Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Money, money, money

I find that this on/off dying malarkey pays havoc with budgeting. Not that I was ever that good at it and am definitely of the any excuse for a splurge, let's close our eyes to the consequences, school of economics. I was quite enjoying the pensioner's plight of living off a daily pittance, well about £40 to be exact which should be manageable even with my psyche. I kept a daily tally and loved the days when we only reached about £2.45. And then the cancer man said you might only have a year, go and have a good time. So off we went and blasted about £6K of our savings on hedonism Italian style and then we thought better hold off, and then they found the lumps in my leg, liver and lymphs and so off we went again, eating our way around the Dordogne and buying the odd small library and another few thousand went the way of all flesh. Now the xray has come up trumps and so it's back to watching the pennies. Boom and bust Trainor style; I may start taking lessons from the heartless Messrs Osborne and Armstrong and cut, cut, cut; but frankly I prefer to spend, spend, spend and do my small bit to boost the economy, and my morale, while I can still taste, walk and wonder.

Friday, August 27, 2010


Well it was no fun coming back, well not after leaving Sam and Julie's it wasn't. Our friends Julie and Harry, who also have a house in France, stopped over as well and we had feasting and lots of very cheeky conversation. I saw the latest scans of the twins including a very super willy on Foetus A, I think it was, both are boys we now know and that is no surprise as girls are very few and far between in our family. I am beginning to feel sorry for Foetus B, he is smaller and more hidden and I love him to bits.

England was cold, wet, noisy, crowded and traffic riddled and if it hadn't been quite nice to snuggle under the duvet last night and to see Harry and Danny earlier I would be ready to sink the whole place.

Today saw sunshine, if a lot weaker than in the Dordogne, and good news from the oncologist. It was only an xray, not a scan which shows up the full story, but on the xray you couldn't see any blobs at all and he was pleased and said I could have another two months off- repreive! - till the end of October when we will have a proper scan. So I am pleased too, of course, even though in my heart I know an xray can't really see enough of me, the bits it saw looked a lot better for now.

We will probably go back to lovely Maumont quite soon, once I have had my family fix and tidied up the garden. You don't need a scan there to see massive growth of unwanted items and I will be pulling them up with renewed enthusiasm.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Back to reality

The last of our visitors has gone and we are now into the last week of our stay here. Next Wednesday I have to go back to Britain, see my oncologist on Friday after he has looked at my chest via an xray and we will then find out how leio is behaving. I feel Ok, my leg is no worse but neither is it any better. I have a bit of a cough but not as bad as it has been, I am eating like a horse but then I always did. One of my big toe nails is hanging off and that is the worst of my problems at the moment. That and the worry that this might be the best summer I will ever have now, we always knew this might be the case which is why we have worked so hard to make sure it was fantastic. And it has been, I have read a lot of amazing books and a couple of duds. Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver is my favourite read of 2010 so far, I enjoyed One Day by David Nicholls, The Help by Kathryn Stockett and A Gate at the Stairs by Lorrie Moore. Others have not made their mark and I still have a small shelf to get through. I have eaten some fantastic meals cooked by Michelin chefs and some by bigger stars in my own family, even a few cooked by myself and we have lazed, laughed, sung and danced in glorious sunshine and drizzly rain. My hair is growing back and friends say I look like Julie Driscoll (well she must be getting on a bit now too!)

I want to come back very soon, I don't want to have to start being injected with poison again, to have my energy sapped and my enjoyment prospects dimmed. Leio get on your bike will you and let me make this summer just the first of many boozy, basky, beautiful ones to come.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Unwelcome visitors

No it's not you or you two; humanoid visitors this summer to our little French house have all been charming and have lifted my spirits. But we have a very sweet and very unwelcome visitor. A chubby, and extremely pretty mouse. I saw her/him a few weeks ago and fell instantly in love, don't know why. So we left well alone, but then Stewart saw him/her and found that he/she had been eating our flour and crapping on our furniture. I utilised my newly returned energy levels and cleaned out the food cupboards yesterday, only to find a nest in an opened packet of popping corn that Jess thought was a good idea to buy maybe last year or the year before. I chucked out all the old half eaten packets and washed the cans and bottles, bleached the round roundy thing that the previous owner had put in the kitchen units to store food on and then stood back and admired my shiny clean world. BUT quelle horreur this morning more mouse droppings on the carousel so we have been off to buy poison to kill my new love and his/her family and friends.

What that will do to my karma I can ony imagine.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

All done and dusted

A few months ago when the idea of the family helping Sam and Julie to move was mooted, I said yes great if I feel well enough and here we are now back in home number 2 in South West France having successfully moved them lock, stock and barrel, although the barrel was empty by the time we left. I felt perfectly fit, relatively perfectly fit that is. And while I can't say I did that much to contribute to the move, on Day 2 when I got up and straightened a few books, plumped a few cushions and picked up a scrap of paper, Joe got the vac out and voila the room was transformed into a thing of beauty. It is a beautiful house, all wood panelling and Minton tiled floors, ceiling roses and those enormous double doors you see in bourgeois French houses.

Harry and Danny tazzed around it with great joi de vivre making us all imagine the twins doing the same thing in a couple of years time. Although two years seems an enormous stretch for poor time limited me. As Jess and Julie filled the bookcases on Saturday night to much banter and hilarity, and as my boys who used to spend hours talking about the relative merits of amps or cry baby wa wa pedals discussed drill bits with their father with equal enthusiasm, I imagined this all going on without me there. After all what did I contribute? - very little other than the odd quip or giggle so maybe it will all continue and not be ripped apart. And maybe, just maybe I will be well enough to go and help Julie when the twins arrive and be there when they career around the lovely hall and through the gorgeous doors and send all our hearts to our collective mouths as they make their attempt on the summit of the two sets of stairs.