Friday, 5 December 2014

Hitting the buffers

`Time to be totally honest – to let everything hang out.

Although I didn't know what was going on until Monday last, I knew there was something wrong with me (and I suspect that after reading last week's blog you too knew all was not well). Ever since I had a heart attack in 1998, I have suffered from angina (the sort you get when you really overdo things but that settles down very quickly when you stop being stupid) and a few alarms and excursions when the old ticker plays up and then you have to sit back and let nature take its course which it does fairly quickly.

However, at the end of October I had a serious moment and was forced to flop into a chair. Naturally I thought this was another of those heart moments and assumed everything would settle down quickly. Not so and I had to spend the rest of the day doing nothing at all (which I find rather difficult). Next day and there were important things to do – and somehow they all got done even though it included carrying eleven boxes of books. By the evening I was shattered.

There were still some things that I had agreed to do the next day (and a blog to write) and again I got through.

Thankfully there was nothing urgent to be done over that weekend and I took everything very easily – confident that come the Monday morning all would be well. But it wasn't. From then onwards instead of feeling better and better I was feeling worse on a daily basis. So it was I went to the doctor last Monday (probably three weeks later than I should have done).

It turns out that I am seriously anaemic – blood count on the floor at 6.8 when it should be over 14 – which explains everything. At first it seemed that I would have to go to hospital for a blood transfusion but then that idea was shelved – the thought of the drive down and then the usual fight to find somewhere to park the car was too much to contemplate. Instead, I promised to take the tablets and to do almost nothing for a few weeks – with the proviso that if I start to feel any worse we hot-foot it to the hospital without delay.

Somehow, and I have no idea how she did it, Marcia found the time to travel to Sidmouth where she was dropping in to meet some of her readers.
(Photo by Chris Smale, the lovely Transworld representative)
I must say that my doctor and all the others involved at our health centre were wonderful. I was seen at ten past eight, had some blood taken at half past ten and the results were through later in the afternoon. I am sure all will be well but I am afraid that this week there will be none of the usual photograghs.

Meanwhile poor Marcia had a filling fall out of one of her teeth and had to undergo treatment yesterday. Her dentist of the last twenty years or thereabouts, Malcolm Bruce, has virtually retired from the practice in order to teach so it was time to put her faith in someone else. As it happened that someone else had been trained by Malcolm himself and all was well although the whole procedure took more or less an hour.

So, what with one thing and another neither of us has got much work done. The copy editing of the next book, the title of which I can now reveal will be Summer on the River has arrived and working through that will be my first job as soon as I am up to it. This story is set in the area covered by my Marcia Willett's Dartmouth with some of the characters living or staying in Dartmouth and one old friend from Forgotten Laughter now living in a cottage at Torcross. I can promise you that working on that manuscript will be a great pleasure. Incidentally, I understand that this book will be published a little earlier next year – probably in August – as it opens during Dartmouth's Regatta week which is at the end of that month.

A quick SOS to my boating chum Roger means that this week you get two dogs for the price of one. Hos Jack Russell, Tilly, staring at her best boy friend known as Chester. Many thanks, Rog.