Barcelona and a snowboard

I missed my family holiday this year as it was just after my hip op and I was busy with work. Thought I’d feel sad but I was actually relieved and glad to stay put. I couldn’t have joined in properly anyway – my family climbed Snowdon on the hottest day of the year (quite a walk at the best of times).

So, I’ve a flight booked to Barcelona – with a snowboard included (it’s one re-booked several times from last year). It amuses me to see it there – bit out of place on the beach but a bit like a surf board with bindings I suppose. I’d hoped to give surfing a try this September (an option where I’d stay – near the beach, outside of the city) but my hip’s not better. I’m getting a 2nd opinion in view to a replacement.

I’ve been deliberating about whether or not I should go to Barcelona. It’s been quite a year and to be honest, I could do with the time-out and a bit of a re-charge. Flying and travel’s going to be a bit complicated and weird but I might go for it and take care.

One fifth or 20%

I was told I’d have about 80% use in my hand and advised to use it as normal. It seemed an academic figure and if you think about it, 20% is quite a lot – almost a quarter. I wasn’t really sure what that would mean in real terms but the weekend before last this started to become clearer.

When I was taking the marquee down after the festival, one corner of the frame slid down putting the full weight of it onto my thumb. Normally this wouldn’t have been a problem but I didn’t have time to think or move.

It became quite sore and swollen so I had to wear my hand brace again last week. Luckily the ligament wasn’t broken again and it is better now. I have begun to learn what this sum of 20% really means and I now need to work out the things I can’t or shouldn’t do. It will be something I’ll need to learn. I’ve another festival next Saturday so I’ll need to take it steady.

I have a scan for my cyst on the 3rd of September. I hope it behaves itself in the meantime. I might give it a nickname.

The pointless phenomenon of tailgating?

This is not to be confused with the other variety – a social event held on and around the open tailgate of a vehicle. The one I’m talking about involves people driving too close to the back of your car to stop in time. It’s one of my top bugbears.

It’s not that I drive slowly – on the contrary I actually go a bit too fast, especially on the motorway. Today on my way around the M25 I got tailgated by a white van in the fast lane, stuck behind a row of traffic at about 70mph.

What’s the point? It simply doesn’t make any sense in my mind. It’s not like I can drive into the car in front of me so why do it? The only outcome is them hitting the back of my car if I have to stop suddenly. I had a little rant to myself in the car and eventually the van moved across into the slow lane and undertook everyone at high speed (possibly even more stupid).

I’ve several theories on why people tailgate:

  1. Frustration and the vain hope that all (12 for example) vehicles in front, will accommodate them and move out of the way (not very realistic).
  2. Anger or stress – someone who’s late or just had a run-in somewhere.
  3. Stupidity and a lack of attention or thought to safety. I think there are actually people who do it out of habit and have no idea how close they are.

    None of these sit comfortably with me and I once got so mad with a driver that I let him go past then pulled out and tailgated him for about 3 miles. I think he was a bit freaked out but perhaps he’ll think twice about doing it next time. That was years ago and I would refrain from doing that now (although it’s tempting sometimes).

Pub drama

My evening took a bit of a dramatic turn last night when I decided to go to the pub for dinner. I was about to tuck into my main course, sitting at a table outside, when I heard a strange wailing noise. It was quite noisy and I couldn’t see any sign of anyone in distress so I carried on eating. Then it came again followed by several members of the staff who came and stood outside peering up at the roof.

It turned out that a young lady who works there (with her knee in a brace as she had broken a ligament in her knee) had tried to climb onto the roof to rescue her cat! Perhaps not a great idea while incapacitated (although we love our pets and do what it takes to protect them sometimes). Consequently she’d fallen and hurt herself quite badly and was lying on the roof terrace wailing in pain.

A very unfortunate incident but luckily the fire service turned up quickly and got to work. Then it got challenging as they couldn’t get her off the roof through the building. Two fire engines and a fire truck later they were ready to go. It was seriously impressive how they managed to extend the car across in the air about 20 metres. It was quite a rescue to watch and apparently she’s OK.

Festival madness

Well, it’s been a crazy time since we arrived at Wickham festival early yesterday morning. We’ve had a bit of a mud-fest and it’s caused total chaos. Although it’s been a bit challenging, it’s been great to be part of the event so far. I just wish I’d brought a pair of wellies and not (previously white) trainers. These have raised a few smiles and chuckles with the event staff.

There have been various mishaps, the worst being the main stages not being opened due to the heavy rain and electrics. This has been difficult and disappointing for the staff and some of the vendors located nearby. Then there were the loos that wouldn’t flush all day and filled up (gobsmackingly disgusting) because the waste tanker got stuck in the mud. Eventually they flushed at around 5 in the afternoon.

Here’s a couple of photos: the motorhome that got stuck and had to be towed out by a tractor as well as a digger (far left). Today when the sun came out – a great shot across the venue. It’s a really lovely festival – nice atmosphere and very friendly. It seems many of the people who work here have been coming for years.

Across the ‘pond’

Most of the hits on my website are from the US now so I’ve decided to get Privvi over so we can give the market a try. I’d have sent it sooner but the wipes can’t be posted so they’ll have to go into the boxes when they get there. Hopefully we’ll be all set in a few weeks. Thanks to my friend Barney for helping with this – much appreciated and fingers crossed.

We’re at a festival in Hampshire tomorrow so I’ll try and post a video or pictures. Very busy preparing and packing tonight.

On the mend

I nearly didn’t write this evening and it’s a lot later then I’d usually post. I’ve currently got 7 minutes to post before midnight! I’ve had an extremely busy day and struggled to find a moment to work till now. Since I haven’t ever missed a Friday (as far as I’m aware) I couldn’t accommodate the idea of missing one.

My thumb’s doing pretty well – still a bit numb and I get weird pins and needles down the side sometimes. Hopefully this will subside. I’ve been given the all-clear by my consultant and physio and been advised that I’ll have about 80% function in my hand now. It’s sore sometimes (apparently due to the trauma) but I just need it to work for the essentials – driving, working, eating, cooking. I know I can’t do certain things but I have to accept that and appreciate the things I can do. It does make me sad but I have to try not to think about it, keep busy and focus.

If I think back to my thumb ‘reveal’ video a while back, this is an enormous improvement and it looks almost normal now.