Monday, 9 May 2011

Today I saw something so jaw droppingly scary I felt better about taking Amy on the back of my bike when she was little. She did wear a helmet, since you ask. We were driving to Hamble, car on autopilot, and along Ingleside in Netley Abbey we slowed down behind a pony and trap, which Hannah told me was a cruel way of using a horse and it had a brading line or something on it. How did she get to know so much about horses? Anyway, a man and lady were being trotted along, and the lady stuck her leg to the left to show they were turning left at the t junction ahead. At which point, in swivelling around slightly, I could see that in her left arm she was holding a baby girl. Goodness, don't we all have our funny ways?

Another weird thing I heard about is a man in our Triathlon club, a fellow triathlete no less, but who takes his traithletes in bigger chunks than I do. First, he does Ironman distance, which involves swimming a couple of miles, cycling over a hundred miles and then staggering off your bike and RUNNING A MARATHON. When I did nearly 100 miles on my bike, and no swimming, the last thing I could imagine doing is running a marathon. Anyhow, this guy, is going to do that 10, yes TEN days in a row. He must have a screw loose, as my mum would say. Meanwhile, in the Bowen house, Mr Triathlon himself is still nursing a nasty injury to the arm after falling off his bike in the triathlon we both did a week ago. My knee and ankle combo meant that I did a 5k run in the longest ever time recorded in the history of the earth, 2 minutes longer than it took me two years ago. I made time on the swim and the ride though, and finished in just over 1 hour 30. R did it in 1 hour 21 I think, the winner, a guy in his forties, made it in 57 minutes. It was a lovely day, sunny and windy. Granny Mary met us and looked after the girls, offered moral support and a lovely picnic afterwards. R was so amazing, with his injured arm all bloody, he ran around to support me on my last few hundred metres before seeking first aid help. What a star.

Today I had a phone conversation with my oncology consultant, saving me the horror and hassle of sitting in outpatients at the Princess Anne, not one of my favourite places for a variety of unhappy associations. Dr Marshall tells me that my blood results are fine, keep taking the tablets and she'll see me in a year. It is a funny time of year, in between my blood results going in and getting the result, I am sure the feelings fade, but its still an anxious few weeks. Still, another year of grace, nothing lurking in my blood, so you are not getting rid of me yet.

Last week I was in Portswood, hanging out at the delightful Llama Lounge, or something like that, which used to be Pizza Hut. I went into October Books, which I love for its subversive nature, and i actually bought a book. I am not one for buying books when a perfectly good library service exists, still my premonitions of the end of a perfectly good library service ( we don't have one in Thornhill anymore, we don't even have a Post Office here anymore) led me to buy a book. It is called the Sacredness of Questioning Everything, by Dave Dark. I question the author's surname before we go any further.

Last week Lou and I were in the post office pick up point in Northam, trying to pick up some postmen, and were chatting to them about surnames. One told us this, which deserves to be an urban legend and to which end I am passing on: A family have the surname Hogflesh. Pronounced Ho Flay. How Hyacinth Bucket is that? We laughed like drains and wandered out into the sunset, feeling slightly more of a comedy duo than when we arrived.

I railed against the evils of Facebook and Xbox to Lou and another friend the same night, poor girls, they don't know what to do with me when I get like that, foaming at the mouth and all. Friend wanted R to go round and help her set up her X box. I suggested that if he were the last man alive, he still wouldn't be the man for the job. We don't have an X box, a horse box or any kind of box other than cardboard ones that bike bits arrive in and A sleeps in and makes into a house for her teddies.

Sailing has been great lately, I had a fabulous sail one evening last weekend in gusty conditions, a year ago I would have been crying and begging to get off and swim for home, and now I am laughing maniacally and loving it. R and H sailed on the weekend, H did one race with R on a borrowed boat ( it was a series for a bigger type of boat) and then she had other commitments, so R did the rounds of teenagers at the club to find crew, and went out in such windy conditions that the mast fell down and they were towed in. Now, I suspect that I would have been crying and jumping off in those winds. R's career 2.2 as a sailing instructor is going well, if unpaid, as he is doing a couple of weekends teaching children at the club. I have got all my duties out of the way for the year, I was the very responsible post of Officer of the Day, having to open the safe and set the alarm and other such things like look after keys, and add up money, which don't play to my strengths at all, but I got through it! It was actually fine, and a lot of it is signposting people to other people to help them.

H has taken up netball club, to add to her wide range of sporting activities, so we now have swimming on Mon for me, R and A, and H has orchestra. Tue, choir, followed later by diving for girls. Wed H swims. Thur H netball, both Brownies. Fri H swims. Sat H triathlon, K and R swim. Good grief, I need a PA or au pair or someone just to keep up with the costume changes.

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