Tag Archives: work

Day 202

I am writing quickly before going to work on Day 203. After days of heat, sleepless nights, chest infection and various niggling worries, I finally had some quality sleep. More like unconsciousness really, as I spent three hours in a chair dead to the world, even though Julia tried to wake me several times. On finally returning to life it seemed silly to wake myself up by writing so I went straight to bed.

That’s one of the keys to my current sleep pattern, and various other problems. I nap during the evening, wake around ten or eleven, use the computer, wake myself up and end up working until the early hours of the morning. This is bad for brains, blood pressure and weight. It’s not even particularly good for writing as I’m not sure I produce my best stuff at 2am. Mainly I hop from site to site, adding to my store of general knowledge and forgetting what I really mean to do.

This lack of focus is probably the thing I most need to get under control.

Work was warm and stuffy. Phone calls have picked up again – several times I had only just finished one when another came in. A day like that can really slow you down, because it takes longer than you think to adjust your thinking. I was listing a collection of enamel badges – advertising, civil defence, and Yogi Bear all came into the picture, but no sooner did I get into the zone for 1960s kid’s badges when the phone rings with someone wanting a valuation, or wanting to know if we open on Sundays.

Sometimes it can be very difficult to give a polite answer.

Teasel – temporary photo

Photos are just to add some colour, I will add new photos when I get home tonight.

Day 198

It was quiet this morning as I dropped Julia off. The final roundabout of the journey is usually quite busy and can have a queue stretching back up to 400 yards. On average it is probably about 200 yards. With cars taking up about 6 yards that’s 30 cars. I really must try to count them one morning. Today, however, there were four. It wasn’t really a queue at all.

We were short handed in the shop because one of us had been visiting his mother and the trains weren’t running back to Nottingham. My observation that when I have car trouble I get a taxi, didn’t go down well. Anyway, at 1am we went home. We had packed 14 parcels, had no customers and had not even had a phone call. it’s like the whole world has gone into hibernation.

Tonight, as I struggled with telephone banking again, I had a text telling me not to go in tomorrow unless we find ourselves flooded with orders. due to eBay’s new policy of wanting to use One Time Passcodes I now find I can’t log in to the work system. That’s the beauty of modern technology – always altering to make life more difficult.

When I rang the bank tonight I couldn’t complete the security protocol because I couldn’t remember my “significant date”. I haven’t a clue what I chose 25 years ago. I t wouldn’t be my birthday because that would be too simple. It wouldn’t be my wedding anniversary because I have never been able to remember it.

There are other questions that they could have asked, but I had to be transferred to someone else to “be taken through security another way”. Sounds ominous, doesn’t it?

It consisted of asking me how much money I had in my account, what I bought when I last used my debit card (it was eight days ago – I couldn’t remember) and various other tricky questions . . .

I have to go now. As I type, I’m listening to two poets talking about poetry and I am losing the will to live.

Day 183

Last night, whilst browsing the internet, I found an interesting documentary on Wilko Johnson. His music may not appeal to you, but I think his story and personality may do, despite any musical differences. It’s called Oil City Confidential but I can’t find the link at the moment. It features music, poetry and the story of a man who was told he had just ten months to live because of inoperable cancer. As it turned out, he had a rare operable cancer and survived. I offer this as proof that there is interesting stuff on the internet if you can get through all the kitten videos.

Work was a little busier than average, with people coming to buy a variety of things. It always feels more like a shop when people come to buy stuff. When it’s just eBay we might as well be in a warehouse. Though if we were in a warehouse I wouldn’t have things falling on my head when we open the cupboard doors.

As a note for that mythical PhD student who will, one day, use my blog as a guide to life in 2022 – these are the edited highlights. The reality involves much more snoozing in front of TV and staring into space than the posts suggest. Of course, by then the life of a student will probably be so sanitised that drinking caffeine and driving a car will be seen as dreadful acts of self-destruction. Or, as they type in an underground bunker, my use of fossil fuels will be seen as part of the global warming process that produced the desert on “The Surface”, as they will call it . . .

Day 158

Only a few parcels today, but the calls and a steady stream of customers kept us busy. The owner rang this morning – he got his holiday plans confused and tells me he won’t be returning until Thursday. This is a nuisance because it means I am needed in the shop on Thursday, the day I had planned for a trip out with Number Two Son.  He has to cram a lot in to his UK trip – sightseeing, friends and parents – and things are tight regarding time. We will open the shop as usual on Thursday and close early so that we can get the bulk of a day’s work done and still have time for a trip around the Peak District.

Fortunately the weather forecast for Thursday is warm, sunny and generally dry. It is quite wet at the moment and has been colder than usual. In fact we both thought about putting the fire on last night, as it was a touch autumnal.

Rang for an appointment for a blood test today – I have made a mess of the organisation, due to the Bank Holiday, but got a time for my INR (Warfarin test). It seems I can’t book the other test at the same time. I have done before, and when I asked if the system had changed, was ignored by the receptionist, who seemed to be doing something else at the same time. She says I will have to ask the nurse if she can fit it in as a favour. It only involves an extra tube of blood once the have the needle in , and presumably an extra form to fill in, but they have refused before when I have asked.

At other times they have taken samples I didn’t realise were due, so they can fit them in when they want to. It’s another sign that the NHS is returning to normal after the trials of Covid. I can’t see that it’s efficient for them to drag people down for two separate appointments, and it definitely isn’t efficient, or convenient for me to go down twice when once would do.

However, I won’t go on.

Reading that back, I have become aware that the blog as a diary of my trials and tribulations, revolves round a small number of grievances with the world. I might try to convert to being one of those thought-provoking bloggers that always has a subject to discuss, preferably one that doesn’t involve doctors.

 

 

Day 8

Up late, quick breakfast and off to work. Still first to arrive. Got a parking space, though customers from the hairdressers had used the spaces in front of the shop and parked two cars in three spaces. As usual, fought off the urge to park in front of the hairdresser and see how they like it.

We packed the parcels, I put two medallions on (one an Alcan medallion which features the Kitimat smelting plant and the Kemano power plant. It’s all very interesting, and proves, once more, the benefits of collecting for expanding the mind.

During the morning Julia texted to tell me I had a small package. At first I thought she was just being generally disparaging about my physical attributes, but further reading revealed that the Post Office had delivered a small package for me at the house. It just goes to show how modern written communications can be misunderstood.

Today was my day to have a half day, so I went home at 1am. For lunch we had the last of the Spiced Sweet Potato soup followed by the leftover vegetable stew and red cabbage from the last two days. For tea we had potato and paneer curry. I am now made up of such a high percentage of vegetables that a vegetarian cannibal could eat me without troubling his conscience.

This state of affairs won’t last – I’m planning on eggs and bacon for breakfast

and a roasted gammon joint for tea. We put two gammon joints in the freezer in case the reported possibility of Christmas food shortages became real, but they didn’t. Experience shows that if we leave them in there we will forget about them, so we are going to start eating them as part of a determined freezer clearance exercise.

 

 

Random Jottings

I’m not quite ready to report on Sunday in its entirety, though I will get round to it in a day or two.

The driving went OK, helped considerably by a knee brace. I suffered a little last night, but the knee recovered as I slept and wasn’t too bad today.

Had my dressing changed this morning and progress is looking good – new skin forming and I’m hopeful that another week should see things just about healed.

Then I had a pneumonia vaccination, which was a surprise, as I didn’t think I could have one until I was 65. It’s always nice to get something for nothing.

Went to work and did another half day without a problem. Planning to do full days on Thursday and Saturday.The return to work is going quite well.

Adjusted my seating arrangements at home. I’m no longer putting my leg up, but this puts less strain on my knee, so it’s a good trade off. I have a telephone consultation booked with a physiotherapist on Friday to discuss this further.

The return to writing is not progressing quite as well as I had hoped, but it is progressing, even if it is very slow.

Asked my uncle about the day the school was bombed when I saw him on Sunday. It had occurred to me that although I knew my Mum had been there, my uncle and one of my aunts must also have been there. He was there, so I have another note to add to the family history.

Number One son reports that he is a little stiff from doing the Great North Run yesterday and that his time was in the top 5.000. As I’m a little stiff from just sitting in the car, I wouldn’t mind swapping with him. I’d be happy to be in the first 50,000.

Tried a few photos when I got home, but mostly blurred by a mix of wind and poor photography.

Teasel

 

 

By these baubles…

Yesterday, after posting, I had another note from WP, congratulating me on four successive days posting.. It’s only in the last few weeks that I’ve had a run of failing to post on time, prior to that I had some quite lengthy runs. I’m wondering what happens when we put the clocks back. It’s either then or when we put them forwards (I can never work it out) that my posting record becomes patchy. It’s nothing to do with me, but all the posts within an hour of midnight seem to stop registering on the right day. The first time I noticed it I’d strung months of continuous posting together and it suddenly disappeared.

Will WP send me a note telling me that they have recalculated? That would be a laugh. For people like Derrick and Tootlepedal, who both seem to possess metronome DNA, I’m sure they have hundreds of consecutive days. My efforts hardly count next to their long, photo-filled and extremely regular posts. They should be getting gold medals, not just notes with a blue drawing.

I’m now conflicted, do I now miss a day to show my disdain for the system or do I carry on regularly so that WP can pat me on the head for being a good boy?

I will ponder this question as I publish this post, get a new email and sit in the latest set of Saturday roadworks. They are working on the ring road and there seems to be a new delay every Saturday, It’s the only day of the week I go directly to work instead of dropping Julia off first, and it’s a little annoying to sit in a queue on what should be a quiet and easy journey.

Ah well, compared to the abyss of unemployment it’s better to be delayed than out of work.

The title comes from Napoleon Bonaparte – “You call these baubles, well, it is with baubles that men are led…”

WP obviously feels the same. When he said baubles he meant the Legion d’Honneur, rather than Christmas decorations. That’s the medal on the red ribbon at the far right of the header picture.

Time Passing

I realised on Sunday evening, as I sat by the fire watching TV, that it was the first time in about a month that I have not noticed any pain. It’s very relaxing. I now need to make sure, as much as I can, that this continues. I can’t do much about  the weather but I can make sure I lose some weight, do my hand exercises and order the pills in plenty of time.

That was about all I did during the afternoon, as the promise of the morning faded. We had stir-fried vegetables for tea and watched Miss Marple. After that I read a few more blogs and went to bed. Life is less fun since I had to start working Mondays again.

It became even less fun when I actually arrived at work after dropping Julia off. We had one parcel of 14 items to send to Australia and one of eight items to send to Canada. IN addition there were invoices, queries, offers and fourteen other parcels to send. At one point, I started to swell up like the Incredible Hulk. I couldn’t find several of the bits I wanted, things have been moved since the last time I looked at them and time was pressing. Just as I was about to ask for help in locating several of the pieces, a customer came in without an appointment. It would be unprofessional of me to offer an opinion of either his parentage or the lonely existence suffered by his two brain cells, but if it were an international event he really could bore for England.

I have  a deadline looming in six days, and nothing fit to send. Another is lurking behind that one and then there are a couple of extras I have slotted in. There are more in May.

Have you noticed that the year is nearly a third over and, having been on hold for lockdown, I have done nothing that I had planned outside writing. Writing is OK, and I enjoy it, but I really did want to get more work done around the house and garden.

Oh dear, Spring has only just started and I am in a panic about time passing. Strangely, I can calm my fears by playing games on the computer, this feeling better whilst, in fact, making the problem worse. Life is strange.

We had pizza and salad for tea tonight – reasonably easy to prepare as we bought the pizzas ready made and just added a few fresh veg. It was made even pleasanter for me because Julia prepared it. I am a lucky man.

Early to Bed…

My new health regime, which consists mainly of going to bed at a sensible time and turning down offers of a second slice of cake, have paid off – I’m already feeling a lot better than I was at the start of the week.

Today turned out to be another busy day. The sales promotion has not only brought a surge in sales but an avalanche of enquiries – many of which are time consuming and lead nowhere. However, like many things, you have to sift through to find the nuggets and as one of the queries led to a £275 sale, it was worth the sifting.

Nothing else of note happened during the day. I watched a little TV, snoozed and ate stir-fried vegetables for tea. I’ve also been going through magazines of Readly. I’ve managed a bird watching magazine, two writing magazines, the TLS and an art magazine tonight. Not bad for a monthly subscription that is the equivalent of buying two magazines. OK, so I only browsed the last two as I wasn’t feeling very intellectual, but it’s still good value.

If anyone is doing ab thesis on the life of an average middle-aged man in the early 21st century – this is it. This what I spent 60 years training for – a life of quiet mediocrity and vegetables. I always wanted to be rich and famous and eat steak…

I had an article sent to my email about the cherry trees in Washington DC – very interesting. I like cherry trees. My Mum and Dad had several and when Julia’s Mum died the village planted a cherry tree in memory of her contribution to the local community., so they have always ben part of my life. Of course, now that I write poetry in Japanese forms I am virtually obliged to write about them.

I seem to be deficient in cherry blossom pictures, so you will have to make do with apple blossom.

Spring in the Mencap Garden

A Cunning Plan produces Dividends

I have watched too much TV tonight and only have 32 minutes to post. That blocks out a thoughtful and well-reasoned post, a properly researched post and even a soup review. A proper review with three or four photos to load will be pushing it.

We had a hectic day at work – the boss found a button which allows him to offer discounts to people who are watching our lots on ebay. He spent the morning knocking 8% off prices and provoked a flurry of buying. We had eleven orders today – nine as a result of the discount campaign, and now have eleven others waiting to be packed. It’s all very well selling, but we need to get some new stuff on. By the time we’d finished packing, dealing with queries and answering the phone, there wasn’t any time left for other things.

However, it is nice to be busy.

My day wasn’t helped by having a bad back. I woke up at about 5am with my back in spasm and couldn’t get back to sleep.  After a while I knew I wasn’t going to get back to sleep so I got up. It was 6.28 and the clock wa set for ^.30 so it wasn’t a great sacrifice. The plan was to be having a blood test by about 7.15 but I moved so slowly I wasn’t even ready to leave the house by then, Better luck tomorrow, I hope.

Oh dear, midnight has caught me. I’ll still keep it short though, as I need to gett o bed.