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<My Diary Archive 2013 My Diary Archive>

- Up around 7am. 21C in, 15C out, sunny. . . walked BGdns. Distant 'booms' were 'just' audible in the very far distance. Most unusual. The knee jerk conclusion is that it was the sounds of distant live-firing from some navy ship or other. (Frequent warnings of such are often transmitted on various marine frequencies by the distant vessels concerned, but strangely one never seems to hear their firing!?) It was a weird, almost subaudible, far-distant booming noise. In reality, it was probably far more likely to be sonic booms from some very far off aircraft breaking the sound barrier somewhere? Intriguing. . played ball on the lower seat as usual before ending up on the higher seat to drink my coffee. As we sat there, 'the' dobermans arrived with T (who I haven't spoken with for AGES) for their morning walk! I've not bothered mentioning it here, but we HAVE been bumping into those dobermans quite a bit of late, as I've started to frequent BGdns more and more of late again. I kinda just froze and kept Bella laying down on the ground real close. HUGELY stressful for me. Managed to engage in a little polite conversation as 'the' doberman wandered around too close for comfort, but without incident. According to T, the dog has settled down nicely, is no trouble, is a real softy, etc, etc. That may well be the case, but no way do I trust it (nor will I ever) and I'm still quite convinced that if Bella was to do her sudden crazy running around and possibly nipping it thing, it'd very likely end up in her being torn to shreds again. I will continue to give them a VERY wide berth, whenever I can! I was eventually greatly relieved to be able to curtail the conversation and escape! . . .dug out my my plastic petrol container from the garage and then left Bella at home and walked to the local petrol station and filled it up. 5.56 ltrs @ 7.50. . carried it carefuly back home and then laboriously got it into the car's tank. Took a while because I think I've long lost the cap to go on the container to hold the little plastic spout in place. Had to just hold the spout on by hand and wrap a piece of cloth around it to stop all the petrol just pouring out around it! The car started up straight away, so hopefully that solar battery charger IS now actually keeping it topped up. . . TVd/PCd and listened on the radios for a bit. Listened-in for another scheduled ISS contact as it passed over from around 12:22pm. VERY little heard again. . . Mum called in with the papers for chats. We both appear to be pretty down. SO difficult to have to engage in her pointless conversations. VERY glad when she went! . . cooked and ate three pieces of bacon, four sausages, and two large mushrooms with four pieces of bread and butter . . .napped . . TVd . .walked BGdns. Played ball until around 9pm and then sat in the dark at length mostly watching the sky whilst listening to the radios. A fourteen year old boy was being rescued by the coastguard troops on the Exmouth side of Torquay. He'd got a fishing hook badly stuck in his leg! Nasty. . . Resisted smoking all day again until after having returned from the evening walk, and then just had a couple. Pointless this token 'cutting down' really - it can NEVER work of course. Within a couple of days I'll allow myself just this one, and then just that one, and in no time I'll inevitably be back chain-smoking again. . TVd . . ate doughnuts and biscuits . . to bed around 3am.
30 - Up around 7am. 20C in, 16C out, a sunny spell or two but mostly cloud . . . walked CCove and threw Bellas ball for her to swim out and retreive - from within twenty feet of a watching seal. Carried on up through the woods and back to BGdns for more ball play before eventually home in a bit of drizzle . . TVd . . touched base with DF and cancelled his intended visit this evening. I'm just totally unable to tolerate 'people' at the moment - even more than usual! I've even been tempted to turn the phones off (and actually have on the odd occasion!) just to absolutely ensure I don't have to make ANY conversation with ANYONE! Boy - HOW absurd it seems for me to have spent all that money on all this radio gear at the moment. THE very last thing I would be tempted to do right now is attempt to 'chat' on a radio to anyone!!! All total irrelevant pointless silly nonsense! Even making a bit of meaningless polite conversation to passing dogwalkers seems to be something to be avoided at all costs if possible right now, and of course sitting in the PC room and doing my journal is also more than I can face enduring! . . . listened in around 13:11hrs as the ISS had a contact with a youth group in the Netherlands. Didn't pick up very much of it again and happily turned it all off and just walked away from all the irritating noise and never-ending, day after day meaningless gibberish from all the usual amateur voices . . . cooked and ate a big fry-up again . .received an unexpected letter from the doctor, just kinda drawing a line under my recent visit etc. I guess. "I enclose a copy of the results of your recent chest x-ray. There is nothing like cancer or acute infection shown. There is a question that you might have had TB in your youth but this is an old finding and nothing that would be associated with your current symptoms. It would seem likely that you will not succumb and therfore your gamble is paying off. If your symptoms continue and you haven't improved, do see me again." The comment about 'my gamble' was referring to one of the things I'd said about my smoking when I saw him - along the lines that smoking is a gamble with your health, and that your a 'winner' if something kills you before the effects of the smoking. My recent difficulties with breathing had made me leap to the conclusion that I'd lost the gamble and that the smoking had got me. The actual hospital x-ray results read as follows. "Report Date : 21 August 2013. Results for Examniation XR Chest:Clinical Information: Chronic smoker cough. No blood. Acute onset of short of breath. Discomfort lower sternum. Findings: Heart is not enlarged. Abnormal shadowing seen at the right apex with streaky lines radiating towards the righ hilium. Findings are likely to be chronic and long standing.? Due to old TB. The rest of the lung fields appeared normal." Oh well - I guess that's that and I 'should' be relieved and pleased. Trouble is, bizarrely, a large part of me had kinda gotten accustomed to the idea that I DID have something seriously wrong and potentially utlimately terminal, and in that line of thinking, there actually WAS some 'relief'! Kinda something along the lines of FINALLY, I can relax and give-up, and not have to keep on fighting so hard just to continue existing!!!!! It was almost disappointing to have it confirmed that all is well, and I have to just carry on carrying on! :o( . . . napped until around 5pm . . dropped a short patch lead out of the PC room window and with the minimum of messing around with connections, managed to plug my scanner into the colinear aerial on the front of the house and have it propped up against the handrail by the door out in the front garden. That enabled me to fully monitor the appropriate frequency on the radio while sitting on the steps out front waiting for the red arrows to appear in the sky during their scheduled, annual Dartmouth Regatta display.Image from my Brixham garden of the Red Arrows displaying at Dartmouth I'd read somewhere they were displaying at 6pm. Neighbours in the street had also gotten the same impression, and a handful were also out in their gardens looking skyward in the direction of Dartmouth. As it turned out, for whatever reason, their display turned out to be at 6:30pm instead. Actually no bad thing because the sky had become rather cloudy, but luckily cleared away a little again at around 6:30pm. Listened on the scanner to the usual and now familiar shouts from the aircrew as they did their display, largely disappearing down behind the surrounding hills and out of sight deep into the Dart valley. Very cool to have the annual thrill of just standing in your front garden and seeing bits of their always impressive display like that. Despite the less than ideal weather, they succeeded in doing a big red heart in the sky (but sadly side-on from my vantage point). All too soon the show was over and they all headed off in formation across Lyme Bay towards the East. Carried on sitting on the doorstep for ages, listening to them 'chatting' on their radios for about as long as I reasonably could. I'm no expert on what they do, but from what I've heard on the radio, it DOES seem as though they do various fly-bys with their smoke-on whilst travelling to and from their various official displays. No matter how often I see them, I always get a bit of a buzz from it (and now added to, by being able to hear on the radio their excited shouts and yells etc whilst they perform). VERY cool stuff. On the down side, it also makes me feel SO inadequate and SUCH a failure in life! . A touch of drizzle and then rain saw me eventualy turn off the radio and retreat back inside . . skipped the walk . . TVd . . ate a pastry slice, crisps, banana biscuits and chocolate . . TVd until bed around 1:30m. Resisted smoking until just a couple in the evening.
29 - Woke earlier, snoozed on then up around 7:35am. 19C in, 15C out, mostly cloudy. . . PCd a bit of this . . walked FGn . . .aimlessly sat around feeling VERY down . . around midday, cooked and ate - two pieces of bacon, two sausages, two big flat mushrooms with a little grated cheese, two eggs and half a tin of sausages in baked beans with two pieces of bread and butter . . returned to bed soon after and thankfully succeeded in sleeping off the rest of the day until around 5:30pm. . TVd and ate a couple of small doughnuts . . . .walked BGdns and sat around until long after dark . . . TVd nothing. Feeling VERY down. Awfully awfully very, very down!!! I'm just totally not functioning at all at the moment - and in the most dire of darkly down moods! It's hard to explain, but I feel SO NOT 'myself' (whatever that is!) at the moment!! I hardly recognise myself in how my mind is working at the moment! It's DEEPLY disturbing and absolutely overwhelming me with feelings of total despair about everything!? Inevitably, it was my conclusion that things HAD to be this way because of the 'stopping smoking' thing. The problem with that conclusion, and the most disturbing and unsettling thing about it was, that I'd never experienced anything like this before when 'giving up'. This was worse - FAR worse than anything I'd experienced before!!!??? Smoking aside - there is absolutely not a doubt in my mind now, that in recent years, perhaps simply because of increasing age, the 'chemistry' of my brain has and is changing, in ways I have NEVER experienced before!!!???? (Deep down in the back of my mind, I HAVE been wondering more and more about the possible prospect of early onset alzheimers or some such, SUCH is the very noticeable change in mental functionality!!) Giving up smoking is hard enough - but I've been there, seen that, done that, all before - THIS effect on my 'mood' is something else - far worse!! Accompanying the crushing 'down' mood, I am also continualy experiencing terrible bouts of anger about silly stuff which wouldn't normally have had any such effect (and this BEFORE the recent smoking cessation!). Stopping smoking seems to have just made everything far FAR worse!!?????! . . It's a hard thing to have to accept about yourself - the pathetic failure etc - but after having had no choice but think long and hard about everything, I made a deliberate and conscious decision to resume smoking this evening. Under these dire circumstances (aside from financial ruin!), what have I got to lose! :o( . . Having a smoke (the first in three weeks?) suprisingly did NOT seem to help my mood! It is also worthy of note, that having that smoke did NOT give me the effects that I would previosuly have experienced after having NOT smoked for so long beforehand. I did NOT experience the usual light headedness or 'pleasurable' relaxing 'every cell in my body, buzz' I more usually would have had! All SO different to anything I've ever experienced before!?????? It didn't even make me cough loads! Something about me HAS changed. :o( . . . ate crisps, ham sandwiches and a large amount of chocolate (a whole bar +!) . . to bed around 2am.
28 - Woke earlier, snoozed on then up around 6:45am. 19C in, 14C out, misty sunny . . . walked BGdns. Swam Bella on the beach at FCove, sat and played ball and drank my coffee in the Gdns and then walked back via town to shop for a few supplies . . PCd and messed around looking up radio frequencies on the net. According to relevant websites, not only are the Red Arrows displaying over Torquay later as part of the regatta week, but also apparantly the RAF Falcons parachute display team are dropping in, and also the Breitling Wingwalkers doing a display. Did my best to look up any mention of them all, with regards to what radio frequencies it may be worth listening to. Eventually added a list to one of the UBC3500XLT scanners and got batteries charged on everything, etc. .rang up the doctors surgery and cancelled my Friday appointment! With my health (breathing/cough/sinuses) now 'settling down' and definitely slowly improving, I can't see any point in wasting a doctors time on it all now. I DID however ask the receptionist over the phone what the 'official' x-ray results were. All clear apparantly, except that there WAS a passing comment made about a bit of a mark in the right shoulder area, which it'd been said was suggestive of some old tuberculosis scarring or some such!!???? Huh? I've never had TB? Intriguing - but pointless seeing a doctor just to get to the bottom of what the hell that might be all about. . . pottered around wasting away the day. Ate just a couple of chocolate biscuits . . .headed out back to BGdns with Bella, armed with radios, cameras, coffee etc around 4:10pm. Played ball for a bit while messing with the radios. Sadly, visibility across the bay was awful, with a misty murky fill to the air, actually at its worst, 'almost' making Torquay invisible at times from such a distance!! If the RAF Falcons did drop in at 4:30pm, I neither heard nor saw anything of them at all. .the Breitling Wingwalkers (I assume, from the sound) DID appear to do a display some ten to fifteen minutes AFTER their scheduled 5pm, but once again it was hard to see anything of them, and their display smoke appeared to make visibility in the direction of Torquay even worse! Once again, didn't hear a peep from them on the radio. . more and more people turned up in BGdns as we sat waiting for the 6pm Red Arrows display. Picked them up on the scanner a good five to ten minutes before they began their display. The weather/visibility did NOT improve and it really was quite difficult to see them a lot of the time! Photos/video were pretty much out of the question for the most part, so I didn't even bother trying. Listening-in on the scanner was far more successful than actually being able to watch them on this occasion! Such a shame. Brixham WAS treated to the aircraft all flying over pretty low and close (at least one, right up the throat of the harbor) shortly before the very end of their display. . . back home early by around 7pm . . . TVd . . . drank a glass of red wine. Cooked and ate a whole pack of four quarter pound Birdseye burgers in buttered bread rolls, biscuits and chocolate. . .TVd until bed around midnight. MUCH difficulty not smoking this evening! :o(
27 - Woke earlier then up around 7:45am. 20C in, 17C out, misty sunny . .Torbay lifeboat were out towing someone back in again - from a good 25miles out in Lyme Bay? . . walked FGn. Carried on down to the harbor intending to buy the webbing belt the guy had ordered-in for me. Turned out the shop didn't open until 9:30am so I ended up sitting around on the deck seating near the working harbor, drinking my flask of coffee and wasting away a bit of time. Eventually returned to the store and bought BOTH the belts they now had in stock, for 11.90. VERY hot walking home - with Bella acting up and giving me a hard time all the way. By the time we got home I'd really had enough - needed some 'space', and had to banish her to the garden on her own for a bit. :o( . . messed around with one of the new belts adjusting it to size and attaching my keyring, D ring, etc, etc. PCd a bit of this while monitoring radios. Around 10:30am the lifeboat arrived back in harbor with the vessel it was towing. Turned out to be fishing vessel 'Pisces' with engine failure - AGAIN (21/8)?!! . . tall ship 'Stavros' departed the harbor around midday . . Mum called to touch base . .in terms of my breathing etc, I AM 'starting' to now feel as though I'm very much on the mend (from a VIRUS) - albeit quite slowly. The down side of feeling 'better' is, the better I feel, the more difficulty I seem to be having with regards to smoking withdrawl. Whilst I was having so much trouble breathing etc, it really wasn't quite so much of an issue, because I simply had no other choice than NOT to smoke. With each passing day of feeling 'better' in terms of my overall health, the smoking cravings are increasing - lots!! :o( . . TVd . . ate a banana and a handful of biscuits . . napped until around 5:45pm despite being woken more than once by the sound of thunder as some rain fell . . TVd . . . walked down through town, out along the breakwater and back, and then back around the harbor and up into BGdns. Sat and drank my coffee in the dark before heading back. Home by around 9:40pm . . TVd nothing . ate a couple of small ham finger rolls, crisps, mini cheddars, biscuits and some chocolate . . to bed around midnight.
26 - Up at 8am, 20C in, 18C out, misty sunny . . . walked CCove, the woods and then back to BGdns for more ball play. Chatted very briefly on the handie when someone from new Zealand was calling through the local repeater via IRLP and getting no-one come back to them. As I ended the brief conversation I spotted a baby seagul apparantly in some distress in the water a short distance from our usual lower seat. Turned out it was caught in the line of a guy fishing from the rocks! :o( Thankfully he managed to pull it in to within arms reach and then appeared to manage to get the hooks and line untangled without causing any injury or damage. Upon release, the bird flew a short distance away and seemed to be none the worse for the experience. Phew. . carried on down to the inner harbour and sat to drink my coffee by the old fish market, 'people-watching' and listening a little to a nearby busker singing and playing his guitar. As I sat there, a guy from the local store where I'd tried to buy a replacement webbing belt, suddenly walked up and announced he'd got one in stock for me now! Blimey - that's 'small town' service ain't it! lolol I finished my coffee and then stopped in the store on the way back home and had to appologise because I didn't have enough money on me! Said I'd call back in tomorrow to buy it. . . sat around/TVd/PCd. Actually spent an absurd amount of time on-line surfing reading up on sinuses, etc! I'm coughing plenty from whatever is congesting my lungs, but I get the impression, THAT side of things is definitely slowly getting better (oh thank god!). My blocking and constantly filling sinus issue, is now taking the lead in terms of unpleasantness and discomfort/suffering. . I can't believe I just spent SO long on-line, watching videos of people pouring miniature watering cans of water in one nostril, 'through' their sinuses and then out the other nostril!!! Eeewww. lolol An in-desperation, tentative half hearted attempt at doing something similar, did NOT go well! lol If things don't soon improve, I WILL be having another more serious go! Eewwww!!! lololol .. . drank a glass of red wine. Cooked and ate three sausages, three bacon, two mushrooms with grated cheese, two eggs, half a tin of baked beans and two small buttered finger rolls . . .napped for an hour or so (despite my blocked sinuses etc) . . . TVd/PCd . . walked BGdns with a coffee and sat around on one of the lower seats waiting for the big regatta fireworks display above Torquay at 9:30pm. Drank my coffee and continued to play ball a bit with Bella during the display. It was quite a good display I guess, but for some reason (perhaps the added couple of miles distance) I'm not convinced it was any better than the Paignton display I'd seen a short time ago. Or maybe it was because it had been so over-hyped in the local paper, with much mention of a special super-duper firework, specially imported to end the display? Anyway, for whatever reason, despite how big and impressive a display it was, 'I' felt it was just a little bit of an anticlimax. For me, the most impressive bits were some extremely bright and loud fireworks - nothing more than a single almost literally 'blinding' white light accompanied by an ear shattering bang. I can't recall ever having seen anything quite like those before. The much hyped final firework appeared to be just high, big and loud - like you'd expect. . . sat on a higher seat for a bit once the display was over and done with, watching the sky and the usual handful of 'orbitting bodies', as multiple boats headed back from Torquay across the bay to return to Brixham harbor after having been over to watch the fireworks. . . TVd . . ate two bananas, biscuits and two jam doughnuts . . to bed around 1:30am.
25 - Up around 6:45am, 21C in, 20C out, sunny . . . walked FGn and then down and along into BGdns. Swam Bella on FCove before sitting around for quite a while watching all the sailboats and yachts in the bay. LOTS of yachts. Huge numbers. It really did finally look as though there WAS a proper 'regatta' going on. Image of a moth class hydrofoil in Torbay What particularly got MY attention were the weird little single handed sail boats I don't think I've ever seen the like of before. Subsequent surfing on the net revealed them to be 'International Moth' class hydrofoil sailboats. Didn't seem to take much wind for them to amazingly rise completely clear of the waves on their hydrofoils, and then go at absolutely breathtaking speeds! It was the speeds they were going that first drew the eye. All the other sailing vessels, big and small, appeared to be almost standing still in comparison to the speeds they were seemingly effortlessly acheiving!? Absolutely extraordinary things to see, 'zooming' around faster than even your average motorboats! According to what I've read, 'a sailing hydrofoil can achieve speeds exceeding two times the wind speed'!!! I don't appear to have the intelligence to be able to work all that out in my mind! lol How can it go THAT much faster than the wind - and how on earth can such a craft so perfectly 'trim' its hydrofoils so as to remain 'airborne' like that?? Amazing . . . back around midday via the stores for some butter and multiple packs of blackcurrant flavoured fishermens friend lozenges. I'd bought one pack of those a few days ago, and they do seem to be fairly useful, not only for clearing my airways just a little, but also as a bit of something to do instead of smoking a cigarette! . . . TVd . . somewhere around 2pm an unsual aircraft noise had me leaping to the window. Turned out to be a (the?) Catalina flying boat going past again, this time heading northish . . ate two salami buttered finger rolls, crisps, biscuits and chocolate . . napped poorly for an hour or two . . TVd . . walked BGdns. People camping on CCove with a big fire putting lots of smoke into the air, gave me a little difficulty with my breathing etc. The Fairmile was cruising slowly around the bay on a booze-cruise with a disco onboard, absolutely blasting out 'unpleasant', and unpleasantly loud music. SO loud, it was irritatingly audible from > five miles distant! There was no escape from it. . eventually ended up sat on the higher seat, nearer the road which is currently lined by lots of campervans taking advantage of the still currently free overnight parking. Some guy driving down the road in his car, went out of his way to blow his horn next to every single motorhome he passed adjacent to BGdns (around eight?) - and then carried on doing so next to every other one he passed along the cliff top road!!!! What a repulsive example of humanity he was! That he should get so much pleasure from ensuring that whoever may have been in those campers, was not able to have peace and quite and sleep. Repulsive! . . . All in all it felt unpleasant to have to tolerate other people this evening (frankly unbearable) and I returned home 'early', around 9:30pm . . . TVd and watched 'The Mechanic' film. . . BB called to touch base . . ate a banana, biscuits, two mini chocolate rolls and two doughnuts . . to bed around 2:30am.
24 - Broken sleep then up around 6am, 20C in, 17C out. A few clouds but otherwise clearing to sunny. Much coughing. Could NOT clear my throat again/still! Poor neighbours, having to endure all my disgusting choking/coughing etc noises at all hours!! . . slow getting going . . walked FGn. The Tall Ships Youth Trust ship the 'Stavros S Niarchos' was moored up off the end of the breakwater outside the outer harbour, looking all picturesque. It was apparantly going to soon be moved into the harbour and tied up alongside - with an 'open day' scheduled for tomorrow. Almost tempting to have a look - but I probably won't. . Eventually walked down around the harbour, and then out along to the end of the breakwater and back. Undoubtedly as a result of my smoking withdrawl, throughout the entire walk, I seemed to be very much in the mood for an 'English breakfast '. I did even dabble with the idea of having one at one of the many cafes, but ultimately just couldn't bear the thought of paying the prices they all charge. Ended up shopping for a few appropriate supplies on the way back through town and then headed home to pretty soon start cooking! . . . cooked up two big flat mushrooms, two eggs, three rashers (half a pack) of bacon, three thick cumberland sausages (half a pack), half a tin of baked beans and a slice of fried bread. That turned out to be actually an outrageously large feed - and substantially more than I would have got in a cafe! I should have done 'thirds' of packs instead of halves! lol Just for interest, I actually tried to calculate approximately how much the raw materials for the meal had actually cost me. Even being 'generous' with approximating the cost, I figure that huge meal cost me LESS than 2.85. A SUBSTANTIALLY smaller meal at the cafes would have been nearer 5 I think. . .PCd and monitored radios briefly when I heard people on the scanner talking about and going to an air display at Dawlish today. Only picked up a few snippets here and there before Mum called in with the papers and food donations for chats etc. . PCd . . . napped for maybe only an hour or so . . TVd/read the papers as my sinuses got all increasingly bunged up and troublesome. . walked BGdns coughing and badly bunged up . . .had to replace YET another of my energy-saver downlighter light bulbs! WHAT a rip-off those bulbs are! They are SO expensive and don't last a tiny fraction of the time they say they do, or of the life of a regular old fashion light bulb. Outrageous rip-off! (actually stopped typing this to go revisit that replacement bulb and write the date on it, just to really be able to tell how long they last!) . . TVd/PCd the night away as some heavy rain fell . . ate a banana and a couple of jam doughnuts before ultimately to bed around 3am.
23 - Woke earlier more than once, managed to snooze on for a bit then up around 8am. 20C in, 19C out, misty cloud cover. Tired and headachey. Annadin tablet for breakfast . . . walked BGdns around 9:15am. Felt pretty iffy (a woozy, semi-drunk type feeling!??) and sat around for quite a long while. Eventually started to imagine I was maybe feeling a little 'better' - or certainly better in terms of my breathing compared to most of yesterday! . back via the store for milk, but also ended up buying four small sausage rolls and four jam doughnuts. . sat in the back garden around 11am with a large coffee, and ate the sausage rolls and two of the doughnuts. Almost a breakfast? A deliberate attempt to get some food inside me away from any time when I'm liable to have to sleep - since sleeping on a full stomach of late, seems to have been very much a part of worsening my breathing problems. . . TVd/PCd this at length until mid afternoon. Well - so far, overall, a much better breathing day than yesterday - which actually isn't saying much, but I'm awful grateful nonetheless. . .managed to nap for a while and then persisted some more until around 5:30pm . . woke with a coffee and a handful of biscuits. More congested and bunged up than earlier. . . TVd . . did the mountain of dish washing chores as rain showers passed through . . . walked BGdns despite the rain showers. Sods law saw the next shower be more prolonged, and by the time we reached BGdns, we were both pretty soaked. Played ball for a bit in a drier spell before heading up top and taking shelter under the roof until long after dark as more rain showers passed through. 'Trapped' into chatting to the guy who recently had his dog put down. Would MUCH rather have sat there in solitude. . plenty of coughing and could NOT clear my throat! Eventually escaped (from the utterly pointless conversation) and headed home . . .gave Bella all the remaining rice and mushrooms etc concoction as her evening meal, because I just wasn't in the mood for it. . . TVd . . . ate a lump of cheese with some crisps, followed by salami slice sandwiches and then some chocolate . . TVd until to bed around 11:30pm.
22 - Poor disturbed sleep then up around 7:15am, woken by noise from outside thanks to the open windows. 19C in, 17C out, sunny. Still all bunged up, coughing, feeling 'breathless' and generally feeling pretty 'beaten up' after last night!! . . walked BGdns. Returned through town and popped into the doctors surgery to make an appointment to see any one of them when the results of the X-ray are in. Turned out the earliest I could get a suitably timed appointment was for next Friday - and yet again a doctor I don't think I've ever seen before! If I get any more episodes like last night, I'm not sure I'll make it till Friday, one way or another!!!! . . . returned home to just sit around in front the TV feeling fragile and good for nothing, with all the doors and windows open again . . ate early, a bowl of the rice concoction around midday, and then TVd for as long as I could resist, before having to lay down for a bit. . . managed to nap for a bit but back up around 4:30pm feeling all bunged up and badly breathless again! :o( . .TVd/monitored radios. A yacht called 'Big Toe' (or was that 'Tow'? lol) on its way to Dartmouth was in a bit of trouble out past Berry Head. Snagged itself on a crab-pot line or some such, and couldn't get free of the line. The Torbay lifeboat was eventually launched to assist. It appeared they simply put a heaving line on and quickly managed to tow the yacht free from its snag, without any ill effects at all. The yacht (in company with another) eventually decided to return to Brixham rather than carry on with its intended passage. . . drank a half glass of wine in the hope that would help relax and open my airways!! It didn't of course . . .succumbed to a growing 'need' to eat burgers. Cooked and deliberately ate early, a couple of quarter-pound BirdsEye burgers in buttered bread rolls. . TVd until around 8pm. Walked BGdns, having real trouble breathing again. Even felt like a struggle just walking to and reaching the normal lower ball playing seat!!!!! Sat there for ages just feeling out of breath and awful. I was called on the radio a couple of times at one point and DID eventually reply, but even just trying to talk made me increasingly breathless and I soon got off - but did at least have the opportunity to cancel DFs visit tomorrow!!! The way things are going, I've no idea what sort of shape I'm liable to be in by then, and certainly don't need the added aggro of having to work to a 'schedule' for no good reason! :o(. .definitely a 'metallic' taste to my (largely ineffectual) coughing now!??? . . Eventually headed up to the higher seat, but even just that short climb was a real struggle this evening, with plenty of stops along the way gasping for breath. Actually felt worryingly pretty wobbly on my feet for a bit of that climb, and was very glad to eventually reach the seat and collapse and 'recover' (relatively!) for a bit. Didn't hang around too long and eventually struggled slowly back home. . . threw all the windows back open to get fresh cooler air flowing through and just sat in front the TV again. . at some point somewhere around 10:30pm I didn't feel 'quite' so breathless, and had a slightly easier time of it than I'd had pretty much all the rest of the day - although I had developed a headache, to go along with all the other bits of me which appeared to be aching, so did pop an annadin tablet in the hope it would take the edge of things! . ate some Mum-donated Thorntons strawberry cream chocolates. . TVd and actually sat through 'The Pledge', a Jack Nicholson film which was on. Found it pretty poor and really 'tedious', but forced myself to give it the benefit of the doubt and sit through it nonetheless. Boy - wish I hadn't bothered. What a dreadfuly miserable ending! :o( . . to bed around 1:30am. . although hard to be objective, on balance, I think today has been the worst day overall in terms of my breathing difficulties! Although I've definitely had MUCH worse/more severe breathless episodes (last night in particular), today stands out as the most prolonged period of continuous, unbroken difficulty! :o( I'm fearful things are looking like they are actually getting worse - and god knows, I don't think I can take too much of 'worse' before having to think about heading for a hospital for alleviation of the breathlessness symptoms when at their worst!!! :o( I HAVE done a bit of online reading-up on breathing related stuff, in an attempt to understand what may be going on, and try my best to self diagnose. My position has definitely changed as things have progressed. (It's only been a couple of weeks, but boy does it seem like a VERY long time to me! How many breaths does one take in a day? That's how many times I'm dealing with how bad I'm feeling!!!! It has all become the sole focus of ALL my thoughts and attention right now! There IS nothing else for me right now! A whole new 'mindfulness of breathing', and NOT in a good way at all!) I'm not sure how or why I've concluded it, but I'm now very much thinking I 'may' have been attacked by some form of virus type deal! IF I'm right, I'm pretty sure anti-biotics wouldn't be appropriate or help. IF I'm right, if I'm lucky, in time things 'should' get better and I won't be left with any particular permanent problem. Only time will tell. If things DO get worse, and if I do sudenly get a particularly bad episode, I may have no choice but seek emergency help!! :o( <shudder>
21 - Up around 6:45am, 18C in, 13C out, sun and cloud . .sounds as though the lifeboat are towing something back in? . . awful bunged up and coughing again. I'm not sure how it could cause some of the chest/breathing sensations and symptoms I've been suffering, but assuming the x-ray thing IS showing me as completely healthy in terms of my lungs, then I guess I'm gonna HAVE to pursue the 'sinus infection' route and maybe see if the doctor will perscribe me some antibiotics again - to cross that off the list?!!! Without going into too much unpleasant detail - there have been two noteworthy occasions of late when I've been able to actually blow my nose and briefly/unusually get it feeling 'relatively' clear (on the right nostril on both occasions). One of those occasions was this morning when waking at the PC. What I've found utterly extraordinary on both these occasions is - um - well - the capacity of the nose/sinuses!! I wouldn't have believed it was possible if I hadn't experienced it! :o( Sadly any relief doesn't last, and the pressure/blockage appears to immediately return, and then can't be cleared and seems to start affecting my throat and breathing etc!?? . . . walked BGdns. Arrived at the gardens just as the Torbay lifeboat arrived off the breakwater with fishing vessel 'Pisces' in tow (engine failure apparantly). Back via the store for a few supplies. . . chopped up tree cuttings and filled a bunch of carrier bags and secreted them in the bin . . cut my hair . . vacuumed . . TVd/PCd. . monitored radios for a bit around 2pm when the Red Arrows were supposed to be doing a display at Weymouth. Sure enough they WERE audible, although I didn't bother listening for long because of course I've heard it all before, and there's a limit to how interesting that is when they are nowhere in sight . . just sat around for most of the rest of the day feeling tired-out and aching . . TVd, and as cloud built and showers threatened, decided to skip this evenings walk . plenty of coastguard activity on the scanner from multiple people apparantly getting stranded on the rocks over Torquay way. Idiot holidaymakers acting like lemmings? lol . . eventually cooked up a pot of peas and rice together with a pot of chopped onion, mushrooms, chopped chicken slices, grated cheese, garlic salt and mushroom soup. I'd been putting this off for a while because I've LONG been aware that cooking such stuff (lots of moisture/gas fumes given off over a prolonged period?) WILL cause me sinus blocking type symptoms! This has been noticeably the case to me for probably some years now. Boiling potatoes and rice is worst - but even just doing chips can have a noticeable effect. I ALWAYS cook such stuff with windows and doors open these days (even in winter), however experience has proven that having the doors and windows open actually suprisingly makes little difference! I ALWAYS end up getting rather nasally 'bunged-up' after such cooking. (Is it just a coincedence that all this recent breathing trouble started immediately after having cooked up a big saucepan of boiled potatoes and peas on the evening of the 7th?) Given all this - on top of my recent breathing problems - I was aware I WAS taking a real 'risk' - maybe?! Anyway - despite the risks, I dared to do the cooking (with doors and windows WIDE open and wind literally blowing through the house) , because some of the stuff was threatening to start going out of date/off. . ate a LARGE bowlful with four pieces of bread and butter, with plenty left for another meal or two . . DF called to touch base. Difficulty clearing my throat throughout the brief conversation. Increasingly bunged up whilst TVing thereafter. . oh so, SO tired - despite the breathing difficulties I just HAD to lay down to try to sleep around midnight - but that just turned out to be impossible. Coughing, spluttering, snorting, blowing, choking, gasping for breath - I had no choice but to be back out of bed within a quarter of an hour! Got dressed again in desparation, with the intention of at the very least, heading out into the fresh air of the garden. On top of my restricted breathing, my coughing and choking got SO bad, I ended up throwing-up - LOTS!!! What a waste of food! :o( . . in total desparation, because walking around in the fresh air had definitely seemed to be 'ok' and better than just staying-in before, I ended up leashing up Bella and inspite of feeling oh SO dreadfully tired, headed off for a walk in the early hours!!!!! :o( . . a bit wobbly and woozy, and gasping for breath, headed off down through town and eventually at length up into BGdns. Had no choice but to stop and try to get my breath on multiple occasions along the way - and really was in a pretty sorry state after the climb up into BGdns. All in all, a dreadful, dreadful experience. :o( I've never had asthma so have no real idea what that may be like, but I HAVE seen people suffering asthma attacks and suchlike on TV - struggling to breath and with that look of fear and rising panic in their eyes when they find they can't. For the first time in my life, I find I now regretably have a much better understanding of the hell it is such people live through. -//-

Sat around in Bgdns until around 1:45am before feeling recovered enough to suffer the walk back home. . back to bed after 2am with the bedroom windows open, despite the inevitable interruptions from outside (seagull etc) noise. Thankfully eventually managed to get to sleep. That was the worst such experience of breathlessness etc I have EVER experienced - so far!?! :o(
20 - Up around 7am, 19C in, 15C out, sunny . . PCd a bit of this . . .walked FGn. Back via the post office to draw out some cash . . . mustered the energy to mow both lawns. Spent a lot of time messing around with the front one trying to dig out some of the weeds, which really is pretty much all thats left out there. All I seem to be succeeding in doing is making a big mess of muddy holes out there! :o( . .with some of its branches in danger of fouling my wire antennas again, I somehow mustered the energy to get the ladder up and trim some of the the big cherry blossom tree in the back garden. Regretted having done so half way through, but managed to push on and get most of it trimmed , apart from on the neighbours side. I did NOT have the energy to start asking for access, or carry the ladder next door, etc, etc, so just left it on that side all mishapen. . put in an hour or so cutting up cuttings before just giving up half way through, all aching, tired-out and in a downward spiralling mood. Stashed two bin loads of cuttings in the garage fro further attention some other time . . ate a chicken and mushroom pastry slice with chips . . napped. All short of breath and blocked up again. :o( . . TVd . . went to make a coffee to take on my evening walk only to find the damned milk had gone off before its sell-by date AGAIN! (I think I maybe need to make my fridge colder!) . Walked up the store (before they closed) and bought more milk, returned home and made my coffee and then walked Bgdns quite late. Played ball and then sat around for another hour after dark mostly skywatching the cloudless sky. Despite the bright full moon, I once again saw plenty of stuff orbitting around, and one excellent meteor heading kinda NNW around 9:45pm . . . TVd nothing . . ate corned beef, grated cheese and barbeque ketchup sandwcihes, crisps and a little chocolate . . to bed around 12:45am.
19 - Disturbed and broken sleep waking up all over the place then up at 6:45am. 19C in, 14C out, sunny. . walked FGn . . got clean and sweeet smelling . . put on a load of laundry . . left Bella home alone just after 10:30am and walked across town for my 11:10am x-ray appointment at the little local hospital. Turned out it only took me around twenty minutes to walk there, so I was way early and had to wait around for ages. Sat outside on the grass under a tree for much of the time before eventually into the tiny crowded waiting room. Eventually called in by the lady radiographer around half an hour AFTER my appointment time! Told to get topless and then awkwardly positioned with my chest flat against the glass plate of the x-ray machine, with the backs of my hands on the back of my hips, and my chin resting on the top of the plate. Told to take a deep breath and hold it - and that was that. Seconds later the x-ray was displayed on a VDU across the room - which I of course asked to have a look at. The woman confirmed it looked pretty clear, with nothing leaping out as of concern. Even to my untrained eye (after having looked at a couple online recently) it looked remarkably clear and 'normal'. Wow - how extraordinary after all those years of chain-smoking and inhaling brick dust and dog dust etc, etc, etc. I DID ask if I could take a quick photo of the x-ray, but the woman wasn't happy about that suggestion so I didn't push it (although I'm sure if she'd thought it through, she wouldn't have been able to come up with a legitimate reason as to why I shouldn't). Apparantly somone with appropriate expertise would review the x-ray and then report back to my doctors surgery, and I should contact them for the results (in a week I 'think' she said!) I was only in there for just a handful of minutes before back out and on my way. Well - there we go then - as I'd feared (and expected!) , I'm guilty of having wasted NHS resources on an unecessary X-ray! On top of that, I'm absolutely none the wiser about what's been causing my recent problems and no closer to being able to do 'whatever' may be required to alleviate the 'laboured' breathing/chest pain/bunged-up type symptoms! :o( . . back via town for a quick look in just a couple of charity shops. Scored five dark brown leather place mats for the dining table for 1:50 . . .got laundry out on the line to dry. Tried real hard to motivate myself to do something, but just couldn't seem to muster the energy again and ended up just sitting around feeling tired out! . .ate two ham and grated cheese finger rolls, mini cheddars, crisps and biscuits . . . napped fitfully until around 5pm. .woke feeling really awful, all short of breath, coughing, bunged-up and absolutely aching all over!? Worst I've felt for a few days. How ironic given how clear the x-ray had looked earlier. What the hell is going on with me to make me feel SO dreadfully bad?! . . popped an annadin tablet and just sat in front the TV for a couple of hours before feeling able to move at all! . eventually mustered up the energy to walk - slowly! . . . walked BGdns with a coffee after 8pm. Detoured back via the local cash point to draw out some cash - only to find it wasn't working. Grrrr. . TVd nothing all evening . . . ate ham and grated cheese on toast, a banana, biscuits and a couple of squares of chocolate . . to bed around 12:30am.
18 - Woke earlier, snoozed on then up at 8am. 21C in, 19C out, sunny. . . walked FCove and BGdns. Rain showers . . .PCd/TVd/ sat around doing absolutely nothing again! :o( . . . ate two corned beef, mayo and grated cheese finger rolls, mini cheddars, crisps and a banana . . napped . . walked FGn and then down around the busy harbor, all full of holidaymakers, before heading out along to the end of the Breakwater and eventually back. There is still a second, 'mirror image' lifeboat moored up alongside the Torbay lifeboat. 'The Duke of Kent' if I remember correctly. Eventually back and up into BGdns. Sat drinking my coffee on the higher seat and then under the roof as more rain showers passed through. Got dampened some more on the way home. A good >three-miles walk. . . TVd nothing the rest of the evening away . . ate a banana and three Mum donated jam doughnuts . . .'early' to bed around 1am.
17 - Broken sleep then up around 7:45am, 19C in, 17C out, cloudy . . . walked across town to the park at St Marys for a bit of ball play before popping into P's. He and someone else appeared to be struggling to get his radio set up to receive digital modes, and I'd wanted to just see what they were up to. . back home by around 11:30am . .PCd/monitored radios and chatted locally just a little until Mum called in with the papers and food donations etc. . .the forecast rain finally began to arrive in earnest. Ate Mum donated gala and pork pie, mini cheddars, crisps and a square of chocolate . . . napped until around 6pm . . wind and rain. Skipped the walk . .TVd and then mostly PCd the evening away acheiving nothing (reading up on 'Packet' a bit more, but STILL failing to really understand it, and especially how to use the PC to decode it). Actually - I probably spent most of the evening blowing my nose!!! Although having suddenly stopped smoking is clouding the issue, I am starting to wonder if I have some sort of sinus/upper respiratory track infection going on? Seems more and more likely to me now that the chest x-ray thing IS going to be clear and a waste of NHS resources to feel guilty about! . . . ate a couple of bananas, bowls of co-co pops and a couple of jam doughnuts before to bed around 3am.
16 - Up around 7:30am, 20C in, 17C out, full cloud and light rain . . . walked FGn in the light rain. Back via town. Popped into a chemist and dropped off for safe disposal, all the old (out of date) medication I'd found in my bathroom cabinet yesterday. Some homeopathic rubbish, some prozac from who knows when, and some serious pain killers from back when I had my hernia op I think. . . PCd this . . Mum called to touch base. I was able to tolerate the conversation for just a little while - but then she started telling me about some relative or other who'd given up smoking by 'just' stopping, blah blah blah - and I really almost pretty much just hung up on her! :o( . . drank a glass of red wine. Cooked and ate two quarter pound burgers with grated cheese in buttered rolls and chips followed by a square or two of chocolate . . napped until around 6pm. . D called in for coffee and chats. I really should have cancelled his visit as I'd intended. I was in an awful angry intolerant mood all evening, and he very much got the brunt of it. . both went onto the PC at one point when D wanted to show me some music videos or other. Just happened to have the radio scanner on when I turned everything on, and it immediately started picking up a conversation in Russian!??? Oh wow - it was picking up a conversation from the International Space Station on 143.625mhz. I'd bumped into mention of that frequency on the internet some while ago and had added it to my scan lists, but until now had never heard anything on it. That's nothing to do with amateur radio - that's apparantly a 'proper' talkback to ground-control frequency for the astronauts. Fascinating. Shame I can't speak Russian. lol . VERY glad when D finally left, well past 10pm! . . . needed to get out in the fresh air, and since the skies were all starry clear before tomorrows forecast rain, decided to walk and make the most of the possibility of skywatching. Walked BGdns with a coffee very late around 11pm. Played a minimal amount of ball before just sitting in the dark for ages, mostly leaning back on the seats looking directly up at the sky. Sadly there appeared to be quite a bit of haze making the view a bit 'milky', but it was clear enough to see a sky full of stars. Almost immediately started 'tuning in' to seeing MANY orbitting objects, and also saw a couple of shooting stars during my hour or so of sitting there. . eventually home around 12:30am. . TVd . . ate corned beef and grated cheese sandwiches, mini cheddars, crisps banana and a little chocolate . . to bed around 2:45am.
15 - Woke earlier a couple of times, snoozed on then up around 8am. 20C in, 19C out, cloudy and a hint of rain in the air. . .BB called to touch base. Woke at the PC as a heavier rain shower passed through . . .walked FGn after the rain. Back via the store for a few supplies . . . PCd a bit . . . drilled, plugged and screwed the wall near the front door and hung the tide clock above where I keep all my keys and Bella's lead, etc. That clock appears to be keeping good enough time for it to do its job and enable me to glance at it and get a feel for what the tide is doing before I go out walking. . . ate corned beef, mayo, grated cheese and ketchup sandwiches, crisps, banana and biscuits . . fitfully napped, frequently waking enough to register 'discomfort' in my stomach/chest, DIRECTLY as a result of having eaten. . TVd . . walked BGdns around 8pm. Threw up. Played ball and monitored radios. Somewhere around 8:30pm the Teignmouth lifeboat and coastguard response teams were mobilised to Ansteys Cove - over round the distant headland past Torquay. (Always hard for me to receive stuff from that sort of area.) A female rock climber had apparantly fallen and potentially damaged her hip and back, and had ended up on a difficult to reach ledge. The 'Rescue 106' helicopter was eventually also tasked to attend. Called it quits playing ball and headed to the higher seat to drink my coffee and hopefully get better reception. I'd 'just' reached the seat and sat down, when DM turned up and joined me! . Listening-in to the rescue became even more irritatingly difficult when another guy ended up sitting down and chatting. I'd seen him yesterday when he was walking his ailing (rottweiler) dog, and we'd exchanged a few words - and not for the first time apparantly. He recalled me (and Sally!) from some years ago when he was down her on holiday once before - when I'd been running round filming everything, etc. Shockingly, it turned out that today, whilst down here on holiday in his camper van for a couple of weeks, he'd gone to a vet and had his dog put down!!! Only a few hours ago! I think he said it had bone cancer or some such, and had exhibited unusual 'aggressive' type behavior earlier, suggesting it was in pain! Despite all that, it still seemed a bit weird to me to go and do such a thing whilst on holiday somewhere miles from home. Also weird that only hours later you'd be capable of sitting having a 'meaningless' chat to 'strangers' about irrelevant nonsense, etc? . At some point I made mention of my current breathing issues during the conversation. (Felt I had to because I was embarassingly coughing, sniffing, clearing my throat, etc so much!) That had DM tell me an anecdotal little tale of how someone had allegedly had breathing troubles, gone for a check-up and had ended up being dead within a couple of weeks! It kinda made me laugh, because it was NOT said by DM AS a joke at all!! There IS something a little bit funny about that guy at times. Can't imagine why you'd feel obliged to say such a thing to someone under such circumstances? I AM very much having to consider such an outcome as a very real possibilty, given how generally unwell I am continuing to feel. I AM worried - for Bella's sake mostly . . the rescue continued as we all sat there in the dark chatting. Ultimately the hellicopter arrived on scene, and was plainly visible by its lights in the dark distance. Turned out the ledge the climber had ended up on was below an overhang, and the helicopter couldn't winch her off. From what we overheard, it turned out to be a particularly awkward extraction, with people having to be sent down the cliff on long ropes, with the ultimate intention of lowering the stretchered casualty down into the lifeboat before being winched and taken to a landing site and waiting ambulance (I think - something like that). The difficult rescue went on and on for absolutely ages! So long, that at one point, the helicopter left its winchman behind with the casualty, and flew back to Portland to refuel before then returning some forty minutes or so later - and STILL the rescue dragged on!! . . eventually the 'ex' dog walker and DM had enough and left me to it. As is so often the case when I encounter such events when out (especially when I can actually SEE part of it), I felt obliged to sit there until I knew the outcome. On this occasion, the whole business dragged on for SO long, even I had to give up and head home before it was concluded. Somewhere around 11pm, the rescue helicopter actually landed simply to save on fuel, and I took that as my cue to give up awaiting the outcome, and headed home. . sadly I couldn't pick up the comms on the way home, and even when at home, I could only pick up 'snippets' on the living room scanner, so I'm not sure how the extraction was resolved in the end. Suffice it to say, it was all concluded and the helicopter heading back to base by around 12:15am. WHAT a long awkward little rescue THAT apparantly turned out to be! Must have cost an absolute fortune. I trust the woman rock climber casualty was all nicely drugged up - that was an awful long time to be injured, strapped in some sort of stretcher and hanging around on a rocky ledge! (At least it was quite 'warm' out) . . TVd . . ate bowls of rice krispies . . to bed around 2am.
14 - Up around 7:15am, woken by the sound of my own wheezy breathing I think! Very bunged up, headachey and lacking sleep. 19C in, 16C out, cloud and a light drizzle . . . walked FGn in the rain . .tried calling the Radiology Appointments Office to make my x-ray appointment, but just got busy lines . . PCd a bit of this . . Mum called to touch base - and was quickly dismissed again! . . called the X-ray number again shortly before 11am and happily got through. Turned out I was a bit early (48hrs from my doctors appointment would be more like this afternoon, or better still, tomorrow) , but the guy on the phone eventually managed to locate whatever it was he gets from the doctor and went out of his way to get me in on their system while I waited on the phone. He then managed to get me booked in for a chest x-ray at Brixham hospital on Monday (somones cancelled appointment)! Wow - that could hardly be better for me - almost immediate, and local/walkable. Excellent. . .PCd more of this trying to catch up, before eventually just giving up! I have absolutely no idea what I've missed or related inaccurately these last few days. My cigarettes withdrawl has put me into a dreadful state of permanent confusion - and dangerous irritability and outbursts of anger, etc, etc. I am totally not 'myself' AT ALL. The last few days seem like weeks. SO a part of me is the smoking addiction, without it, I really am a TOTAL non functioning mess - and god knows, I pretty much was already before stopping smoking anyway!!!!! I'm pretty miserable right now - and that IS a serious f***ing understatement! . . . ate two pieces of bacon, two eggs, four small sausages, half a tin of beans and four pieces of bread and butter . . . napped fitfully until around 7pm . . TVd . . walked BGdns with a coffee quite late. Misjudged the temperature and ended up overheating wearing a hoodie. Considerably warmer this evening all of a sudden. Played ball and then sat around on the higher seat for well over an hour. It wouldn't have been so long but for getting interested in the outcome of a little drama that was being played out nearby. A 'distressed' girl had appeared from a car parked up on the road, and the couple that she was with had to chase after her. From snippets I overheard, it appeared she'd just been dumped by some guy or other, she may have been under the influence of drink, there was 'mention' of suicide, and at some point she did actually jump off the canopy roof of one of the main gun floors (actually quite a jump in the dark) - which saw the couple she was with race down to where she'd landed out of my sight. I've seen enough of people engaging in such childish, manipulative, attention-seeking behaviour over the years, to have not too much sympathy for the 'distressed' girl. She really did seem to be acting as she was, simply to 'manipulate' the couple she was with. Nevertheless, I couldn't help myself sitting there for a bit longer than I otherwise would, just to see how things panned-out. Eventually she was half-carried (suddenly become incapable of walking on her own? lol) back up the slope to their car, and off they all drove. At one point just after 10pm, there was a small break in the cloud right above me. Immediately the break in the cloud appeared, I spotted what I presume was a satellite orbitting past heading north. Seeing all this orbitting stuff really has become almost commonplace to me! lololol . . . TVd . . ate a chicken and mushroom pastry slice, two packets of crisps, banana and biscuits . . to bed around 1:30am, with the outside temperature remarkably still up around 18C!!!.
13 - Woke around 6am. Snuggled with Bella for a bit before getting up. 18C in, 13C out, sunny with a touch of cloudy haze - or visa versa. All bunged up, tight in the chest and coughing again. . PCd a touch of this and then had a look online for visible ISS orbits etc. Confirmed it WAS the ISS I've been seeing these last few evenings. . . walked early with a coffee and headed straight down through town, around the harbor and on out to the end of the breakwater. Sat near the 'lighthouse' at the end for my coffee. Collected up a good handful of deadly fishing tackle strewn all over the place on the way back, and eventually put it all in a bin! Hooks, line, weights, etc, etc. Shocking. :o( . threw Bellas ball into the water by the Torbay lifeboat for a bit. (They seem to have a 'spare' lifeboat twin moored up alongside it at the moment?) . back round the harbour and then up the mountain of steps to FGn. Despite whatever is going on with my chest/breathing etc at the moment, the crazy thing is, I was able to do that substantial climb more or less in one go. Once at the green, I was of course out of breath like anyone would be, but was NOT noticeably having any 'particular' problem with breathing. Once I'd sat on a seat and got my breath back for a bit, it was THEN that my at-rest breathing felt slightly more laboured than is normal again. Doesn't make sense to me at all!??? It fully suggests to me that if I DO get a chest x-ray, it'll come back as clear and showing nothing untoward, and I'll feel terrible for having wasted everyones time and money! I just bet! I dunno what to make of all this at all. .back via the local store for a few slices of bacon. The not smoking thing is definitely making me 'get the munchies'! Throughout much of the morning walk, I was lusting after having a proper fried 'English' breakfast type feed - which resulted in my buying the bacon on the way home!!! . . . PCd a bit of this, but boy is it hard to knuckle down to doing it at the moment. I normally chain smoke when doing so of course. I can't even gnaw at my fingers because my few remaining teeth aren't up to it! Jeeze, I'm toe curling climbing the walls wanting a cigarette trying to type this!!!!! :o( . eventually just HAD to stop. . . cooked up two thick slices of bacon, four small sausages, two eggs, some fried potatoe slices and half a tin of baked beans and ate with a crust of bread and butter. Somehow managed to eat it all without torturing myself with my 'useless' false teeth. To be honest, I probably mostly just swallowed cut up stuff without much attempt at 'chewing'!! The bad news is, I really can't face enduring having those damned torture devices back in my mouth anymore.. . . fitfully napped until around 5:15pm. Predictably woke all blocked up and with 'laboured' breathing again - and feeling a bit stomach achey and sick of course (which ain't nothing new). . TVd . . PCd a bit of this . . .walked BGdns with coffee. Played ball until gone 9pm. A lot of noise was drifting over the waters of the bay from Paignton. Eventually some band or other was playing on a stage over there, presumably on Paignton green somewhere. Really quite plainly audible even from such a distance. Must have been absolutely deafening close up. Eventually called a halt to ball play and headed for the higher seat to drink my coffee and look at the view as darkness fell. I had hoped to be able to do some meteor watching, AND catch sight of the space station again, but sadly almost unbroken cloud cover put paid to all that. Somewhere around 9:45pm the music over Paignton paused and a big firework display took its place. Couldn't 'quite' see it from my higher seat, so moved a short distance and knelt down on the grass to watch it. Worth watching. Turned out to be a really quite big and impressive display, which went on for what seemed like a really long time until around 10pm. . headed back home soon after. . . TVd nothing . . .ate a banana, half a battenburg cake and a square of chocolate . . TVd/PCd until bed around 2am.
12 - Woke just after 3am being unwell, coughing lots and feeling as though breathing was 'particularly' difficult again. Threw up! Ended up in desperation sat out in the garden for a bit, because the cool fresh air made things 'easier'.

Eventually back to bed only to uncomfortably toss and turn for ages before finally managing to sleep a little more. . back up around 7:30am. 19C in, 16C out, cloudy . . slow getting going. Boxed up all the 'Vapourlites' electronic cigarette parts and firmly discontinued using it (I didn't from yesterday as I recall). I've definitely not noticed ANY assistance from it with regard to my nicotine withdrawl, and given how I'm feeling all short of breath and heavy chested etc, I think inhaling 'vapour' or trying to do anything of the sort, is a hugely bad idea for me. .Made the mistake of allowing Bella to please herself and stay downstairs whilst I awoke up at the PC. By the time I next went back downstairs she'd scratched and bitten herself absolutely raw all underneath, on the insides of her legs and all along her back! FFS! :o( Straight back to THIS no-win, battling fleas nightmare! . . . walked FGn . . . eventually left Bella at home and walked to the dentist for my 11:20am appointment. (When typing this later, I can't 'quite' recall what was said.) I think she asked how things had been. I explained I was still in a lot of pain - that the top plate would now fall out of place even easier than before (one light touch of my tongue, and I could fully eject it from my mouth in an instant) - and given other (unrelated) problems I was currently having, I really was not in the most positive of moods about any of it at the moment!! As I sat in the chair, I 'think' the dentist suggested it was too early to do another impression of my gums for a new top plate, and instead she'd just do the fillings and make the relevant teeth look better. I said something along the lines of if it was just for looks, then I couldn't see the point of enduring the pain of having the fillings, because I couldn't care less how they looked - it was not being able to eat that was of greater interest to me! With hindsight, I probably said and acted completely inappropriately? I don't know. It was suggested I should leave the plates out for the timebeing to allow my mouth to heal - and should make yet another appointment for the future - to have an impression made again I think? . . I dutifully made an appointment for mid september and left - really not at all happy. What a waste of time that was. What a f***ed up mess this has all turned into. Typical of my luck/life. I've never heard of anyone having this sort of ongoing constant pain and nonsense with false teeth - and with no end to it in sight! :o( . . sat around feeling very VERY miserable . . . SH called telling my anspahone he was intending to set off on his way down to visit!! Had to hastily call him back and embarassingly say please don't right now. I'm in no fit state for ANY sort of human contact right now, never mind an actual visit!! . . . called the doctors surgery and got an appointment for 3:20 this afternoon. . . partially heated up a tank of water using the old immersion heater! Called the vets office and confirmed I could simply walk in and buy one of those outrageously expensive 'prescribed' flea collars, without having to actually see the vet (because I was on their books, and it WAS a repeat of what Bella'd had before) . . . pretty soon-after leashed Bella up, and walked across town and bought one of the 32.08 Seresto rubber collars, after having popped her on the scale in the waiting room.31.2kg . . walked back through the unbearably crowded harbour and then up over FGn . . . . laid an old sheet down across the bathroom floor, got ready with towels, flea shampoo, brushes, treats, etc, etc, etc - and then (after stripping to my waist and putting waterproof leggings on!) went for it!!! Put a few inches of warm water in the bottom of the bath and then got Bella to jump in - without much persuading at all. :o) Getting her to lay down IN the water was something new, and a little more difficult, but eventually she did - which then enabled me to scoop up and pour cuploads of water all over her and make her nice and fully wet. With her stood up again, I then applied the flea shampoo (even enough left for another bath sometime) and lathered her up as best I could before then using the bath mixer-tap shower head to wash her down with more warm water, etc, etc. It all took a few gravy bone treats and much encouragement and praise, but it actually didn't go 'too' badly. Once done she happily hopped herself out of the bath and had a little bit of toweling down, before then shaking herself all over the whole bathroom - and then the landing at the top of the stairs - and the kitchen - and, and - !!!! lolol . . 'encouraged' her to stay out in the garden and dry off a bit, by doing some vacuuming. Once I'd vacuumed around the place a little, I sprayed some flea spray on strategic areas of mostly the living room carpet. All that remained then was to give Bella a flea tablet (wrapped in a small lump of cheese) and then to fit her new flea collar (allegedly affective for up to eight months!). Silly to waste it, so the small amount of excess collar which I trimmed off to fit her, got dumped in amongst her bedding in the bedroom (which also had a 'bit' of a spray). So - there we go then. A multipronged assault against the fleas, about the best I can do - and costing a small fortune again!!! :o( . . .left Bella at home and walked to the doctors surgery for my 3:20 appointment. A bit of a ten minute+ wait after my appointment time, before in to see a locum type doctor I think I haven't seen before. Tried to explain why I was there as best I could. i.e. I'm a chronic smoker, have been for decades - also inhaled huge amounts of brick/cement dust etc over the years. After a drink and big meal on the 7th I've suddenly developed 'at rest' breathing difficulties, significant enough to be waking me from sleep (and see me immediately HAVE to stop smoking!) - although paradoxically, I can still walk up hills and stairs etc and NOT get particularly breathless. I explained I was under no illusions, and it was more than likely I'd simply 'lost the gamble' and that the smoking had finally 'got' me. I wasn't looking for some miraculous 'cure' - I simply wanted to set in motion whatever process was available to me, to have tests done to be able to establish exactly where I stood. Just want a 'sit-rep' kinda.. . . the doctor thankfully seemed to understand. He had a listen to my chest and said he could NOT hear anything of concern. I further voiced a suggestion that I 'may' perhaps have inhaled some of my own vomit when I was mildly 'sedated' with the wine, had eaten too much, and gone straight to sleep on the 7th - and could that have done some 'damage'? The doctor 'seemed' to think that unlikely, but agreed that the first step under the circumstances was to get a chest x-ray done, to see if there was anything to be found, and cross that off the list. He gave me a slip of paper :- "Dear Patient. You must book your own appointment by ringing the Radiology Appointments Office between 9.30am to 4.30pm on ******. Please allow 48 hours (excluding weekends) after your doctor's appointment before phoning to book your examination.-//-" and told me to call them on Wednesday. . . headed straight home. . Ate a pastry slice, crisps, banana and square of chocolate. . . napped poorly until around 6pm . . PCd a bit of this. .annadin tablet . . waited-in, listening on the radios for the ISS to pass over around 7:46pm BST, scheduled to have a contact via an italian station with participants of the '14th World Scout Moot Canada 2013'. Suprisingly VERY poor copy this time - only caught a few bits and pieces. . . walked BGdns. A lot of people partying aroundabouts tonight. One 'camp' fire on Fishcombe Cove beach (under the dangerous cliff!) , three or four on Churston! Played ball and listened to the radios. The Torbay lifeboat was in the process of towing someone back into Torquay from somewhere >10 miles distant out in Lyme bay. . A little further along the coast at Elberry cove, the CRTs and inshore lifeboat were called to assist, where a 43 year old woman had broken her leg and needed 'extracting' from the awkward to get to place. I think she was eventually packaged up and taken by the inshore lifeboat to a waiting ambulance across the water at Broadsands. .saw a big bright orbiting light heading east again, somewhere around 9:30pm. Second time I've seen that in the last few days. I'll have to check, but must surely be the ISS? Nothing else in orbit is that big and bright. . . . TVd . . Mum called the ansaphone to touch base. Eventually mustered up what it took to call her back briefly. . TVd . . drank a glass of red wine. . cooked and ate two quarter pound burgers in buttered bread rolls with garlic mayo, grated cheese and barbeque sauce, followed by a few squares of chocolate. Happily managed WITHOUT putting my false teeth back in. . . stood out in the cold dark back garden for a while somewhere around midnight, having a look for the Perseids meteor shower they'd mentioned on the news, which was supposed to be peaking this evening. It WAS an ideal, pretty clear sky for the most part, but actually felt a bit chilly and I wasn't much in the mood to be hanging around out there. Saw just one before retreating back inside. To be honest, since living here, I've seen SO many when walking BGdns at night, I guess I've gotten a little used to the idea of seeing them. Nevertheless, they still make me wonder why satellites and the space station aren't in deadly danger of destruction from them all the time. . . TVd until to bed around 1am.
11 - Up around 6:45am. 20C in, 17C out, cloudy and sunny spells again. A really painful back and shoulders again??. . slow getting going . . eventually walked around 8:15am. Ended up walking straight to the woods and then out along the back lane towards Churston!!!!! Walking and just keeping on the move makes my weird breathing thing and the smoking withdrawl 'easier', so I figured now was a good time to explore the feasability of walking out of town to where I'd been given to understand a car boot sale is held on a Sunday. It was a bit of a spur of the moment decision, and as a result, I ended up wearing rather too much for how the day warmed up, and didn't have any water (although DID have my flask of coffee). It was quite a long walk, and really VERY nasty when I took to the main road out of town at a point where there was no pavement!! . the first field I was aiming for (I 'think' where they have the steam fair) had a sign suggesting there WAS a car boot sale there today, but not until the afternoon! No way was it possible to hang around there for THAT long! Figured I hadn't walked 'that' far, and I may as well keep going a bit further out of town and head for the other field (out past 'Windy Corner') where there always used to be a car boot sale in the mornings. . Getting from the traffic lights at the 'Windy Corner' junction, down to the entrance to the field on foot, really was a death defying nightmare, with no pavement either side of the busy road - and with idiots driving past at speed, inches from me!! At least along the way, I could see over the hedges that a large boot sale WAS taking place there right then. SUCH a relief to eventually manage to get off the road and into the busy, BUSY field! . .wandered up and down up and down looking at lots of 'stuff' at length. Because of my spur of the moment decision about trying to get there, I actually didn't have very much money in my pocket,nor a rucksack to carry stuff back in, so didn't feel particularly able to get serious with anything which otherwise 'may' have been tempting, although to be honest, very little was for some reason? . . . one thing which DID suddenly leap out at me from a pile of 'junk' on the floor in front of someones table, was a clock. Image of a 50p car boot sale tide clockA 'ashortwalk.com' 195mm diameter, aluminium faced TIDE clock!!! Oh wow - how often have I looked at tide clocks on e-bay over the last few years - but always felt I HAD to resist because they were such a 'luxury' and SO ludicrously expensive! It wasn't necessarily a type I would have wanted to buy, it was looking a little bit 'used' and had a slightly bent hand, but IF it worked, I was definitely potentially interested. I was even more interested when the woman at the table saw me looking at it and without any prompting from me, suggested I could have it for 50p!!! Ooooh - but did it actually work? Pulled my radio scanner out of my pocket and quickly dropped a battery out of it and stuck it in the clock. As far as I could tell there was a quiet whirring noise from the plastic Chinese movement, so it seemed WELL worth a 50p gamble, and I was soon walking away with it. (Just the movements alone are priced around 10. That actual clock (although perhaps now discontinued) is still for sale new on e-bay for around 25!) . . carried on wandering up and down all the tables through the crowds, but in the increasing sun, pretty soon just felt as though I'd had enough and needed to get away! I'd proven it WAS possible to walk there - that was enough for today! . followed the car exit track out of the big field, and happily emerged back up on the green at 'Windy Corner', completely avoiding the nasty pathless main road. . headed back the 'back way'alongside the golf course avoiding the main roads to Churston and then back into the lane leading back to the woods and beaches etc. . eventually reached BGdns by around 11:45am, and collapsed onto the top seat for some recovery time. Blimey - I hadn't been off my feet at all since I'd set off earlier! Hadn't stopped for a sit anywhere along the way! Based on how long we'd been out, that's the equivalent of a good few miles (10?) of walking!! Sat on the high seat recovering and drinking my barely warm coffee. Sat there for quite a while, waiting to see what there was to see of the power boats over by Torquay (due to start racing around 12:30pm), but it turned out their course was SO far away, it really was almost impossible to see anything of them at all, so soon returned home . . . recovered from the walk and PCd just a little, looking up local tide times and the like. Eventually put a spare battery in the tide clock and left it running to see what'll happen. Bizarrely, it's not gonna be the easiest thing in the world to establish if it's actually keeping good time. lol . . .ate a tin of 8 hot dogs in brine in two buttered bread rolls with grated cheese and some barbeque ketchup followed by a square of chocolate . . napped fitfully for just a short while. Woken around 5pm coughing, spluttering and wheezing with the house full of barbeque smoke blowing in from next door! Had to quickly run around and close all the back windows. That was the last thing I needed, suffering from my current breathing problems!! :o( . . TVd and charged batteries on all manner of things for a bit. . whiled away a bit of time grooming, brushing and combing Bella - lots. Throughout the whole time I was walking around the car boot sale earlier, she'd been scratching and scratching - badly! Groomed her lots with the fine toothed flea comb, and ended up with a big pile of fur for the bin. It was just as I was about to stop when I found a flea - on me!! My grooming of her had obviously disturbed it and it had ended up crawling around on my arm!! Quickly despatched of course, but that proves without question that we DO very much have a flea problem again. Damn. :o( . . . walked FGn with coffee, cameras and radios around 7pm. The lifeboat SAR demo was due to begin down in front of the breakwater beach at around 7:30pm. Radio comms confirmed that the Coastguard 106 helicopter WAS going to be attending at about that time to do a few demo winch lifts etc. Although a very distant view from FGn, I had no intention of racing all the way out to the breakwater to endure the crowds that were assembling down there, just to get a closer view. Having seen similar before, I was only really interested in the helicopter part of the display, so figured the zoom on my camera would afford me a good enough view and enable a couple of token stills for here. . Images from the 2013 Torbay lifeboat week,  SAR demoLifeboats eventually got in position and sure enough, around 7:30pm the helicopter appeared initially coming in from the west. Ended up stood at the edge of the field, with one foot on the stone wall next to the road, and with the video camera supported against the upright of a lamp post. Filmed a bit as the helicopter winching display got underway, with several ups and downs being made to the lifeboat, etc. At one point all of a sudden, a tall (Sainsburys?) delivery van stopped on the road right next to where I was stood!? Turned out he was pausing before driving by, because he'd seen me pointing with my camera, there was nothing coming up behind him, and he didn't want to spoil my shot! Blimey - that was jolly thoughtful and decent of him. lol :o) . . the helicopter eventually ended its display and was just about to return to its Portland base, when the lifeboat asked if they could do a quick flyby of the Fairmile ferry which was just leaving the outer harbor. Apparantly the Fairmile was doing a special RNLI fundraising cruise, with plenty of the lifeboat volunteers on board, acting as crew serving the passengers etc. The helicopter promptly obliged and hovered right down low alongside the Fairmile for a while, just outside the harbor entrance. That must have been a cracking close up view for everyone onboard. After a quick run back along the breakwater and over the crowds on the breakwater beach etc, the helicopter headed East out across Lyme bay back towards its base in Portland. For me, that was the end of the entertainment, but the crowds were treated to the usual mock lifeboat rescues etc, as the lifeboats raced back and forth etc. . sat around for quite a while longer, dabbling with the idea of sticking around to watch the fireworks scheduled for later, but it'd actually turned a bit chilly in the shade, and I didn't fancy having to hang around there for almost a couple of hours. Eventually called it quits and headed home. . . TVd whilst monitoring the scanner a little. Amusing to hear someone chatting on the local repeater on their handie, whilst stood on the breakwater waiting for the fireworks to begin. lol . . breifly popped out into the front garden as the lifeboat week finale fireworks got underway. Actually not much to see from the garden because it was so distant and behind trees etc. Pleasant enough to be back out in the cool, fresh and more easily breathed air for a bit nevertheless! . . .TVd . . ate a small tin of salmon in two buttered baps, crisps and a square or two of chocolate . . . to bed around 1am.
10 - Woke earlier then up just before 7am. 19C in, 15C out, cloudy with sunny spells again, although very little wind this morning. Feel very achey. My shoulders and back actually feel all painful to the touch!? . . exciteable as ever Bella, headbutted me in the mouth as I was putting my shoes on to walk!!! If there was one thing I absolutely did NOT need to have happen right now, that was pretty much it!! Whatever the dentist did the other day doesn't particularly appear to have helped with the pain I'm suffering from that top plate. Certainly the pain in the gum on the top right HAS 'reduced', but it's still painful when I bite down suggesting there remains more fragments of bone in there, and somehow because of whatever was done, I'm getting lots more pain from the denture on the OTHER side now!!! On top of that, the top denture now seems to have really almost nothing actually keeping it in place at all. One light touch with my tongue, and I can have the whole damn thing straight out of my mouth!!??!! Eating anything with it like this is now very nearly impossible. On top of all of that, it would appear that I am very soon liable to be losing my two front teeth top left. They are sensitive, 'moving around', and I have a strong suspicion that the top denture has actually forced my left top front tooth out of position, such that it now protrudes outwards a little!! Having Bella headbutt me there was NOT what I needed. My smoking withdrawl saw me explode with uncontrollable anger - and I hit her! :o( . . . walked the cove, woods and BGdns again (in a foul and dangerous mood!) and eventually back via the store for milk. Back by around 10:30am. . sat in the garden briefly. Next door asked to borrow my ladder because his bathroom waste pipe join appeared to have become dislodged near the outside collector. Hauled the ladder off the pergola and handed it over the fence. . . spent most of the rest of the morning just laying down on the bed, feeling tired out , utterly awful and unable to sleep. D called at one point telling me there were power boat races in the bay today! I SO couldn't give a ****!! Returned to bed after having actually turned all the phones off!! The way I'm feeling at the moment, the VERY last thing I need is - 'people'! :o( . May have slept for five minutes or so, but mostly just lay there until gone midday. .Mum called in with the papers and food donations - but wisely not for long thank goodness . .TVd . . ate a slice of Mum donated gala pie, crisps, mini cheddars, banana and a couple of chocolate biscuits. . . returned to bed and managed to intermitantly sleep for just a while. Back up around 6:45pm . . TVd as just a hint of rain in the air passed through . . walked BGdns with a coffee. Played ball for a while, keeping an eye on the breakwater as darkness began to fall. I'd read that as part of this years lifeboat week, they were going to be trying to light up the whole length of the breakwater with people holding candles. Eventually sat on the higher seat for a better view. Not sure if it was just poorly attended, or if it was still too light and the candles too dim, but it really did seem the attempt was a dismal disappointment. I DID however see a big bright light heading east. DEFINITELY something in orbit. . .TVd . . .ate bowls of rice krispies. . .to bed around 1:30am. Misery!
9 - Up around 7:15am. 20C in, 16C out, cloudy and breezy with sunny breaks. A bit of rain in the night. . woke at the PC as usual, but all coughing and feeling a 'tightness' of my chest and feeling as though I was having to put a lot more 'effort' into normal breathing again/still!!?Under the circumstances, having my normal morning cigarettes was utterly out of the question!! :o( Tried to make do by using my electronic cigarette instead - although that didn't seem to do me much good in terms of my breathing, and certainly didn't seem to make ANY difference with regard to my nicotine withdrawl. . . walked C. Cove and the woods, and then back via BGdns. When the sun came out I was overly hot, when it was hidden by cloud, with the stiff breeze, I was cold. . back home around 10:30am. . . sat around 'suffering' a bit, with doors and windows open trying to get a fresh air flow through the place to help my 'laboured' breathing. Weird thing was, when out and about and walking around like normal, I didn't really feel or notice any particular problem??? . . did the mountain of dish washing chores which have been sat there increasing in size, since when Mum and Sis2 came and we all had fish and chips while sat up at my dining table, whenever that was. . . .ate a pack of Mum donated faggots, microwaved with six crusts of bread and butter . . TVd . . napped. Tossed and turned for ages. A feeling of 'discomfort' in my chest, somewhat 'more effort' required to breath, an irritating slight amount of 'crackling noise' from somewhere down my throat while doing so, constant coughing and trying to clear my throat, etc, etc, etc. :o( Finally managed to get to sleep, only to be woken soon after by the ansaphone taking a message just before 5pm. Couldn't get back to sleep and ended up just sitting in front the TV for ages, feeling 'fragile' and very not good. Touched base with D and called-off his intended visit this evening. . . eventually walked BGdns with a coffee - and the E-cigarette. Played ball for a bit before heading up to the higher seat for just sitting around. Fireworks were being let off over the bay above Paignton. Looking back across that way, there was still so much light in the sky, it seemed almost silly to be having fireworks at all so early. . as darkness increased, I spotted a neat shooting star to the east. .being out and about definitely makes my breathing thing 'easier'!? . . . TVd the evening away - with 'difficulty'! Wanted a smoke bad, but simply couldn't! :o( . . ate four boiled eggs with bread and butter, and then a few squares of chocolate . . . to bed some time after 1am, after NOT having smoked all day.
8 - Woke around 4am feeling cold (?), a bit nauseas, all headachey, bunged-up, and coughing and spluttering (left lung specifically!). Up for ages and difficulty getting back to sleep (after an anndin tablet). Only managed to half snooze a bit until up with the alarm at 7:15am. 20C in, 16C out, sunny. Boy I feel tired and lousy. So much for trying to get a decent nights sleep before my dentist appointment! . . walked FGn a little early and sat in the sun for a while. Rapidly warming up to be a real hot day! . . recovered from the walk with a brief sit in the shade in the garden before leaving Bella home alone and heading to the dentist for my 10:10am appointment. . . unusualy a little bit of a wait in the crowded little waiting room AFTER my appointment time. Eventually in and - well - told her in no uncertain terms, that things had been worse than I could possibly have imagined. Explained about the bits of bone that had caused the ulcers adjacent to the bottom plate, and how eventually managing to dig them out had seen me get immediate relief from the pain and have the bottom plate settle-down to now being 'ok'. Went on to explain that (now I have experience of how bits of 'buried' bone feel), it was exactly the same sort of pain I was experiencing on the top right gum, and I was certain there were bits of bone stuck in the mishapen gum there. I also explained how that top plate doesn't stay in place, how it comes adrift in my mouth whenever I try to eat anything, and expressed my concerns that it was likely that was happening because so much of the plate had been ground away in an attempt to stop it hurting (where the buried bits of bone are). . the dentist had a good look at the inflamed area causing all the pain and suggested she'd take an x-ray and then have a go at seeing if she could find and remove any bits of bone. Bit of a hassle having her poking around that bit of gum, because it was SO painful and inflamed. The slightest touch had me almost leaping out of the chair! She ended up 'swabbing' it with some sort of light anaesthetic to deaden the pain a bit before giving me an injection (or was it two?) - which really hurt like hell! Stayed sat in the chair whilst a small x-ray was taken of just that one top right area. Nothing untoward showed up on the x-ray!?? She explained that bits of bone against bone wouldn't show up - which I guess makes sense, but then why take the x-ray?? . a short time after, with the injection having already taken effect, she started having a serious go at the offending bit of gum, looking for bits of bone. I don't know what tools she used, but the squeaky crunching noise was awful. I was absolutely delighted to see a little collection of bits of bloody bone on her 'table', once she'd called it quits and got me to suck on some cotton wool to mop up the blood. They were of course miniscule little pieces, but a couple WERE almost as big as the 3mm chunk I'd removed from under my bottom plate, and in total, it amounted to really quite a relatively substantial amount I thought! (Think about how much discomfort/pain a tiny little, barely-visible splinter in your finger can cause. THAT puts it in perspective I think!) . Well - that can only help, but I'm under no illusions. It seems inevitable to me that there will still be little bits left in there. . Thankfully I was able to just sit there for quiet a while recovering, whilst she did a LOT of typing (in my record?) on her computer? So much for all the fillings I was supposed to be having today. She said I should NOT wear the plates for a couple of days to allow things to settle down, and I should make an appointment to return for the fillings AND to have another impression made of my top remaining teeth and gums, with a view to having a whole nother replacement top plate made up! A short while later I was heading to reception to book an appointment - with my false teeth in a plastic bag in my pocket! (How/what on earth am I going to be able to eat, now I can't be using the dentures for a while?!!! :o( ) An appointment slot was available for Monday (with no other slot available for over a month!) so after checking with the dentist that Monday wasn't too soon, Monday it will be - again!!! :o( . . .returned home in what felt like stifling heat. The thermometers are saying up around 25C already - and rising! Briefly sat in the garden recovering with a drink of water and cigs before PCing a bit of this whilst monitoring radios. . Around 11:29am the local coastguard teams were apparantly up around Berry Head somewhere, doing 'a controlled pyro burn' creating lots of smoke. . .PCd this at length for hours, until the injection began wearing off and the soreness of my mouth reappeared with something of a vengeance. :o( . . .ate a banana and some dunked biscuits . . lay down to try to nap. Not very successful (not because of my mouth, but because of a 'tightness' of my chest and 'discomfort' and 'noise' breathing!!????) but snoozed for just a bit . . .walked BGdns with a coffee. Back around 9:45pm . . dared to try my dentures back in my mouth, because I HAD to eat something. . BB called to touch base . . successfully ate corned beef and grated cheese sandwiches dunked in a tin of oxtail soup . . to bed around 1am. Difficulty getting to sleep.
7 - Up just before 9am. 20C in, 16C out, cloudy. . walked BGdns as it cleared to hot and sunny. . did a couple of loads of laundry, including most of the bed linen - which I SO hate having to do, and as a result, don't do anywhere near as often as I should! . . .mowed the lawns both front and back. Cut back a bit of next doors front garden hedge with the loppers and secateurs, just to tidy it up a bit. They'd had their learning difficulties guy in on the weekend and he'd trimmed their side, but left an unsightly tall and overhanging bit on my side, where he presumably couldn't reach. I mercilessly cut it down/back and then chopped it all up into bag sized chunks. Pottered around in the back garden, weeding, sweeping and tidying up just a little. .filled multiple plastic carrier bags with cuttings, and 'secreted' them in the bottom of the wheelie bin. . eventually had to call it quits with very little done and less to show for it, because it just felt far too hot in the full sun to be doing such things. . cut my hair/beard etc . . .Tired out and needing sleep! With my long awaited next dentist appointment scheduled for 'early' tomorrow morning, I didn't want to end up eating and napping, because it was already late afternoon and I didn't want to be up all night. Skipped eating anything and whiled away a bit of time PCing, to stay awake . . . walked BGdns around 8pm. Played ball until sundown (around 8:45pm now - carrying a torch every night already!) and then sat around for ages listening to the local club net and then briefly chatting locally on the handie for a bit. . back home by around 10:15pm. . drank a glass of red wine. Cooked up a large pot of boiled potato, peas and tinned minced beef in onions. Got the bed linen back on the bed while it cooked (It's so warm - I'm still mostly sleeping under just a sheet at the moment.). . Ate the whole big saucepan of mince and potato 'goo' after 11pm, followed by a little chocolate. Too much! . . TVd until 'early' to bed shortly after midnight.
6 - Woke earlier snoozed on then up around 9:15am. 22C in, 20C out, sunny. One of the things that added to my down mood yesterday, was finding that my old mobile phone that doesn't hold a charge for longer than five minutes, has now had whatever credit was on it, 'swallowed' by the phone company (Orange) because I haven't used it for so long. :o( I'd ended up trying to have a surf online, looking at mobile phones and pay-as-you-go call tarrifs and suchlike! Mobile phones really has to be almost THE worst possible thing you can try to look up on the net! Overwhelming amounts of stuff, overwhelming choice, indecipherable confusing tarrifs, price plans, phone specs, etc, etc, etc. I wasted my time going round and round for ages, before just HAVING to give up - really absolutely none the wiser! The ONLY thing I was pretty sure about, was that it made absolutely NO sense whatsoever to attempt to resurrect that old (still 'locked' to Orange) out of date phone by trying to buy a new battery and get my few s of credit back, etc. I DO have another old serviceable 'out-of-date' mobile phone (a Sagem MyC4-2, given to me by PS years ago) which DOES seem to hold its charge for a 'while', but even that one is still 'locked' (to T-Mobile) - so it too is 'probably' not worth bothering with? Who knows!!!????? In my confusion (feeling like a real 'out of touch old man'!) I figured the best thing I could do would be to dare to go into the local mobile phone store (the lions den!!) and ask silly questions and let the salesman educate me, and try his best to suck me into some expensive contract (NO chance! lol)! . . walked FGn in the hot sun (with the charged but long since not connecting (disabled SIM) Sagem in my pocket). . carried on down town and visited the mobile phone store. When I went in, the sales guy was poking at a PC screen, and kinda made me wait before attending to me. THAT got my back up straight away! I explained I was possibly after a phone - maybe a cheap and simple one, on a pay as you go tarrif, to be largely unused but left in my pocket at length for emergencies without having the credit run out - or maybe I just wanted the one I had unlocked, etc, etc? As I was explaining, the phone on his desk rang and he went to pickd it up as though he was eager to answer and didn't want to have to bother with the customer stood in front of him!! Grrrr. BEFORE actually answering his phone, he did breifly let me know they didn't do unlocking, and he suggested the best bet for me would be to walk down to Tesco's and buy myself a new PAYG sim card for the one I had. I left - leaving him to his more important business! . I stood in the high street debating with myself about the phone thing for quite a while. I'd love one of those new fangled android smart phones (just so I could play 'APPS') , but at the end of the day, it just isn't a priority or something I can really justify potentially spending up to a couple of hundred pounds on! If the old Sagem was already unlocked, I could have shopped around for the cheapest PAYG sim card deal and gone with that - but it isn't. Nowhere local unlocks phones to my knowledge - and I don't have the cables or ability to do it myself/online etc. To hell with it - I did exactly as the guy had suggested, went into the nearby Tesco Express store and simply bought myself a new T-Mobile PAYG sim card for the Sagem. Even then, I didn't have a clue what I was supposed to do with it or how to get it up and running with credit on the phone etc. The woman behind the counter must have thought I was a right old duffer! I ended up buying the sim card and 10 of credit for 10.99! Headed straight home pretty soon after to play with the phone. . .turned out to be 'reasonably' straighforward, and in a short while, I had the phone up and runing on the new SIM. . poked at the phone and instruction manual for hours, trying to familiarise myself with how it works, and committing a few numbers to the SIM memory, etc! I'm sure I won't have it for particularly very long (either it'll break, the battery will die, or I'll succumb to wanting to upgrade to an unlocked smartphone), but for the timebeing, it IS nice to have a working phone in one of my pockets again - 'just in case'! . . . ate corned beef, mayo and grated cheese sandwiches, crisps and some chocolate . . napped poorly for only an hour or so until around 5pm . headachey. .walked early and sat around on FGn for ages until it was all in shade before heading along the clifftop road to BGdns, following the last rays of the sun. Down on Fishcombe cove I spotted a family all sat around having what appeared to be a picnic. They were sat directly next to the small-car-sized lump of rock which had 'recently' fallen from the cliff above the triangular 'falling rocks' warning sign. One of their kids was happily playing on and around that big lump of rock. They all seemed completely oblivious of the very real danger they were in. The cliff immediately above them was all full of visible fissures and cracks, and enormous amounts of rock, soil and potentially even trees, were just 'hanging' there waiting to come tumbling down at ANY moment. I couldn't help myself - I shouted across to them (the tide was right in so couldn't walk over to just speak to them without getting wet) and with much pointing at the cliff above them, tried to explain that where they were sat was very, VERY unsafe. They barely acknowledged me, even 'shrugged me off', and simply carried on sitting there!!! Breathtaking stupidity! Nothing to do with a lack of familiarity with the area - ALL to do with a total lack of common sense - which seems to be par for the course with SO many (otherwise intelligent?) people these days!! Oh well - good luck to them - and dare I say, I find myself thinking 'good riddance' if 'it' WAS to happen to them!!!!! :o( . . played ball and sat around for a bit before eventually heading home by around 9:30pm . . TVd the night away . . ate a whole tin of spam (on its own - with a knife and fork!) , crisps, Mum donated jam tarts and some chocolate . . to bed after 3am as the outside temperature dropped down to only around 13C, the coolest it's felt for a little while.
5 - Woke earlier snoozed on then up around 8:45am. 20C in, 17C out, overcast grey and strong gusty winds. . . walked FGn . . .monitored radios while yet again, trying to envisage (and failing) how to better lay out all the equipment. . . ended up feeling down and 'cancelling' the day! . . sat around aimlessly. Ended up giving Bella some serious grooming for ages . . ate corned beef mayo and grated cheese sandwiches, crisps, banana and a whole bar of chocolate! . . . napped until the alarm at 6:30pm . . . walked BGdns and played ball until sundown (getting earlier every day already!) and then sat with coffee on the higher seat while Bella chased the rabbits . . half way home (in the dark) around 9:30pm the coastguard response team pagers went off. A teenage girl was stuck half way up the cliff over Torquay way. Ended up on the radios for the next couple of hours, monitoring, as the coastguard teams (with police in attendance) set up lights and ropes and abseiled someone down the cliff to rescue her. It was 22:38hrs before the casualty was 'secure in the strop'. Winching them up, across and down began around five minutes later. Safe by around 22:54hrs. . . PCd/TVd the night away . . ate bowls of co-co pops before to bed around 4:30am!!
4 - Up just before 9am. 21C in, 17C out, drizzly and gusty winds. Slow getting going. . . walked FGn and sat around for ages chatting to other dog walkers in the strong gusty wind (up to a gale force seven). The Torbay all weather lifeboat headed off at speed across Lyme Bay towards Teignmouth whilst I was sat there, apparantly due to be participating in a SAR demo? . caught out in a shower of rain on the way back to the store for milk before heading home . . . PCd a bit of this whilst monitoring radios just after midday. Only 'just' picking up bits and pieces of the distant comms outside of my range over Teignmouth way, but it appears the lifeboat IS doing a SAR demo with the Teignmouth lifeboat off the Teignmouth seafront, complete with the 'Seaking 169' helicopter doing winches and transfers etc. All over by around 12:30pm with the helicopter being thanked for a nice display and heading back to North Devon. . . PCD more of this as occasional rain showers passed through . . . pottered around for ages acheiving nothing before sorting through all my old bits of wire. Had a go at making up a fixed level audio-out lead from the FT-897 to the PC with one of the six pin mini-DIN plugs I recently bought. Used an old cable which originaly came with some old camera or other, with a stereo plug and integral ferrite sleeve on one end, and a 9pin PC plug on the other. Cut the PC plug off and eventually succeeded in soldering on the 6 pin din. Boy - was that a awkward fiddley job (because of my failing eyesight mostly!). As soon as I'd made up the cable, I connected it up to the radio and PC and then spent ages having a tune around and getting a feel for how it's working for just receiving data modes and SSTV etc. Well - it works like it should ok, but I'm not particularly happy with how it works with my 'confused' sound card setup in the pc, and the HRD software, and especially with all the multiple interconnections I'm trying to stuff into the PC line-in and mic sockets now. I think I may have to revisit all these (mono) interconnections, with a view to explicitely directing some to specific left and right 'channels' of the stereo sockets, to be able to more easily control and mute what is coming through and out of where, as and when required. . To be honest, the whole radio/PC desk setup is now in desperate need of a total overhaul and re-think, in terms of some sort of shelving and more permanent layout for the precariously stacked equipment, etc. I just can't 'quite' figure out which way to go with it all . . .plenty of rain falling. Skipped the walk . . listened around on the radios until late . . TVd/guitarred . . ate ham baps, crisps, mini cheddars, a banana and biscuits . . to bed around 1:30am.
3 - Up just after 9am. 22C in, 20C out, sunny with some big passing clouds . . walked FGn pretty late. Half way across the green I was called on the radio! It was the guy I'd recommended BGdns to the other day, just leaving the area to head home, and wanting to say thanks for the local knowledge beach recommendation etc. Sounds as though he wasn't disappointed thank goodness. Sat around in the warm breezy sun for quite a while chatting to other dog walkers before eventually back by around 11:30am. Plenty of chatter on VHF from the club guys up at the steam fair. .briefly chatted to D and DM who were both up there on their handies. Perfect weather for the day really. I was very pleased to hear that D had taken my advice and had bought himself a D ring for his belt, now had his dog tied to him, and was finding life much easier as a result. :o) . . PCd a bit of this until Mum arrived around 12:30pm with the papers and food donations for chats . . . vacuumed. Ds dog seems to have covered the place in noticeable little white hairs! I'm used to living with a covering of black Bella hair on everything everywhere, but having more noticeable 'foreign' white hairs around the place demanded immediate attention. lol . . ate four slices of bacon in two buttered finger rolls followed by a sqaure or two of chocolate . . . napped until the 6:30pm alarm . tired and headachey. Annadin tablet . . TVd (Dads Army), slow getting going . . D called to touch base and tell what fun he'd had at the steam fair. lol Weird to me how he could have found it SO interesting for so many hours. If I HAD gone, I'm sure (as is usual for me with such things) I would have found it all mildly interesting for maybe half an hour whilst I quickly walked around and saw all there was to see of all the exhibits, and would then have wondered what the hell I was doing there and would have wanted to - 'escape'! . . walked BGdns with a coffee until after dark . . . TVd/guitarred a little . . . cooked and ate two cheeseburgers with garlic mayo in buttered rolls, a whole bag of (six?!!) Mum-donated jam doughnuts, and a quarter of a chocolate bar! Far too much!?! . . to bed around 3am.
2 - Woken at 7am by the sound of a heavy rain shower, then again at 8am by the phone ringing (no message left - wrong number?)! 22C in, 20C out, some sunny breaks in the fast moving cloud. It's the big Torbay steam fayre in the field just outside town for the three days this weekend starting today. Just enough rain to turn the field into an awkward muddy mess for them all (again) perhaps? It attracts big crowds and costs quite a bit to go to that fayre (7 Friday, 8 Sat/Sun I think), so I've never done it, and won't again this year. The local Riviera radio club are apparantly running a special event callsign from up there again. I 'think' there 'may' be some sort of (free) related convoy through town and activity up on FGn this evening, so I 'may' have to check up on that and have a peek with Bella. . slow getting going, a bit headachey and tired. PCd this . . . walked pretty late with a coffee. Just out of the front gate, and Bella was limping pretty badly from her front right leg!! Turns out she's taken a little chunk out of her main pad. Can't see anything in the wound, and there isn't anything I can do about it, so I guess she's just gonna have to suffer for a bit. :o( . walked BGdns and headed down onto the beach for Bella to swim after her thrown ball. Figured the salt water may help her pad . sat around in BGdns for AGES as sunny spells passed through. Lots of boats sailing in the bay, and plenty of holidaymakers around. One of those rare occasions when I felt very, VERY lucky with my lot, and so incredibly fortunate to be able to wander down and sit around in such a beautiful place every day. Drank coffee and sat around smoking cigs and listening to radios until after midday before eventually (reluctantly) heading back. I really could so easily have sat there almost all day!! I AM SO lucky, in so many ways! . . back via the store for 'addiction supplies'! :o( . . part way back home I passed the postman who went out of his way to make a beeline for me (which was very good of him). Yayy - a small padded envelope - MUST be my new 'Daffodil WMS328B Wireless Optical Mouse already. . . PCd and tried out the mouse. Nothing to it - put the tiny miniature dongle in a USB slot (shame it won't work in the mouse PS2 socket using the old mouse USB to PS2 adapter) - fitted the two supplied AAA batteries in the underside of the mouse - turned it on via the hidden on/off switch underneath - and immediately it was working. Blimey - it works fine. Wouldn't even know it was wireless - no discernable 'lag' AT ALL - and more importantly from my point of view, 'so far', there's no indication of any cross interference with any of my scanners or radios, etc. Based on reviews I've read, it 'may' well not last very long, but while it does, I'm VERY happy with it. If this is how well modern day wireless peripherals work, I may have to seriously re-consider going fully wireless with a (more expensive/robust/reliable?) mouse AND keyboard combo! It is SO cool not having that (always too short for MY setup) mouse wire trailing all over the desk - would be lovely to lose the keyboard wire too. The only major concern I have is with the batteries. The minimal 'instructions' suggest it has 'Automatic power on/off for energy saving', but it says nothing about how or when, so I guess time will tell how that's gonna pan out. I certainly have NO intention of physically turning it on and off underneath every time I want to use the PC. ..touched base with D and told him about the proposed convoy of steam engines through town later which I wanted to see (from around 6pm?), and suggested if he was interested in joining me, he should arrive earlier than his usual 7pm. He said he would. . . ate the remaining mushrooms and cheese concoction with four pieces of bread and butter . . absolutely tired-out so just HAD to lay down to try to nap for a quick hour and a half. As it turned out, I didn't really manage to get ANY sleep because the damned phone kept ringing and then finally took an ansaphone message! . .Gave up trying to sleep through the phone ringing and got back up around 5pm. Turned out the messages were from D, intending to come over even earlier because of concerns over the likely traffic jams etc. . quickly rushed around trying to charge camera batteries etc. Wasn't long before it was possible to make out the sounds of steam engines and whistles and the like from the direction of the main road! . . D arrived with his dog, really early not long after 5:30pm whilst I was still trying to get ready to go out! He'd apparantly got stuck BEHIND steam engines on his way here - so we all rushed straight out and briskly walked straight to FGn. A couple of steam engines were already parked up on the green. Clearly the convoy had set off plenty earlier than the 6pm which was what I'd read was their intended time. More engines were making their way up the tortuously steep hill of Overgang Road above the outer harbor, with its awkwardly acute hairpin bend. Roads were closed off and crowds of people were watching along all the streets. We quickly made our way across the greens and joined a small crowd at a vantage point at the top of the flight of steps overlooking the hairpin bend. Image of steam engines in BrixhamStopped there for quite a while (perched awkwardly on the narrow steps) as various steam engines and vintage vehicles did the awkward hill climb in front of the crowds below us. Those steam engines really were enormous great lumbering beasts of heavy metal, all clanking, hot, hissing and chuffing, and I was actually quite amazed at how readily they managed the climb and awkward hairpin bend. That's an awkwardly steep bend, even in a nice new powerful car! Only one of the engines hauling long trailers seemed to have a 'bit' of difficulty getting around the turn - but only then because of the length of the trailers and the line they'd taken rather than because of lack of power. Their 'hesitation' in completing the turn, saw the crowd of onlookers (all willing someone to fail) all cheer. lol (EVERYONE appeared to be armed with cameras or mobile phones or tablets etc, ALL taking photos and videos, - so, as ever these days, it seemed totally pointless for me to bother filming any of it, except for a token snap for here). . eventually walked back up onto the green and wandered around all the dozen or so engines etc, which had parked up on the grass near the childrens play area. Those engines really were 'works of art'. There were even some miniature ones which had presumably been 'made' by their drivers! Stunning engineering. Everyone on board any of those engines appeared to be covered from head to foot in black oil! WHAT a bizarre life they must lead, travelling all around the country to shows like that. I asked the owner of one of the miniature engines, and was told it could do between six and ten miles on one large bucket of coal. . .did quite a bit of 'dog sitting' with Ds dog again, whilst he ran round taking loads of photos. (Dunno why! lol) I recommended he consider getting a D ring for HIS belt, so he could just tie his dog to him for when he's doing such things. I've long since learned it really does make life SO much easier - especially when trying to film such events. I really couldn't live without, and strongly recommended it to him. . . at length, all the vehicles trundled back onto the road next to the infants school, and headed back down in the direction of the harbor and thence the main road back out of town towards the fair site. . briefly played ball on the green for a bit before then all heading home - with the sounds of chuffing steam and distant whistles plainly audible from the main road down in the distance. . . D kept his dog on its lead in the house for a short while to enable Bella to have her evening meal in peace and 'unchallenged', before then letting him off. There were a couple of moments of slight 'tension' between the two dogs, but once again they were mostly VERY tolerant of each other. Very impressed with Bella allowing the 'invasion' again. :o) . . coffee biscuits and chats until D left around 9:30pm . . . TVd/PCd the rest of the evening away. . . heavy rain showers in the early hours. . ate bowls of co co pops before to bed around 2:30am.
1 - Up around 8:15am. 21C in, 17C out, grey and misty again to start. . . slow getting going. The one surviving baby seagull from the roof opposite was flying circuits! :o) . Walked FGn late as the weather started to brighten up to sunny and the temperature climbed lots . .arrived back home to see a baby seagull (the one from opposite?) sat on MY roof, having a peck at my long wire antenna ridge mounted insulator!! Grrr. lol . .PCd and sat in-wait for Sis2s flight to depart from Heathrow T3 somewhere after 11am. Soon after it'd taken off I was able to track it via www.flightradar24.com, and 'fly along' using their cockpit view, as the Boeing 767 climbed up to around 30,000 feet @ 440kts, headed across southern England and Ireland, and thence out of range across the Atlantic. Amazing being able to do that. (Although I had my scanner running through all manner of busy aircraft frequencies, I've not devoted enough time to doing such things on the airband to be able to know which specific frequencies to listen to, so sadly I did NOT manage to hear any of their comms.). .Whilst following Sis2s flight, the radio guy on holiday down here who I'd recommended Battery Gardens to yesterday, called in on the radio - on his way to BGdns! I was able to give directions and guide him where to park etc. :o) I DO hope he isn't disappointed with the place! lol . . .drilled plugged and screwed the wall above the french doors in the living room and hung the brass plate. . unscrewed the brass plates and reamed out the french door, lever bolt recesses. Those lever bolts hadn't been sitting properly in the recesses ever since clumsy Bella crashed into the door some time ago! Better now. . spent ages using a bit of old salvaged PVC window trim to fashion a little L shaped stand for the indoor outdoor thermometer I scored in the charity shop the other day. It's designed to screw on a wall, but I wanted it to just sit at a slight angle on the TV unit in the living room bay, so I can see it from where I sit watching TV etc. Got under the floor and managed to thread the sensor wire down through where all the TV aerial cables come down through the wall, and then poked it out through the air brick to loosely sit just under the airbrick cover, out of direct sunlight. Seems to work ok like that. The benefit of having the new one there instead of my old one, is it has a slightly bigger LCD display, so better for my failing eyes to read from my chair. The old one (which has its own little fold out legs/stand) I've temporarily set up in the PC room, with the sensor just poked out of the window. The sensor catches full sun like that during the morning, so isn't particularly accurate at taking the outside temperature - but it'll do for the time being. . climbed into the attic and re-hung and reconnected the 2m copper tube slim jim antenna. I'd brought it down weeks ago, to test on Ps anatenna analyzer, and it'd been just sat around in the conservatory ever since! Monitored radios a bit. Amazingly, even inside the attic like that, it's recieve performance isn't 'that' much poorer than the tri-band colinear on the scaffold pole on the front of the house in open air!!?? I'm VERY disappointed with the performance of that tri-band antenna in that location. I think the antenna is ok - it just really seems as though it is in JUST the perfect position to be particularly deaf! Sooner or later, it's gonna be coming back down I think - and maybe somehow getting put back up on the BACK of the house instead? We'll see - it's a lot of awkward work to do and will likely end up uncomfortably close to my long HF wire!! . Stashed some packaging and a large cardboard box up in the attic out of the way with all the rest too (useful for when I next sell some stuff on e-bay and have to package and post). . vacuumed and cleared up before then showering and changing out of all my dust covered clothes (covered in filth, from crawling and squirming around under the floor). . . PCd and monitored radios for a bit before eventually making a coffee to take and then heading out to walk rather late . . walked BGdns. Just heading down to the usual ball playing seat as darkness was beginning to fall, when I bumped into DM again. Chatted for a bit while throwing Bellas ball in the increasing dark with increasing cloud cover. DM produced a box of kipling cakes of some sort, so I had one (Bella too) while sharing a bit of my coffee. . eventually headed up and sat around some more on the higher seat with the better views and radio reception. . DM eventually headed off on his scooter. I remained for a good while longer, needing to 'recover' from having the company and 'top up' on my 'alone' time. Spotted at least three satellite type orbitting bodies in a break in the cloud. Sat around in the warm (>18C?), breezy, deserted dark for ages. Eventually headed back home around 11:30pm - and promptly ended up back on the radios for goodness sake! Had the very briefest of contacts on 40mtrs with a station up in Sheffield. It was a special event callsign - GB558VUL - supporting the last flying Vulcan bomber. Couldn't resist giving that one a shout for a log entry. I have a soft spot for Vulcan bombers. Stunningly beautiful aircraft. I used to catch regular sight of one CLOSE-UP when I used to go plane spotting at the end of the runway at Patchway (Filton, Bristol) when I was a kid. Rolls Royce out there used to use one to test the engine that would be used on the Tornado (MRCA). Bizarrely, even though I have no memory of most of my life, I can still remember the name of that engine - which was just 'bolted on' underneath the otherwise sleek lines of the Vulcan. A 'Turbo Union RB 199' . . . Mum had left an ansaphone message saying Sis2 was safely back home in NC, USA . .received an e-mail from Amazon telling me my mouse had been dispatched . . TVd . . drank a glass of red wine while cooking a pot of chopped mushrooms, onion, bacon, mushroom soup, garlic salt and grated cheese. Ate half with four pieces of bread and butter, a banana and then some chocolate around 1am. . . to bed around 2:30am.