Monday, 29 August 2011

I’ve been given an award!

liebster_imag My precious friend Tracey gave me an award because I make her smile. Thanks dahling! ;)
I am now passing this award on to 5 bloggers, as per the rules below, that I admire and who inspire me and/or sometimes make me laugh so much I nearly throw up!

Here is what the award is all about:

The Liebster award ('Liebster' is the German word for friend or love) originated in Germany. The aim of the award is to bring more attention to blogs with fewer than 200 followers.

These are the rules in accepting this award.
1. Show your thanks to the blogger who gave you the award by linking back to them. Right click the image and paste it to your side bar.
2. Reveal your top 5 picks and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.
3. Post the award on your blog.
4. Bask in the love from the most supportive people on the internet – other writers.
5. And best of all – have fun and spread the karma!

Here are my 5 nominated bloggers!
Janell –  so insightful and nearly always makes me laugh. Except when one really shouldn't.
Sam – so bloody exceptional – all that climbing, cycling, fund raising – it's impressive. And exhausting!
Christine – brainier and braver by the minute…
Anita – oh yes we will!!
Nat – what can I say? you are my Guru

Saturday, 27 August 2011

please think of my friend?

DSC_0131B This evening I have a face awash with tears. And I am filled with rage and sadness. I keep looking up at the ceiling – just to feel that wrench in the front of my neck – just to feel still alive. And to try to be calm and stop this crying. I have had the most horrible few weeks. I think.

Oh! Actually. No, I haven't; actually, I haven't at all. I just thought I had. But really one of my friends has. She is ill. Extremely ill. My week was simply filled with worry about her and her family and sundry other [quite unimportant somehow] stuff.

She is suffering. But she is a tiger. A fighter. A wonderful woman, intelligent, beautiful and interesting to know.  She has three lovely daughters whom I've heard a lot about from her – all good things. I met them once. They are admirable. And beautiful too. She adores them, each one for their own individualities. And a sweet husband, equally loved – he has been amazing in his support according to her - and with the same name as my FH. Odd. 

My friend  has the orange top on in the photo. And the blue nails. Blue? Heh heh. She is in such a hard place right now. Sometimes it's hard to know what to do, what to say…so, just think of my friend please? It might help.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

what a fabulous weekend!

DSC_0056 we had the loveliest day yesterday – Rick and Judi treated Julie [yes, yes, all my friends – far too many of them starting with a J!] to a horse gallop down the beach at Ilfracombe for her birthday. We drove [well, the FH did], Judi and Rick brought the fabulous picnic and Laura brought her Mum, Julie, who had visions of being shoved out of an airplane! It was a surprise – I haven't been able to talk to Julie for weeks, in case I let the secret out!

DSC_0105 The beach at Ilfracombe

But it was much nicer than that – she had an hour of riding a beautiful horse called Apache across the sands of Ilfracombe at Crow Point. It's a stunning beach – rather cunning if one is prepared to walk a little way – one passes the families with their shrieking kids, barking dogs and sundry other horrid stuff, until one arrives at a beach that would make an Australian surfer gulp. Empty. Deep. And stunning. But no waves ;)

We drove down sundry skinny lanes with billions of humps to get there [almost vomiting over all the beastly humps], paid a toll [!!]then, whilst Julie was cavorting about on her horse, we set up Judi's picnic and delved into the wine. The weather was completely perfect! Windy, but warm and sunny…get on!

DSC_0041The sand dunes were great, the company was delightful. SOME people went bonkers in the dunes…and yet still managed to keep their wine in the glass! 
 DSC_0100 I loved it. So good to be with friends and no pressure at all. Eventually we left; Julie and Laura had a 'roof down' crisis with their car, but we managed to get back to Judi and Rick's in one piece for more wine and the remains of the picnic on Judi's amazing  front. Making the most of the last bit of sunshine, sitting on their gravel patio just finished the day off perfectly.

But even this day was darkened by cancer – Julie said that the young woman who accompanied on the horse ride has had leukaemia. Twice. Poor child. I really did not want to know this. But - it seems impossible to escape it!! – and it's driving me mad. I am sick and tired of cancer…but then, I always was I suppose. Just that now, it's more personal. Isn't it?
Good news though!! My Aunt has reached the end of her horrible chemo/radio regime…her email today made me smile. At the same time, it made me cry – the pain she is enduring….ffs…does it never end!!??

Tomorrow I am off to the GP for shots for Kenya. Whilst I am there I am going to ask about depression. Not sure that I have it, but I am sure I need help with something.  Maybe my brain is broken?

And by the way – thank you so much the people who have already tried to help me with messages of support – it means a lot…

Sunday, 21 August 2011

grumpy and sleepy

I have been wondering these past few weeks if I am depressed. But I don't really know what depression is or how it feels. I am usually a pro-active, energetic and cheerful person – recently I am exhausted. And quite cross. And bored with things. And uninterested. This worries me.

This afternoon was a perfect example. I was working this morning. Lots to do. And I was enjoying it, as it's a lovely client who is open to suggestion. I was grafting away, when suddenly I just needed to rest. To sleep. This is not normal for me – usually I manage with a few hours sleep a night.

But this was overwhelming. I had to go to bed. I hate this! It reminds me of just before I was diagnosed. Even though I know it's not the same. It felt like my body weighed 100 ton. And my mind was a blank. I went to bed and slept for 4 hours! Not normal. I am worried.

The last few weeks I have been feeling strange – upset. The smallest thing makes me feel like crying - or I am just bumbling along, then I just start crying for no reason. This sucks. I need to get away from this and I don't know how. I don't know what to do. Or who to talk to. I hide it as much as possible.

I am in remission. I should be able to enjoy it – usually I do and I am ever so grateful. But the last few weeks, I feel as if 'Something Is Looming'…I feel like I am living on the edge. I am afraid of the Kenya cycle all of a sudden – the other girls seem so much fitter than I. How will I cope? Will I be able to do it? I don't HAVE 5 hours in every day to cycle for training. Or even two. Will I manage? Will the team help me?

Why am I so scared of life all of a sudden?

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

women v cancer conquer Stratford –upon-Avon!

I can't believe this – I cycled 100km!  We did the Great Shakespeare Ride, in aid of the Shakespeare Hospice. And as a training exercise. This is the furthest I've cycled in my life! Quite a few of the girls that I am cycling Kenya with came, which made it great fun. It was so nice to see them all again.

The longest day's cycle in Kenya is 99km – and we certainly won't be belting along like maniacs! We did the cycle on Sunday in 6 1/2 hours, including two stops [for fabulous cake and incredible pork pie! thanks to those volunteers – everything was free] – well chuffed, as I was quite worried I wouldn't manage it at all. The middle section was horrific awful not very nice. But the great thing was, we had 'proper' cyclists with us – and even they said it was a tough ride. So we feel really pleased with ourselves.

The FH was there of course, my Main Support Team :) Dragging up the hills was unreal – my chain came off due to the low ratio, and some Smart Aleck [I am being polite here] on his Skinny Bike [road bike] passed me and actually called me a stupid b**ch! I was so stunned I was speechless. And that's a new one on me.

There appears to be an hierarchy in cycling, where people who ride road / racing bikes feel they are superior to people who ride mountain bikes. I have NO idea why – it's twice as hard on a mountain bike, as they weigh substantially more. Would like to have seen that rude man do the cycle on MY bike. But after Kenya, we are getting Skinny Bikes ;)

Here's a pic of us, nicked from the photo site. Note pained faces, funny hats and odd t-shirts…not to mention those spazzy hats!


This is before we left our fabulous overnight stop at Loraine's house – where we had a great dinner, and were warmly welcomed – MUCH better than a B&B. Don't WE look fab in our beastly cycle shorts?


In the meantime, back at the cancery ranch, everything seems to be fine. With me. Thank God.

But some of my friends. Not. Last week [yes, it's taken me THAT long to get my head around it], one of the girls who was to do the Cycle 1 with us, died. Cervical cancer. She was so young. It's heart breaking. Infuriating. We chatted on Facebook – she was a very brave young woman. And I miss her.

This is why I am doing the cycle. To raise funds to enable MORE research into these horrible cancers – perhaps one day the amazing people who spend their lives trying WILL actually find a cure?

And to honour the women who have been killed.

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

and thank you Steve!

hello Carol :) thank you for reminding me to post – and for reminding me WHY I should post – to let everyone who cares know I am still here, and all you cancery types – I am still beating it's ass. Too right I am. So far, so good.

my friend Steve Turner, whom I haven't seen for years [but I hope to see soon!], donated a great big huge tile cutting machine to sell for my Women v Cancer fund. It is worth £500. We sold it today for £325.00! That was the minimum we would accept, and some fellow bought it through the Riviera Tile & Bathrooms Facebook site. Way to go!! My new total will show up on the Justgiving site soon. Here's the beast!


In the meantime, I am cycling. A lot. Practice or training – whatever. Both involve hills!I I bought a machine for my bike to tell me how fast [slow!] I am going. It's brilliant! Average speed, time etc. But it's exhausting. The cycling.

I so hope I succeed in Kenya.