Saturday, 31 December 2016

Happy New Year everyone

Let's hope 2017 is better than 2016 was...

Wednesday, 28 December 2016


I'm still exhausted and therefore every day or so I collapse like someone hit me over the head with a sledgehammer, so my posts may be patchy for a while...
Yesterday was fairly unambitious - I walked about 4 miles exploring the route to a nearby supermarket that used to be a Co-Op last time I lived here and is now a Sainsburys (I know - the excitement!)
There was one pleasant bit of a view along the way...

but it was mostly very urban and built up. I spent a lot of time talking to myself (hopefully no one was around to hear me) - I remember that, don't remember that, was that there before? Can't remember... That sort of thing.  When I got back home we just watched TV all afternoon.
This morning I walked almost 8 miles in 2 chunks - doing some shopping for household necessities such as curtain rings and continuing the exploration of unfamiliarly familiar streets. It was a beautiful if cold frosty morning and I enjoyed myself except for some complaints from my left ankle. After a few years of living in the relative Plains of Berkshire South Wales is going to take some getting used to!

The park with the duck pond above is due to disappear under a new housing development in the near future - heartbreaking.
I'm now absolutely dead on my feet (well, flat on my back actually) with nothing more vigorous than TV watching, fried rice making, beer drinking relaxation planned for the rest of the day. Enjoy your day!

Monday, 26 December 2016

Happy Christmas everybody

I know I'm a little late but my complete and total exhaustion hit yesterday and turned me into a tree stump!
Yesterday morning we mostly spent continuing to unpack stuff. I'm now stuck as far as my kitchen goes until I get a fridge delivered on Friday - in the meantime I've got a small drinks chiller taking up a chunk of work surface and a box containing the contents of the old fridge taking up another chunk, leaving we with very little room for maneuvering things around the room.
At 11 M's dad arrived to pick us up and take us to their house for the day. We sat around chatting and watching TV until lunch was ready, and after lunch his Dad, S, and I went for a walk. It was of course raining most of the way. At intervals S offered me a choice of the short or long way back to the house and every time I picked the long way without remembering how much hillier Wales is than Berkshire. Not to mention how slippery and muddy the off road sections were. I really enjoyed it despite the rain (no photos because of the weather) but by about 3.5 miles my ankles were really aching and when we got back (5.4 miles in total, at least half of that up hill) all I had the energy for was changing out of my muddy clothes and collapsing on the sofa. Everything - the busy days, the lousy sleep, the booze and the hilly walk - crashed in on me at once and I'm embarrassed to admit I was in bed by 7. And I'd spent an hour struggling to stay awake before that. 
This morning I feel mostly human but I doubt if I've caught up on my rest enough to last the day - I just hope to get some stuff done before I collapse again!
Hope you all had a lovely day yesterday!

Thursday, 22 December 2016

We own a house

We actually completed the purchase yesterday but I spent the day running around the house packing (and later hobbling round the house packing after my back seized up in horror at the unusual exercise) followed by half a bottle of wine (straight from the bottle - I'd packed all the glasses) and an early night.
Now I'm sitting on the sofa like the Queen of Sheba while 3 big strong men empty all the furniture out of the house. To be fair, I'm not just being lazy, I'm also trying to stay out of the way (but I'm not sure if they can tell or if they're plotting to accidentally drop a TV on my head)
At least I can provide plenty of tea and coffee.
Once the house is empty I'll be able to hit the road (120 miles of it) heading down to Wales...

Tuesday, 20 December 2016


We exchanged contracts on the new house!
We are due to complete tomorrow, pack up the rental on Thursday and move into the new place Friday. I am exhausted and delirious with relief. Or possibly drunk on prosecco (what? I like it better than champagne or cava).

Friday, 16 December 2016

Will this never end?

Yesterday I was involved in 17 house move related phone calls and achieved nothing at all. Our vendor is now galvanized into action; our solicitor and the estate agent are working hard to get things sorted; and we are all spinning our wheels because it appears that the solicitor our vendor chose is basically rubbish - from our point of view, never having directly communicated with her - she is both inept and lazy. Every time I talk to our solicitor or the estate agent I hear the same thing - I've left messages with the other solicitor and she hasn't returned my call. She knows that her client wants this pushing through asap but apparently doesn't see that as a reason to do, you know, her job. HER JOB!!! We're not asking her for a kidney for God's sake, but I think it would be no more difficult to get one out of her than to get her to send a damned email.
Even now this could all fall apart because we can't complete in time.

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Breaking news

Last night M and I were discussing alternative plans for the near future - deciding that if our house purchase fell apart we would rent something in Wales then look again in Spring when the market typically picks up, and we'd have more choice. I told the estate agent that the proposed delay wasn't acceptable to us and he promised to make our points to the vendor - and in a last ditch attempt to save the sale he even offered us the short term use of a flat he owns above his real estate office. We turned that down - so he made the same offer to our vendor. And now it looks as though the sale may go ahead after all! As of 16:00 today the vendor has agreed to rent his flat on a rolling week basis so that we can complete before Christmas. Of course because we've lost a couple of days it's going to be tighter that it needed to be and it is now likely - not definite but likely - we may end up completing the day before Christmas Eve and moving during the period between Christmas and the New Year - I'll have to find out what the removal company's availability is like tomorrow. But hey, at least we're not starting over at this late date - that's worth a lot!
Because of all this stress and tension, anxiety and frustration I've now got back ache from the top of my head to the heels of both feet. I've been strung so tightly and nothing I could do helped - not reading, or sketching, not walking or watching TV. I will be so damned pleased when this is all behind us!

Tuesday, 13 December 2016


I've just been told we can't complete or move till mid January because the vendor wants to go from her current house straight into her new house. Every step of the way we have been clear about wanting to move over the Christmas period - in fact it was a condition of our offer for the house - and she has said she'll go into a B&B or even stay with family if necessary to make that happen. Mid January would mean we had to move out of here on the 10th and put all our stuff into storage while we do God knows what - stay in a hotel or something. 
This better be a misunderstanding by her solicitor or my head may just explode 

Monday, 12 December 2016

What a frustrating day.

Still no further forward on the house purchase. I've spent most of today trying to call our solicitor (and failing to get through). I didn't leave the house, train or draw - or do any studying. I was just too stressed. 
All I achieved was a couple of loads of laundry. Wow. Productive.

Friday, 9 December 2016

Yesterday I slipped into a weird twilight zone world...

A world where, long after everyone else had lost interest and I had lost the will to go on, out of the blue - our mortgage offer was finally confirmed!
At this point we still just about have time to get things through before Christmas but to me it feels more likely that we'll be moving between Christmas & New Year, or even in early January. Mainly because we're still waiting for the vendor to tell us whether she has Japanese knot weed in her garden (I'd settle for a waffly'not to my knowledge' response) and the solicitor hasn't yet had her copy of the offer through from the Bank. After a few weeks of this stuff I think mild pessimism feels more appropriate than allowing myself to hope it will all work out - too much pressure that way!
I can't believe this has only been going on for about 5 weeks - its feels like months since our offer was accepted. Of course the downside of this step forward is that it will very soon be necessary to get all the logistics worked out - no small thing when moving 120+ miles!

As a possible result of getting the confirmation through, portending an end to the 'in limbo' existence of the last 5 weeks, this morning I was actually inspired to get on the Versaclimber, and trudge away for 41 minutes going nowhere in front of an old episode of Criminal Minds. Ever since then my arms and legs have felt like lead and I've struggled to get up the stairs - its brilliant!!!  Although possibly a bit over the top for a first time back to exercising. I'm trying to find the energy to get outside in the sunshine but my body seems unaccountably stuck to the sofa at the moment.

Thursday, 8 December 2016

Something horrible happened to me today

And I survived!
Let me explain... On Saturday this week M and I are having our company Christmas do - a fancy lunch at The Hinds Head in Bray  (also our last hurrah before returning to the depths of mostly Michelin star-free Wales)
So given that I suck at losing weight and gained 34574656 lbs on my ill fated experiment with Mirtrazapine, I needed to buy something to wear for that lunch that wasn't 5 years old or walking trousers. I'm not exaggerating.
So this morning I hopped onto a train to Reading to find a cheap (because I'm NOT NOT NOT going to be this heavy next year don't laugh I mean it) dress at Marks and Spencer, which did indeed happen, and by carefully choosing a loose-fitting flaring style the dress wasn't even in as painful and embarrassing a large size as I had feared would be needed.
But one thing I couldn't avoid noticing as I studied my reflection in the wonderfully flattering changing room mirror (I think dimmed lighting and the right kind of fun house mirrors in those changing rooms could quadruple M&S's profits myself)  was that I looked like someone had dangled a couple of ugli fruit in a string bag where my breasts should have been. I needed - desperately - a new bra. Or bras, though obviously only wearing one at a time. The problem was, I had no idea what size of bra I need these days. Other than being very clear about it being a larger size than when I last bought them (and stretched them endlessly by constantly wearing them while bingeing and abandoning all forms of real physical exercise).
So I girded my loins, headed to the lingerie fitting rooms - and requested a bra fitting. 😱😱😱 Because all overweight depressives really need to strip down to their undies in front of a total stranger armed with a tape measure.
I will admit she was really nice and didn't once retch visibly at the sight of me. And I will also admit that thanks to her help I now have a comfy bosom. But I still want to know why there isn't a better way to do this crap in the 21st bloody century. Like maybe adapting a 3D printer to scan your chest in the comfort of your own home and print out a kind of negative image in the form of a pretty bra not made from canvas and steel. Someone could make a fortune out of that if you ask me...
So anyway, I shopped. For clothes. And I didn't eat all the chocolate in the M&S food hall on my way out of the building either, which I consider a massive massive massive victory.
And now that every lovely person who left lovely and kind comments on my last post is probably wishing they'd been less encouraging and supportive I'll leave you with one happy thought. I had a bra fitting today and you probably didn't. And now you don't have to because I shared the whole experience with you. You're welcome.

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

I fell asleep and then it was today

OK, that's a lie, I didn't just hibernate for a week and a half. I spent most of last week feeling just under the weather enough to not do anything (except sometimes eat crap and lie in bed all day) and couldn\t bring myself to write about it. Then on Friday we lost internet and I spent all day on the phone trying to fix it, so was too stressed to write anything.
Then on Saturday I visited my Mum, which was restful and lovely except that it was worrying and sad to see how much pain she is still in all the damn time. Because of the constant chronic pain we didn't go anywhere, she insisted on cooking for me (I asked her to last time I saw her, but she wasn't in pain then - I felt really guilty as she worked on it and helped as much as she'd let me, but she's very independant and it wasn't a great deal.
Sunday was a big fat lot of nothing. I had a bit of a headache and didn't walk far or watch movies.
Monday I watched Batman v Superman AND the 2016 remake of The Jungle Book. The Jungle Book was really good despite my initial 'eh, another classic movie wrecked by a remake' reaction, Batman v Superman was watchable enough. But I watched in Jungle Book in 3D then had eye strain for the rest of the day.
On Tuesday I was reading the side effects of my antidepressant and contraceptive to see if they might be responsible for a slight problem I'm having, where I discovered that yes, very possibly for that problem (sore boobs, sorry for the TMI) but also - the antidepressant can cause back pain and joint pain. I may have mentioned my bad back once or 10,000,000,000 times the last few months, but with my history of back trouble never considered whether there might be more to it. I've also been having stiffness and pain in both ankles every time I get out of bed or stand up after sitting too still for too long - I attributed that to laziness, old old old age and possible very-long-walks-associated damage or arthritis. Now I'm left wondering if I'm actually causing the pain every time I pop a pill, and if so should I go back to the doctor and ask him to change it AGAIN, bearing in mind how well some of the pills have (not) agreed with me. Why do (some) medical matters seem so incredibly difficult to sort out? Also, does anyone know of an antidepressant that suppresses your appetite, increases your energy level, and causes the weight to fall off you because if you do I'd like to hear about it.
Yesterday I started a new hobby, something I've always wanted to do in that wishy washy 'I wish I could...' way that never involves actually looking into it or trying to do it. I've always wanted to draw, and I've now borrowed a book from the library on drawing fundamentals for talentless beginners (that may be its title) so I can give it a go. I did a couple of exercises yesterday which proved I am indeed a talentless beginner, whether I manage to keep it up is highly debatable given my track record with hobbies other than reading and TV watching, but I hope I will - it would be nice to feel I could be creative and its portable enough to take with me if I work away etc. Who knows, maybe sometime I'll post a sketch for your amusement (I mean that literally) if I do.
Anyway. Sorry I vanished for so long. Will try not to do it again, but can't promise, especially during this time of limbo / upheaval. Now I must go draw on a thing.