Random Jottings Of Gildersleeve

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Location: United Kingdom

Perhaps you'll learn more about me as you read my blog. For anyone who translates my blog using the translator facility, don't forget if you wish to read the comments in your own language to click on the title of the post down the left hand side otherwise they will remain in english. Also I assume that the translation is accurate but I don't know, so please allow for errors.

Monday, December 29, 2008

How Things Can Change...

My new hobby or interest may be put on hold or stopped altogether...

Some bad news from my Consultant...

My kidney function has decreased and I need some more blood tests doing...My Dr's surgery has managed to fit me in tomorrow and my Dr is in the surgery all day so I'll get an appointment with him but I suspect unless his computer has some extra information on it, he'll know as much/as little as me as he will only receive the same letter as I have.

What a way to end the year...

I'm hoping its a blip and all will be well....The Consultant says that my kidney function has decreased and my creatinine levels need checking again but here's the hope...my blood pressure was very low that day and he thinks that this hiccup may be related and as he reduced my blood pressure tablets "significantly" that may mean things have improved. I do hope so, otherwise I will be worried about the future and be waiting for the phone call or a letter with good or bad news.

The Dr's surgery fit me in for a blood test tomorrow. There is nothing I can do about it, it's out of my hands as I eat the best diet I possibly can, as you know from previous posts on my blog. It's down to God and the medical professionals now. I am also arranging an appointment with my Dr whilst there.

How's Mum?

Well, remarkably, yesterday the pain was much less and she was on fewer pain killers...similar today but when she made the effort to get out of bed and sit downstairs a little it returned but she's still managing it better. So there is some better news seemingly regarding her condition. So it's a mixture of good and bad news I guess.

She is not out of the woods yet but if things go ok it could have been much worse if this story is anything to go by...
I hope 2009 is going to be kinder for everyone.


When I worked in a jewellers shop we were all issued with our own tiny penknives that we used to prise batteries out of quartz watches or unscrew tiny screws or close up little claws that held stones in rings etc...and we all probably thought nothing of bringing it home with us in our pocket but under new rules being brought in on the back of violence between some sections of society if we were now stopped in the street by the police, we now would find yourself either in court and being given a jail sentence and/or community service.

These new rules come into force in the UK from January 5th. I wonder if the laws are the same across the whole of Europe or it's just a UK thing.

So where does that put you if you maybe wish to buy a knife and have to get it home? Or what if you go on a camping trip and you perhaps wish to own a Swiss Army Knife because of all the gadgets that are built into one?

I can appreciate the reasoning behind the idea of restricting who has one but it still seems a little over the top to me. If you are already inclined to causing harm to someone, this will not deter you. And your character and reputation should speak volumes as to whether society has something to worry about you doing serious harm.

Does this mean that you can no longer buy such an item? Can we only walk around with knives made of plastic. I'm afraid if someone is this way inclined they will still do harm and probably carry something more dangerous(many things can harm or kill)

I know of someone who went to jail because he was found with a Kitchen knife hidden down the leg of his trousers...that is something more to be frightened of. As is if as part of your culture you belong to a gang that hangs around on the street and uses a gun, a knife etc...for protection and/or to threaten others or carries one when committing a crime. But to penalise someone who does none of these things seems unfair.

Maybe I am just ignorant. As reported in the media, it raises more questions than it solves.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Its Not Digital...Its Not Stereo and Now Its Nothing At All...

Remember that radio that cost a £5. I tried to use it tonight and the dial indicator that points to the appropriate station stuck and then became very tight and now it won't move at all. I cannot find the receipt for replacement or refund so it's going in the bin.

Sound wise and appearance(and with three wavelengths) it was fine but if you cannot tune it to the stations, it no longer serves any purpose.

I guess I will be looking for another quite soon and hopefully I'll have better luck even if I have to pay more.

Update:I did, I have a Roberts LW/AM/FM still a good price(Under £20)unfortunately it's only powered by batteries unless I manage to get a mains adapter but it sounds good and looks good and again as I only want to listen when I am preparing meals in the Kitchen I don't want anything fancy. If I have to use batteries the manufacturer says they will last for 80 hours if played for 4 hours per day.

The Cost Of Booze...

I have come to the conclusion that some of the most famous and probably delicious cocktails will have to be rationed by me...making them at home will mean that they are less expensive than when purchased in a pub or a nightclub.

But I'll make certain they are a special treat. Have you looked at how much Tequila as an example you get in a bottle? It's the same for most of what's on the shelves at the supermarket or off licence. And the price...but much of the price alcohol costs goes in taxes to Government. So far I cannot see much saving buying on the net. I'll have to ration myself or make the drinks a bit smaller. I can understand why people used to brew their own booze to avoid paying taxes etc...

And yet we have a Government looking into raising the price of alcohol still further because of recent reports of how the young are getting tanked up and risking health problems and violence. Someone is buying it and there must be proof but if you look at the population as a whole, the few will affect the enjoyment of the masses if the prices are increased and I'm afraid to me, its too expensive already.

I suspect the reason(and the alcohol)causing the problem are the very cheap beers and lagers and what we need is the expensive liqueurs and spirits need to be brought down in price and the really cheap booze that isn't bought for the taste just the effect it has there might be an excuse for slightly restricting who its available for on age and price.

If you look back in Britain's history our drinking culture has been much worse than it is today. However, with the media access we have today we hear so much more of what is happening. Victorian and Edwardian times were much worse if what I have seen or heard in recent documentaries on television and radio.

So I think most of the cocktails I make will be non alcoholic which will keep costs down or I can add something like Vodka and use fruit juice/soft drinks to make up the volume.

I reckon some of these drinks will cost a few quid a time. So that will restrict things still further.

Mind here's some new and seemingly great sites...

Drinks Mixer

Drinks Swap

The Webtender

Jeffrey Morgenthale's Blog

Cocktail Blender

Bols Cocktails

Want to buy some booze? Well naturally always weigh up if a company is reputable but try this one...

The Drink Shop

By the way, if you think you can indulge in other luxuries...think again, they say that the cocoa bean has been affected by the weather and other things this past year and it means that chocolate will become even more expensive for the foreseeable future so another pleasure may be closed off to us. And there is the story(myth or otherwise)that chocolate companies are making their products smaller but charging the same price or more and in the UK a story broke that in one well known range of Christmas variety some items had been removed and replaced with a less expensive choice.

And I still believe that a lot of music and films are overpriced especially now that they are so readily available on tv and radio 24/7 and repeated over and over again. They would sell much more and have less problems with piracy with the main population if prices were brought down to an acceptable level. I know when I buy a cd I have to watch the price and really want it as the money will be diverted to other essentials over pleasure. Usually it's in the back catalogue range of material though. I can't see it changing though.

As usual anything that you enjoy you have to pay for. Just once wouldn't it be great to have what you dislike and can do without and would not miss would rise in price instead.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Happy Christmas Everybody!

I've looked through the TV/Radio Listings magazine and hope to see/hear the few programmes that I think will be of interest. Radio wins out once again but there are fewer stand out shows than I remember in previous years and more than ever many are repeats from previous years. TV wise I hope to catch the TV showing of two popular animated characters(in the UK)but seemingly also favourites in other countries...Wallace and Gromit. One is a film that was released perhaps a year ago and the other is a specially made short for TV.

And a documentary on the great comic actor Stanley Baxter.

Update:The Wallace and Gromit short was the most popular programme on Christmas Day and pulled in around 14 million viewers which in this day and age where the population have so many interests and the audience is spread across many many channels that's good going.

I'm not sure what kind of a Christmas dinner we'll have this year. Mum is off her food or may find herself unable to eat as much as other years, I hope that I will manage to have some of what I have in the fridge and most can be cooked fresh or from frozen.

So that's turkey, potatoes(probably roasted, I may also do a few new potatoes, what doesn't get used will later)baby brussels sprouts, turnip, little sausages wrapped in bacon and some gravy(and some apple, sage and onion stuffing balls)

If Mum feels like it she can have some raspberry pavlova or a piece of Belgium Chocolate Truffle Gateau and I think I may have some fruit salad.

That's been changed slightly and made things even easier...I have opened some sliced sweet cure slices of pork already cooked, I'll hang onto my Turkey until the weekend or later. And I may use my ham joint this coming weekend.

If we get through that...I think we've done well.

I may offer a glass of wine or later try to make a cocktail using my newly acquired interest and look for a new sensation(alcoholic or otherwise)Or make my first Snowball(an old but easy favourite)all I have to decide is whether to make it large or just a small one between us. I have made certain or will that I have everything I need to make as many cocktails as I can and then find out what tastes similar so I can slim down what booze I have in the house. Sometimes it's just that the liqueurs are made by different companies.

There are so many possibilities...what have I been missing? I may have to invest in a blender. But look after my liver too. I never have been a drinker and have gone months and years without. Maybe an advantage/disadvantage of cocktails is that if you use vodka etc...you can get the effect but hide the flavour. There are few white wines I can say that I love and the same is true of beers. Red wine tastes like medicine to me, I am afraid.

As I write this at 4.30am(I am thinking for Breakfast)and for some time now I have been eating less, I am thinking of having a wholemeal bun spread with egg mayonnaise and some rashers of bacon inside)

I guess there isn't much else to think of today. I think my cough has improved but I have also managed to all but lose my voice. I'll do a little more tidying up around the house(and see if I can get things shipshape as things were allowed to get behind when Mum went into hospital and since she she came home my priority has been looking after her and cooking/feeding her.

We managed to eat our meal(and she ate all but a few sprouts)The cocktail is on for tomorrow...tonight it's a nice cup of tea.

If you are fortunate to be surrounded by loved ones, give them an extra hug, for many Christmas can also be a time of sorrow and loneliness. Material things come quite low on my list of important matters.

Monday, December 22, 2008

A New Interest...

Drink responsibly...

And I do realise that drink can cause problems...and in some parts of the world it is not acceptable on religious or cultural grounds but I have never really been a drinker and my health problems will probably mean due to water retention I cannot drink much anyhow. But I was told that I am allowed to drink alcohol in moderation. And in case one day I am unable I may as well try it whilst I can.

So my new interest is...

Making Cocktails(alcoholic and non-alcoholic)

You can go into this in a big way and buy lots of equipment or keep it simple. I'm sure that there are many recipes that are delicious(and some that are really awful)lots of cocktails I've never heard of and many that get mentioned in books and plays. Who hasn't heard of a Harvey Wall banger and/or a Screwdriver?

Well here's some great sites you may like to try...

Cocktail UK

In The Spirit

Great Cocktails

Alex's Cocktail Recipes

So one cocktail was mentioned by a friend on a message board and tonight on the way home in a taxi I mentioned how I was thinking of(but being careful)maybe making Cocktails as a hobby. And the Taxi driver said his Mum loves 'em and out of all he could mention he said the same one again so I guess it's popular so I have to try it don't I?

The ingredients are Orange Juice, Cranberry Juice, Vodka, Peach Schnapps and a Lime Wedge and it is mixed over ice and goes into a Hi-Ball Glass but I suppose you could make a smaller one.

What do they call this cocktail? Sex On The Beach.

I purchased glasses of various types, a cocktail shaker, some white rum, gin, brandy, tonic water, soda water but I have never drunk any of these so I won't know if I like them or how other ingredients will hide or alter their taste? And I bet I still have not purchased certain items(I cannot get Ginger Ale anywhere)that I should've to make some I wish to try. I'll learn. I was let down a little as some items were not available. The measurements on the above are given in shots so I can cheat and use the small shot glasses I purchased.

And a friend has told of another popular cocktail I have heard of and seems easy to do...Tequila Sunrise.

It's a bit late I'm afraid but the following articles appeared in the Daily Mail Weekend Magazine a few weeks ago(which I bought)and the Eggnog Syllabub featured looks wonderful but you'll need to change the servings depending on how many there are of you...I don't think I am able to make them this year but I wish I had been able to and I may still try in the next few weeks but here's a link...

Eggnog Syllabub

Once again Happy Christmas and a Happy New Year...and "Bottoms Up!"

PS I have added a few more items to my store of booze ;-)

But do remember you can have fun without the alcohol and find plenty of cocktails to enjoy that booze is not required so if it's against your faith or you are teetotal you can still join in.

Apologies if on a couple of the cocktail sites you find some have names that may offend.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

If Someone Gave You £100...

Though welcome and you probably have fantasised what you would do with an unexpected windfall, you'd probably actually find it difficult to spend it because you will have so many things you feel the money should be used for. Luxury versus Necessity. Also, if you have to watch what you spend, you are likely to still try and get as much as you can for your money.

Tonight, I really did go out mainly looking for bread, milk and soup but I did actually go mad and I have no money left to speak of.

Some luxury items were purchased to try and see that although we've had our problems these past few weeks I want to try and have some kind of Christmas meal to remember with Mum. I have a small Turkey Joint(that I will be able to make a couple of meals out of)maybe some sandwiches, I cannot believe that I purchase a small joint of ham(I don't remember ever doing that before)I don't remember buying Christmas Crackers before and I nearly bought some luxury one's but many of the novelties in the expensive range were things like golf tees...no use for me so I found a box of 12 that seem to have a reasonable range of items inside and they only cost £5. If we're still here next year we can pull some of the unused crackers again.

I found lots of little items that we can use as extras to our Christmas meals and before or after the day. I do need to get some fruit and unfortunately maybe fresh vegetables(I have no room in the freezer for any frozen items)

I have a raspberry pavlova, Some kind of Belgium chocolate gateau and two small sherry trifles for deserts to follow. I managed to get some alcohol too(wine and some cider)I'm debating whether to get some vodka and Pymm's. So it's probably going to be a Merry Christmas after all.
And I must not forget to get some aluminium foil. I meant to have a new cooker by now. The state of my oven seeing I am so interested in food is a disgrace so early next year I hope to put that right. The only thing that could go wrong now would be if the cooker fails me on the day. Otherwise all should be ok.

I'm not boasting about this spend...but whilst you are able, do it...one day it may be impossible or you maybe watch the pennies most of the year so to splash out if you able is a good thing.

Being careful with money I just could not part with such a lot for a bottle of Pyms and the Vodka I fancied but I did get a rather large bottle of Vodka and Apple for under £2 and having never tried Pyms I bought a small can of Pyms mixed with Lemonade for around the same price. If I like it I may go the whole way but I'll decide after I try it. I must admit this is a one off luxury if I do so...

You'll realise from what I have said in previous blog entries if you are blessed with good friends and family that is what matters most above everything else. I've always felt that way but these last few weeks have brought that home more than anything. I do't think that I needed to be reminded but often people or things that are dear to you can be often taken for granted.

In case you do not return until the new year Seasons Greetings to you and yours for Christmas and I wish you Health, Wealth, Peace and Happiness for the coming year wherever you are in the world and whatever your faith.

Life Is A Pantomime...

Well mine is and it's all my own fault...

Don't ask how or why but I managed to lose the Codeine tablets Mum takes to kill her pain. I took the house apart three or four times(even looking through the rubbish)and after 3-4 hours I gave up but what can I do as she needs her painkillers.

To cut the story short I was advised to contact the local Doctor's covering service and was patched through to the hospital Mum was in when the initially tests were done when she fell downstairs.

So I managed to secure a taxi(which was a surprise being that it's a busy Saturday Night, Nightclubs and Disco's and being so near to Christmas)and go there hopefully to pick up a prescription(unfortunately that's all it turned out to be)no drugs. No late night chemist open to change the prescription into actual drugs. The earliest and easiest place to get the prescription changed into actual drugs is 10am this morning at the local Tesco's Supermarket which just happens to be a few streets from where I live but what would she do overnight until then?

Luckily, I was given a spare tape of the pills to tide us over(and it had 15 on the tape)so that's almost 2 days worth anyhow.

Now, just you wait I and you know what will happen...the lost tablets will probably turn up in the next day or two. These have to be the most expensive tablets I will have ever had to buy.

And I will have to be much more careful in future.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


Well, there's bound to be some isn't there?

If someone said you can lay in bed for hours but it's your own choice, and you can get up whenever you wish its somehow different to enforced incarceration. Pain is still bad and I don't know if it's worse and therefore the painkillers need to be stronger or they are losing their effect.
And as every day is much the same I can understand some depression creeping in, for the time being I am managing a reasonably variety of food as good as what was on offer in hospital during her stay. One problem is that Mum tends to play down when she is ill and does not like telling people when she is really ill so she makes it sound as though it is nothing. She'll not say "I've crushed a vertebrae" or broken a bone in my back, she'll just say I've hurt my back when talking to friends and she'll not tell neighbours if she can help it. I suspect she would even be that way with anyone sent to help her recovery or care for her.

We've had a lousy cold and cough on top of all this which at last seems to be improving(I suspect we caught it whilst in hospital)when I was a patient 10 years ago funnily enough I too developed a cough but as soon as I came out of hospital it disappeared.

Tomorrow, It's my turn for my check up to see how I am doing, I hope things are OK but this time the blood tests are more extensive and have to be done at the hospital so I will be waiting that dreaded phone call that may say things are not as good, all I can do is keep my fingers crossed. All the stress and worry over Mum may not have helped and this will be the first time she has not been able to go with me, someone will notice. And be upset and surprised by the news when they find out.

You do not always realise how you are missed until something like this happens.

Update:Nurses and Consultant sent their best wishes to Mum for a speedy recovery. I had the big test done and await good or bad news(if all is ok I will be seen in January close to the same time as Mum with her own Consultant)

A letter arrived from the Dr's Surgery(they still have Mum as under the wrong Dr)and now when she's well enough they want to have her "Breasts checked!" though there is no hurry and nothing to be concerned about and it has nothing to do with her fall.

So I mentioned that that was the wrong Dr and that her own Dr was supposed to be coming out to see her at the end of this week, she said we could discuss it with him...Guess what Mum is not down for a home visit so we are now waiting to see what the receptionist finds out when she talks to him later today and phones us back. Hopefully, he'll visit tomorrow. And see how she's doing and see that we have enough medication over the Christmas period. Wouldn't you know it...he called today whilst I was out and Mum did not hear him so he's calling again tomorrow. And I know already from what she says, she's going to play this down which makes it seem as though it's nothing but it is serious. Its in her nature, what can you do?

My consultant says I have lost weight and that my blood pressure was very low today so I am still on all the tablets as before but the Blood Pressure tablets have been reduced from 6mg per day to 2 mg so we'll see how things go(I have been feeling lightheaded lately)so this may make a difference.

Boots redeemed itself further, there is a young man on the Pharmacy department who knows his stuff and has been most concerned about Mum and tonight he spent ages with me telling me the different ways the painkillers and Paracetamols could/should be taken so they have the most beneficial effect at killing the pain. If taken too often the body gets used to them so at some point if it's possible you need to space them out or take a break before starting again.

Whilst there he found a cough bottle that should ease us and get rid of our little cold we brought home with us seemingly from hospital, you often come home with something extra to what you go in with.

I also purchased some more of my Garlic tablets(I believe in them)and I purchased a tube of Berocca tablets which are a kind of multi vitamin/mineral tablet that dissolves in water to give an orange flavour(and I was given a second tube for free)

It's looking more positive isn't it?

Update:Another day, I'm not sure that Mum will ever feel as confident getting around as she improves so will need someone watching out for her but the signs are good. The overall opinion is that progress of a good recovery is likely and today it was even said that though a crushed vertebrae is serious, a broken hip would probably caused many more problems.

Also we've both had our drugs to keep us going through Christmas replenished(she was quite truthful to her Dr, played things down slightly, but I had warned him before hand and I'm sure that he has seen this with many patients and can read the signs)he has also given her an extra painkiller that could help when the others seem not to work. It's a horrible day out there raining a lot, cold and windy but I must go out to get the prescription filled and get some bread and milk.
I hope to be home ASAP and I think tonight I'll arrange to get my fish and chips again :-)

Update:The fish and chips were ready on time but the Taxi was 20 minutes late this time!

Unfortunately, mum's Codeine was missed off the prescription so I've had to re-order them for next week before everything closes down for Christmas. But the new painkiller looks promising which as she's having a bad time tonight could be a blessing if she manages to sleep through the night!

Did the new painkiller make any difference and do the trick? Not at all, It made no difference whatsoever.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Child Care...

The United Nations or some similar weighty organisation has in the past day or two issued a report suggesting that children in the developed world are being rushed into education or into Nursery care too soon. This means that the bond between parents and children suffers. And it probably does the child some harm.

Of course there is an argument that the child who socialises with others and experiences life outside of his or her's home may have some benefit making that child a whole person, less insular but when I was a child my Mother worked but not during the formative years she was there for me and I was not a latch key child coming home to an empty home. Nor was I farmed out to grandparents or relatives.

How many of today's families could hold down/afford to work if they had to pay for the child care which is still for many too expensive or non-existent or not have relatives that either offer to help for free or take next to nothing to care for children? And if money changes hands it is not declared. Also, any agreement is looked down on because of stories of child abuse and anyone looking after a child other than by a parent is suppose to have been on some professional course with a qualification at the end of it. Not forgetting having had a police check done on all concerned in case the person is a pervert.

The ideal model is two parents bringing up their offspring but you can always find situations where that is not the case. Just as you can find single parents that are not suitable to be a parent(but whose model are we following as being correct?)but some will do as good a job or their best and put their children first and battle to give them a stable home life and try to see that they are not deprived of love or what their friends have so they feel disadvantaged. Sometimes a family will stay together for the sake of the children or a home breaks up and it ends up as a single parent household. It's too easy to condemn those involved, there are too many variables. Divorce, seperation, desertion and we haven't mentioned step families.

We have in the UK(and I am sure it is similar of other countries)more than ever a Government with plans to get parents out to work. The children must be put into the education system as soon as is possible. When I was a child I am sure that I mixed with other children but it was informal and an arrangement between parents who were in a similar situation. For those who make decisions today in many cases it is too rigid and there is little room for maneuver.

Unfortunately, as I have said elsewhere in previous blog entries, some families that live in poverty or take benefits etc...are often classed as being the same as those who give all a bad name. The genuine parents that want to try and have a close and loving home life and be there for there children are being pressured into having a child and getting back out there virtually as soon as the child is dropped from the womb. Some have to go back for economic reasons.

And the few anecdotal cases that come up in the media only make matters worse. I can see the idea of getting away from the culture of having something for nothing and trying to say work gives you an incentive but its not a black and white decision, there is a grey area. There could be times when this is not the best policy.

There are genuine families who would like to give their children a life that resembles what they had, a carefree and innocent childhood will suffer to some extent, sometimes because the income is too low, the daily cost of living is too high and jobs are not guaranteed for life parents go back to work too soon.

The Government of the UK are wanting to teach the subject of Sex to an even younger section of children(I forget the exact age)but I know its too young and their minds should not even be thinking of such matters.

You cannot have it all ways...they say that there are too many unruly children on the streets involved in violence and crime so there is an argument for having parents at home but if parents are working long hours and away from home who is watching these children? And I am also afraid that many who do work find themselves still unable to provide what in a modern society is a decent standard of living and families still have to make do. There will always be families able to do more than another.

I'm not saying that it should be the female who stays at home or the Male that in today's world has to be worked out between those involved. I'm afraid too many of those who make the decisions are out of touch with the kind of lives most of the population live.

And still the care offered for children so parents can work is still hit and miss in quality and I am afraid for many it is still too expensive to afford on the wages many jobs pay or shall we say that some jobs pay well but the daily bills soon eat away what income is being brought back into the home.

I have to be careful that I do not look at this through rose coloured spectacles and maybe see a world that really never existed or be accused of being sexist by suggesting that the female stayed at home and ran the home whilst hubby went out to work. That's why I said maybe all that is important is that one parent is able to stay at home whoever that happens to be.

I'm sure someone can pick holes in my argument and I am talking in general terms having no children of my own. I hope that I am reasonably fair in what I think...

Friday, December 12, 2008

Lets Start A New Post...

She's really suffering now...
But I've managed to get a new supply of the drugs the hospital issued to ease her pain and a few others that her Dr normally issued(before this happened)Her own Dr is coming to see her in our home at the end of next week barring something unexpected. I suspect whether we want them or not other health/social care departments will visit too.

I see if you are able to afford private care and live in a country like the USA they have a new procedure that seems improve such injuries as crushed vertebrae.

It almost returns vertebrae to their usual size to avoid putting pressure on the others that surround the injured bone, it involves putting a needle into the crushed vertebrae and a kind of cement is injected into the damaged bone. I suspect it is an expensive procedure and possibly has some possible dangers where something could go wrong. Anything to do with the spine has some danger.

This may not be as widespread as the Internet suggests as my friend North Star who knows someone who injured his back...he was not offered this procedure and was told time heals. There was talk of wearing a corset or brace for him and Mum. So far they are trying to get Mum better using rest and allowing nature to take it's course.

Well, it's early days...we can only see how things pan out. The danger is to try and rush these things. If she had to live as now...what a life...what life? You can understand why people give up and wish to end it all. That is a natural reaction I suspect initially for anyone when something traumatic happens to anyone but it also brings home how finite and quickly your life can change in minutes.

The pain killers are not really having the effect I'd like...this may be due to her getting used to them or the pain increasing, I'm not sure.

The only good thing is I did manage to get some food into her...Cereal and some toast for Breakfast, Soup and a couple of egg sandwiches for lunch and she shared some of my fish and chips for supper. Also, like in hospital I have managed to give her some tea/water and a small coffee.

I managed to get some shopping in earlier this evening having got Mum to promise not to move anywhere whilst I was out.

In the great scheme of things it's not important but my new hard drive is playing up(I have yet to get it to work as it's supposed to. And the reason I purchased it(to store items that might be lost if another drive crashed)I managed to format the wrong drive(I'll blame being worried about Mum and being tired from all the time I was spending in hospital between visiting hours)and I have lost 5,000 mp3's(music)I lost the lot but managed to get some back. Some are lost for good...others I will have to start from scratch and convert them myself and that took months!

That is one thing they could improve on in the local hospital's...If the restaurant was open all the time you could drink tea and make it last hours but they have set times for meals and the reception areas are very small and near the entrance so cold and drafty. But when you have three and a half hours to kill between visiting hours, it's not worth coming home but waiting around is boring...heaven knows if I thought it was boring what it's like being a patient.

I say heaven knows, I have been a patient so I do know how difficult it is to fill the long hours between tests and visiting hours(my favorite pastime was constantly re-arranging my bedside locker and it's contents many times in the day)but how you long for someone to walk through the door and see a familiar face to give you comfort and hopefully break up the boredom. And how awful it is when the bell rings and the visitors leave...and you have to stay.

Update:She was not confused in Hospital. She'll be unhappy me saying this here. But there is some confusion, now she's home. I hope it's that's she's sleeping so much and/or the effects of the strong drugs she's taking for the pain. I believe it is confusion more than memory loss. I am hoping as she takes less of the medication this will improve...otherwise there is something else to worry about. I did look up side effects on the Internet and it's suggested this is one of them.

My good friend Curmy mentioned to me that her own Mother was confused when sleeping for a long time but afterwards when she returned to some kind of normal life, she's was fine again. So we'll see how it goes.

I'm off to cook the evening meal and we'll be having Plaice, vegetables and either chips or mashed potato.

Tomorrow for quickness and easiness I have purchased for our Sunday Meal, one in the Bird's Eye range of meals and in particular a Roast Chicken one, we used buy them often and they were always decent value and quite tasty.

These are all easy meals that take next to no preparation.

Dare I admit that I am scared and frightened about what the future holds for Mum and selfishly the same is true for myself. Suddenly, the future looks uninviting and full of problems and I'm not sure I am bothered about any of it. I may be able to listen to the radio, eat something nice(I hope)afford to keep the heating on and stay warm but after it's all done and dusted, is there any point to it all?

There was a big feature done on the BBC World Service about does money make you happy and contented after some big survey that was done decades ago. In general the ordinary person in the street is happy as long as they can afford food and shelter and extra money doesn't really add to one's happiness, it's equally as likely struggling after being used to having "Just enough" to find it taken away will make you less content and happy. They said you are more likely to find your life enhanced by experiences such as a nice vacation etc...tell that to the person who hasn't the money to just go where they want, when they want.

But is living on handouts from charity or the benefit system a country has? It might be ok if you did not have to prove to the authorities you deserve what you receive or battle against some of society who lump the genuine with those they believe are not so. Even if ill, when receiving help you are told what is your's, but even if you can manage a holiday(even a modest one)you have to keep the authorities informed of your whereabouts. "Big Brother" is watching! That's why I said earlier many with a view on such matters have no idea what it is like until they experience it for themselves. How much of your life is your own?

There isn't much to look forward to. I'm not sure that I fancy living for decades ahead. And the thought of ending up in residential care fills me with horror just I'm sure it does Mum. It's one thing to be positive and hopefully fight this problem and be as we were but to fight it just to end up in care, I'm not sure even she wants that. If that was to be the outcome.

I/we are only one of many in this country or across the world...we're no worse I suppose but there are too many of us living this way. I can remember the promise was as I grew up people would retire earlier, have a decent pension and be doing all those things they wanted to...it may be so for some but for most I doubt that is true and highly unlikely. For most it's a life of debt and when older a life of being frugal surviving on very little. Funnily enough the entertainer Lionel Blair was interviewed on the radio and his charitable work came up and the charities he helps are those trying to give older people a decent life where they can both have a decent meal and keep the heating turned on.

The Archbishop of Canterbury has just given a lecture/speech where he says that as population we feel our country is going to dogs and we are going down the tubes. Perhaps every generation feels pessimistic or maybe he has something.

Update:Pain is bad with or without painkillers(that may be normal in such cases)and we have already had a kind of dispute where I have had to withdraw them in case she takes more in a 24 hour period than she should(that makes you popular...not)and though I usually say age is but a number and we pay too much attention to age these days...that is a factor and has to be considered as part of the recovery process. Maybe I will be my positive self again soon, it's early days...This is not like me at all. I am made of stronger stuff...and if I think I have it bad, I have to think of Mum.

Monday, December 08, 2008

On Top Of Everything Else...

And my health worries...unexpectedly, early this morning Mum fell downstairs. I heard a clatter and thought maybe something had fallen over in the bathroom. After all I was half asleep myself. Then maybe 10 minutes later I heard her call out. I found her at the bottom of the stairs.

For now she is resting in bed but knows later on that she needs checking out. Hopefully nothing is broken or cracked. But they will probably x-ray and then decide whether to keep her in. If it requires a hospital visit this will be her third time, in recent times. She fell the same way on the other occasion and was reasonably ok other than shock and in need of her arm being dresses and a wound to be stopped bleeding, the other time she saved herself by putting her arms/hands out and injured her wrists. She's had a few minor falls in the bedroom.

Being half asleep herself might've worked in her favour as she would be less rigid and probably rolled down the stairs. Whether she had blacked out before or afterwards I am unsure. If she did blackout. I suspect she certainly did after the fall hence the delay calling for help.

I have been a little lightheaded of late and know how that feels, I heard on the radio that if you feel that way the quickest way to lose the fainting is to drop to ground/lowest level possible. I suppose if you do not manage to, you'll fall anyhow but unfortunately if you are in the wrong place, it depends whether you fall on the landing or where the stairs are. I have instilled for sometime that she never stands at the top of the stairs in case of possible accidents.

It will be strange if I become a carer for her and am needed at home. I could not imagine leaving her alone. And she is most insistent that she will not go into residential care. For some time I have not allowed her to attempt to go out without me being there and using a taxi to go any distance. Initially, she has scrubbed her arm on the carpet, has some pain in her neck, arm and back. Mainly, up on moving but I hope this is a bit like whiplash rather than damage.

I cannot say what will have happened by the end of today. She will be amazed and probably not too happy I have mentioned this on my blog or the net in general as she is quite a private person. I'll keep you up to date here.

Update:It's 6pm and I have managed to get some soup into Mum...I am about to have something to eat myself...get shaved and will then set the wheels in motion and see what happens next. She has a nightdress, face cloth, soap ready. I think she will be x-rayed and could be spending a few days in hospital(now whether that means an operation?)

I hope that they can get her better again...

Which hospital will she be sent? Well, the local hospital is fighting to keep accident and emergency over so she may be sent to the other hospital in another town(we are between two so could be sent to either)

Unless they send her to one even further away?

Keep us in your thoughts and pray all will be well...

Update:If we believe what we are being told...prognosis is good. The Dr showed me Mum's X-rays. She has a crushed vertebrae.They are hopeful no operations are likely but we'll know better after some scans tomorrow.

Thankfully, though crushed it has not seemingly(unless there are some splinters)that they've missed spread outwards and it should fuse in time and not stop her mobility too much(I hope)though it may mean more use of pain killers.

They have seen worse cases(they say)the pain will lessen as the days go on...she may get home earlier than she thinks...they want to get the brace or corset on and get the bone settled to avoid her getting a lump or hump. It's shown up this time but I wonder if she's done this ages ago and just been picked up on. I hope that she does not have to wear the corset for good. And now I am told to expect social getting involved and all kinds of aids being installed(possibly a stair lift)and until she's totally better some daily nursing care.

But how do we stop her having further falls and in particular falling downstairs?

They took some blood tests in case they've missed something and they wanted to double check her ECG. So I hope that is nothing else to worry about.

We've been lucky in many aspects...I'm not sure if I'll get to bed...I should try but within 4 hours I need to see her Dr and tell him what's happened and maybe get something for me.

And try and tell a few of her friends what's happened. I actually think she received better care and kinder treatment from the hospital she eventually ended up(Darlington)than Bishop Auckland. And we've always rated BA as the one we go to if we do require treatment. That's a personal opinion, others may say different.

It's strange her not being in the home...she must be bad to complain of the pain as she was. I'm not used to seeing her grimace. I'm thinking of going through and eating my lunch and evening meal at the hospital restaurant and if I time it right I can go straight into see her when visiting hours happen you get two visits 2.30pm-3.30pm and 7pm-8pm. Its just not worth coming home between visiting hours so I guess I'll be there for approx 8 hours.

Update:Swings and Roundabouts kind of a day Last night possibly one broken bone and positive vibes. This afternoon, talk of more bones being broken and Mum being told to lay totally flat and not to move her legs or head, she should not really have her head on a pillow. But she cannot resist moving her limbs and if caught they keep saying keep those legs down.

She could cause further damage and/or delay the time it takes for the injury to improve. If she does as she is supposed to she can lay flat in bed at home just as she is doing at Hospital(they'll be wanting that bed)

Well, the latest this afternoon was so so. Tonight after an MRI Scan they are upbeat again and we're talking one crushed vertebrae again. The Dr who saw her was talking of sending her home but wants the ok from The Consultant so we'll see what happens. Of course she wants to be home, I want her home but I would rather a delay if it actually is better for her recovery. They could be rushing things as a lot of care will be needed at home. One crushed vertebrae may be played down by those who decide who can receive help and be dismissed. But from now on she will be vulnerable.

But it's still better if you can stay in your home rather than a care home. And a recent report published in the press yesterday shows it's less expensive and the care is probably better too. And still find it degrading that residents in many homes are given what is classed as pocket money.

Update:We certainly go round the topics on here don't we? Food, Politics, Digital Radio, Health...and now it's Mum and her illness. Well, under 80 hours and tomorrow afternoon unless something unexpected happens they are pleased with her progress and she will be allowed home. Now this will mean taking things slowly but doing here what she was doing at hospital, resting much of the time in the same flat position but also to avoid being stiff and muscles wasting away some gentle walking and movement. There is talk of being called in and having her progress checked as an outpatient and I have no doubt her GP will keep an eye on her too. But she looks happier. That has to help. Getting back into your own familar surroundings. I will have to be there watching over her. Especially when she wants to walk about and if she dares venture out, I'll have to support her. Have to is not really the word I'd use, I want to and should.

We have got off lightly considering(at least it looks as though we have...but it's early, early days) But just because she's home quick I don't want the powers to be to dismiss what's happened as nothing and that everything is as it was before. Any similar incident could cause even more damage and there will have to be much time and care given to recovery and to avoid further problems in the future and after all everyone is getting older.

You do worry that they try to get you out of hospital too soon but they do need the beds. But they'd have nothing to gain if they had to call you in because they were rushing matters. Mum speaks highly of the care she's received and said the hospital food was good too. That does not mean that she "Likes" hospitals...someone must. It's good that they exist but nicer if you can stay away from them.

She's home now and it's going to be a long haul...having had to sit around a lot today waiting to come home and travel in a taxi etc...she is in much pain and needs to lay down and do as she did in hospital.

Oh and in the patient dispatch information...get this, they have the right GP practice on the forms(wrong GP)and her home address is given as one she lived at over 45 years ago possibly longer...and they were told all the correct information. Human error or computer? We hope to see her Dr tomorrow. She sees(unless something happens in the meantime)her Consultant as an outpatient to see how her progress is going on January 23rd next year.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

It's Not Digital...It's Not Stereo...

Many People(it is said)have a radio in practically every room...some have them tuned to different stations. Some the same and it means if they have to go into another part of the house they can continue listening to the same programme and not lose track of a favourite piece of music or a breaking news story, perhaps a drama.

Usually this is instead of walking about with a portable radio though these days perhaps someone might be listening via something similar to an I-Pod. It could be a podcast that has been downloaded from the net.

One thing that DAB has changed in the home(if you can get a decent signal in "Every" room)is the delay on the audio. All radio that was analogue and available via LW, SW, AM and FM was received at the same rate on any piece of equipment but various DAB Radio's can be seriously delayed and can cause all kinds of problems by the processor decoding the signal, the technical design and each manufacturer might have different standards. And we have not mentioned what happens if you listen via a tv and the signal is delivered by satellite.

Well, I managed to find the radio in the Kitchen a few weeks ago was failing and I managed to snap the antenna off which killed off FM reception altogether.

I came across a radio in a supermarket, for under £5 it can't be very good can it? Well, what have I to lose? I don't want an expensive radio that can be damaged by what may happen in the kitchen whilst cooking or could get knocked over. Reception is not guaranteed. Certainly not on a DAB Radio.

There has been talk that analogue radio signals could be switched off in the future but nothing definite, the powers that be are determined to push digital radio. This past week some promised digital radio transmitters to help improve coverage across the UK had the plug pulled on them. I think I read though it was officially a delay(these transmitters)may never be built. That does not instill positive thoughts about how DAB broadcasting may go in the UK. There has been a lot of negative publicity about DAB Radio in recent months. Some promised stations have been knocked on the head. And some stations have closed.

I thought OK I may not be able to hear some of the stations on air now and none of those only available on DAB but I can still hear most/all the BBC stations local/national and the same regarding commercial stations via LW/AM/FM and guess what this radio had all three of these wavelengths. So how could I be robbed?

I gave it a try and it's working fine. As I said its not stereo, DAB, it does not have preset buttons and you have to turn a wheel to make the pointer move to the stations you wish to hear but I can put up with that, there is a little interference on AM so the radio must be picking up something from in the house but not enough to worry me, I tend to know what I want to listen to music or speech and I can recognise the station usually without looking at the dial(maybe a problem if you cannot see)I know when I want to hear a particular programme or be entertained in general so...I'm happy. It's only for using if I am making a cup of tea.

Today it is rare to find a radio offering these three wavelengths combined. You usually only get AM/FM and LW is often dropped but is a favourite with British living in Europe as they can access commentary on cricket matches in the Summer or Radio 4 programmes the rest of the year. But these days(officially/unofficially)many listen via satellite, cable or the net abroad. The sound is much improved using these other methods. But LW does still have it's uses such as the Angler who might spend hours on a river bank. It allows the population to listen whilst FM carries Radio 4's usual programmes of news, drama, comedy, documentaries and more.

I probably shouldn't have but as I write this I have virtually polished off a bag of Gourmet Jelly Beans by The Jelly Bean Factory, they are a bit special and have flavours you'll not find anywhere else. It must be years since I last purchased a packet(I think I was in Edinburgh, Scotland approx 10 years ago and was in some kind of shopping Mall that was below ground in the Waverley Station area?)I found this packet in my local Woolworths store. Just a time when it's closing down and there was very little stock remaining.

The Jelly Bean Factory

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Better Late Than Never...

And not really important but...

Remember those free environmentally friendly light bulbs we were given by the Gas company...

I said I'd try them out.

And then got side tracked...

Tonight a light bulb failed and tripped a switch on the main fuse box, so I thought I'd replace it with one of these.

Verdict! I'll leave it in the light socket and it's in the passage that runs along side the house rather than in the house. Do I like it? NO!

I don't like waiting for it to warm up and I'm not keen on the tone of the light either. So I remain unimpressed. At least I don't spend much time in the passage other than popping out to the fridge/freezer.

I would not like to use it indoors.

I guess I'll be back out there buying some more traditional bulbs whilst they are still available.

Update:One day on and I dislike it even more...they'll take some getting used to(with or without good eyesight)I think that I'd prefer to be in a room with no lights.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

What Is Poverty?

It's all relevant to your situation and location. A starving child in Africa. Someone begging in the street. Or affluence in a developed country could be someone with an expensive car, the latest technology or gadgets. All seen as something to aspire to and maybe our priorities are wrong and health and happiness should be measured by something not as shallow as possessions. I put health, happiness and loved ones first but surely we are entitled to some luxuries.

There are people in the UK struggling to make ends meet. Other countries too but I can only talk of my own. Our country is said to be one of the richest in the World. But there are those amongst the population deciding whether to stay warm or whether to have a decent meal. Even this week I watched elderly shoppers buying only what they needed(milk and bread)and the lowest priced brands which hopefully are ok but may be higher in salt and other nasties. And the joy when they found they could afford some butter and cheese.

There has been in the news over recent months even before the so called "Credit Crunch" stories explaining our Governments plan to lift certain sections of society out of poverty(mainly children and the elderly)which has missed the mark and there has been an increase rather than a drop in the figures. So correspondents and experts have been interviewed on tv, radio and the press and been asked how to judge what would be poverty by today's standards.I think I heard correctly that is judged on the income of a household.

And the figure is set as a meridian of £229 if you are single and around £329 for a family before you pay rent on a property. £229 maybe sounds quite a lot of income perhaps it is if that's what you are being paid but knowing the cost of living, rent, community charges, travelling to and from work if you have a job, expenses you may incur, the utility bills(Electric, Gas, Telephone, Food)TV Licence(you need one to watch tv in the UK)possibly prescription charges and all the unexpected things that crop up when items need replacing or repairing perhaps not. I honestly don't know how so many people survive when paying full costs. But equally for those who complain that people receive other help etc...have to remember that there is less income so it evens out. I am sympathetic to people struggling in work and those not working and am not angry towards either section of society in general.

And there are other problems. One year you might just be able to survive, another year you might need more, each year could be different but you will not know how much you need until a bill drops on your mat or see how prices in the shops have increased, fuel costs. And you may need that little extra by you in case you cannot cover that bill that arrives and you are caught short.

The electric, gas companies etc...will still want their money. It is difficult say I'll wait for the bill and then find the money. How long is a piece of string?

And if ill you probably deserve a decent lifestyle as you spend more time at home and you need to stop yourself getting depressed. You don't want to be ill and have a miserable lifestyle to match. You are always told to leave the heating on, stay warm, and do not be afraid of using it. But people do...and according the media and charities that help the vulnerable they often report of some of the population losing their lives during Winter.

And what if you want to save up for an odd holiday? Or you decide the time is right to replace carpets, furniture or have the house decorated. Or your property needs repairing? Or what if you plan to do these things and you don't get around to it and delay doing so? And what if you do not want to apply for a loan? What if you are turned down? The honest and genuine are likely to be the one's that have problems.

Rules can be complicated and in today's climate the savings threshold should be raised. It probably would help many.

Of course stories exist(many anecdotal)that suggest some do manage to live well, such examples get reaction from some sections of society but often these people have never had to experience how difficult it can be. Views often change when they do.

Many families are finding, during this financial crises, essentials have increased in price and they are having to cut back on what they spend but at what point do you reach before you can no longer do so?

Decades ago, I read or heard that the average take home pay was in the £400-£500 range, There must be some but you'll have to be specialised and probably work long hours.

Today, this would include people in the media and sporting world. And they would probably earn more than a Consultant. A Taxi driver only today mentioned to me that a local council leader who will front a new council will be earning more than the Prime Minister who deals with national and world politics(already an official working at the BBC earns more than the PM)Work that out.

Unless, you have been fortunate to work most of your life, receive a good wage, been able to save and/or invest in a personal or works pension scheme that has not been raided or closed down, you will be living on a reasonably low income. Possibly putting up with a lower standard in early life to benefit later but most end up on a State Pension and/or means tested benefit of some kind.

There are many examples where pension schemes have gone wrong, one was featured on the news only the other night...A man had seen his works pension reduced so if he retires now, it is not worth what it was and his retirement lifestyle not as comfortable, if he tries to work longer to build it up, he is unable to because he reaches retirement too early and cannot work long enough to build up his lost income.

If he retires now and closes his pension the company running it have a penalty clause and he'll lose value on his pension. Yet, only a few months ago, he could've retired and had the full amount of his pension. The older you get and when you probably need the most help, you'll find that if you have savings(even a modest amount)you'll be penalised.

The new Queen's Speech announced in Parliament which fleshes out what the British Government hopes to bring into law over the coming year was announced today...most of the bills are not controversial and deal with trying to sort out the recession the UK finds itself but one will cause changes to worry some of the genuine vulnerable in society.

The high cost of utility bills and prices are likely to continue to rise many retired/older people have to decide whether to keep the house warm or to eat. To stay warm they wear loose, baggy clothes or a hat to stay warm, drink warm drinks, have a hot water bottle or two about their person. My elderly Aunt always wore a thick woollen coat and a woollen hat indoors. And often went to bed and heated that one bedroom. This was when she was aged 98/99 and eventually she had to go into care to avoid falls in her home(the stairs were steep)and she had to fight for that.

Her savings were meager just about enough to cover her funeral and of course, your allowance when in a home is not much...you can perhaps buy a few sweets, some make up and toiletries possibly a newspaper or a magazine but that's not much is it.

In a modern society many luxuries are the norm and they are seen as expected items in the home. Not having them would be seen as odd. But again my Aunt only had a radio and tv for company most of the time.

However a telephone(even if you don't make any calls)will cost you approx £120 a year to rent the line(and you'll pay a tax on that line)Most things that you buy or services you use in the UK, you have to pay a fee/tax. Here it's called Value Added Tax, in the States and elsewhere it would be called simply a sales tax.

I can understand the money raised but the phone as an example I have never got how talking to someone on a phone you pay a tax and if the phone company did not supply the line they could not deliver their product.A basic connection to the Internet will probably cost approx £144 a year(you can't have one without the other)those two bills combined comes out at £264. If you want to watch basic tv in the UK you have to part with an annual fee of approx £131.

If you want to access some extra choice a cable/satellite service of the most basic without movies or sport will cost you £268 per year. But again you have the tv licence otherwise you can't watch. That's £399 combined!So all the above added comes out at £914 annually(close on £1,000)Of course you can live without tv and the internet. That is a silly amount.

But if you spend a lot of time indoors I suspect life will be quite boring without some entertainment. There is one thing I have managed to think of to avoid some the costs(The choice of channels is not as great)but there is a system recently launched that offers extra tv and radio and you do not pay monthly subscription to watch)so that would save £268 per year. You may not feel as though you are losing out if you switch to the new system. And it appears if you have a dish already erected all you change is the receiver box. That still means an outlay for the equipment. Too much for some.

But I find myself(as a friend North Star in the States has made clear)where tv is king, he manages without a tv. TV often gives us a glimpse of a lifestyle many of us will never experience so I do not feel connected to those I am watching. If you are not careful you start to dislike many of those you see as you feel they are flaunting their wealth at you. Are they any happier, I wonder.

I find that I am less interested in tv. I'd be more likely to miss my radio. I would like to keep access to the internet and radio if I could and worry if they can afford to keep the heating on or feed themselves? Many end up living in one room, usually the bedroom and staying in bed to keep warm.

I hate to say it, it sounds mercenary, I know if I outlive my Mum, I can see myself living a basic life like I have described. Staying in one room etc...Not much to look forward to.

It may mean I have to have a simple diet and cut out many items that are good for your health because of being on a tight budget and I will have to do more home cooking rather than using prepared dishes. Make more of root vegetables, soups, baked beans etc...basic but good wholesome fare...but with small portions I should still be able to have a varied choice and survive, so my food intake may not change too much. They survived on such food during the World War and came to no harm.

The worry for many is finding money to replace or repair equipment that fails such as a fridge or a cooker.

And those working are not necessarily any better off, you'll find your wages gobbled up by bills, travelling to and from work etc...as mentioned earlier. So you work but back home any benefits may be hard to see. You could actually be out of pocket.

There is another bill being proposed today to try to get low income families to save for the future but again if you are on a low income surely it's difficult to save because you are on a low income. And if you save...when you need help, they will probably say, you've saved too much so are not entitled to help.

I said this somewhere else, in some ways I can see why people buy property and once purchased it is great not having to pay out a weekly rent and say this is mine but house prices are so high and commitment is so long(usually decades) you may find that you cannot afford to get your foot on the ladder, if you do, jobs and income is not guaranteed for life and what happens? You may find your home repossessed and no roof over your head.

You can't take it with you when you leave this world or your investment may be tied up in some legal wrangle with family if you have any, possibly having to be used to keep you in a home or given up to the Government.

I am more inclined to follow the European model which is more popular where many buildings are rented out at reasonable rates, tenants are allowed greater freedom to alter the property whilst they live there. Most of the UK population seems caught up in debt and have worries for years.

I never thought I would say this, I always said I would want to live as long as I possibly can, I don't want to leave any quicker than my allotted time, I have been fortunate to have a lovely childhood, seen some wondrous events in history and lived through exciting times but with all the new ideas, the talk of climate change etc...I think that I am glad not to be being born into the world I see evolving around me and I am happy to be older and missing many of the plans being thought up for our young to face. I see the gap between the rich and poor still widening.

We need money to live and yet for many I think it can bring many problems. You need to be roughly in a position where you do not have worry about being able to pay the bills and have enough to be comfortable but many are on low incomes and/or trying to live on hand outs(and do everything right)or have an obscenely amount of money that you'll never spend. It's easy to stray into the wrong section.

Both will give you worries. The only hope is that the person who is "Rich" puts their wealth into some charitable work and has made arrangements for others to benefit. That they do not forget where their roots lay. I can perhaps see more than ever why some people who follow certain religions voluntarily give up some their income to good causes. I'm generalising(and have no proof really for what I say)other than what I hear in the media and charities but it is said those who have the least usually give the most.