A Bank Holiday and all that means. Feeling depressed and unable to concentrate on anything for very long. Feeling sorry for myself because another year has gone by and I am getting older and the aches and pains take longer to go away.
My birthday and things start to go wrong almost immediately. Mr Smiley has to cancel our lunch date, the postman doesn't bring me any birthday cards, and then There and Back lets me know that she isn't very well so won't be able to travel up to London for our day out together on Wednesday. All I can do is cry; this wasn't how I wanted my birthday to be.
There and Back may not be able to join me but I still go to the theatre. I walk to the bus stop, a bus arrives within a few minutes and almost immediately after boarding the bus it starts to pour with rain. I arrive at Cambridge Circus and miraculously the rain stops just as I get off the bus. I cross the road to have some lunch (it rains while I am in the restaurant) and then I head for the theatre. It's only a few minutes walk and still more about 45 minutes before the show is due to begin but there is already a queue starting to form outside the theatre.
I join the queue and after a few minutes it starts to move as the doors open and we are admitted. I quickly find my seat, get myself comfortable and look forward to watching my favourite (and the nation's) favourite musical. This is the first time that I have seen it performed at this theatre (Queen's); previously I had seen it several times at the Palace Theatre, and one thing that I notice early on is that the set is different from that which I was used to.
It didn't take me long to fall under its spell and the three hours of the show went by in a flash. As usual the performances were wonderful and the cast received a well-deserved standing ovation. Once the show was over, I put my coat on, gathered up the rest of my belongings and headed out into the street to make my way to the bus stop. I was again lucky with a bus arriving within a few minutes of me arriving at the bus stop and like my journey to the theatre, it was not long before it started to rain. When it was time for me to get off the bus the rain had stopped again and I walked the short distance home. Ten minutes later it started to rain again and continued for the next four hours.
How on earth had I managed to stay dry all day?
Up early as I had to travel into London again, this time to attend a workshop about patients having online access to their pathology data. The workshop had been organised by the Department of Health and most of the attendees were pathologists, although there were a couple of GPs, a number of other doctors, at least one chief executive of a foundation trust and a number of senior people from the Department of Health. I was the only patient present, and while the idea of the workshop was to discuss the possibility of patients having access to their pathology data, my presentation was to show that some of us already have that capability.
Unlike all the other presentations which comprised numerous PowerPoint slides, my presentation used the internet and my medical record to show what can already be done by some patients in this country. The presentation went down well and during lunch I was asked many questions about the system that I was demonstrating and the benefits that I felt it gave me.
I met lots of lovely people at the workshop. I find that doctors are generally a lovely group of people to give presentations to and this group was no different. I met several professors who were very interested in what is already available in General Practice, and the President of one of the Royal Colleges has asked if I would give a presentation to the Royal College in the New Year.
I find this work, although I don't get paid for it, very worthwhile and even though I am a bundle of nerves before each presentation, I find that once I start talking the nerves disappear.
Thursday turned out to be a pretty good day.
I was very tired when I got home on Thursday and it did not take me long to get to sleep and once asleep that was how I wanted to stay. I slept most of Friday morning, had a nap in the afternoon and still managed to go to bed and fall asleep at a relatively early hour. I didn't achieve anything because I just didn't have the energy for it, but catching up with some sleep did make me feel a little better.
Another day pretty much lost to sleep. I did manage to go out and do some food shopping and the walk did me some good. The afternoon and evening was spent half listening to the far off public address system at the Guides' rally at Crystal Palace and when the fireworks started I watched those that rose into the sky from my bedroom window. Having had so much sleep over the last couple of days I had problems dropping off, but eventually I managed it and slept through the night without waking up at all, a fairly unusual event.
I've not been looking forward to today; it is the anniversary of my husband's death. Lots of tears at frequent intervals but I have managed to do a few chores and to do some knitting. My circular shawl is growing and I have only about another 30 rows to do before I start work on the border; work on it will certainly slow down then as I try to manipulate the border on two needles and join that to the shawl which is on another needle.
The 'Print O' The Wave' stitch panels are growing and the shape of the pattern is starting to become clear.