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    For those who don't know, we're trying to update via Twitter.

     

    https://twitter.com/manxforums

     

    Basically a database table containing all the MF posts ever has fallen into a corrupt state. Due to the size, normal recovery methods aren't having much effect so I'm now looking into dumping the data out and rebuilding it from an extract. Obviously that's quite drastic and it's proper shit-the-bed type stuff as one error and it's all gone. I don't know how current our backups are right now, Uni does that stuff, so I'm going with the assumption that I need to get this right first time.

     

    So, the blogs module uses a different table than posts so all being well this should appear and hopefully either direct people to the Twitter, or at least understand it's being worked on.

     

    It's a lovely day outside, go get some fresh air.

  1. BarbaraG
    Latest Entry

    After pondering what to call my blog, the revival seemed to be the most apt. I thought of "Bursting with Joy" but that would have seemed a little OTT even if it would appear appropriate to those who have been through the dark days of my life. "Risen from the ashes" was another thought but that reminded me of the Phoenix. The Revival is pretty apt for what is happening to me now; a revival as in the definition "A restoration to use, acceptance, activity, or vigour after a period of obscurity or quiescence."

    I didn't want to continue blogging telling everyone how good I was, followed by how down I was and boring people with the endless rollercoaster that my life became since Tom died. Strange things happen sometimes when people suffer loss and allsorts of unbelievable things can happen. Unpleasant things from early years, suppressed and forgotten, can come back and have to be dealt with. This has been the case with me. It isn't necessarily something you want to share with the whole world. So I withdrew from almost everyone and everything. Someone once asked Tom did he write everything there was to know when he wrote his autobiography. His reply was "When you invite someone into your house, you don't show them your bedroom." With that in mind, I also didn't want to share my struggle over the past 8 months or so. What I can say without doubt is that I am now having a revival.

    Tom wrote about his journey with cancer and did so with such courage, humour, honesty and optimism. My journey since he has gone has been one of grieving but also of the most awful depression. The thing about depression is that you are anything but optimistic. Negative and pessimistic if the two can be separated. Who want to read about that? But now my journey has taken me another step further. I have been through grief. I have been through irrational behaviour. I have even revisited the darkest days of my past and I am now coming out of the tunnel.

    The numbness gradually went which I didn't even know was with me. I only knew when I felt anger and love again. Love came first when I felt it for my family, friends, birds and dogs. I went through the motions of looking after my animals and birds, but I was ashamed and bemused by my total lack of love or feelings for them. I didn't understand it. Anyway, the love is very much back. Anger came but not at Tom which people said may happen. Apparently the person who dies can come in for some anger for leaving. No, my anger seems to be with everything that I seem to have suppressed in the past or present for that matter. So where am I now?

    I have come off the antidepressants and am doing well. I have been doing some bookwork for Tom’s brother and Sister-in-law at Pooilvaaish which has given me a purpose and self esteem. I started back with Castletown Band but have been absent without leave for a few months whilst I come through this last tunnel. Painting has been a struggle but one is complete which I have put on this blog. It is too dark for my liking and I cannot brighten it no matter how I try and so I will leave it. It represents a period in my life and reflects the mind of the artist at the time. It is of Langness Lighthouse and my first attempt at acrylic. Most of the painting was done in the early hours of sleepless mornings from around 2 a.m. That is what depression is like. You can lie there tossing and turning or you can get up and try and make use of the wakefulness.

    My baby heron survived and the strangest thing is that he must have been the runt and thrown out of the nest. I am only 4ft 11 and some would probably agree I was of a muscular build. My young 'Odin' seems for all the world, a heron equivalent of me. He's a titch. His legs only come up to the knees on the other herons & he can be identified at a glance. As small as he/she is, when it comes to the sardines in a morning, Odin will defend his territory. He knows his name as well, but so funny to look at. In the summer I watched him catch an eel in Castletown harbour and even as a large heron tried to rob him, he wasn't out done. He will always be looked after by me and he's very special.

    I have also had the pleasure of watching a family of moorhens raise 2 sets of young in the summer. I think my little moorhen did survive last year because as shy as moorhens normally are, there is one which is fearless when it comes to humans and I think it may be my little fella.

    Last week I had an overwhelming desire to go back to programming. Now if that isn't a sign that the depression is lifting, then nothing is. I never thought I would ever feel confident to go back into that sort of environment or that anyone would be even slightly interested in a 59 year old. Well I made a phone call to one of my old firms just to test the water. What can I say? I went to Central Software today already knowing that they would like me to join them on an adhoc basis at the moment. I was nervous for two reasons. Firstly I can feel emotional meeting people who I haven't seen since Tom was a fit and healthy husband. Secondly I haven't programmed or been into that sort of workplace for nearly 3 years. I didn't even know if I could pick it up again, but I had this strange confidence about me that it would all be fine. John the CEO treated me like I hadn't been away from the place for nigh on 14 years. I left at the end of January 1996. Most of the people that were there when I left are still there and they were all pleased to welcome as one of their number again. I only worked there for 3 years but in all my years of employment, I have never loved a place like it. Everyone who works there does so because they love programming. There isn't any politics as there is nothing to be gained. There aren't any bosses as such. No positions to aspire too or projects to you want that much you would denigrate your co-workers to achieve your goals. It is heaven for me especially at my age. I can do a bit of programming which I have to say I absolutely love. There won't be politics, just a team of people all enjoying what they do and encouraging each other. I am sooo excited.

    I was craving a can of coke tonight and there was none to be found. The garage was closed as it was 9.30 so I decided I would creep into the Sidings (pub), buy a can and leg it home. I'm from the old fashioned brigade that feels like dying at the thoughts going in a pub on my own. I sidled up to the bar feeling very conspicuous when I lady shouted "Hello Barbara" and then half the bar joined in. That was when I decided "to hell with it"; I got my coke and joined her and her husband for an hour. I mention it only as another way of letting you know how the revival is going. On the way home which is only about 200 yards, I decided it was time to blog. Also today I have seen the doctor and let it be known that I am now off the antidepressants and want to now get on with my life. I needed them when Tom was ill. I was so badly affected when Tom was being treated; I used to go into the park to sob my heart out. I couldn't remember things or think straight. I couldn't get the thoughts out of my head that I was going to lose him soon and at the same time I kept Tom’s optimism alive. Whilst he slept beside me I would exhaust myself on the internet looking to see if there had been a breakthrough in his cancer. It was relentless and I drove myself. When he died my nightmare became reality. The worst had happened. I had lost half of myself and it was the best half. I fluctuated from being unable to function to racing thoughts and basically I was a mess. Then as I have said, I gave away quite a bit of my finances and followed that up with reliving every trauma of my childhood and so on. Now it is finished. I have been warned that the antidepressants will have suppressed some of the grieving and I may still have to go though some stuff which is only what everyone else has to cope with. I'm up for that. I am going to be the Barbara that met and loved Tom 20 years ago. I'm not going to finish my life in a permanent depressive state. I'm having a revival.

    Before I end this blog I would like to apologise to all the people I have neglected over the past months/year. Pauline, Joyce, Cheryl, Dorothy, Barry and Linda to name but a few. Wendy and Sean, thank you for the flowers. Thanks to everyone who has encouraged me to blog again when I thought it was passed its sell by date.

    This is Barbara Glassey on the banks of the Silverburn River looking forward to Christmas and the New Year.

    blogentry-3931-007674000 1291952819_thumb.jpg

  2. Well here we are back home after Paul has had his op in London. He now looks good, no skull deformity and is feeling good. I have to say that all the years of paying health premiums have paid off. I am ashamed to have not stayed with the NHS, which I support,and believe in passionately, but the care he got privately was really superb.

     

    He has been given the go ahead to fly by end of January, so his ski holiday is on. The Walton skull plate was synthetic, but the London plate is titanium, will he set off airport security scanners and how will we explain? This could be fun. Watch this space!

     

    We also got to experience NHS A&E in a large south London hospital. Will never grumble about Nobles, ever again.

     

    On the day of Paul's discharge he collapsed and became unconscious 3 times, once in the car on the way back to the hotel, once at the hotel and the third time, again in the car just as I arrived at the hospital doors to have him re admitted (at the suggestion of his consultant, with whom I had spoken).

     

    I had parked, on double yellows, outside the private patient entrance, went in and asked for assistance. They had no porters specifically on duty, the ambulance men in the ambulances next to my car told me it was not their job to get Paul out of the car and into A&E as he had not arrived in an ambulance. One even suggested I should not have brought him in but should have dialled 999. I went to A&E 100 yards down the road, queued for 5 minutes to get to the desk, receptionist tannoyed a porter, but none arrived. Eventually she found a wheel chair and a hospital worker who pushed it to the car but told me it was not his job to help me get Paul, who was still unconscious, out of the car, into the chair or wheel him into A&E.

     

    Eventually I prevailed on two ambulance men to assist in the car to chair transfer, then I was on my own, and was being harassed by the Hosp ital parking attendant to move my car. I had been on the yellow lines for 20 minutes and was blocking no traffic, so after wheeling Paul, who was just coming round, into A&E, I had to abandon him and find parking.

     

    10 minutes later back in A&E Paul had disappeared. I found him in triage. I noticed that next to the triage station was a police office and outside was an armed police officer. Paul was wheeled into the A&E cubicle area. 50 cubicles, all full, nowhere to go. Paul was pushed into a suture room with two beds.

     

    That is where and when we noticed the cameras, 5 of them, and the rifle mikes, four of them! Channel 4 were making a documentary on Kings A&E. A large Jamaican, bleeding profusely was then admitted to the room with a nurse, his partner, a junior doctor and a camera man, sound man and gofer, who had filming consent forms. (no we did not sign up!) The Jamaican had the broadest patois I have ever heard, and whilst being stitched related to the film crew how he had been "rolled by four niggah bruthas" for his wallet. I suppose it may make good TV.

     

    After a scan, because the main worry was that Paul had started another hemorrhage, there were no cubicles or rooms, no NHS ward beds available, and private wing were trying to rearrange beds, it was a 3 hour wait in a corridor on the gurney.

     

    Eventually a bed was found, but again no porters so Paul had to walk the half mile to the ward.

     

    I will never again criticise Nobles, as long as I live.

     

    Anyway, Paul had another two nights in and has been fine ever since. No bleed, the collapses were put down to wrong medicine prescription at discharge, low blood sugar, he had not eaten the night before or that morning before discharge, and peri operative risk. In other words he had been discharged too early!

     

    I stayed at a boutique hotel on Camberwell Church Street, a 10 minute walk from Kings College Hospital on Denmark Hill. The area was fascinating. The ethnic mix was extreme. It was vibrant and for a manxie, quite exciting and certainly an eye opener.

    Within the 400 yards from the hotel to Camberwell Green there were 12 different nationalities represented in the shops, restaurants and bars. Spanish Hotel and tapas restaurant, Lebanese kebab shop, Jamaican pattie and jerk take away, Vietnamese restaurant, Chinese restaurant, Bangladeshi restaurant, Thai restaurant, English Fish & Chip shop and two pubs, three banks and two estate agents, 5 Nigerian hairdressers all offering "easing" and money changing facilities behind windows filled with neon lights, a Polish delicatessen, an Indian corner shop and hardware store, a Jewish bagel shop. Other shops, cafés etc were clearly not English owned or run, but what they were did not matter.

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    (Originally written on 02 October 2008)

     

    There I am at Heysham in the Ferry Terminal. God is having a particularly heavy pee on the port at the time. It’s early December 2006 and I’m on my way home.

     

    Heysham Terminal – I wonder why Dante omitted it from his divine comedy – must have been too scary. Actually it’s more Mines of Moria from Lord of the Rings. Dark, damp and full of strange creatures.

     

    The traffic cone is in the middle of the sewage pool designated as the Gentlemens toilet. I heard on Manx Radio several weeks later it was still there.

     

    Passengers gather. Staff mill about saying nothing. Rumours circulate. Staff admit nothing. I speculate if I can afford the prices at the cafeteria – café? Sod all to eat bar some cake. Hardly adequate fare for those about to be in peril on the seas.

     

    Tension mounts. Due to the lack of information from the staff, the passengers mill around like a badly directed crowd scene from a 1950s Hollywood epic. The designated sailing time comes and goes, An hour passes then we low caste foot passengers are herded on. I start Baaing like a sheep. Several of the younger passengers join in. Further delay ensues but at least we’re on the boat. I find the buffet area and scrutinise the menu. Outside the weather can best be described as very unsettled. At last the mighty engines rumble and we set off. Starving, I buy a chicken curry with chips and rice. Superb. Then the fun begins. The ship rattles, pitches and people start to be sick. The deck tilts like a mad tilty thing and there’s the growing smell of sick. The Angel of Death appears in a corridor. Jack Hawkins walks past in his duffle coat. I debate asking if there’s a U Boat ahead. Half way across, the lounge resembles a Star Trek episode – people being hurled from side to side. The Christmas trees ( cleverly secured at the top, but not at the bottom ) swing side to side like deranged monkeys. The plates in the galley and all the little packets of biscuits and cakes fly out of their display cases.

     

    Flavour of the day is vomit.

     

    We crawl round on the floor looking for someones spectacles which were thrown of his nose by a particularly vicious pitch of the boat. The TVs go out. Lights flicker.

     

    I wait for Jean Luc Picard to give the order to abandon ship.

     

    The Angel of Death is throwing up in the gents. I am struck by the realisation that Steam Packets’ Ben My Chree is as stable as Gaddaffi in his pre friend of the west days.

     

    Some poor sod is huddled on the top deck on the leeward side under blankets throwing up her intestines. The only others up there are a few madmen trying to enjoy a fag and not get tossed overboard.

     

    Everything not bolted down in the lounge is flying around including all the passengers. Then at last lights through the dark and rain.

    Douglas.

     

    People try to avoid dying before reaching land. When the ship of doom does eventually dock hours late, naturally with their usual contempt for foot passengers; we are let off last. In fact the cleaners were boarding and in the lounge before we get on dry? land. But at last there I am.

     

    On holy ground.

     

    The land of my birth.

     

    The blessed isle

     

    It’s cold, dark and p*ssing down but I’m home.

  3. ... this cartoon does a pretty good job of expressing alot of my thoughts about parts of modern life and work.

     

    It involves a strong reaction to it - oh dear NSFW language.

     

    The challenge in life is how to ensure the poetry this world has to offer us outweighs the frustrations life blocks us with ... and an understanding that overcoming those frustrations is partly what creates our poetry. Life aint easy - but that shouldn't surprise us really.

     

    dreams.png

  4. Well hi there folks and welcome to a good old beef from me after a weeks silence. Today it’s the airport that is doing my head in. Well not just the airport, I guess I could say general security on the Island. Our Government has followed a policy over the last 20 years or so, that appears to be based on what everyone from outside the Island appears to know what is best for us. So, we have imported boat loads of civil servants from the UK and given them out top jobs so that they can and are free to make the same mess over here, as they have done across the water. We used to have a nice quiet quaint little airport until the playboys and girls turned up. Just look at (in my opinion) the outrageous goings on down at Ronaldsway. Firstly we now have to find an extra 2 million quid for an extension to a runway that in my opinion is totally unnecessary, all because Alan Bell used the wrong cheque book when he was paying for the thing. This extension it would appear, is to comply with minimum runway lengths throughout Europe, or is it by the CIA, god knows and he isn’t answering me so far and I have asked him twice. They are getting away with murder on this compliance lark. They are using compliance as an excuse to waste out money and squander our resources. Over half the runways in Europe do not and will not comply with this latest bloody nonsense. The Americans certainly had a security problem in their airports. However, I still believe the aircraft that crashed in to twin towers would have done so anyway. To prevent or eliminate it here, we decide to build a runway that is capable of taking the size of aircraft the terrorists prefer to use. Once this monster has been completed they have another little nugget up their sleeve folks. Yes they are going to erect the most expensive hi-grade security fence around the entire airfield. This will undoubted become the most expensive fence ever built to keep mushroom pickers off the airfield. I think the cost was something like £200,000 the last I heard. Well let’s hope Allan gets his right cheque book out this time then. Then you take all the rest of the nonsense that goes on down at the airport, such as taking your shoes off to be checked out. In my case, I am usually handing my shoes over to a neighbour or at least someone that knows me well, in order for them to make sure I am not carrying a couple of bombs in my heels. Well folks I can tell you that I already have enough problems finding my way around our cluttered pavements without the additional hassle of lugging a couple of bombs around in my shoes. Flying is still in my opinion by far and the best way of getting from A to B, and until someone events a better way we are stuck with it. Anyway no one is going to take a damn bit of notice of me, so I will now shut up on this subject. In fact people I am going to belt up for the day as I can’t concentrate very well on writing these days. It’s coming back to me, but a few more days are needed under my belt. I will blog again tomorrow as I have probably achieved nothing more than doing your poor heads in this morning.

     

    I am still plodding my way along the Silverburn folks; however, I do get scared every time I see a digger or something arrive at the railway station. A dratted security fence along the banks of the river I think to myself, or could it be that some civil servant has located a document in the Manx Museum telling the story of how a drunken monk from Rushen Abbey fell in the river and drowned back in the 17 hundreds, so now they have to erect a security fence to prevent it happening again today! There are no monks left, so I guess it would just be as always is the case - done in our best interests’ folks.

  5. Like millions throughout the world I worshipped the Birth of Christ at Christ-mass last evening. The number of families of ordinary people joining in the celebrations over Advent and Christmas reveals that on this island those who deny Christ's message and portray people of faith as deluded are portraying a picture of island life which does not reflect the true picture.

     

    Christ is Alive!

     

    More than ever His message of love is needed. We should not live for ourselves but for others, sharing with our neighbours the gifts we have been given. Be thankful for your gifts and for those given to others.

     

    We can give thanks in the words of ’A Christmas Prayer’ by Robert Louis Stevenson:

     

    Loving Father, Help us remember the birth of Jesus,

    That we may share in the song of the angels,

    The gladness of the shepherds,

    And worship of the wise men.

    Close the door of hate and open the door of love all over the world. Let kindness come with every gift and good desires with every greeting. Deliver us from evil by the blessing which Christ brings, and teach us to be merry with clear hearts.

    May the Christmas morning make us happy to be thy children, and Christmas evening bring us to our beds with grateful thoughts, forgiving and forgiven, for Jesus’ sake. Amen.

     

    May you and yours enjoy a Joyful and Blessed Christmas.

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    There I am at Heysham in the Ferry Terminal. God is having a particularly heavy pee on the port at the time. It’s early December 2006 and I’m on my way home.

     

    Heysham Terminal – I wonder why Dante omitted it from his divine comedy – must have been too scary. Actually it’s more Mines of Moria from Lord of the Rings. Dark, damp and full of strange creatures.

     

    The traffic cone is in the middle of the sewage pool designated as the Gentlemens toilet. I heard on Manx Radio several weeks later it was still there.

     

    Passengers gather. Staff mill about saying nothing. Rumours circulate. Staff admit nothing. I speculate if I can afford the prices at the cafeteria – café? Sod all to eat bar some cake. Hardly adequate fare for those about to be in peril on the seas.

     

    Tension mounts. Due to the lack of information from the staff, the passengers mill around like a badly directed crowd scene from a 1950s Hollywood epic. The designated sailing time comes and goes, An hour passes then we low caste foot passengers are herded on. I start Baaing like a sheep. Several of the younger passengers join in. Further delay ensues but at least we’re on the boat. I find the buffet area and scrutinise the menu. Outside the weather can best be described as very unsettled. At last the mighty engines rumble and we set off. Starving, I buy a chicken curry with chips and rice. Superb. Then the fun begins. The ship rattles, pitches and people start to be sick. The deck tilts like a mad tilty thing and there’s the growing smell of sick. The Angel of Death appears in a corridor. Jack Hawkins walks past in his duffle coat. I debate asking if there’s a U Boat ahead. Half way across, the lounge resembles a Star Trek episode – people being hurled from side to side. The Christmas trees ( cleverly secured at the top, but not at the bottom ) swing side to side like deranged monkeys. The plates in the galley and all the little packets of biscuits and cakes fly out of their display cases.

     

    Flavour of the day is vomit.

     

    We crawl round on the floor looking for someones spectacles which were thrown of his nose by a particularly vicious pitch of the boat. The TVs go out. Lights flicker.

     

    I wait for Jean Luc Picard to give the order to abandon ship.

     

    The Angel of Death is throwing up in the gents. I am struck by the realisation that Steam Packets’ Ben My Chree is as stable as Gaddaffi in his pre friend of the west days.

     

    Some poor sod is huddled on the top deck on the leeward side under blankets throwing up her intestines. The only others up there are a few madmen trying to enjoy a fag and not get tossed overboard.

     

    Everything not bolted down in the lounge is flying around including all the passengers. Then at last lights through the dark and rain.

    Douglas.

     

    People try to avoid dying before reaching land. When the ship of doom does eventually dock hours late, naturally with their usual contempt for foot passengers; we are let off last. In fact the cleaners were boarding and in the lounge before we get on dry? land. But at last there I am.

     

    On holy ground.

     

    The land of my birth.

     

    The blessed isle

     

    It’s cold, dark and p*ssing down but I’m home.

  6. I suppose reading Tom Glassey's blog, I remembered my visits (as an escort not a patient) to the Cardiothoracic Centre in Broadgreen, Liverpool.

     

    Broadgreen Hospital.

    Christmas 2003.

     

    Robert Owen House.

     

    Me and a house full of women. They were all well into their 60s except one who was around 30 and more than 10 years younger than myself. We got on.

     

    Her partner was in intensive care.

     

    "A split aorta. Brought about from too much smoking and partying".

     

    She was quite frank and open about that. I think she was too quick and ready with the answer, as if she had become too used to it by now.

     

    Although I don't remember me actually ever asking the question.

     

    She went to visit him one evening and I never saw her again.

     

    Unusually, no one else in the House was from the Isle of Man. I had been there before, accompanying my mother for various tests and operations, so I knew the form. This time was the big one though - a triple heart by-pass.

     

    The others were staying in the House whilst their husbands received treatment of one kind or another, just a hundred yards or so away. For some, things were not looking too good.

     

    We were all sat in front of the television. Coronation Street or was it Crossroads? Not one word of the wooden dialogue was sinking in.

     

    "Where are you from?" one lady asked me, in an attempt to break the silence and spark conversation, perhaps escape the collective thoughts for a moment.

     

    I replied "The Isle of Man . . . . . and you?"

     

    "Well, I grew up in Liverpool but we have moved over to The Wirral now"

     

    Other than football, I know nothing of the city and all I could think of was The Beetles. I felt like an enthusiastic American tourist as I asked her if she had ever seen them. Her reply surprised me:

     

    "Oh yes, many a time, as a teenager we often used to visit the Cavern in our lunch hour".

     

    And that was it!

     

    Suddenly the atmosphere changed as the company, all strangers to each other until now, excitedly joined in the conversation. It turned out that the ladies were all from the area and during the early 1960s they had worked in various Liverpool city insurance offices and banks. They had more or less grown up with the Beetles and the Mersey Beat bands of the era. And so for the next half hour or so, I felt privileged to listen to the reminiscences as they re-lived the years of their teenage and early 20s.

     

    Who was their favourite Beetle and why? Yep, they knew them personally alright.

     

    It wasn't just the music but the latest fashions, the politicians, the scandals, the wonder of television, Habitat, train travel and the Modern Art movement.

     

    The conversations were spontaneous and the scene would have made an excellent television documentary. A snapshot of being a teenager in the 1960s.

     

    The room seemed to explode as so many wonderful stories came out from the time when these women were all young and carefree and living those exciting years. For those too brief minutes they were laughing teenage girls again.

     

    And then suddenly the reality of the present, four decades later, struck the room like a big black cloud. One by one they said their cheerios and left, as visiting time arrived.

     

    I was left in the room with just the one lady. Her mind focussed well beyond the television as her eyes gently watered. There was no visiting time for her as her husband was at that moment in the operating theatre.

     

    "I went to the Isle of Man a couple of times when I was 19. Port St Mary." She waited. I listened to the short silence.

     

    I was hoping for a bit of history. Perhaps I would know people she had known and it was clear that she had met someone special from the Island all those years ago. I wanted to know more.

     

    "I didn't go back again" she said, "I married a Doctor from home instead."

     

    I wasn't sure just what to say but it seemed she was just going back over a few points in her life. Anyway she looked at me to see if I wanted to know more, or if I was even interested. I was of course and glad to be there, allowing her thoughts to flow.

     

    "This was supposed to be our time." She said sadly.

     

    It turned out that she had married in her early twenties and had had her family in the first few years. She had devoted her life to her children and by the time they had left home and had families of their own, it was time to look after her parents, and then her husband's parents. She had made sure they were cared for and looked after, and it seemed that this was a particularly stressful time of her life. Eventually the parents died.

     

    Together with her husband, after giving their lives to others, they could now finally relax for once and look forward to the rest of their lives together. This had been just a few months previously.

     

    "This was supposed to be our time," she said again.

     

    Some weeks ago her husband had gone to the doctor with chest pains. It was lung cancer and he had been given just months to live.

     

    I looked at her. I gave her my best dead pan look. Perhaps some questions can't be hidden.

     

    "No," she said "He never smoked a cigarette in his life."

  7. There is no update, but I'm writing one anyway, because it's a blog, and I feel strangely compelled to add to it on a regular basis, even if I have nothing to write about apart from the most pointlessly mundane of trivial observations.

     

    I have not yet begun to source parts for the R5, because snakebite (he who sold me the car) says he has some of the required bits in storage, so it'd make sense to take a look at those and see if they'll do the job before lashing out cash to buy them elsewhere, so that's a task for the weekend.

     

    I did do a bit of poking around here - http://www.eurocarparts.com/ - and it appears that all the stuff I need is at least available, and not ruinously expensive either.

     

    I'd say the car probably needs about £500 spending on it to get all the 'nuts & bolts' stuff right up to scratch (including labour), and then after that, it's just the aesthetic restoration aspect that remains, which I suspect might be rather more costly, but the car is already twenty years old, so another few months of waiting won't kill it. (He said, hopefully.)

     

    I have used the car for the commute a couple of days this week, and since I was working late one night, the drive back over the mountain (nice and dry and no fog) to Ramsey was certainly a bit of an eye-opener. I daren't go much beyond 'a certain speed,' * as one tends to become acutely aware that even the slightest mistake will almost inevitably result in an untimely and somewhat messy death, but even at that stage it all gets rather hairy, too much so for a fat old man like me, that's for sure.

     

    Anyway, it's Friday night, which means getting stupidly pissed and playing BF2142 online with a few chums. (Complete with headsets and Teamspeak, because nothing less than the ultimate nerd-em-up will suffice.)

     

    So that's all for now, which is probably a good thing, because this is a really shitty blog entry.

     

    * It doesn't do to overly incriminate oneself......

  8. There's 2 types of godbotherer story, one where the punchline is 'that was when I carried you' and the other ends with 'i sent a boat and then a helicopter, what more did you want?'Today I spoke to a lady whose partner is dying in the most awful way - I cannot even write what she told me about how he is suffering, truly indescribable. Her faith frightened me because it felt almost inhuman and devoid of normal outrage in the face of this apalling cancer, and I admired and felt humbled by her strength - she turned to go and for a moment she held my arm really tightly like someone drowning and I caught a glimpse of real agony and dawning horror in her face. I hoped that whoever was carrying her would be able to manage till the boat arrived. He might be out of pain by the time you read this, lets hope so.

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    Hey everyone,

     

    Just wanted to mess around with the blog capabiltiies of Invision. I'm not here very often, most of the time I'm posting on my Tech/Business blog, my Hobby Blog or my Personal Blog.

     

    Feel free to check them out ;)

  9. Still listening to that "Warrior Radio" station - a strange fascination goes out from it, somehow..

     

    As I type, it's pumping Manowar into my ears - "Hail and Kill" - rather loudly, as I have to admit. Brings back more memories - teenage years and all that. Blimey, the stuff I used to really like and listen to with full commitment - amazing...

     

    How did the lyrics to one of their songs go:

     

    Heavy Metal Or No Metal At All

    Wimps And Posers Leave The Hall !

     

    err..where's the band gone?.... :)

     

    (I won't admit to still having a copy of "Kings of Metal" somewhere - nope, never!)

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    I’m not the most experienced with forums etc and only really use the internet for research. But, when I signed up to manxforums.com I noticed this section and had long discussion with my ‘very smart’ brother to find out what a blog is! After he eventually stopped laughing, I now understood what it’s all about and have decided to give it a shot. Oh life was so much easier when I was a blonde but, since returning ‘au naturalé’, I can’t use that as an excuse anymore!

     

    The time has come in my life when I just think ‘how the ... did this happen?’. I never imagined that I would be approaching my 34th (ergh!) birthday as a singleton however, since moving back to the island, I’m finding it increasingly difficult to meet a decent single man over the age of 30 who isn’t either a maniac, a drunk or just plain scary, and if my ass gets any bigger, I’ve got no chance.

     

    So, am I looking in the wrong places? Where are they all? Or can they just not see me because i’m so short :unsure:

     

    I can’t guarantee many interesting entries, and I apologise in advance, but this blog will be dedicated to my life as a singleton in the Isle of Man. Exciting ey!

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    Smoking dimps out of the ashtray, listening to Simple Minds and Billy Idol.

     

    It this isn't a cry for help, I don't know what is.

  10. Amazing - totally, truly, fucking unbelievably amazing!

     

    I casually clicked on a topic tonight, to view the last post by 'Politician'. In his post, he linked to a Guernsey forum. Nothing too unusual with that as a rule but I lived there for 8 years and despite my best efforts, I had yet to find an active forum over there to get in touch with people I used to know.

     

    Anyway, I clicked the link and had a look around and a particular part of the forum caught my eye so naturally, I clicked it and lo and behold, I saw a name that I recognised - a name I had not seen for 10 years! The name in question happened to have started a thread that had no replies to it so I registered with a name he'd recognise and added my reply, in the hope that he'd remember me. Sure enough he did, and within 5 minutes I had a PM from him and there, after 10 years, our friendship was renewed once again.

     

    We've since exchanged multiple PM's and added each other to MSN and I have not only gained contact with a long lost friend but also have the possibility of gaining contact with two more.

     

    This is a very happy Mission, signing out on a Sunday morning.

     

    :D

  11. SO! What a great few weeks it's been. Carl arrived about 3 weeks ago and we have been having an absolute blast. Been zipping round the country visiting people and places, and having a laugh along the way. When we were in Rotorua, Carl decided he wanted to do a Zorb. Now, for those of you who are not familiar with Zorbing, its where some crazy arse person decides to chuck themselves inside a massive see-through globe and hurtle off down the hillside going round and round, upside down, or you could follow the link Here But doing the simple version wasn't good enough for Carl, oh no, he had to go, down the hill, unharnessed, with water thrown in and there he came, swishing down the mountain on the zig-zag stretch, arms and legs flailing about. Now when it comes to exiting this pods, i can say that there is no graceful way to do so. It's almost like watching someone getting re-born with water swishing out first followed by a pair of pale legs and body which was covered in THE most sexiest wet suit ever (haha) to follow! I however thought i looked much more refined sitting on the deck with a coffee watching the shananigans going on.

     

    But, there was one more exciting thing to occur on this trip - i got proposed to!!!! Yup, that's right, so now we are engaged and looking forward to a life here in NZ. As to how easy it will be with immigration remains to be seen, but we have had positive feedback from them already. Of course once i had told my mother, she had the wedding all planned within a day, down to the catering, venue, flowers, the only left for her to sort out was her dress - haha, nothing like a bit of forward planning. We don't plan to get married until about Feb 2008 as i refuse to be a fat bride and need the time to lose the weight, otherwise i'd do it tomorrow if i could.

     

    So that's all i have for now, as i am feeling down in the dumps today as Carl is heading back home and again we will be apart, but hopefully not for too long this time.

  12. Wednesday night's practice was run in near-perfect conditions but featured a bumper number of incidents, one of which proved fatal. A total of 13 riders suffered falls, with an injury to a marshal at Ballacraine also reported. Thankfully she is o.k. and will be fit to continue duties tonight. Spilt oil caused Stuart Noon to fall at Quarterbridge, but he is likely to be discharged from hospital later today. Of the other incidents, TT sidecar driver Glyn Jones fell off at the Mountain Box with no injuries, and Classic specialist Tony Myers dropped it at the Gooseneck (in front of yours truly) after coming in too fast. Happily he was also ok. For a full list of incidents, see iommgp.com.Time-wise, most riders now appear to be in the groove and achieving the sort of lap speeds we will be expecting in the races. Top of the pile in the Senior was Kenny McCrea with a time of 19m 17.78s, 117.318 mph. Second and third were Ian Pattinson and Seamus Greene, with times of 19.23.80 and 19.33.10 respectively. The fastest lap of the week so far in this class is 19.15.32, set by Alan Jackson on Monday night.

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    Yesterday. I paddled. I haven't done that in years. Overall, yesterday was an excellent day.

  13. I'm doing a show on mflive tonight. From 10 (unless the football goes to penalties) till 1 ish.First hour is a Velvet Underground special playing tracks by the band and the member's solo work. As well as a track from Lou & John's Pre VU band the Primitives.Plus various covers of the band's songs by Nirvana, Pavement, Galaxie 500, The Strokes and others.Then a few hours of the usual Punk, Funk, Soul, Folk, Garage, stuff to close.Click to listenFinishing up with some Krautrock!!!I'm not currently streaming.But this is what I'm currently listening to. Which I hope will give you some idea of what to expect next time - 0.png

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    Well I started out with a new experience for me, a coffee at Indigo Red on the way to work. It was some Latte thing and was very pleasant. Al seems quite well.In work I was made my standard tankard of Tea by one of the kind ladies I work with - bit of a setback as I couldn;t not drink it but I went and made myself a swift mug of Nescafe's finest to compensate.... this hit me quite hard and I started to feel pretty light headed.I managed a 3rd cup at 11 and started to feel quite sick.... in fact I had one of those horrible burp cum vomit moments and enjoyed the fresh aroma of beany bile... anyways... I'm much happier now and will scamper off to spill the profits... err... beans and have some wierd drink for lunch. 4 down at 2pm.... This is going to be hard work.

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    Well this is it, the start of my Baby blog.No, it's not like a small version of a normal blog. It's a blog about a baby....my baby. :D We (myself and my soon to be wife) went to the Hospital yesterday for the first proper scan and it has to be one of the best experiences ever. To actually see a little human life forming inside another is just special. They're still incredibly small at the moment, being about 15 weeks old and no more than a couple of inches in size. But you should have seen the little blighter move. He was wriggling and squirming ( and I swear I saw them doing the backstroke), but seriously, they're incredibly active in there.I tell you, it's enough to make a grown man cry.I already have a son from a previous relationship, and he is nearly 11 now (now that does make you feel old). But this one already feels completely different (not better, or worse, just different, more intense) probably because I'm older now and can appreciate these things a bit more. He is really happy for us and is praying for a little girl (so he can do the Big Brother thing I suppose and protect them). I just know we're going to be a really happy family.I'll post the scans up soon. Bye for now.Anyway, I'm not going to spout too much now, cos I've got plenty more months ahead to offer up more wise words !! Suffice to say that I'm a happy bunny right now and seeing as I've got the easy part of the bargain (being a bloke) I'll be doing my best to help 'Mum' out as much as I can.

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