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Tuesday, 10 December 2019


Image result for election

Tumultuous times here in the UK just now and I feel as if we are drowning in the negative emotions which seem to fill the atmosphere.  The very air we breathe these days is polluted by accusation and acrimony, recrimination and fear, scandal and division, argument and anger until it seems that there is nothing good to be found anywhere. 

Not only do we have an election coming up but there is Brexit to be dealt with one way or another and whatever the outcome there half the population will not be pleased and there will be more anger and division.  

These lines from the carol "It came upon the midnight clear" seem appropriate just now:  

And man, at war with man, hears not
The love-song which they bring;
O  hush the noise, ye men of strife,
And hear the angels sing.


I came across this Poem yesterday and it sums up the situation nicely and hopefully brings a touch of humour to counteract all that negativity!
On a more hopeful note I walked up through the woods yesterday to the post box with a birthday card to post and noticed that there are daffodil shoots poking through the grass and even a tight bud or two so just as Spring will come again so hope spings eternal.

Not sure if the link is working as it should so maybe I will need to copy and paste it if it does!

Monday, 14 October 2019

Age related m'dear!!

Getting old comes to us all if we are lucky but it is nothing like I imagined it might be.  If I thought about it at all it was to see myself as a wise and serene old lady maybe with grey hair in a bun and wearing a flowered pinny who would be making cakes and bread and pottering in my garden, knitting and sewing and generally being a kind and gentle soul.  Pah! Not so!

I guess I knew I wouldn't be able to do some of the things my younger self might have done but what I didn't realise is that inside an old person is that younger self who cannot quite accept this.  I see young people running up, or even more scarily down, steps and stairs without holding the bannister and wish that I could do that too and I am jealous.  Yes really!

So how have things changed now that I am an old lady?  Well for a start although there are still 7 days in each week (I usually know what day it is too) and 24 hours in each day somehow the hours are much shorter than they were and so the weeks fly past - ask any old person who will tell you that this is so.  I dare say if/when one reaches the stage of having to be in a home and spending all one's days in a room full of other old people staring at the television and being taken to the toilet possibly even being hauled up out of one's chair with one's knickers showing and into a wheelchair for the trip there (I have seen this at first hand when I used to visit as a volunteer an old lady who ended up in a nursing home) then perhaps the hours seem longer than they were but for those of us who haven't yet reached this stage time has definitely changed and rushes past ever faster.

Then there are other changes like the increased number of appointments of a medical nature and wonderful though the NHS is in spite of all the criticisms made about it, I personally cannot fault the service, it is just that I would rather it wasn't necessary! So that might be where some of the time goes!  As my lovely young opthalmologist a few years back when I was seeing him for various eye operations used to say in answer to any of my questions about why this or that or the other had happened "I'm afraid it's age related m'dear"!  And it hasn't only been eyes since then.

Weymouth earlier this year
 I can no longer run for a bus nor get the lids off jars, lift a heavy pan in one hand whilst scooping the contents into a dish with the other, go upstairs (or downstairs) with my arms full as I now have to ensure that I have a hand free to hold the bannister.  I haven't had a bath for ages in case I can't get out and now use the shower instead, I have to think before bending down or turning round and do nothing suddenly and I try not to look in a mirror without thinking or I wonder who that old woman in the mirror might be with all those winkles!

Weymouth earlier this year

I have found that as I got older I have become more cautious and my sense of self preservation has increased - not that I am afraid of going for a walk in the wood on my own or going anywhere else on my own, I am not fearful when the doorbell rings and usually fling the door wide before wondering who it might be but it's just that I am less dare devil and take more care not to trip or fall these days and I am fearful too for those younger people doing things like leaping over a gate when they could so easily catch their foot and fall flat on their faces, riding bicycles in London (the Wanderer did this for a time and my imagination ran riot) or any other perfectly normal things which I might well have done myself without a care once upon a time.

Forde Abbey Gardens earlier this year
BUT there are some pluses to being old the most important plus is that I am still here when many of my friends and family no longer are.  I live by the mantra that "To live at all is miracle enough" these days.  Although time is shorter than it used to be I can spend it as I choose now I don't have to go to work.  Friends are more precious than ever before and we keep each other going always finding things to laugh about, I have a free bus pass so am able to go where I want on the bus for free as long as it is not before 9.30 but these days getting out of the house by 9.30 is too much of a rush anyway!  I have a Senior Rail card which entitles me to a third off rail fares again as long as I don't want to arrive in London before 9.30 but that would mean leaving home before 6.00am an unearthly hour that I would be unlikely to be doing anyway.  We rarely use the car if there is a bus or train route to where we want to go and so we are able to sit and enjoy the scenery and the ride instead of keeping our eyes on the road.  Oh and since all that time spent with the opthalmologist I no longer need to wear distance glasses and am legal to drive without them and for the cataract op the lens he put in enables me to read enough to do the shopping and look for a library book without needing to get my reading glasses out. Can't be bad!

Not quite true I made this one recently!
So although I am no more serene than I ever was, am not sure how much wiser I am if at all, I don't have grey hair let alone a bun and nor do I wear a pinny,  I rarely bake cakes or bread these days nor have I done much crochet or knitting and can see the day is nearly here when we will have to employ someone to do the garden for us I am still the younger woman I once was but with a few extra perks which I put down to getting older.  All is not lost after all!  Let's hear it for old age!

Thank you for your comments on my last post I can't promise I will be posting regularly but am enjoying putting my thoughts and a few photos together so I will be back occasionally.

Sunday, 22 September 2019

An outing with a difference

Can it really be more than 18 months since I last posted on here?  I have missed you all and several times I have thought of returning to blogging but always I felt that I had nothing different to say.  Those months I have been away have been filled with the minutiae of daily life as a pensioner when everthing takes longer than it used to and there have been hospital appointments, visits to A&E and follow on appointments, X-rays, physiotherapy, dermatology I began to wonder if I might get a Blue Peter badge for visiting the most number of NHS departments in a given time ....... none of it life threatening but as my eye consultant used to say "age related m'dear"!!

However that is not why I am here now but because I wanted to tell you about an outing last week that was a bit different to my usual.

Mr M and I went to Exeter on Friday, by train as usual, and the scenery en route was as always stunning in the sunshine and although there were signs of autumn, rosehips and hawthorn berries and a few coloured leaves, it still looked and felt like summer.  The train was full by the time we got to Exeter with standing room only as at each stop more people going to the Climate Strike got on with their placards.  We had planned to spend some time wandering about and I wanted to go to a wool shop I'd heard about and to have Mr M's postponed birthday lunch (after the restauant in Weymouth that we had planned to visit on his birthday a couple of weeks ago had been closed at lunchtime and the place we went to instead not up to much) but when I had discovered earlier in the week that there was to be a Climate strike on Friday I said I'd like to join in even if only for a short while and to stand and be counted which Mr M wasn't up for so we split up and arranged to meet later and go for lunch.

It was amazing to be part of the 2000 or so protestors and the atmosphere was great with people of all ages including a few children, babies in arms and pushchairs, teens, dogs (a few) and  even some people in wheelchairs coming together with one thing in common - their love of the Earth.  I have always said that nothing would entice me to be part of a big crowd but the fate of our planet seemed worth it and I kept to the edges to start with!  I overheard several other protestors saying that this was the first time they'd ever done anything like joining a mass protest so I knew I wasn't the only newbie and I made a new friend when I stopped to speak with a lady about my age carrying a "placard" saying "You know you have to sort it out when Granny shouts about it"!  She too had been drawn to come to Exeter to join in and be counted.  We stood chatting for a while and we both left the gathering just before they all set off to march to the County Hall as neither of us was up to the walk. Does this mean we are now activists I wonder?

We went for a coffee together and I telephoned Mr M to say where we were and he joined us.  We have exchanged e-mail addresses and hope to keep in touch.  It was amazing yesterday morning when looking at the headlines in most of the papers to be able to say "I was there and part of it"!!

I had been to a coffee morning the previous Saturday to find out more about Extinction Rebellion thinking that if Greta Thunberg a 16 year old was prepared to travel across the Atlantic in a small racing yacht to speak at the UN then the least I could do was to find out more about Extinction Rebellion and maybe do something instead of talking about it.  It all seemed so very well organised that I felt drawn to join up attracted by the Non Violent aspect of it and the fact that so many people of every stripe and persuasion can come together and there be no outbreaks of damage or destruction but now I am wondering.  Why do I feel I don't want to admit to being part of it all when speaking to friends, will the gilets jaunes  or other violent groups infiltrate the peaceful non violent marches as happened here in Paris and is this the way to achieve the aim of getting governments around the world to do something about the things that are making climate change worse?  I have no intention of joining the protest they plan in London 7 - 19 October as I wouldn't be able to get there and if I sat down in the road I might not be able to get up these days but I know now that for every marcher or protestor glued to the road there are dozens more back home acting as support in one way and another and maybe I can do my bit in this way from home.  But life is very difficult at times when it comes to knowing what is the right thing to do.

Mr M got his birthday lunch and very good it was too but there wasn't time to go and find the wool shop this time never mind that can be another day.  The train home was pretty full again with people still clutching their placareds some now a little the worse for wear!!  But I'd had a lovely day and felt really invigorated by it all.