So where's the snow?

Muddling through in Austria; God, life and a small black dog


A photo


This photo, was so moving that I asked Cee Neuner if I could use it.  It’s of a 90-year-old lady who hadn’t been on a horse for 50 years, so it’s really a happy shot but it makes me feel sad.

So many themes in my life, I’m questioning, wondering about, feeling sad, angry and confused.

My decision to walk away from horses as there was no future here with them for me-is that time really over? If I rode again, would I be a bundle of nerves and have to start all over again?

My own childhood was filled with  seeing the effects of ageing on my Grandmother, her stroke and dementia, the constant battle between her and my mother. Having to decide to hate one and love the other. Seeing my own mother die from what for her was the most humiliating form of cancer. Consequently being unable to handle friends growing old and declining, causing me either to act in anger or walk away.  Being unable to handle my own changes as I get older too.

This picture touched something deep inside, the message of being never being too old. I will have to look at it for a long time until I get what it’s saying to me.

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Poor Paggy

Might be April but this can still happen!

Poor old Paggy is still in hospital and he’s not really getting better. He said that he’d originally had a kidney infection and his body is better except for his blood sugar.  We visited him on Saturday and he was wired up to a drip and completely groggy,  coherent but doped.  The nurse asked us if we were relatives and said they need to find someone as Hans should be getting daily care, not once a week.  So with Linda’s help, I found his brother’s telephone number and gave it to the ward.  The two don’t get on, but he’s Hans’ only relative, maybe next time we visit Hans, he’ll chuck us out. He reckons he’ll be home for Easter, but I don’t think so.

Its been strange here when we’ve been doing stuff around the yard and garden, not to be hailed for a beer or our work criticised, maybe he’ll not come home at all, but go into the Old People’s home in Tamsweg.  It looks great, they have this huge reception/dayroom with a bar (this is Austria) and all sorts of facilities, he’ll soon have them rocking!


Poor old Paggy!

Action in Madling

When I got back from Bible Group last night, I noticed Paggy  hadn’t put his blinds down or taken the post in, but I’d seen the Red Cross lady leaving earlier that day, so wasn’t worried but thought I’d go and see the old codger in the morning and help put the tarpaulin back on his car which had partially blown off.

No answer to the door or yelling.  I checked with his support agencies ie Red Cross (Amateurs!) and Hilfswerk but they knew nothing nor did the Hospital.  I was now entering panic mode, none of the neighbours were at home.   So I got the ladder, which had been used in his previous emergencies to peer into his first floor bedroom.  Then I wussed out and called our English neighbour (Hi Dave) who went up for me. He could see Paggy lying on the bed, but not moving.  I began to think Paggy might be dead.    So like the previous two times, I called the Fuzz.  They got him to answer, but he couldn’t move.  So this time they had to get a hammer to break the window when the ambulance arrived.  Linda , who was now home  and I cleared the glass and left the professionals to it.

Of course I remained about, and one of the paramedics told me, Paggy was in a Diabetic coma – with his sugar at about 30 when the normal is 100.  He was talking by the time they brought him out, so I guess they filled him with sugar!  I took some photos then wondered if this was a bit ghoulish but they’re only the cars!

According to my calculations, he must have been taken ill in the late morning the previous day.  Too early for major beer and he’s been drinking less. He’s moaned for ages about the Meals on Wheels he’s been having, so has he been eating properly? Was the coma a side effect of being out of things for maybe 24 hours, maybe underlying was another stroke? Poor old bugger!

Tomorrow I’ll be visiting him and giving him a piece of my mind about not giving anyone a key – if they let him home, after all he’s been receiving monitoring.  He’s convinced everyone steals from him and trusts no one. I bet once he gets the bill for repairing the window he will  do something!  Its the third time I’ve rescued the old git because I’ve noticed something not usual. I just hope one day someone looks out for me.  Now maybe you’ll understand why getting old freaks me out!!!!!!!

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Why getting old freaks me out!

Mum, Gran and my brothers, pre me!

Telling you about Gran, is a beginning of my explanation of why I just see getting older as a negative thing, that in it there’s nothing positive.  This drives Dave nuts, but I can’t help it!  Seeing both Gran and Mum’s world shrink around them as they got older, makes me so conscious that this is trying to happen to me too.  Mum increasingly wouldn’t drive out of her comfort zone. I’ve never been a confident driver, resorting into panic with the unexpected, but I’m making a conscious effort of trying new places, when we go on holiday not leaving it all to Dave.  I’ve seen it in Paggy too, as his world in the past five years has shrunk to his flat.  He talks about visiting his farm in Czechoslovakia, but he never goes.  He bemoans about his stroke that stopped him driving and I think, didn’t you foresee that at some stage your life might change, did you really imagine you’d go on forever? I can’t see anything positive in being old, someone think of something?

Clothes are another old thing too.  I still see people dressed as they were in the 1940s and 50s,but  maybe they’re just being carefull. Now I’ve never been one for fashion, but I hope what I wear (mostly jeans and jumpers)  isn’t dating, but when I see how little my daughter wears, and the skimpy it is, I just couldn’t face wearing the stuff, I’d feel naked.  So am I already the equivalent of the Granny in the old straw hat and brown coat?

Music, Mum used to go on about Glenn Miller, and I’d think that’s soooo old, but maybe I’m no better in liking 70s stuff. But then again, look at how many radio stations still belt out the stuff.  And I do like Trance, and bands such as Hurts, so maybe I’m not too bad on that one. I hope I wont be stuck in a home being made to sing stuff from the second world war – Dave’s Dad caused a real upset in his when he wanted some Eminem played – good for you John!

Then I’ll think what will it that will get me – illness or heart?  As if I could be prepared for it.  I use my faith as I’ve talked about to rebuke such thoughts! I see a close friend of mine becoming steadily more forgetful and fear to speak to her about it. Something will get us, the best to hope for is an unexpected swift end, at home in bed!

Yet I see myself parked in a home one day, and I wont expect duty visits where the kids look at their watches.  As long as I have a window on a garden or a view it’ll be ok. I dareasy I’ll have my Ipod and digital photo frame and will live in my head! These may be the only possessions I’d need!!!! I wont be grumpy about whatever gifts I’m given like Mum,  thanks heavens for Amazon wish lists.  I’ll always accept fresh flowers and soft centred chocolates and bath creams!    I will always be changing my place around so it doesn’t look set in one era. Eating well and exercising, maybe they’ll keep all this at bay!