bed but ended up watching a weird documentary called 'Designer Vagina' - all about plastic surgery and much of it cosmetic!!! What a strange world.(4/10)paaaa
23 - Up around 8am but still dark outside with menacing clouds. I long for a warm sunny summers day . . .walked and found four more 'pennies from heaven'! Small pile of stuff dumped in the grass???? Drill bits, screws, electrical connectors etc etc??? Pocketed a fair bit for my tool collection - more stolen stuff dumped by someone?. . .touched base with M/D who announced that Dad's hair was starting to fall out with the radio therapy . . . walked up Kingswood with Sally and got a replacement battery for my watch - 3.95? I haven't thought this through have I - bet I could buy a cheap wind up one for not much more than that - cheaper over time. :o) My finances this month are screwed - drew out some of my savings from the building society!!! Tried tying Sally to a bench in the shopping precinct and doing my 'Sally-wait' command but she was having none of it and barked and yelped and got all the shoppers staring at me as though I was beating her!! Walked her down into Kingswood park and practiced some more without the audience at which point she did really well and was almost perfectly obedient?! Walked her back to the precinct and had another go with better success and less embarassment . . . walked home and saw people working on the house that had the big pile of rubber backed carpet underlay thrown in the front garden - asked if I could have it - should be ideal for covering the back of the car for Sally. They had no objection so dropped Sally off at home and then returned and carried it back all wet and dripping after being out in the rain! Spread it out in the conservatory to dry out. . . fully intended to force myself to sit at the PC and write overdue e-mails but sleep seemed a preferable option - yet again!!!! . . . walked and popped up for a kebab . . . BB called to touch base. . . TVd till late with another nasty stiff neck related headache. (4/10)pas
24 - Dreadful nights sleep tossing and turning and being woken up all over the place by the gale battering the house outside - finally gave up and got up just after 6am after only about five hours sleep -DAMN!!!! . . . walked early . . . poor old Sally seems exhausted . . .hurridly messed around for ages with the laptop trying to get it to accept download of pictures from the digital camera - didn't seem to want to do it perhaps because of a lack of RAM? Packed everything up with bowls and dog food and duvet to lie on and set off rather later than I had wanted with Sally in the back of the car to pick up Sis1 around 10:30am. Stopped for petrol an annadin tablets. Picked up Sis1 and hit the road. Sun and rain on the drive down and Sis1 raking over her job crisis situation and saying how she felt as though she had a trapped nerve with strange feelings in her arms and hands!!!! Doctor has given her another month off sick - she can't face going back to that work only to be assaulted again - can't blame her!! . . . arrived at M/Ds early afternoon. They both seemed ok - Dad had seen the doctor today half way through his radio therapy and all was reported to be going to plan. Definitely losing his hair - Mum with his agreement has taken to vacuming his head!!!!!! Sally seemed quite happy to be there and clearly remembered nice walks and sleeping with her man on the floor of the garage and even wagged her tail and let unafraid Dad stroke her like an old friend! Very unlike the devil dog - nice. Spent some time in the garage with Dad going through a load of junk and stuff he had sorted out for disposal - I'll take it all and drop off what I dont want at charity shops. There seems to be no stopping Dad at the moment despite his visual perception problems - garage was all neat and sorted out, shelves had been altered and the heavy tumble drier had been lifted into a new high level position!!!!!! Chats and Dad insisted on getting out his pink folder and showing us the newly sorted out papers and details of their finances - I pointed out an amount in one account and said he should put that into premium bonds but Dad replied "that is my funeral fund"! I am glad when I hear him say such things because at other times he says things which suggest denial of his illness and the inevitable outcome . . soon putting the seats back up in the car and taking to the road for Paignton with everyone and well behaved Sally crammed in the back. Parked up on the sea front within sight of the pub and all went in for a meal, Mum leading Dad by his arm, leaving Sally in the car with her bowl of water - interesting to be able to watch what Sally got up to in the car on her own from the table as we ate - she was ok. Mum slipped into her new role that Dad has been training her for and she went to the bar to order everything leaving Dad safely installed at the table. Felt VERY strange for Mum to be 'taking charge' like that but seemed to be wise to sit back and let her do it - confidence building stuff. In her abscence Dad did his 'Mum is like a butterfly' speech - 'she is strong if she only but knew it. Butterflys fly across the Atlantic when they have to.' Their relationship has subtly changed already maybe - for the better. I was starving not having eaten all day - had a HUGE 16oz steak meal followed by a purple topping cheesecake - absolutely delicious. Watched Dad as he occasionaly tried eating with the fork round the wrong way and not noticeing his food slipping off his plate and mum attentively keeping an eye on him and occasionaly pushing the food back into place. . . The pack walking along Paignton sea frontgot Sally out of the car and all walked along the sea front as I played with her on the beach - WOW she got excited and playfull!! Not sure I've ever seen her SO playful - all jumping and bouncing and barking and jumping into the sea after thrown pebbels. A dog will make you smile. Footprints in the sand . . . drove back to M/D with a sandy wet dog! M/D insisted we stop off at their local shop because they had seen special offer tins of dog food - Mum insisted on buying some for Sally. . . back for chats and coffee with Sally tucking into some of the new food in the garage - gone in an instant - guess she likes that sort of food then . . . decided to walk Sally early evening down round Battery Gardens to get it over and done with and to try and dry her out a bit. She definitely remembered where we were going - clear warm evening with moon and stars and plenty of rabbit chasing. Sat on a bench overlooking Torbay with a cigarette - calming. On the way back Sally tried to detour into the pub that we'd been in only once or twice before! What a memory! . . . more chats and coffee and nibbles and then loaded up all the junk into every available space in the car leaving enough room for Sally to stretch out and sleep on the way back. Hugs and 'love you's' and back on the road around 8:30pm. . . stopped for petrol (Sis1 split the cost thank goodness) and broke the speed limit all the way back - VERY tired. Both agreed it had been quite a pleasant day. Dropped off Sis1 and then home to thankfully find a parking place right outside the house and unload everything. Quick touch base with M/D to confirm safe arrival and then spent an hour or so messing with the couple of photos I'd taken on the digital and copied a few to Sis2s e-mail address - assuming it is still live? Eventually to bed absolutely tired out! Today was ok. (4/10)pa
25 - Up late . . .walked in the rain and mud. Found three 'pennies from heaven'. . . slept the day away as it poured with rain . . . walked wet . . . TVd and watched "Conspiracy" on BBC2 which recreated the 1942 summit at Wannsee on the outskirts of Berlin, where, over lunch, the Third Reich calmly devised the extermination of six million people. Awfull but absolutely BRILLIANT production. Kenneth Branagh seems to have been responsible for bringing much to the screen. Respect . . . Pcd till early - bloody website is down - no mail or uploading possible! (4/10)ps
26 - Up very late and yet more torrential rain - don't want to walk!! . . .still unable to log on to my webspace!! . . .walked in the rain - don't think I'll ever be walking in anything worse! Dreadful weather!! Some flooding down the road where there is never flooding - guess a drain is blocked - Sally bounced in the puddles and got wetter than if she'd been for a swim somehow!! LOTS of wiping down back home. Found five 'pennies from heaven' . . . PCd just a bit . . . messed around a little sorting out some of the junk I brought back from Dad's garage . . . touched base with Sis2 . . . watched 'The Bridges Of Madison County' on TV again - still think it is just a brilliant film - first tears for a while . . .walked in the mud and rain again! Uggh! . . . TVd with warm wet dog . . . drunk LB popped in briefly talking about geting a cheap PC for surfing cookery pages!!! . . . TVd till early. (4/10)psss
27 - Today is the second British memorial day for the Holocaust.
Up late again. Snuggles with Sally. . .walked in the mud and rain - getting tough to walk in the depth of mud over that field! . . .PCd for quite a while but somehow did nothing and got nowhere! Me and surfing seem to do that! . . . fell asleep all afternoon! . . . walked. As I walked down the road towards the field there was a commotion that turned out to be an upset black girl, in tears I think, being closely followed by a ranting, shouting black (young?) guy. Very tempted to shout out and ask if she was ok but didn't and just stopped and watched to make sure he wasn't gonna touch her or ?????? Lo and behold - I became the target for the idiot's agression!! "WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING AT?" he shouted from about twenty metres away as he advanced towards me all gesticulating - "I'm looking at you!" was my innept and unwise answer. The girl made no attempt to run away so it was obviously a domestic - the worst possible situation to get anywhere near!! Not sure what else he shouted out but I'm fairly certain it included a 'cutting' threat - that and apparantly to other people I look like a "Fucking hippy!" Cool. :o) I turned and walked away and he headed off raving and ranting with the girl. The two pence peice that he threw from an amazing distance missed me and was actually picked up by another passer by who obviously didn't want to get involved but I couldn't resist having a few words and saying "Pennies from heaven" to him as he walked away with his profit. Carried on round the field replaying events and imagining what I could have said and done (strangely all in the manner of TV's 'Judge Joe Brown'!!!?) but feeling frankly pretty uneasy and keeping an eye on my back! Walked uneventfully round the block the way the nutcase had gone on the way home just to make sure I had reclaimed the streets from my fear. . .popped up LBs and picked up the food she had called to say was waiting for me. Nice one - tomorrows dinner. . . BB called to touch base. . .TVd till early. (4/10)ps
28 - Up late woken by a thunder storm battering the house! . . .walked as it stopped raining and saw some sun come out but what a wind!! . . . touched base with CW for the first time since she finished work - she seems ok . . . walked Sally up the shops. Tied her up outside a card shop and went in to buy cards but couldn't concentrate and keep an eye on her stressed and barking at pigeons outside so gave up. Walked down into the precinct and Sally strained on her leash and barked and barked as someone elses dog did the same back. I tried to speak to the owner and hesitated to allow the dogs to make friends but the guy got all agressive and shouted out to all that were watching that I was just teasing his dog!! I was just trying to be friendly!! Really annoyed me and made me all shakey!? Tied Sally up and went into Sainsburys for the first time with her outside. Rushed in, grabbed a tin of coffee and rushed out as devil dog wolf howls echoed around the precinct!!!! Managed to get some marrow bones from a butcher - great big things I could hardly carry!! Struggled home and spent half an hour sawing them up and putting several pieces in the freezer for later. . . things of late got to me and I started to get all down and tired of living in a world of such agression. Sleep was my escape as Sally chewed her bone . . . walked . . . ate LBs donated food and gave Sally hers - excellent as usual - woofed down by both of us . . . PS popped round for chats till early. Terrible air of tension between him and Sally all evening and with me holding onto her she even had a go at nipping PS leg as he returned from the bathroom!!!! This needs to be addressed! . . . PCd briefly looking up canine behaviour web sites. Suspect that Sally thinks herself an equal to me despite my 'top dog' behaviours!! Hmmm? (3/10)ps
29 - Up late . . . not bad weather so covered the back of the car with the underlay I picked up the other day and drove Sally to Snuff Mills with a pocket full of chocolate button treats. Walked along the river which was real swollen, high and brown and started a more rigorous training regime for Sally with lots of sitting and staying and coming etc etc all reinforced with treats. She did ok. . . drove home with the wet dog and then spent a rediculous amount of time trying to see if I could do a waterfall animation with the digital pics I'd taken. No way - just could not get the seperate images I'd taken to line up good enough - guess that is why expensive cameras have a 'burst sequence' setting. Must figure out some way of attaching the camera to things so it can't move when I try and take a manual series! . . . fell asleep for a couple but woken by phone calls but no ansaphone message! . . . walked and found 5p . . . sat in the garden for a short while - funny but nice kinda quiet mild evening - two surviving frogs spotted -Yayyy. . .TVd till early watching 'Predator' which was on yet again. BB called to touch base. . .amazing how many people bump into my website and immediately think I am the Terry Jones from Monty Python and either sign the guestbook or send me feedback accordingly!!!? Don't people actually read any of it? Also amazing how many people e-mail me asking for copies of the music cassettes I have!! Isn't there a law against that? Ignore and delete I'm afraid. (4/10)ps
30 - More rainy drizzley dark weather!! . . .walked and stopped to call the police on my mobile and report the stolen car that had been crashed into the childrens swings and then turned upside down and smashed up by passing school children! Never have my camera with me when I need it - charging the batteries! Rain started on the way home and got wet - luckily just got home before the torrential rain! . . . surfed and suddenly thought of what I could use the gift certificate for DS had sent me - surfed for hours and then ordered The Dog Listener, So Your Dog's Not Lassie and RSPCA Complete Dog Training Manual from Amazon. What a brilliant idea - good old DS. First time I've 'bought' ANYTHING on line! Oooer. . .Couldn't resist it and despite the awful rain took the camera and popped back over the field - just in time to see the team of four guys from the council disposing of the car. It was of course a write-off but the way they dealt with it was hilarious. Instead of just righting it and winching it onto a flatbed trailer or picking it up with a strop they used a tractor with a split hydraulic bucket to try and grasp it and pick it up and stuff it into the end of a high sided trailer!!!! An almost impossible operation and absolutely hilarious to watch as one fat worker all frustrated and gesticulating tried to direct the driver of the tractor. They succeeded in reducing the car, someone's some time pride and joy to an unrecognisable pile of scrap with the roof torn off and bits and pieces falling off all over the place, never mind the deep furrowed damage to the grass of the field!!! SO funny. Wish I'd had a video camera-could have made a buck by sending it in to 'You've Been Framed'- the digital had a hard time with the low light in the rain and the pics I did take were nigh on useless. Found a couple of pennies on the way back. . . slept - woken with a big headache by SH leaving an ansaphone message . . .walked in the rain . . . TVd . . .touched base with M/D who seemed real ok. . . BB called to touch base . . . sat in the conservatory for a while and then early to bed to read a little buddhisty stuff.(4/10)paa
31 - More awful weather forecast for the next several days with flood warnings on several rivers! BIG gales tomorow!!! . . .walked and found 13p - sad to say I actually walk along actively looking for money now!! Even got a bit jealous of a guy in front of me I saw picking up a 2p peice! lol . . . left Sally at home watching the Animal channel on TV and walked up to shop. Couldn't resist another pair of hardly worn heavy duty walking boots in the Salvation Army charity shop for only 3 - rediculously low price! Think I have enough footwear to last this lifetime! . . .tried to work out which of the local stores did the best deal on dog food - should have taken a calculator - my maths is rusty after years of hardly using it! A three for the price of two, six pack of 'Winalot', deal in Sainsuburys was too good to pass up. Bought a few things that I could carry along with my new boots in my rucsac and rushed home to get the car and drive back up. Bought 12 packs and loaded the car up!! That is about 30p for a 400g tin - nice one - that'll be hard to beat. . .slept but woken again by SH calling. Called him back and he confirmed that his new 35mm SLR camera was ok and he was prepared to sell me his old one and the lenses for 30. Can't say no. . . BB called to ask my opinion about an 'ethical' dillema connected with her work. Life is SO tough when trying to do the 'right thing' is SO important to us! . . . walked between rain storms and found another penny . . . TVd till late. Seem to be feeling the pull back to a meditational practice and cleaning up my act although lack the commitment.(4/10)ps
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