Monthly Archives: November 2015



Well, my weekend away didn’t go quite as planned.

Visiting an European Christmas Market has been on my wish list for a good while. And this weekend I was really looking forward to delving in to the sights, smells and sounds of a Christmas market.

Sadly, Warsaw, I discovered, is not the best place for this experience. It become clear that if the Christmas market did exist, we were too early for it. When we arrived at the hotel and I asked the receptionist where the Christmas Market was, when she replied ‘we don’t have one’, I was instantly reminded of a scene in the Tom Hanks movie, ‘Money Pit’.

I’ve included it for your entertainment!

I laughed just like Tom Hanks at that moment. This continued throughout the weekend as we sort of plunged from disaster to disaster- but it was a good weekend, though not as I imagined.

We were delayed by 3 hours at the airport last night and I was chatting to a man who said he had had the worse weekend of his entire life in Warsaw. His friend got arrested and was still in jail for getting drunk. I was just relieved that the worse thing that happened to me was not getting my fix of cinnamon… I was also pleased that when I was laughing like Tom Hanks I wasn’t arrested under suspicion of being drunk and disorderly!

Thanks for listening. Enjoy the clip! Tom Hanks ‘Money Pit’


A weekend off!


It is 6.30am. I am at the airport. I’m drinking the most expensive tea I’ve had for ages and a skinny muffin- which is not skinny- but is not giant!

Im waiting for my two buddies who I know from Bulgaria- and quite bizarrely I am off to Poland for the weekend. It seemed a good idea when we planned it in the summer!

Ive never been to a Christmas Market. In the spirit of- let’s embrace life- this was booked and here I am.

Min the mean time life has happened. My brother has been very poorly and his prognosis is not good. I’ve lost the sight in one of my eyes and I haven’t felt this stressed in a long time. Readers will know I battle depression on a fairly regular basis but it is not that often that I feel stressed- pain in my chest stressed. Can’t breathe- stressed. But at the moment I do.

I could have cancelled. But I haven’t. I have decided that I will have the weekend off from all the pain and rubbish that I’m swimming in. My friends do not now about my brother or my eye- and I don’t intend to tell them. I’m taking the weeken off!

I am going to do my best to see the sights, smell the smells, taste the tastes of the Christmas market. I am going to consciously be a tourist in every sense of the word. I’m not sure if I will succeed- but I will try. Because I know full well, it will all still be waiting for me when I get back.

My situation at home is not a temporary one. So I have to manage it. My strategy for this weekend is try and breathe and be present. We shall see!

Thanks for listening.

My brother and I


My brother has been in hospital for 7 weeks. 9 weeks very poorly, but was out of hospital for 2 of those weeks. This has included two separate and extended stays in ICU for septic shock. Both times everyone including the Doctors were amazed at him surviving these. My brother has been seriously ill and paralysed for 21 years. Since our mum died 18 years ago, my sister and I have been his primary carers.

We love him. The thought of him dying paralyses me. And somehow, he is still alive.

The challenge for me, is living my own life at the same time.

I am so pleased that I have the challenge of hospital visits and dealing with bureaucracy- because these things mean he is alive. I am not complaining.

I often think, I can look after my brother, and vaguely run a school, try and meet the expectations of my 85 year old neighbour with alzheimers and dementia but looking after myself, gets totally lost in the mix. Unless a friend is feeding me, I either, at best don’t have anything to eat or at worst I am living on take-aways and sometimes a ready meal. I never know if it is ok to go away and see friends- “what if the hospital calls”… my life is dictated by hospital visits and how can I help my sister…

My brother is surviving at best, slowly dying at worse, but I have to live. And how to do that is the current challenge.

Thanks for listening.