Slow down

Why has it taken so long before I figured out that I only had to say slow down. When the lady from the hospital phoned to make the appointment for my treatment she was speaking too fast.

I actually asked her to slow down. I explained that I am partially deaf and needed her to speak slower. Which she was happy to do. The conversation was much easier for me to understand. Very often, and my husband is guilty of this, people think that because I have a hearing impairment they need to increase the volume. Sometimes that is the case but usually I can hear them but my brain has to translate what it’s hearing. If someone is talking too fast my brain can’t keep up and it sounds like a foreign language.

When I say slow down I don’t mean speak in an exaggerated slow speech. Just speak normally but not too fast. If we are talking in person please make sure you are facing me and don’t cover your mouth. It is so annoying when people talk to me when facing away or in another room. Equally (I had a supervisor who did this) talking with their hand partially covering their mouth.

Wearing face coverings in the last year hasn’t helped. Stupidly I find myself wanting to remove my mask in order to properly hear what is being said. As if that helps!

Yes I have not one but 2 hearing aids. I don’t wear them as much as I should. In many situations they don’t help as they magnify all the sounds around me but don’t help with conversation. I tend to wear them more to listen to the TV.

Thats another bug bear for me. Why can’t everyone on TV have their microphone on the same volume. I can be watching something and hear one person clearly but not others.

In the days when I had control over what to watch on TV, I kept the TV controller to hand. If it was a commercial channel I would have to turn the volume down for the adverts but up again for the program.

Is it just me ? When I listen to music I find that a lots of the music over the last couple of decades I have no idea what they are singing. The words are not clear enough for me. When I hear Will Young singing leave right now I hear the words Pooh Bear right now. There are several songs where I hear the lyrics incorrectly. Those are only the songs I can hear distinct words. Many songs are a jumble of nonsense with the occasional word decipherable.

That reminds me. Recently I tried to use the word tenterhooks. Only I had never seen it written down and always believed it to be tender hooks until a friend pointed it out to me.

Tonight on a question of sport (TV sports quiz game) one of the sections was about sports personalities whose surname began with the letter G. I heard E. For this reason I have s tendency to use the phonetic alphabet when telling someone my email address or post code even my name sometimes. Just ensure they get it right. I also using it to check that I have heard something right.

I’m pretty sure one reason I prefer to communicate with written words is so that there is no misunderstanding what I am hearing/reading.

Not on my neck!

I missed the start of the item on the news so I only caught the end of it. A lady was speaking about not wearing polo neck jumpers. It was something about her neck. At first I thought she had had her thyroid removed. As the news item continued I became confused. The journalist was talking about domestic violence.

I have never claimed to be a victim of domestic violence. I was a victim of emotional abuse/coercive control. However during our divorce, (a time when we still lived in the same house for 7 excruciating months). He thought it was funny to put his hands around my neck on an almost daily occurrence. He didn’t use pressure, he never left any marks.

He was aware that I didn’t like anything around my neck so he used it as a form of mental torture.

I hadn’t given it much thought in the last 15 years but having said that it does limit my choice in clothing. I can’t wear anything with a high neckline. Anything that is anywhere near my neck and I start to panic.

15 years later we are friends now. It helps having two grandchildren in common. He was here (as our support bubble) for coffee and a chat this morning. We don’t talk about the bad times. However I don’t think I will ever wear a high necked top/jumper again. Just thinking about it gives me the shivers.

Needles

For months now during this pandemic the news has been full of vaccines. Whether it is about which vaccines have been approved, how many have been administered or the different priority groups. Lately it has also been about Britain versus EU vaccine availability. I’m sick of it!

It isn’t so much the news that I’m sick of but the images shown on tv.

You see for me watching the news has become a thing of torture. I know I am not alone in this. I have a needle phobia. I don’t mind the talk about immunisations. It is the many many images of needles going into arms. Why do politicians and journalists even have to say ‘jabs into arms’? Why can’t they talk about vaccinations without saying it that way. Why do they insist on showing film of needle going into arms. It just isn’t necessary.

I’ve had enough, we all know what a vaccine looks like. We all know that it involves a needle. Over the years I have had many many needles in my arms and hands. That’s ok, so long as I don’t have to do it or even look.

Please please can they stop showing it. just talk about it don’t show and and don’t call it jabs in arms.

It saw me and didn’t care

Last week I noticed that the bag of bird food by the back door had been nibbled at. I bought some mouse poison, the same as I had used back in the early spring. A few days ago I saw something out of the corner of my eye falling out of the fireplace. I put the mouse poison box on the fire place. Each morning I have crept about looking for any dead mice. Nothing! I have moved it to the same place as last time we had mice.

I have purchased a metal Bird food container. It actually looks quite cute. That will stop them stealing the food I buy for the birds.

This morning to my surprise I saw a mouse run from the fire place towards my mum (who is totally oblivious). A moment later I saw a mouse peering at me from behind a stack of books on the fireplace. I don’t know if this is the same one or a second one. He/she looked at me looking at it and calmly ran across the room and under the sofa.

I’m not going to look for it, I’m not that brave. I am stunned that I didn’t scream and climb onto the furniture. I have put down more poison, granuals this time. Time will tell but I won’t be able to relax until I know they have gone.

mouse

Unlike many of my friends I am not bothered by spiders but I am terrified of rodents of any kind. My instinct is to seal up the room and never go back in there again until I am sure we are free of mice. I know I can’t do that. My Mum who is disabled spends most of her time in her special riser armchair. She is aware that I thought I saw a mouse last week.

Before I left my husband we had mice in our house for a while. He used the little nipper mouse traps. I can’t use those as a) I am terrified of getting my finger caught in them. b) I wouldn’t be able to remove the dead creature (if it was successful in catching any).

This time it is up to me to deal with. I’m not happy about it but so it goes.

It’s a wrap

Feeling rather weak after my delivery round whilst suffering from a rotten cold, I am beginning to get my appetite back. I fancied making a cheese and beetroot sandwich providing that the bread I bought last week hasn’t gone off.

Surprisingly when I got home my husband was sat in the kitchen watching tv and drinking beer. He made me a cup of tea for which I  am grateful, and said he had bought me some lunch. I was then presented with a plate containing a wrap. I so appreciate the effort but when he told me it was my favourite I was excited to eat a mexican chicken wrap. What I found in front of me was southern fried chicken. We have been together for over 6 years, surely by now he must know that I never ever eat southern fried chicken of any description from any source.

I have lost count of the number of times we have discussed which wraps I like and which I don’t. I would rather he didn’t bother, than get it wrong every time.

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Boxes

Today I am thinking about boxes.

Today Statto and Miss Effervescence are moving into their new home together. They will be sharing a flat in London with a friend of Statto’s from school (Skye) and his girlfriend Kat. I hope that the four of them enjoy their new life together in The Big Smoke. I spoke to Statto briefly a few days ago, he was getting quite excited and had done his packing. So I expect that he is now surrounded by boxes. I have had a box of his belongings, in the back of my car for the last year, since he moved into the house he has been sharing with friends for the last year. This box (I have never delved into it to see the contents) contains items (including family photos) that he had with him at University. Statto will be the third out of my four sons to have moved home in the last four weeks.

Today my living/dining room is littered with boxes. But these boxes are different to the ones Statto will have. These are box files. A few months ago I got fed up with our filing system which consisted of piles and piles of papers all over the office. Owl began to sort the papers into piles.Office So one day I gathered up all the piles and filed them into  boxes according to what went together (in my mind).box files There were some things that I didn’t file as they didn’t quite fit any of the categories I had sorted. Owl in the mean time (being a graphic designer by trade) had decided to design labels for the box files. It took him a long time (several months) to get all the graphics exactly how he wanted them. I could never do what he did, I wouldn’t have had the patience to spend so long on it even if I had the know how.

Finally the graphics were completed, with the utmost of care they were then applied to the spine of each box. The boxes were then transferred to the office shelf where I was sent to admire his work. filed The graphics are brilliant but what I hear you ask are the pink heart shaped post it notes stuck on each box? When I looked at the inspired graphics I had to write out my own translation of what should be in each box. Unfortunately, Owl’s idea of what should be in each box didn’t quite tally with mine.

I have been putting off, what I knew would be a mammoth task, checking each box to ensure that they all contained what the label said should be in them.

Because I have advertised my beautiful car for sale. my carwe spent yesterday making sure that all the paperwork was together. Most of it was but we couldn’t find the latest MOT certificate. There were box files on the dining table, coffee table, dining chairs and sofa. One by one I went through each file, whilst Owl went through stacks of loose papers. This was when I discovered that when Owl labelled the boxes he didn’t look inside them. He just stuck labels on random boxes. I don’t think any of the labels had any relevance to the contents. After about four hours the missing MOT certificate was located. It wasn’t in the box file for Car documents or the one for car insurance. It wasn’t in the one for utility bills or the one for bank statements it was in a file marked up for general household things.

At this moment in time I would say that two thirds of our paperwork is now filed properly.  Later after I have finished working in the kitchen and the house is filled with the aromas of bleach and baking, I shall get around to completing the task of filing all our papers so that I can lay my hands on anything easily.

Once this has been achieved the files can go back into the now tidy office which Owl worked on a few days ago. I don’t believe it has been so tidy since we moved in. office Not only can we now see the floor, I can now also see and best of all actually get to my desk.my desk

Now before I do anything else I shall just check what new emails are in my  Inbox. Then I shall be all boxed out.

Text talk

Yesterday evening Pug and Skater were discussing text messages from the other parent.

Apparently he never uses punctuation which makes his messages more difficult to understand. Pug tried reading out his father’s latest text message exactly as it was written. Not only was he out of breath at the end but it still didn’t make a lot of sense. However they had got the gist of what they needed to know. They might be playing golf (pitch and putt) with him one day next week depending on Tony. They don’t know who Tony is but never mind.

Anyway the upshot of this is that I commented that I always use punctuation in my text messages. This was greeted with the response that everybody does. I beg to differ on that one. Some people, and I don’t just mean youngsters, use text speak for any written format. However my sons assure me that all their friends use punctuation and none of them  use ‘text talk’ except for the occasional LOL or FFS or WTF.

I am proud that not only do my boys know how to use the English language as it should be used but they also mix with young men and women who also have a good grasp of our language and don’t abuse its use.

How to for dummies

Today Owl and I had planned to visit our beach retreat. Foolish we may be but to go down there on an inclement day like this would have been beyond stupid. The weather forecaster last night promised atrocious weather and they were not wrong. So this morning laying in bed listening to the wind and rain lashing against our window we made one of our wiser decisions and decided to stay close to home.

However, much as I would have liked to stay indoors, supping hot tea, eating buttery toast and whiling away my time writing and reading blogs I did have to venture out. These kitchen cupboards have not yet learnt how to restock themselves without more than a little help from yours truly. I persuaded Skater to go with me(actually he didn’t need persuading but that sounds better when referring to a “teenager”).

I think it is good for them sometimes to go with us when we shop so that they can see what we go through in the interest of keeping them fed, watered and cleaned. The hour we spent meandering around seemingly aimlessly but in fact in a strict routine. (Owl says I am the only woman he knows who can go shopping without a list). It is when I go off route that I forget things. Turned out to be fairly painless, oh apart from the ever increasing bill at the end that is.

It was on the short drive home that it happened. I have a pet hate, okay so I have several pet hates but this one is the one I am fuming about today. We hadn’t gone very far before I saw one then another quickly followed by two more. In the space of maybe 500 yards I passed 7  yes 7 stupid idiots who have been allowed to drive their cars without fully understanding the concept of poor visibility. Perhaps it should become part of the theory test that they have to take these days.

HOW TO USE THE LIGHTS ON YOUR CAR

Before you use “Mirror, signal and manouvre” please insert. Engage brain and turn on lights when it is raining, especially when heavy enough to have wipers on at full speed.

Why is it that every single time we have bad weather there are hundreds of drivers who do not understand that just because they can see other vehicles it doesn’t mean that we can easily see them.

Does this occur in other countries?