Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Gran's rebelling...

Him and Her Next Door have gone away for a few days leaving us to Granny sit.

This is fine except Gran is going through a rebellious stage... "I am not getting dressed today, I feel dizzy when I try to..." glaring at me as if daring me to argue.  "I've put on my summer dressing gown for the daytime.  I'm quite decent."

Hmmm, one of Her Next Door 'rules' is that Gran should get dressed daily - except for her bath day, she is allowed a day off then. 

"And another thing, I don't want a new dress for my party." 

Blimey, let it all out Gran.

Is there a book on how to handle teenagers centenarians?

Hopefully Her Next Door will remain blissfully unaware of this outburst.  Nobody reads this do they?

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Our garden in pictures

I love this time of year... (and wondering around the garden on a sunny day like today is the perfect antidote to politics).

Monday, 10 May 2010

Ms Angry to Ms Proud in 48 hours

Friday morning I found our Internet was down – being an IT company we are dead in the water without it. I phoned our ISP (note this stands for Internet Service Provider) who duly did the line checks and found nothing wrong. He told me that before anyone would send an engineer out we had to replace our router.

Not an unreasonable request I suppose except that I informed them that our neighbour was also down. What was the likelihood of two routers going ‘ping’ at the same time?

Apparently this information was irrelevant and had nothing to do with our issue. To me it was obvious that they were following a problem solving ‘script’ and come hell or high water and even when provided with useful information, they had to ensure that each item was duly checked off the list. Sorry Madam, it MUST be your router, grrrrrrr.

An hour round trip to pick up a new router, ½ hour to configure and £80.00 later, low and behold… our Internet was still down. Apologies, but the earliest an engineer could be with us now was Monday. My response? Insert expletives here.  I would also like to know who is going to refund us the cost of purchasing the router - it doesn't make a very convincing objet d'art.

Sunday I did the Race for Life at Scolton Manor in Pembrokeshire, what a beautiful day in more ways than one. There was a little team of us and G8 also ran. It brought tears to your eyes reading some of the dedications pinned to the backs of most of the runners. I ran for one person in particular who never got the chance to grow old, but also for two or three survivors. As we began our running they played Heather Small’s “What have you done today to make you feel proud?” and for once I had an answer to that.

Saturday, 1 May 2010


It struck me recently how old age strikes with some stealth, it creeps up on you almost unnoticed.  We're all living longer and therefore having to cope with aging and all it brings in a way never encountered before.  If not for ourselves then for others who are close to us.

My Gran, who is very alert and has all her cognitive skills, yesterday had an accident she couldn’t avoid and was utterly heartbroken. How cruel ageing can be. The only real joy she gets from life (apart from her family) is from listening to her books and doing quiz shows on television as her sight too has let her down. She never moans though and is usually surprising cheerful.

My Mother-in-law is with us for a week and she too is struggling a little, mainly with arthritis which her weight aggravates and the two combined are now really affecting her mobility. She fails to remember things sometimes too.

Both Grannies would choose to remain totally independent - but for various reasons really can't. Mother-in-law lives on her own still but is helped enormously by her only daughter who shops, cleans and drops in daily for much needed human contact and Gran obviously lives with us cared for mainly by Her Next Door - but neither helper gets much direct help from the Government - financially or practically. This caring group is ignored yet it will become a bigger problem in years to come as each generation seems to live that little bit longer.

All this free caring is saving the tax payer a lot of money. Is it fair that people in their late sixties and early seventies who should now be free of mortgage, children, paid employment etc are finding they have other responsibilities? Please don't misunderstand, all mentioned here do this willingly and with much care and love - they wouldn't have it any other way. But should this silent army be doing it alone and without any support?
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