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Thursday October 30th



I have just completed one lap of Poulson Park. This is the first time I have walked Skipper for two or 3 weeks. I know I have suggested in other blogs that I was about to take Skipper out, but I didn’t actually manage it. I have been lumbered with pleurisy which has very much restricted what I have been able to do. Well, at least I seem to be over the worst of it now. This time last year, I had just packed in smoking. My cough was getting worse and I was becoming breathless even when out on short walks. I was starting to fear the worst. However, I had always told myself that I would pack in smoking as soon as the first signs of cancer came along. Great idea being as I didn’t even know what the signs of cancer was. I visited my doctor, who told me I had something called COPD, and with a bit of medication and exercise I would be fine. COPD it seems as a condition a lot of smokers end up with. Apart from other things, it narrows the airways and makes it difficult to breathe. Anyway my condition worsened and within 3 months I was right in the proverbial with lung cancer. I had a rotten Christmas although I didn’t know at that time I had lung cancer. I could hardly get up and down the stairs and life in general was a struggle. February and March proved to be the darkest days of my life. I had very little hope, and I was sailing fast towards death and Easter not knowing which would come first. More consultants, chemotherapy, radiation treatment and family and friends pulling together encouraging me to fight on, eventually plucked me from those dark days. Today, the sun shines, I am filled with hope, and I look forward to the future. It does not have to be a bright future, I am simply grateful to have a future to look forward to. I am not living on borrowed time as no one said I have to give it back. Life means so much more to me these days, having almost lost it. I live in a beautiful world, but what a shame it took lung cancer to make me fully appreciate it. I have been very fortunate in that I have a wonderful wife to stand beside me and fight the battle against cancer with me. I can’t imagine how difficult this battle must be for those of you who have to face this terrible ordeal alone.


All over the world people are facing up to terrible ordeals, war, poverty, and dreadful diseases. Many of them will not even have basic medical support. At present we are concerned because our banks are in chaos and we are facing what we call or believe to be difficult times. A banking crisis is nothing compared to the suffering many people around the world are enduring. I have been extremely lucky; I was simply born in the right place. My ordeal has made me so much more grateful for everything I have. But more importantly I feel so much now for the poor sods in other parts of the world which are not so lucky. I guess they probably don’t believe that it is a beautiful world. But then what do we mean by a beautiful world, probably as far as the eye can see.


This is Tom Glassey, on the banks of the Silverburn River.



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