Tuesday 11th June 2024 – I’M NOT FED UP

Not on today’s food anyway.

Having had a discussion with my specialist guy who handed me a leaflet telling me to avoid inter alia potatoes in a hospital that publishes that "Les diététiciennes prendront en compte les indications et prescriptions médicales et vous proposeront un repas adapté à votre état de santé." for lunch I had mashed potato, and for tea I had … mashed potato.

And that’s it. Nothing else.

There was a helping of soup and bread at tea, some strawberries and melon at lunch, and with my bread and jam for breakfast that has been it.

It wouldn’t surprise me if prisoners at Auschwitz and Belsen had more calories in a day than I have had today. Never mind the “following your dietary needs according to your health programme”.

Considering that physically I’m feeling much more “like it” at the moment, I have had a wretched, lousy day today and none of it has been health-related which is a surprise.

Anyway, yesterday evening I was pretty much left alone. No-one bothered me and I spent a good couple of hours simply reading a few articles on the internet. Once more, it was late when I went to bed – getting on for 23:30 in fact. Not that it matters much because I’ve given up all track of time here.

It did however matter at about 01:55. That was when the Air-Sea Rescue helicopter came in to land with a patient. And as regular readers of this rubbish will recall, it’s an odds-on certainty that my hospital room is going to be right by the helicopter landing pad.

Mind you, the Air-Sea Rescue helicopter makes enough noise to awaken the dead in the cemetery up the road so I suppose that it doesn’t make much difference where my room is here.

Nevertheless, the amount of noise had disturbed me to such an extent that I couldn’t go back to sleep for ages. And just as I finally managed to begin to drift off to sleep round about 04:30 the blasted thing started up again and took off

And believe me – it makes twice as much of a racket when it’s taking off as it does when it’s coming in to land.

Any thought of sleep was totally flattened after that. I just shrugged my shoulders and curled up under the blankets. There wasn’t much else I could do.

Round about 06:30 a nurse came in to take my temperature and blood pressure

"What? No diabetes test?" I asked
"Not today" she said on leaving. So I curled up under the blankets again where I had been nice and comfortable.

Two minutes later, just I was drifting off into a dazed semi-stupor, the door to my room burst open
"Seeing as you’re awake we’ll give you the diabetes test."

Anyway, the score was 0.78, just below the lower limit of 0.80 so I was able to blag a free glass of orange juice. There have to be some benefits in all of this.

At some point shortly thereafter I must finally have gone to sleep because suddenly two nursing auxiliaries burst into the room to make my bed. It was 08:30 and that was the best sleep that I’d had up to that point.

You won’t be interested in what I told them but it had the effect of telling them to go away and come back later.

After breakfast and while my room was being tidied I was squeezed into the far corner of the bathroom washing my clothes and then I had another glorious piping-hot shower followed by the clean clothes out of the rucksack. I’ve no idea how long I’m going to profit from the exclusive use of this room so I want to make the most of it.

The doctor came round with his handy little leaflet. I pressed him on the food issue (and now that I’ve read it I shall press him further on the issue) but he told me that he was pretty powerless in this respect. Nevertheless, by the time that I finished, he was under no misapprehension about how I was feeling.

His opinion is that if all goes well and the blood test results are good I might be able to go home tomorrow. So in the course of conversation I happened to mention the 25 steps (and no lift) up to my font door.

He was taken aback and genuinely horrified. He asked how I accomplished it so I explained.
"You can’t do that!" he ejaculated.

So now there’s some talk about Convalescence. But …

  1. I’ve heard talk like this before
  2. It’s not going to do any good – in the sense of helping me go upstairs
  3. I’d rather face the 25 Steps than any more of the food that I’m having right now

While he was here I asked him about seeing a physiotherapist and a dietician, but I have the feeling that I’ll be lucky ….

After he had left I managed a couple of hours of my Welsh class, with just a couple of interruptions to liven up the proceedings

After the class and my mashed potato, I transcribed the dictaphone notes. And listening to the helicopter in the background coming in to land, I wasn’t wrong about the racket because I could hardly hear myself speak. But anyway what I dictated was that I was awoken by the Air Sea Rescue helicopter bringing a casualty into the hospital at 01:55. I’d been dreaming of something going on with the Spanish Revolution about a girl who had befriended a Spaniard. She had for some reason wanted a dictaphone so she’d gone to Argos but they didn’t have what exactly she wanted but she knew a local store that had one so she sent the Argos one back and went to the local store which was next to another store that she wanted to visit so she did the two visits in one trip. She then went on a long cross-country drive, all the way across to the other side of the country from where she was, with her dictaphone to go to meet her officer boyfriend for whatever reason she wanted. There was much more to it than this but the helicopter awoke me and most of it vanished.

And if you are wondering about the significance of this dream, don’t worry because so am I. It means nothing to me and rings no bells at all.

This afternoon I’ve not done much. Just read a few articles and sent another stinking mail to the hospital. Someone from the hospital rang me but it was a different department ringing about an accounting issue.

But I’m continuing my attack on the hospital administration, knowing full well that being in charge of the food, they are in the chair here and pull all the strings. It might make me feel better, my outpouring of vitriol, but it’s ultimately to no real purpose. It reminds me of Pyrrus Of Epirus (After The Battle Of Asculum) and his famous "If we are victorious in one more battle with the Romans, we shall be utterly ruined"

After what passes for tea Rosemary rang me to continue our conversation from the other night. She’s off on her travels next week, to a marriage in Italy. All these things that I’m missing. We had a good time on THE GOOD SHIP VE … errr … OCEAN ENDEAVOUR going across from Aberdeen to Greenland when she had to go home and I carried on

Right now though I’m going to carry on to bed. But talking about the helicopter awakening the dead reminds me when I was going to have my spleen removed, and I was offered the choice of two venues in Montlucon for it to be undertaken.

My choice wasn’t made on clinical grounds but on the fact that the one that I turned down, its back wall was the back wall of the local cemetery. I had visions of secret tunnels between the two along which they dragged the surgical failures, or heaving lifeless cadavers over the back wall under cover of darkness.

Honestly, I couldn’t go to sleep for a week.

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