Jump to content
Manx Forums, Live Chat, Blogs & Classifieds for the Isle of Man

Blogs

 

Frustration

Well, this is my 1st blog and unfortunately it isn't that upbeat. Tom has told me to leave it for now in case I show my anxiety and frustration too much, but I'm sure there are a few people waiting to know how we got on with the oncologist this morning. We set off for Douglas and got as far as Ballasalla when Tom received a phone call telling him his appointment was cancelled. The Flybe plane that brings in the oncologist once a week was cancelled and so was Toms appointment. We turned the car round with that sinking feeling in the pit of our stomachs. This was Toms worry since we had been given this appointment before Christmas. All week I had watched the forecast and was confident that nothing could go wrong to stop the plane! Once we arrived home in silence, I couldn't just sit and wait. It isn't my nature and I felt I had to give Tom some hope and try and lift his spirits. I checked the airport site to see what planes where going out today and found the next one to Liverpool was this evening. Then I saw one to Chester at 10.30. I felt I had time to try and swing it so Tom could go across at our own expense and see the oncologist over there. I phoned the oncologists secretary and she informed me that he was coming over on the 12.20 flight but would be so behind, he would only be able to see a few people. I explained how desperate we were and I told her we didn't live far from the airport and the oncologist was only wanting to talk to Tom and see if he was fit enough for more chemo. I said we could even meet him at the airport and buy him a cup of tea whilst he chatted for a few minutes with Tom. She said "Awwhhh!" in a 'aren't you cute' way. I told her thats how desperate we are. She said she would get his file out and see what she could do. We are now playing a very nervous waiting game to see if we can be seen so that Tom can start chemotherapy as soon as possible. It is so difficult to know what to do. Since I started this blog, Toms friend has phoned the oncologists secretary and she has just phoned Tom. This is the latest in the flight saga. The oncologist went to Manchester to catch a flight to the Isle of Man, but that has also been cancelled by Flybe! IF and that appears to be a big IF, the next flight takes off from Manchester, the oncologist will try and fit Tom in at 4.20 p.m. with no promises, otherwise he will have to wait for another week. All flights from Liverpool have apparently been cancelled for the day. Anyway, thats the score at the moment. I will keep you informed of developments. I now have to watch the arrivals from Manchester to see if we have a chance, but I shall go and make us both a cuppa and try to reduce my stress levels.   11 a.m. Update I checked the departures on the airport site and saw that all planes were delayed. Tom put the 11 oclock Manx Radio news on and listened to the headlines of how a plane carrying 20 passengers had gone off the the runway. All the passengers are fine thank goodness and there is now an attempt to move the plane. With this in mind and all the planes backed up waiting to depart, we are reconciled to having to wait another week. Reconciled, but not happy obviously. We just have to pray that next Thursdays flight arrives or there will be a lot of desperate people on the Island, waiting to see a cancer specialist with time ticking away.   14.30 Update Tom has checked with the hospital to check if the oncologist has arrived. He arrived at Ronaldsway at 13.15 and is at the hospital. We have hope again although slim. We will still go to the hospital in the hope that we can be fitted in at the end. Another update will follow later.   18.30 Update Well Tom was seen by the oncologist who said he wanted to see us and thats why he asked his secretary to put us at the end. He is also staying the night on the Island which he doesn't normally do as he will miss the plane anyway after writing up notes. Tom starts chemotherapy again on Wednesday afternoon if all his blood tests come back OK and he doesn't catch a bug in the meantime. He explained that the radiotherapy didn't work, but if he has as good a response to the chemotherapy this time as he did last, we will do well. There will be a CT Scan half way through to see if it is working and then a decision will be made whether to continue. I have to go and prepare some tea for Tom now, so I will leave it for now. Its been a long day!

BarbaraG

BarbaraG

 

Tuesday January 13th

Good morning people. Well I have not blogged for 8 days now. Last week was not my best week every. I will simply be glad now begin treatment again next week. I have decided that now though is the right time to bring the blog to an end for the time being. I will of course be back again but I don’t know when. It might be in a few months and it might be 12 months. Shortly I will hand over the wheel to Barbara.. I shall then fly home to the land I left 12 months ago. It has been one hell of a voyage. I have put our ship on the rocks twice. I am of course hopeful that the ocean tug SS Chemotherapy will pull the ship clear again next week. Whilst I have been writing this blog I have made new friends from every corner of the globe. Every one of you has been absolutely fantastic in coming with me every step of the way. I will of course continue to write for Manx Tails. However, I really need the time to concentrate on my second book, “On the Rocks.” One of my problems is that I get an ache just behind my right shoulder which kicks in after I have written a few lines. I don’t know what the cause is, and it will have to wait now until this chemo session is over before I can deal with it. Of course all of you that have been emailing me can continue still to do so but I suggest that you email me directly at tomglassey@manx.net   Well my watch is now at an end. 8 bells have just sounded and it is now time to handover the wheel to a fresh pair of hands. So good people this is Captain Tom Glassey saying thank you and over and out from the SS Silverburn.

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Monday January 5th

I have now tossed the sleeping pills I got from my doctor into the bin. I would rather put up with sleeplessness than have the side affects of those damn pills. The other night I was sitting in our front room being extremely miserable about life in general. I was getting wound up about the long wait before I can see a consultant. I figured my cancer was getting worse and would not improve until treatment started which is still sometime away. Barbara was watching telly next door and popped in to check everything was OK. “What’s the matter she asked?” I told her my concerns. She tried desperately hard to allay my fears and after 10 minutes of her best efforts, she had one last ditch attempt to revive my wounded spirit by diverting my mind onto something else “Well, never mind” she blurted. “Soon you will have your Flying Scotsman.” Of course I didn’t have the faintest idea what she was talking about. She quickly realised she had just parted with her little secret. I collect money boxes, I know not why, I just do. She had ordered a model of the flying Scotchman which is also a money box. It hasn’t arrived yet. We both laughed later at the idea that the flying Scotchman was going to bring me out of my misery. It was those damn sleeping pills that were making me depressed. I have been absolutely back to normal again now that I have stopped taking them. I would like to thank all those who voted for me and have made me Manx Forums blogger of the year or whatever the award is called. Blimey I have reached the age of 55 and never won a single thing in life, so indeed it is a great honour for me to win this award. I did once however win third prize in the sack race at school, but this by far outweighs that.   Talking of awards, I hear that Malew commissioners decided to award the freedom of Ballasalla to the person who had not shown any disrespect towards them over the last year. However they couldn’t find anyone so they have decided to award it to the person who has shown them the least disrespect. I would have loved to have won that award but I am told I was not even in the running.   Tom Glassey. On the banks of the Silverburn.

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Thursday January 1st 2009

Anyone who titles their blog by the date each day is hardly going to miss out on new years day.   I imagine that most of you by now will have broken your new year’s resolutions. I have still kept mine from a few years ago which was never to make anymore. I find myself beginning 2009 in exactly the same way as I did 2008. That is to take up my sword and engage in battle with cancer once again. This is quite definitely not the way I would have chosen to begin this year or any other year. But then what choices do we really have in life? At present my mother is in hospital and is enjoying it so much, she does not want to come home. I have been to Nobles many times over the last year, and though I have nothing but praise for the staff there I have never enjoyed it so much that I did not want to come home.   Well now time for a little moan. It seems to me that every day of late, our civil service and Government get more stupid. In this weeks Examiner the prison is or appears to be trying to prevent people from playing with toy planes, this time hiding behind that word ‘security’. They have decided that the model plane club should not be allowed to fly their toys near the prison as it poses a security risk. Have you ever heard as much clap trap? If model planes are posing a security threat to the prison, what on earth did they build their new prison on or near an airfield? It’s so easy for any Government run establishments to get away what nonsense they want. All they have to do is quote one of three words, security or health and safety.   Well, here is to 2009 folks and I hope you all have a good one. I leave you today with a little tip which has come my way from our good friend Cheryl, across the Atlantic on the banks of the Columbian river.   The friendship test.; “In order to check out who is your best friend, lock your wife/girlfriend and dog in the car for one hour and when you open it up, see who makes the most fuss of you.”   Tom Glassey. On the banks of the Silverburn river.  

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Tuesday December 30th

In the convent where I went to school in Liverpool, every Thursday evening we had to go to the school chapel and confess our sins to the priest. Mine would go something like this.   “Bless me Father for I have sinned. It has been one week since my last confession. I have been disobedient and I have been cheeky. Last Sunday I took money out of the collection plate when it went around during mass, instead of putting a penny on it. Please forgive my sins?” I would then be sent to the back of the church and told to say 10 decades of the rosary. Had I not admitted to the collection plate business I would have got away with 2 or 3 decades? Trouble was, I knew that the kid who was going round with the collection plate was totally blind like me. The nuns had told us that if we died with sin on our soul we would not be allowed to enter the kingdom of Heaven and would have to spend sometime in purgatory, and at that time I was keen to go on a non stop flight. Later when I had decided the whole damn thing was nothing but a fairy story, I asked myself how can it be considered a punishment to be ordered to spend sometime talking to Jesus and Mary the very people I am suppose to love and who in turn love me. It seemed very weird. When I put this question to the nuns, I was told not to be so smart. So, these unanswered questions remained trundling around in my mind for the rest of my school days. In later years I dismissed the whole of religion as little more than a scourge that has blighted the entire world for thousands of years. Not even when I was told last year that I might only have a short time left to live, did I have any notion to turn to religion. People have often said to me that the world is a very unfair place. Why do some folks on the planet starve, whilst others wallow in food? Why do some folks live in poverty, whilst others bask in riches? Why are some the picture of health, whilst others are sick from head to toe? Answer. Well, of course I don’t know, but stop and ponder this thought!   I don’t have a personal God, but that does not mean that I don’t believe in anything. I believe there is a vastly superior power at work, call him/her/it God if you wish. I’m sure they don’t mind. But someone created this world, it didn’t just happen. Just imagine if they had made it so everyone was equal. We would all be the same size, the same colour, we would all be able to run at the same speed, and we’d all have the same level of intelligence. So there would never have been a Shakespeare, never have been a Churchill, Mahatma Gandy or President Kennedy. There would be no point in football or any other sports because we would all be at the same level. We would all be healthy so how the heck would we die? What kind of world would that be? One that neither you nor I would want to live in! So, I don’t know about a God but I am certain that whoever it was that created our existence knew exactly what they were doing. You will not find wealth or poverty in a graveyard. There is neither health nor sickness. Everyone is the same. Dead! Would you still swap your unfair world?     Tom Glassey on the banks of the Silverburn River

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Monday December 28th

Good day people. Well firstly I am generally feeling better about life in general these last couple of days. I am still having problems sleeping, so last night I took 3 of the sleeping pills which is the maximum allowed. They made no damn difference what-so-ever. I might as well have swallowed a tube of smarties, so I have chucked the damn things in the bin and tonight I shall return to the brandy bottle.   Blimey the other day we discovered a copy of my book on sale on Amazon for £35. They must be mad. Its strange how last week I went through a really dark, dark, low period, and this week I feel much better, yet nothing has changed. As we both sat up in bed this morning, Barbara touched the lamp I bought her for Christmas. She commented on how lucky she was to have a lamp that only required a touch to turn it on and another touch for it to brighten up. I thought to myself. I wished I could just touch a lamp and my darkness would end. Then it occurred to me that, no, I was the lucky one, for I had no need of any artificial light. My lamp burns within me brightly and although it may have dimmed from time to time, it has never gone out.

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Saturday December 27th

Hello folks, well that’s Christmas out of the way for another year. I hope you all had a good one and that by now you have also rewrapped your unwanted Christmas presents to pass on next year. Don’t forget to write the name of the person who sent it to you on the box or you may end up returning it the person who sent it to you in the first place.   I have to say that this Christmas will not exactly go down in my memory book as the greatest ever. I have not coped too well with the news that my cancer has returned. I coped much better last year. I said at the very start of my blogging that I would always be honest with you and try and reflect each day or week as it is. I don’t wish to depress any of you so if you want to fast forward the next bit, I suggest that you log out now.   I have been on such a high when since the specialist said he didn’t want to see me again for 4 months. I knew when I found the lump under my arm that it was cancer starting its second lap. My days just got worse from then on. I would burst into tears for no real reason and I started at one point to loose my mind as well. One night, well it was 3 a.m. actually; Barbara woke up to find me sobbing like a baby. When she finally extracted from me what was wrong, I told her, I did not want to end my days in hospice all alone. I just can’t imagine what put those thoughts in my mind. Sometimes with cancer no matter how loving your family and friends are, you do feel very alone. I am much better now. I don’t like the idea of having to wait until January 15th before I can see the consultant again. But that’s the way it is. I do feel a lot more positive now though. I am ready to go to war again against the same enemy.   Barbara bought me an internet radio for Christmas. It is absolutely fantastic! I can now listen to radio Tipp, a station I use to listen to when I was in Tipperary. I have or at least Barbara has found two American local radio stations that only play hits from the 50’s and 60’s which are also brilliant. When I went through my really low period last week, I even stopped listening to football matches on the radio. I didn’t see the point because if it was a cup round, I might not be here for the final and if it was a league match, I may not be around to find out who wins it. All that is behind me now though! I am not exactly the picture of health at present. However, I am in much better shape than I was.   We are having a bit of a gathering tonight which will be great. I want to end by thanking all of you for your many emails and presents. I assure you that none of them have been rewrapped for next year. I know that everyone would wish for a happy new year. It’s a bit unrealistic to expect every day next year to be happy so, I shall set a more realistic goal, and wish that you have more good days than bad ones.   Until next time then, Tom Glassey on the banks of the Silverburn River.

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Churches Celebrate Christ's Birth

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.

Charles Flynn

Charles Flynn

 

Churches Celebrate Christ's Birth

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.

Charles Flynn

Charles Flynn

 

Friday December 19th

I want to begin today by thanking all of you wonderful people around the world that have emailed me and sent text messages. They are a great comfort to me. I started this blog last February, since then over 20,000 people have logged on. Well in theory that could mean one person has logged on 20,000 times, or 20,000 people have logged on once. In that time we have shared the good and the bad times together. You have all been absolutely fantastic. The blog has really served me well through the difficult times early last year. I did say that I would end the blog this February to concentrate on my book. Well in truth I have now almost finished writing the book. I just couldn’t wait to start it, and once I got going it wasn’t too difficult to blog, write for Manx Tails and write the book at the same time. Assuming I would finish with the blog in February was rather arrogant on my part. I was assuming I would remain cancer free. It just goes to show how important it is to not only deal with the present, but also to make the best of it. Nothing else is certain. Well folks I will call it a day now. I don’t want to depress you all, especially at Christmas. I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas, and I will talk to you again soon.   So, from the banks of the Silverburn River, have a wonderful Christmas. Tom

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Thursday December 18th

I am not long back from the hospital. My news was not good I’m afraid. The doctor thinks cancer enjoyed my company so much last time that it has come back for another visit. I have to have a scan as soon as possible, then probably more chemo. After that, its anyone’s guess. Yes I am a bit down in the dumps today, but that will not last. I just need a day or so to sort my mind out, and try and come to terms with this damn cancer lark. As the days go by I will continue to blog when I feel up for it. I know the way I feel today is only a temporary state of mind. Tomorrow I will be stronger and as the day go by I will be stronger still. Yes, I was doing so well as they say. But you simply can’t take anything for granted in life can you? The past is gone and tomorrow is full of the unknown. I can only deal with today.   Bye bye for now people, from the banks of the Silverburn river.

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Wednesday December 17th

There is something very strange happening in the wild. The other day I heard birds twittering at 5-40 a.m. Today there was bird song at 4 a.m. Why are the birds suddenly singing in the pitch dark? Answers on a postcard please!   At present I can hear the children playing in the school playground across the road. Their shrilled and excited voices rise up into the sky and blend in with the birds chatter. The sky is full of happy sounds. It seems hard to imagine that these young kids will one day be old people which wither away and die. It makes me think how short and temporary this life of ours really is. It only seems as if it was five minutes ago that I was running around in a school playground myself. Yet, 50 years have gone by and what did I do with them. Time it seems to me is very much like money. You can have loads of it and when every penny is gone, you don’t seem to have very much to show for it. Time is a great commodity. Your boss hasn’t got enough of his own so he happy to buy some of yours. Once you retire you will have all your time to spend on yourself, or so you might think. There is and will always be someone staking a claim to your time. Your kids have a great deal more of it than you. However, they still demand bloody great chunks of your time. The phrase “there’s no time like the present” is very apt, because the past has gone, and the future is guaranteed to anybody. The present is all we have. Today is a blessing, and if tomorrow comes out way it’s a bonus. Well my time is up for today my friends so if I receive my bonus, I will be with you tomorrow.   Tom Glassey, on the banks of the Silverburn River.

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Tuesday December 16th

Well folks, I have just returned from the doctors. The doctor couldn’t tell me of course if my lump is malignant. She has referred me to the specialist whom I will see at Nobles on Thursday at 12o’clock.   Well it’s presently Monday afternoon so that’s not too long to wait. I shall now crack on with life and presume it is not cancer, and I shall remain in that frame of mind until such times as a consultant tells me it is, which of course may not be very long. Life is very much like a game of snakes and ladders. You keep climbing the ladders but sooner or later the dice throws you onto a bloody snake and down you go. The important thing is to make sure you climb back onto a ladder as quickly as possible. I am not in control of the dice or the shaker. I have absolutely no idea whether there is a God or not. But someone much more important and more powerful than us is throwing the dice. My good friend and blog reader Dorothy over in Liverpool has sent me an email on faith this morning. I enclose it for what it is worth at the end of this blog. I have faith, but in goodness knows what! I don’t believe any of the recognized religions throughout the world have anything to offer me. For me they have brought far too much strife, death, wars and bitterness throughout history. You do not need a personal God in order to have faith.   Faith When I am continuously being battered by the storms of life, and my very spirit is ebbing away, then all I need to do is hang onto that gift called 'Faith', that one support which will weather the storms. Faith does not depend on a clever head, only belief: belief in the self and the strength that lies within. Faith is the seed of victory and the foundation of making the impossible possible.   Until tomorrow then folks!

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Sunday December 14th

My weekend has turned in to a bleak one. On Saturday I discovered a lump in my arm pit. The lump is solid and of course it could be anything. None-the-less Monday I begin the week with a visit to the doctors, and no doubt be sent for x-rays and all those cancer tests to begin again. It was this time last year I was starting to think that I probably had lung cancer and Christmas was not exactly much fun. I wasn’t expecting it to happen again this Christmas. The only difference this time is that I really don’t know what the outcome is going to be. None-the-less I am probably going to have to put up with the uncertainty throughout this Christmas because I can’t see any test results coming through before Christmas. Anyway whatever is coming my way, I am going to have to batten down the hatches and prepare the good ship “Tom Glassey” for yet another stormy sea. I have had a bit of a weep, but now I am feeling strong again.   Tom Glassey, on the banks of the Silverburn River.

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Friday December 12th

I wonder how many of you will actually get what you really want for Christmas from friends and relatives. How many pairs of socks and hankie sets we all end up with. I have never actually met anyone who has asked for a pair of socks for Christmas. I have nipped in to David Collisters off licence in Castletown and told him not to serve anyone with cheap brandy if they come into his shop trying to buy me a Christmas present. I have told David, if they are not buying a bottle of Cognac then tell them not to bother, go buy something else such as a pair of socks or a hankie from Audrey down the road.   We have just tucked into a load of Aussie biscuits and sweets thanks to the parcel that arrived yesterday from Adelaide. Thank you Janine, I know I can’t email at present as you are on passage to Tasmania but I will as soon as you return to Adelaide.   Well poor old Woollies is closing down after 99 years. At one time they had a rule that nothing in any of their branches cost more than sixpence. Today they seem to have made a rule that nothing in their shops cost under a tenner.   I haven’t heard Father Christmas come round Castletown for a couple of years now. Arthur Vanwell used to come round in a sort of boat thing tossing oranges to us kids as he went on his way. We used to catch them and chuck them back. Probably those health and safety fruitcakes have been up to their old tricks again and put a stop to him. Santa never actually came or had a grotto in any of the Castletown shops. Well the only toy shop was Peggy Waterson’s on Bank hill, now knows as Peggy’s hill. There would not have been any room for him in there as every spare inch was taken up with stock, and even if he had managed to squeeze in there somewhere, she would have sold him within in first hour of trading.   That’s it for today folks. I’m now going to take Skipper on a solo walk of the park whilst it is quiet.   This is Tom Glassey on the banks of the Silverburn River.

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Thursday December 11th

Sorry folks! I have just been listening to the radio and you know what that usually means? Yes there is a rant coming up. Apparently a school bus in America was evacuated and fumigated just because a peanut had been discovered on the bus. It seems 150 people die each year in the US through allergies, 100 people are struck by lightening, 1550 are killed by bee stings and 10,000 people die in sports accidents. The US must be the only country in the world where folks might have a guilty conscience about having a jar of peanut butter in the food cupboard, however be perfectly happy about keeping a gun in the house. We mustn’t get too smug in the UK or over here either. What happens in the US today tends to happen here sooner or later. I also hear that two kids in a school in the south of England were told when they got to school, that they had to wear gowns at school, just because they lived on a farm and might have come in to contact with milk. I haven’t a clue what possible harm a bucket of milk might do and I don’t want to know either. Peanuts and milk are harmful apparently, but Nuclear power stations and telephone masts are absolutely fine. Keep well away from milk and peanuts, but however, if you wish to maintain a healthy brain, stay even further away from the bloody fruitcakes in charge in our councils and civil service.   Gosh people I get so worked up these days. Froth comes out of my mouth, steam comes out of my ears and I start to shake all over and need to sit down and have a brandy. I am going to have to stop listening to the radio.   Now wife Barbara has asked me to try and find out what trolling means. I have come across it myself on the forum but I haven’t a clue as to what it is. Answers please to tomglassey@manx.net   Today I made a start on my new book which I have decided to call “On the Rocks.” I now have 2000 words written so only about 78 000 or so to go.   I still have not managed to flog my boat. I am now down to 6,000 from 8,500. Well there is a credit crunch on. Someone called me last week and offered me a couple of thousand. I suggested it would be cheaper for him to have a day out on Silverdale Lake. “There is a credit crunch you know” he said. “Can you hear my teeth crunching?” I retorted. You just have to admire the bloody cheek of some Yorkshire folk.   Well folks that’s enough from me for today.   Tom Glassey on the banks of the Silverburn river.  

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Oral Contraceptives In Pharmacies Proposal

Generally this would be welcomed by the profession as really it is just another extension of our present role.     Pharmacists are experts in medicines and have a track record of supplying medicines such as emergency hormonal oral contraception over-the-counter and via Patient Group Directions.   They already have the clinical skills and expertise that will help them provide information and advice to women to ensure the appropriate use of oral contraception.   Supplying the oral contraceptive via a Patient Group Direction will widen and improve patient choice, access and convenience.   Community pharmacies are easily accessible with no need for an appointment and located in places where people live, work and shop. Pharmacies also have convenient opening hours, often including the evenings and weekends when GP surgeries are closed.   Regarding the necessary health checks, such as blood pressure testing and healthy lifestyle checks, these are already a part of pharmacist’s extended role.   There is a pilot study in London ready to start next year so if this is successful it is likely at some stage it will happen on the island.

Charles Flynn

Charles Flynn

 

Wednesday December 10th

Blimey, it has taken me 24 hours to calm down after my experience yesterday. Barbara had an appointment at the breast screening clinic. We set off armed with our letter, only to find on our arrival at Nobles we were at the wrong hospital. The breast screening clinic is at the old Nobles hospital. Well sure enough it does give the address on the letter, but frankly when you see Nobles at the top of the letter, you assume it means the new hospital. What is the point in spending millions on a new hospital, then continuing some of the services in the old one, and calling both facilities by the same name? Only our dozy Government could pull a daft stunt like that. Well it gets worse. We then had to drive back to the old hospital with her appointment time past, so I rang the telephone number on the letter which has a Government prefix 685. The girl who took my call did not appear to understand what I was on about. I explained to her what has happened and that we are now going to be 15 minutes late for the appointment. For some weird reason she asks me am I in Coventry. I say, why the hell I would be ringing you from Coventry regarding an appointment ten minutes ago at Nobles. I explained that we were at the Quarterbridge. She asked where the Quarterbridge was. I gasp with frustration. "You don't know where the Quarterbridge is!" She explained that she was in Northhampton in a call centre. Yes the bunch of lunatics running our health service has farmed out our telephone appointments to a call centre based in Northhampton. When we finally arrived at the old hospital, the lady on reception informed us that loads of folk are going to the wrong hospital, yet our health service still are not getting the message.   Well keeping on the health topic I want to conclude today with a little story about donors. Donor cards are back in the news again and whether we should carry them or not. I once spoke to an old lady on this subject, and this was her response. "When I die, they can have every part of my body that will be of any use to them. However, they can't have my heart, for I gave that to my husband over 40 years ago, and no one else can have it."   Until tomorrow then folks Tom Glassey on the banks of the Silverburn River.  

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Tuesday December 9th

I hear on the radio this morning that a group of protesters have managed to get onto the runway at Stansted Airport and delay all the flights. I find it beyond belief that in these troubled times where you can't even smuggle a tube of tooth paste onto an aircraft, that somehow 54 protesters can get onto the main runway and erect a steel barrier across the runway. Does that simply confirm that airport security is, and always has been nothing more than a complete joke?   I also note that a bunch of psychologists have worked out that the best way to control weekend revellers, is to issue the police with a carton of bubbles. Apparently, blowing bubbles in their faces produces a calming effect on them. It seems this half baked idea is now being trialled in Lancashire. I just can't imagine a 6ft 4" Bobby standing outside a dingy night club in down town Blackburn, in front of a noisy rebellious yob, and blowing bubbles at them. I should think it would be more likely, that they will collapse in a fit of laughter.   Also folks I hear that another bunch of lunatics calling themselves psychologists have informed the education authorities that history and geography should be taken out of the school curriculum and replaced with lessons in how to teach happiness and health.   Well, if that's true I think all miserable people should be forced to attend night classes.   Now then people, I have decided to drastically reduce the blogging next year. I want to concentrate on writing another book and will only be able to blog very occasionally. I intend to keep the Manx Tails articles going and Barbara is going to begin a blog of her own so you will be still kept up to date with everything, and have a blog with a different slant on it. I will keep going until I have completed one year blogging regularly and as I started on the 21st February, so that will be the date I will regularly blog up too.   Until tomorrow then, this is Tom Glassey on the banks of the Silverburn River.

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Monday December 8th

I guess people are starting to think about New Year’s resolutions. I used to make them but no more. I only ever kept one of them, and that was, never to make any more. I suppose most smokers will want to try and kick the habit, although I actually met someone the other day who told me he was going to start smoking on New Year’s Eve. Well, I suppose there’s one born every day. Talking of smoking, I heard on the radio that a bunch of medical scientists have discovered that smoking does more harm than was first thought. Well blimey! They have been saying for years that it kills you, so goodness only knows what it does now!   I wonder what reaction you would get if you approached an alien, and explained to him that “I am going to take this weed, mix it with some tar and then roll it in paper. I want you then to shove it in your mouth while I set fire to it!” Well that is exactly what I did for over 30 years. Smoking eventually led to me catching lung cancer. However, lung cancer led to me writing a blog, and through the blog I have formed a good relationship with folks all over the globe. Blimey even lung cancer has a silver lining.   Now then, I hear that Father Christmas has sold his pad in Lapland and bought a house and grotto built by Dandara on Langness. The move is purely for tax purposes. Jeremy Clarkson is said to be furious because Santa’s reindeers smashed down his fences and ate all his vegetables.   Well its time I bid you farewell. This is Tom Glassey on the banks of the Silverburn River.

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

A Rainbow

There is a bright rainbow arcing in the sky outside my window. Its colours touch the green farmland my office looks out onto. When I first saw it I stopped work and stood staring out for a few moments, smiling at its beauty.   ‘Always look for beauty’ has been one of my guiding phrases recently – listen to bird song, enjoy a fleeting glimpse of the sunset while on the commute, feel a sense of awe watching the crescent moon set with Venus and Jupiter shining bright next to it.   I always try and catch these moments and use them to give me some peace during stressful times.   Life can be tough and unremitting at times, and then we just have to be grateful for the small mercies that the world can give us. I find that it is very important to just pause when I feel a touch of happiness and acknowledge that fact – while having a chat with friends, while giving the little ones a hug good night, while listening to some music and tapping feet to the rhythm. These small things lessen the stress and give a feeling that life is worthwhile.   So evening walks and the sound of the waves and the pleasure of reading a well turned piece of prose and most especially the beauty nature gives all provide small specks of happiness to punctuate life. A reminder that even on the darkest night the wonders of the universe are to be seen as long as we remember to lift our heads.

Chinahand

Chinahand

 

Friday December 5th

Once again I’m here in a freezing office hoping an oil tanker will turn up this morning. Actually as I write the tanker has turned up, however the system still isn’t working because we now need to wait for the plumber to arrive to bleed the tank. I woke up this morning at 3am, and of course I have been awake since. I did have to very strange dreams though. In the first one I was on a plane flying to Liverpool, only not as a passenger, I was the pilot! During the flight one of the passengers asked me if the plane could fly as far as Russia. Yes I said and altered course for Russia. Unfortunately I must have taken a wrong turning along the way and ended up crashing the plane in Poland. Well nobody died although the passengers who had booked to fly to Liverpool were not best pleased. In my second dream, I came on as a substitute for Liverpool in an FA cup final at Wembley against Sunderland. There was only two minute left when I came on and I never got a kick. None-the-less, no one was able to say I didn’t play a blinder.   Now there are many ways of beating the system. Here are a couple. A chap in Northern Ireland had difficulty in getting the bin men to remove all his rubbish. He found having about six bins for various materials confusing, and often ended up placing rubbish in the wrong bins. That is until he had a brain wave. Once his dust bin became full, he wrapped the rest of his rubbish in fancy Christmas paper and some bugger nicked it every time.   Junk mail is a huge problem for many of us. A friend of mine in London got so fed up of the junk mail he was receiving that he took himself off to the local butcher, and got a load of chicken’s guts. He then left the guts to rot for a couple of weeks before posting them back to his junk mail senders. It soon stopped.   Well the cold has beaten me once again so I am now off down stairs to the electric fire.   Tom Glassey, still freezing on the banks of the Silverburn River.

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

 

Thursday December 4th

Its not just football and horse racing that are affected by the weather. Other pastimes such as blogging are affected also. I have not blogged for the last couple of days because at present we have no heating. It has simply been too cold to sit in the office for very long. We still have no heating. We misread the gauge on the oil tank and allowed it to run out. Well Barbara didn’t realise there was a little switch on the bottom that stops the level falling! This morning I was going to stay in bed until mid morning in an attempt to keep warm. However, boredom over came me and I have finally made my way into the office and I am now typing furiously in a bid to keep warm. This week my old friend pleurisy has returned. Well at least it’s a faithful pal and never stays away for to long. I am a right old whinge bag this morning. I’m thinking I might have turned in to Arsene Wenger over night. Having no heating this week has taken me back to my childhood on the Janet’s Corner housing estate. We certainly had no central heating back in those days. I haven’t coped nearly as well this week as we did then. We had just one open coal fire in the living room. When you woke up on a winter’s morning there was often ice on the bedroom windows. We would dress in double quick time. The bathroom was an ice box. There would be no hot water first thing in the morning, as the fire had not been lit for long enough. I remember my two brother racing up the stairs at break neck speed in a bid to have the only bath going, as one bath would drain the hot water tank. Often only to find that I had already bathed earlier in the day and the hot water was gone. Later as young adults, Friday evenings were always something of a scramble. I and my two brothers would race home from work to grab the hot water. Whoever got there first also got the pick of the clothes and shoes. I usually got home last as working in Douglas put me at a disadvantage.   Well once again the cold has beaten me and I am going to have to leave this office. If a blog appears tomorrow, then that will mean the oil man has been.   Tom Glassey, on the banks of the icy Silverburn River.

TomGlassey

TomGlassey

×