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Old 15th March 2024, 03:39   #681
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Originally Posted by stevestrat View Post
Err . . . . you're not really selling it as a holiday option Phil.
Good morning Steve, you would be surprised, some tourists actually like roughing it in the bush. There is a certain appeal about camping in a tent, cooking over a fire and being at one with nature in a hot climate in a game reserve.

I realise it might not appeal to everyone but for some it’s an adventure and highly recommended. Because of health and safety, it’s common practice to pay for 2 armed rangers to watch the camp at night and 2 armed rangers to watch the tent’s during the day whilst on a game drive. The fees include food and water for the rangers. The rangers bring their own little hut made from corrugated tin. Their beds are hay, a water douser supplies the water.

I did invite someone from the club to join us on safari camping in a tent, but he decided it was not for him.

Such is life
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Old 19th March 2024, 07:30   #682
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And so the 19th of March rolls around again. For on this day in 2009 my life was to change forever, for on this day my Val was to fall on the Shell garage forecourt in Woodford Essex. The first ambulance took us to Whipps Cross A&E under blues and two’s.

Val, with me, was then transferred to the brain injury unit at the Royal London in Whitechapel London, again under blues and two’s. We didn’t arrive till 20.00 as they were trying to find a hospital that could deal with Val’s injuries. Fractured skull and two bleeds on the brain. They wanted her to go to the specialist unit in London close to Southampton Row but they had no spare beds.

Val would spend a total of 10 weeks in the Royal London. She had stents put in to ease the pressure on the brain. She also suffered heart failure but was too ill to be moved to the heart unit. So the heart team came to her. They lowered her bed at the head end and raised the bed at her feet end. This caused the blood to kick start the heart again. Val never complained once but we all knew that all was not well.

Val was then transferred to King George’s hospital in Goodmayes Essex. Now close to home but Val would never return to our home. After 6 weeks the decision was made to move her to Meadow Court, a residential care home in the grounds of the hospital. She would stay here till she was taken ill on the 12th December 2010. On the 19th, my birthday, I had to make a decision on stopping the medication and machine as she wasn’t responding. She had been unconscious since the 14th.

That decision was the hardest I have ever made. Broke my heart but I knew it was for the best. If she did regain consciousness there was no telling how she would be. But the chances of regaining consciousness was slim. I spoke to her brother who said that whatever decision I made he would stand by me.
So the medication was stopped and the machine turned off. I stayed with her right up to the end on the 23rd December at 08.56. She looked so peaceful as she took her last breath.

I was allowed to lay on the bed so that I could cuddle her in those last few hours. The screens were pulled right around so that we had privacy. The nurses kept coming in to check on her. They were there when she took the hands of the angels.

I don’t remember much after that. Everything was like a dream. Along with a friend we cleared out her room at the home. Collected the death certificate, made the funeral arrangements and contacted family and friends. I have no idea what happened that Christmas. I know I spent it with friends and I know I was seen by a doctor as people were concerned about my mental health.

The funeral was held on the same day that would have been her late Mum’s Birthday, 4th January. Family and friends attended along with the ladies from the care home. The wake was held at the Dick Turpin pub in Goodmayes. I went missing, I just wanted time on my own. I said I was going to the loo but walked out the front door and walked across the road to the local church. I went in and sat in the pews. I closed my eyes and cried. I sensed that someone was close. An arm was put around me and I was cuddled, it was my cousin Christine.

She had watched me go to the loo and had followed me. When she saw me go into the church she returned to the wake and along with two ladies from the care home they came over to make sure I was ok. After that I have no idea what happened. I finally woke up in a strange bed in Greenhithe in Kent. I was at my, then, friends house. I had my PJ’s on but how I got there I have no idea.
I had been seen by a doctor and had been sedated as I was in such a state. I would stay at the house for another 5 days, but I wanted to go home.

My ex-friends finally gave in and took me home. They stayed long enough to make sure I had food in the flat and that the heating was on. Then they were fully aware I needed to be on my own. But they had told a few neighbours that I was at home.

And that is the first time I have told the full story of what happened after Val’s passing. All remembered as if it was yesterday and not 14 years ago.

Yes, I still miss my Val and will always have those memories locked into my heart. I talk to her everyday. Last week was the Cheltenham Gold Cup and we always had a bet. I used to go for the obscure names but Val would always bet on the ‘greys’. Her horse came last and mine fell. Memories can never be taken they might slip away a bit as we get older but they can never be lost.

Remember to give your loved one’s that extra hug, and a kiss, for none of us knows what lies around the next corner.

Thanks for reading.
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Old 19th March 2024, 07:35   #683
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Originally Posted by FLYING BANANA View Post
And so the 19th of March rolls around again. For on this day in 2009 my life was to change forever, for on this day my Val was to fall on the Shell garage forecourt in Woodford Essex. The first ambulance took us to Whipps Cross A&E under blues and two’s.

Val, with me, was then transferred to the brain injury unit at the Royal London in Whitechapel London, again under blues and two’s. We didn’t arrive till 20.00 as they were trying to find a hospital that could deal with Val’s injuries. Fractured skull and two bleeds on the brain. They wanted her to go to the specialist unit in London close to Southampton Row but they had no spare beds.

Val would spend a total of 10 weeks in the Royal London. She had stents put in to ease the pressure on the brain. She also suffered heart failure but was too ill to be moved to the heart unit. So the heart team came to her. They lowered her bed at the head end and raised the bed at her feet end. This caused the blood to kick start the heart again. Val never complained once but we all knew that all was not well.

Val was then transferred to King George’s hospital in Goodmayes Essex. Now close to home but Val would never return to our home. After 6 weeks the decision was made to move her to Meadow Court, a residential care home in the grounds of the hospital. She would stay here till she was taken ill on the 12th December 2010. On the 19th, my birthday, I had to make a decision on stopping the medication and machine as she wasn’t responding. She had been unconscious since the 14th.

That decision was the hardest I have ever made. Broke my heart but I knew it was for the best. If she did regain consciousness there was no telling how she would be. But the chances of regaining consciousness was slim. I spoke to her brother who said that whatever decision I made he would stand by me.
So the medication was stopped and the machine turned off. I stayed with her right up to the end on the 23rd December at 08.56. She looked so peaceful as she took her last breath.

I was allowed to lay on the bed so that I could cuddle her in those last few hours. The screens were pulled right around so that we had privacy. The nurses kept coming in to check on her. They were there when she took the hands of the angels.

I don’t remember much after that. Everything was like a dream. Along with a friend we cleared out her room at the home. Collected the death certificate, made the funeral arrangements and contacted family and friends. I have no idea what happened that Christmas. I know I spent it with friends and I know I was seen by a doctor as people were concerned about my mental health.

The funeral was held on the same day that would have been her late Mum’s Birthday, 4th January. Family and friends attended along with the ladies from the care home. The wake was held at the Dick Turpin pub in Goodmayes. I went missing, I just wanted time on my own. I said I was going to the loo but walked out the front door and walked across the road to the local church. I went in and sat in the pews. I closed my eyes and cried. I sensed that someone was close. An arm was put around me and I was cuddled, it was my cousin Christine.

She had watched me go to the loo and had followed me. When she saw me go into the church she returned to the wake and along with two ladies from the care home they came over to make sure I was ok. After that I have no idea what happened. I finally woke up in a strange bed in Greenhithe in Kent. I was at my, then, friends house. I had my PJ’s on but how I got there I have no idea.
I had been seen by a doctor and had been sedated as I was in such a state. I would stay at the house for another 5 days, but I wanted to go home.

My ex-friends finally gave in and took me home. They stayed long enough to make sure I had food in the flat and that the heating was on. Then they were fully aware I needed to be on my own. But they had told a few neighbours that I was at home.

And that is the first time I have told the full story of what happened after Val’s passing. All remembered as if it was yesterday and not 14 years ago.

Yes, I still miss my Val and will always have those memories locked into my heart. I talk to her everyday. Last week was the Cheltenham Gold Cup and we always had a bet. I used to go for the obscure names but Val would always bet on the ‘greys’. Her horse came last and mine fell. Memories can never be taken they might slip away a bit as we get older but they can never be lost.

Remember to give your loved one’s that extra hug, and a kiss, for none of us knows what lies around the next corner.

Thanks for reading.
Bob, I am reading this with tears in my eyes, I haven ever heard you speak about this before and must be very painful for you losing a much loved one.

Julien.
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Old 19th March 2024, 07:55   #684
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As we have discussed Bob, no matter what our ills, those treasured memories cannot be taken from us, and are ours alone.
Fred
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Old 20th March 2024, 16:01   #685
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Received some very sad news this morning. 2 dear friends have passed away.

My mates aunt, Pat, had lung cancer but not from smoking but from asbestos. She was a nurse but ended up being a carer working in various care homes in Kent. And many years ago one of these care homes was found to contain asbestos. The building ended up being demolished but not before the deadly dust had been breathed in by staff and patients. She worked right up till she was 75. Ended up being in senior management.

She was diagnosed last December with the disease but she declined any treatment. She passed away this morning surrounded by her family, her two daughters were with her. My mate, with his wife, were on there way to see her but unfortunately she passed before they got there.
Under normal circumstances I would have attended the funeral but I don’t know if I could drive that far at the moment.

The other person that had passed away was a neighbour of mine when I lived up in Barkingside. Cecil was as eccentric as they come. After he lost his wife in 2000 he started a routine that he carried out day in and day out. He used to get out of bed at 07.00 every morning and Monday to Saturday he followed the same routine. He didn’t drive but virtually walked the same route every day to Tesco’s in Barkingside.

Always arrived by 09.00 and make his way into the restaurant to have his breakfast. And he would stay there the entire day. He would buy a newspaper and sit in the restaurant all day. Only leaving the table to go to the loo, then back up to the counter for another cuppa. He would have his lunch and evening meal there. He would leave by 18.00 and walk home. Once indoors he would have a bath then go to bed. He would at some point get a bit of shopping. But never bought any food shopping, no point was his answer.

On Sundays the routine changed a bit. As Tesco’s didn’t open till 11.00 he would leave home at the same time as in the week but he would arrive at the Holy Trinity Church in Barkingside and go in to pray. He would then leave at 10.50 and walk through the park, go across the road and into Tesco’s for his breakfast, lunch and evening meal. As Tesco’s shut at 16.00 he would return to the church via the park. Then return home at the same time and follow the same routine of a bath then bed.

He still had a black n white tv. No land line or mobile phone. He rarely got on the bus to go to Tesco’s or to come home. He used the call box across the road till they removed it. So if he needed to phone his daughter or anyone else then he would phone from Tesco’s. I don’t think he had see a doctor or a dentist for years

His daughter phoned me last night to tell me the news. She had found my address and thinking I still lived in Barkingside she had gone around to the flat. The people there said I had moved to Cornwall in 2018. They had no address but they did have my mobile number.
Cecil was 96 when he passed away. He was in the church when he collapsed. The vicar tried to revive him but by the time the ambulance arrived he was gone. Cause of death was natural causes.

His daughter said that the flat was up For Sale. She said the place was bare, hardly any furniture. No fridge, and the cooker was clean but hadn’t been used since 2000. She found no crockery or knives and forks. Only one cup to be found. His garden was neat and tidy but there was no shed or any garden tools. Apparently a neighbour used to keep the garden tidy. The neighbour also used to clean the flat whilst Cecil was out.
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Old 22nd March 2024, 10:04   #686
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I hope, you'll find a right place for yourself. It's really difficult to lose the loved ones. I think about it more and more recently. In times like these, it's crucial to prioritize our own well-being and plan for the future, both emotionally and financially. One aspect that often gets overlooked is retirement savings. While it may seem distant or daunting, investing in retirement plans like those offered by Athene can provide a sense of security and peace of mind for the years ahead. Planning for retirement not only ensures financial stability but also allows us to focus on living life to the fullest, cherishing the moments with our loved ones and creating lasting memories. So, as we navigate through the complexities of loss and grief, let's also take steps to safeguard our future and embrace the journey ahead. And remember, you're not alone in this journey – there are resources and support systems available, including athene customer service, to guide you every step of the way.

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Old 5th April 2024, 16:02   #687
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Looks like my recovery is going well and so is my spending. I had a new bed delivered last Tuesday from HSL. The bed was made to measure and is electrically assisted. Has 3 separate motors, and remote control.

So I decided it was time to renew the bedding. So with my neighbour Marion we went to Dunelms in Plymouth where I spent a few bob on the bedding. Plus I bought a couple of Poppy pasta dishes.
The new quilt covers, pillow cases and sheets need to be washed and aired before putting them on the new bed.

My old bed I dismantled last Sunday and rebuilt it in the spare room. So for a few nights I have been sleeping in there. But I wanted to sleep in my new bed. So I stripped the old bed, and the bedding went into the washing machine. So I put clean bedding on the new bed. And last night I climbed into my new bed. I raised the head end a little way then lifted the feet end just a bit higher.

I went to bed at 22.15 and woke up at 03.10 for a wee. And it was 07.40 b3fore I woke up again. Best nights sleep I’ve had for awhile. And I didn’t want to get out of bed, that’s very unusual for me. But eventually the pressure of a poo got me out of bed. After my visit to the loo I then had a nice shower. And it was nearly 09.00 before I got downstairs.

After breakfast I went back upstairs and got the spare spare bed under the other bed. I put a fitted sheet onto it before pushing it underneath. Then put a fitted sheet on the top mattress and put a couple of the photo printed fleece blankets on top. That will keep the mattresses from getting grubby. The unwanted spare pillows I put the covers on and stuffed them into some pillow bags.

Then had a tidy up in the airing cupboard. Not thrown any away, yet. Going to need some new towels soon, so that will be another trip to Dunelms with Marion soon. Because I had my diabetes eye check today I had a sit down and rested the ankle. Once back from the check up, Marion took me there and brought me home. So this afternoon I have been just resting the ankle and the eyes. Those drops they put in don’t half make the eyes sting, and water.

The people that bought my flat in Barkingside have been in touch. They have contacted me a few times with various questions, which I have always replied to. But now they are selling the flat as the twins are getting bigger and naturally enough they need a bigger home. What they wanted was a further information about the loft. They have a buyer and it was the buyer that wanted the information. The buyer wanted me to sign a declaration about the work carried out but I said no to that. What did the buyer actually want to know.

Turned out they wanted to know the actual dates of the work carried out. Well, I gave all that information to those that had the flat now. But according to them they said that there was no starting or finishing date. I knew that but kept quiet. So I disturbed my memory vaults and came up with a starting and finishing date. No idea if they are correct but it was a long time ago. Val was at home when we had the work done. Think the year was 2006 and the starting month was March but the job was never properly finished as the the builder done a runner with the money. We had to get someone else in to rectify the faults and finish the job.

We had no choice but to call in the bailiffs to get our money back. Plus we contacted the police and got legal advice. But the so called builder was always one step ahead. We never got our money back and he was never caught. His business filed for bankruptcy.
After Val passed away I went looking for this builder. I contacted the organisation that recommended him but they didn’t want to know. I took legal advice on suing them but was advised against this.
But I knew where he played cricket on a Sunday. So I went there.

I knew what car he drove so I waited in the car park. In he drove but as soon as he saw me he was off like a rat up a drain pipe. I saw which way he went and I gave chase but he had vanished.
I won’t reveal his name on the open forum. But if I find him I will try and get back the money he had off of us.
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Last edited by FLYING BANANA; 5th April 2024 at 18:34.. Reason: Adding to the story
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Old 8th April 2024, 12:00   #688
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Interesting tale of woe about your builder Bob but he will get his just deserts somewhere down the line. I believe in karma but sometimes as with the police it might need a little helping hand.

Cowboy builders deserve what they dish out and with spade fulls of interest too. They tend to have a very liberal relationship with things such as tax and honesty with the DWP both of which will be ever so grateful for a little helping hand. Surprising what some might be claiming when not entitled.

They also tend not to bother with little things like liability insurance but it might be worth looking into if not already done as it could be the way with the most merit to getting your money back.
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Old 1st May 2024, 07:58   #689
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Cool 1st of May and we have had…………….

……………………….. first Power Cut since living here in Cornwall. No heating on gave the game away. I phoned the National Grid on 105 and they politely told me that the power would be restored by 09.30. It was on at 05.15 as I got out of bed to go for a wee.
Anyway it came back on at 08.00. National Grid phoned to to tell me that it was now all sorted.

And on top of this we now have a leak in the roof. I contacted a highly recommended local company and they have been up on the roof to look. Waiting on them to send me an estimate for the work.
Plus the access door to the garage is on its last hinges, looks like it’s about to give up very soon. I rarely use this door, especially in the wet, as the steps are very steep and slippery. I would walk all the way round and use the up and over door.

So I have a local carpenter coming out tomorrow to have a look and giving me a price on a new door. And whilst he is here he is going to look at boxing the boiler in.

Another couple of friends from Barkingside have passed away. One from a trauma to the head after a nasty fall, and t’other one from natural causes. But I’ll not be going back for the funerals. But I have sent sympathy cards and made a donation to the various charities concerned.

My progress is getting better. Now have a very nice walking stick in blue plus a second one that has a seat attached, that will be handy at car meets as I often stop to chat to various owners. Not able to stand for too long before the ankle starts to ache. Been told it will be up to 12 months before the full strength returns to the ankle. Just need to take things easy.

But I have managed to get my gardens looking better, if it would stop raining I will get some new plants in. I’m able to cut the grass front and back.
Both cars are running ok, just had to replace the rear tyres on the wee car. But Banana is running sweet. So far we have done 3 car shows with 3 different clubs.

Thanks for reading.
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Old 1st May 2024, 17:55   #690
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……………………….. first Power Cut since living here in Cornwall. No heating on gave the game away. I phoned the National Grid on 105 and they politely told me that the power would be restored by 09.30. It was on at 05.15 as I got out of bed to go for a wee.
Anyway it came back on at 08.00. National Grid phoned to to tell me that it was now all sorted.

And on top of this we now have a leak in the roof. I contacted a highly recommended local company and they have been up on the roof to look. Waiting on them to send me an estimate for the work.
Plus the access door to the garage is on its last hinges, looks like it’s about to give up very soon. I rarely use this door, especially in the wet, as the steps are very steep and slippery. I would walk all the way round and use the up and over door.

So I have a local carpenter coming out tomorrow to have a look and giving me a price on a new door. And whilst he is here he is going to look at boxing the boiler in.

Another couple of friends from Barkingside have passed away. One from a trauma to the head after a nasty fall, and t’other one from natural causes. But I’ll not be going back for the funerals. But I have sent sympathy cards and made a donation to the various charities concerned.

My progress is getting better. Now have a very nice walking stick in blue plus a second one that has a seat attached, that will be handy at car meets as I often stop to chat to various owners. Not able to stand for too long before the ankle starts to ache. Been told it will be up to 12 months before the full strength returns to the ankle. Just need to take things easy.

But I have managed to get my gardens looking better, if it would stop raining I will get some new plants in. I’m able to cut the grass front and back.
Both cars are running ok, just had to replace the rear tyres on the wee car. But Banana is running sweet. So far we have done 3 car shows with 3 different clubs.

Thanks for reading.
Hi Bob.
It is good too hear you are on the mend and getting out and about with Banana,
Just take it easy and not doing stupid things, you are no spring chicken.

Rev.
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