Feeling like Stig of the dump

The subtleties of the English language  were brought home the other  morning when a friend asked “How are you feeling?” . It made me think – the addition of the word ‘feeling’ gave the question a different slant compared to the usual “How are you?”. It told me that the friend knew that I had been undergoing chemo (and he would be happy to hear an answer). On the other hand if he had just asked the shorter question there would have been no indication that he was aware of my recent activities. And of course the only answer allowed to “How are you?” is  “Fine, how are you?” – anything more such as “I’ve got a bit of a rash on my left leg.” is definitely frowned on. Continue reading “Feeling like Stig of the dump”

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Mr Grumpyface

Over the past few months we have done our best to avoid picking up any infections – which generally means people born infections – by keeping clear of crowds and potential infection epicentres. There are of course other sources of infection. Being bitten by a seal would not be good (I gather that seals have one of the more infectious bites, although not as bad as a komodo dragon) but that is a risk that is fairly easy to avoid in the middle of Buckinghamshire. However any animal bite or scratch does come with some risk. Continue reading “Mr Grumpyface”

The best laid plans . . . .

At this point in my last chemo cycle I was in Ward 5 at SMH having been admitted the night before with a temperature and rigor (the shakes – and definitely not of the milk kind). So this time I have made even greater efforts to keep clear of potential sources of infection but as I approach my immunosuppressed period Liz and I both go down with colds. Snuffles and sneezes all round. I have a word with CCHU who say keep a close eye on my temperature and that I can take Day Nurse (other remedies are available) or whatever if required. Continue reading “The best laid plans . . . .”

“You don’t feel your usual peachy self”

That is how my sister-in-law described being on chemotherapy – not ill but not your usual peachy self. She had a different regime to me with weekly doses then a gap and then the same cycle again (more a Matterhorn than my Ben Nevis to use my earlier analogy). At one time there was just a pretty standard dose for all cancers but now it is fine-tuned to the cancer, where it’s at and to the patient. The dose is calculated on the individual’s surface area (estimated from height and weight)! Continue reading ““You don’t feel your usual peachy self””

Am I being too cautious?

On Monday afternoon I should have been giving a talk to Abingdon U3A. I had revised my Furthest South talk to cover not only the Heroic Age of Antarctic exploration but also more recent expeditions and tourism using images from our 2006 trip. I was ready to go but hadn’t run through this latest version to ensure that it didn’t go on too long. So a little more preparation and refinement was needed, but nothing too serious. However I had contacted them as soon as I knew I was going in for chemo to postpone the talk. Continue reading “Am I being too cautious?”