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Monday, 8 February 2016

Stroke or old age?

When driving the car I seem to drive less fast than I did. To me, 50mph seems more like 60mph or faster. It is as if the world seems faster to me, at least on the roads. Also, I seem much slower doing things these days. I put these down to my stroke 2.5 years ago, but I guess I am getting older and slower.  At 67 I don't think of myself as very old though.

When our children were little we had a family joke about drivers with hats. There seemed a high correlation between drivers with hats and slow, doddery drivers. We put this down to age (most hat wearers were old) and maybe they started driving before the driving test became compulsory?

Anyway, I guess I am looked at as "a hat" these days,  even though I don't wear a hat to drive! Ho hum!

Friday, 5 February 2016

Kaifeng Scroll

There has been a fascinating TV programme narrated by Michael Wood about the history of China. I was particularly interested in the Kaifeng scroll  of the Sung dynasty.  Nearly 1000 years ago a Chinese artist created a massive scroll showing the capital city (of 1 million people even then) in immense detail. The scroll has been recreated with moving people and animals in a museum in Shanghai.

See .

Whatever your views on China today, it certainly has a rich history, much if it unknown in the West.


Today we visited the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge and had a very nice meal at a cafe at the URC church just down the road. Cafe prices were very good, as was the food. All the cafe staff are volunteers and many have mental disabilities.

The Fitzwilliam has some famous exhibits.  It is funny how one takes this wonderful city for granted. People travel half way around the world to see sites we can see every day if we want, for nothing. I am sure a visitor would love Cambridge.

Thursday, 4 February 2016

East Anglian weather

Our village green in winter
Some have been forecasting a very cold winter here. So far, we have had very little frost and lots of dull,wet days. The ground here in East Anglia is wetter than I can ever recall. If we do get a cold snap, this will be the first real snow here for several years. I'd say our weather is changing. East Anglia used to be cold and dry, but not any more.

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Stroke and poor voice

Today and in December I had appointments with probably the 2 best speech consultants in the UK. Sadly, both said the same - there is little wrong with my voicebox (both put cameras down my throat through my nose) and, as I have a neurological problem, there is nothing they can do for me. I hope my voice does improve, albeit slowly, but I guess I have to come to terms with the possibility that my voice might be poor for ever. There are things I can do to improve the situation - I cannot tell when my diction is poor or I am speaking too quietly (to me it sounds loud enough!) - so I need to work on these! Not long ago I was told I might never eat again and I proved them wrong. Let us hope I prove them wrong about my voice too.


Our son and daughter-in-law gave us an amaryllis for Christmas, which we potted in early January. After a slow start, it has shot up and will probably be in flower in the next week. There are 2 flower heads, one looks ahead of the other. The smaller flower head is around the other side. We turn the plant every day so it grows as straight as possible. It is on our kitchen table.

See .

Tuesday, 2 February 2016


On Mondays I travel into and out of Cambridge on the bus for my U3AC course. As a boring old f**t (BOF) I have a new hobby - "like" spotting. A teenage girl got on the bus and she said "like" 52 times in 2 miles. As a BOF I said nothing, you know what I mean like.