Taken to hospital

Today has started a bit different to normal, and not in a good way. I woke up at 4am clutching my chest. The pain was awful. On a scale of 1 to 10 it was up there at about an 8. It was unlike any chest pain I had had in the past. This time I had the chest pain the was fro. I the centre of the chest and radiated out over both sides of the chest. At the same time I had a really bad pain in and behind left shoulder blade and was panting for air. I tried to calm myself down and eventually fell back asleep. The next morning ( today ) I woke up and didn’t feel myself. I had a numb feeling that intermittently went in waves, like a mild feeling. Also I still felt a little out of breath and still breathing heavier than I normally would. I got up, and straight away, cranked up the Mac and rang Marc, who is a very good friend of mine and fellow blogger ( www.marccorn.co.uk ). I told him what had happened last night and told him that I was a bit concerned about what happened and how I was still feeling and was not sure what to do. Should I ring NHS Direct or shouldn’t I. Marc told me that his Dad had had a couple of heart attacks in the past, and that he thinks I should ring NHS Direct and see what they say. Marc was a great help and his advice was very much appreciated. So after I spoke to him, I had a quick shower then rang NHS Direct. I answered all the questions the best I could that the man on the phone asked me, he then put me on hold then came back and said that an ambulance will be at my house within a couple of minutes. Once the ambulance car turned up, the medic ran ECG tests which came back fine, but also decided to take me to hospital for extra tests. In hospital, I had blood tests done and chest X-rays, more ECG’s, and blood pressure tests. After what seemed an age, My lovely D found me. She had managed to get away from her work. It was lovely to see her. I was so grateful that she came to make sure I was ok. After sitting for ages more, the doctor came back and told me the test results show that I had had no heart attack. In a way I was surprised that it wasn’t even a minor attack, because it certainly felt like it, but at the same time, relieved nothing was found.
Denise drove me home, where I rang my Dad to give him the good news. He was obviously pleased and told me to look after myself, this was nice considering he doesn’t normally say that sort of thing, but it shows how much closer we are becoming since my Mam passed away and the amount of time we spend together now, but also considering he is very ill himself with cancer. Then G came home from school and came straight up to me and gave me a big hug and asked how I was. To keep G happy I let her have the pleasure of ripping off the sticky pads that the ECG machine gets attached to. She laughed out loud whenever she ripped one off, especially the one on my chest closest to my nipple. That one stung like a b***h.
Tonight I had a great hangout with Marc and Carl ( www.lifeofcarl.co.uk ). It was nice chatting and having a laugh with them both after the day I’ve had.
I’m off to bed now, so hopefully I will have a better nights sleep, but I’m sure it will be in the back of my mind, being worried that I could be woken up by severe chest pains. I do hope not.

Meeting, doctors and money

Today is the day I have to go for my Occupational Health assessment. I has been arranged via work, due to an ongoing back injury that every so often results in me having to take time off on the sick. I have to admit that I am a bit apprehensive because I cannot help but feel ( and this is the cynical side of me ) that they are looking for stuff on me to get rid of me. I’m sure its not the case, and they are just doing the assessment to help me at work and make my working conditions better. I’m not sure how they will do that because as it stands, I already have a hydraulic sit stand desk ( this lifts and lowers at the push of a button depending if I need to sit or stand at any given time ), monitor raisers, ergonomic mouse, ergonomic chair, and on top of all that, I have been granted occupational health breaks, which are a god send. As and when needed, I can go on a 5 -10 min break to ease and mobilise my back.

I am back now from my assessment. It was a case of straight in straight out. I must of been in with the assessor about 5 minutes in total. Thats what it seemed like anyway. He checked my posture, asked me to bend over in different directions, the checked my reflexes, then that was basically that. Away I went. He seemed happy with my movement and said he he was happy for me to return to work soon. From there I went to a nice little cafe

coffee

The cafe is called Cosentino’s. One half of the premises are a hairdressers whereas the other is the cafe. The free wifi was a bonus there. Non of this free weak signalled wifi you get in some places. This is full strength wifi. I held a long Skype video call with J, my son, whilst there. I’m impressed.
I had to take G back to the doctors today as her cough has not really got better since being given antibiotics and an inhaler by the doc last week. Sometimes she coughs so bad she looks like she is going to be sick. Its worse at night when she is in bed. We can hear her sometimes over the TV downstairs. Anyway the doc checked her over, and all seems fine. Just the cough lingering on. No temperature or anything. We are going to monitor her for the next week and see how she does. She’s happy enough and not stressing at all.
I have just had yet another trip to Ikea. I know, I know, I’m spending too much time there at the moment. JUst for a tiny little 12 inch long floating shelf. Had to have one of their lovely coffees as well while I was there. Mind you, I couldn’t help but crack a smile when I said to the girl at the counter that I was surprised they are still showing meatballs on the board and that I didn’t fancy any horse today. She gave a half smile, but I could tell she wanted to smile more but was worried in case she was seen. Neeeeyyyyyy problem
to me.
Tonight I spent some more time doing our finances. Ohhhh how I love doing that. NOT!! We are going to have to change the way we do things. One thing we are going to do is do a weekly shop instead of a daily one. We need to save money and getting a weekly shop and making it last the week should help in some way instead of a daily shop and buying stuff we forgot we already had and food being wasted. I am still looking to give up smoking real cigarettes and move to e-cigarettes like D. I work out I, alone should save about 500+ pounds a year. Then D has her saving as well from going onto e-cigarettes.
If anyone has any tips on how to save money within a household, let me know. Please leave a comment.

Joke of the day:

A man walks into a bar with a roll of tarmac under his arm and says: “Pint please, and one for the road.”

Diets, weight and pain

Today I went to see my physio. I did a bit of fast walking on the treadmill the some stretches, then some exercises on the gym ball. The gym ball is one of those huge inflatable balls that you can use for all sorts of keep fit stuff. I did a few exercises that I have not done before. Since getting back home, I can definitely feel it in my lower back and midriff. No pain, no gain, some people say. I would rather have the gain without the pain thank you very much. Its all for a good cause though. I have to build up the core muscles again, to help my back and posture. Having years of back problems have not done my body any favours. I know I don’t stand correctly. When my back ‘goes’, I am doubled over like an old man, and often need the help of a walking stick to be able to stand up. I used to be so fit when I was younger. I used to play football all the time and do lots of running and fun runs. These days I cannot run full stop. I would love to be able to run again, but because of my prolapsed disk, theres to much risk involved. Well, there is at the moment. One day I would love to get back into shape and do running again. Some people say, ‘why don’t you try swimming?’ Apart from trying to fit swimming in around work and home life, especially when you have to try and find a time slot when the kids aren’t running riot in the pool, which makes it difficult to do lengths. Also its the cost. These days, I find swimming, on a regular basis, expensive. Money I can do without spending and can be used for other things. This is a shame, because I do enjoy swimming, and maybes having a sauna afterwards as well. It’s something I may consider for the future though.

Fat

Losing weight is another thing I need to do. Being about 4 stone overweight is not helping my back at all. Thats like having 28 bags of sugar strapped to your body permanently . Because I’m broad / stocky ( ish ), loads of people don’t believe I am that much overweight. I have just learned overtime to hold my belly in a lot. I have tried Slimming World in the past and lost 3 stone, but my body looked like skin and bone when I lay down. That wasn’t even my ideal weight. The problem I find with diets such as Slimming World, is that I get the munchies for chocolate to the point where I am going nuts with the cravings for the stuff. Don’t get me wrong, D is doing great on Slimming World, and it can be a really successful diet if done correctly, but I struggle after a while to keep focused in it. I read a great book once by the hypnotist Paul McKenna called ‘So You Want To Be Thin’. Before going into the ways he thinks you should eat and train your mind, he gives some of his opinions on diets, and the way people eat. It’s very interesting. If you have not read this book, give it a read. It will make you think a bit differently. I should dig the book back out and go through it again to try and refocus my mind on losing weight. I’m not after a ripped six pack and pecks etc like some airbrushed pop star. I just would love to be a healthy weight, which in turn should reduce my back issues so I don’t have constant pain anymore.
I would love to hear peoples opinions on what I have just said, any tips or experiences you may have. You never know, one of you may say something that flicks the switch in my brain and motivates me.

Steve

Blog advice needed please

I have read somewhere, on the tinterweb, about being social when blogging. If you comment on other peoples blogs, and be active blogger all round, people will view and leave comments on my blog. It apparently works both way. Well from my experience, It doesn’t work both ways. I have left comments on loads of blog posts over the last several weeks, and not received one email back to say that comment has been replied to. On top of that, I get very few comments on my blog. The ones I do get are always from the same few, regulars. To them I am thankful. My views have been gradually building, which is nice but not the comments. To date, I have had a total of 19 comments since I began this channel. Its not a major thing. I do my blog because I enjoy doing it and I hope everyone out there that does visit my blog, enjoys reading my posts, but it would be nice to get comments so I can see how each post is received and what you all thought of them. Please don’t get me wrong, this isn’t a rant or anything like that. I’m just curious ( and admittedly a bit frustrated ). I would love to know, how other bloggers build up a following who do actually comment and reply. I would be super dooper fantastic, if anyone can offer advice on what they do, or what they did in the beginning to start building comments.

Thanks for listening to me on such a subject that thousands of other bloggers have probably spoke about in the past.

Worst spam I have ever had

I received this spam comment on my other blog. I assume this person is overseas, and obviously does not bother using anything like a spell checker. I found this spam quite funny and had to share the comment. The following text is the exact post that was left on my other blog.

I awfully much assumption that your article you correspond with well hankering you proceed with to belittle delete to building a better and superiority websiteI sheer much confidence that your article you author a register successfully hope you endure to compose to construction a ameliorate and bigger websiteacutely much confidence that your article you indite generously upon you continue to write to edifice a greater and larger website}

If anyone fully understood this word for word, well done to you, and you deserve a medal. Mind you, I won’t be giving you one, as I am skint.

Penguins and illness

Monday morning, and I’m awake at 09.30 which means I have had 11 hours of well needed sleep. It was helped by the pain killers etc that I took last night. I was actually falling asleep in front of one of my favourite TV programmes, Person of interest. I got ‘told’ to go to bed by D, as my eyes were rolling, while I was trying not to fall asleep.
Once I had sufficiently woke up this morning, I went down to my Dad’s house and went to the bank to sort out a problem. This was easily done with a phone call from the branch. It was a case of the left hand not knowing what the right hand was doing, and paperwork being sent out for stuff that was sorted weeks ago. I don’t know about anyone else’s experience, but I have found Lloyds TSB very easy and friendly to deal with. So much so that I am actually thinking of moving to them from my money grabbing, robbing bank.
Today, I started filling in a new spreadsheet so that I can keep an watch on my finances. Its frightening to see how much money I don’t actually have, and even more worrying is the fact I have not included petrol and cigarettes in that. I feel the time is getting close to give up and join D, in the wonderful world of E-cigarettes. That would save me a fortune. Well a fortune in my money anyway.
We have been watching the final episode tonight of ‘Penguins – Spy in the huddle’. What a fascinating series this has been. If anyone has not seen it, its about 3 different breeds of penguin, in 3 different parts of the world. One of the magical things about this series, apart from how cute baby penguins are, is the footage captured but the remote controlled, disguised cameras. One is disguised as a rock, another an egg, and a few more disguised as penguins from the breed they are watching. They were able to get right in amongst the colonies. Some penguins took a fancy to the disguised cams, some wanted to challenge one of them and accidentally pulled its head off, a predator bird tried to snatch the egg cam, and one tried to mother one disguised as a baby penguin. One of the things that stood out for me,was some of the actions the penguins took, were the same as what humans would do. For example, there was a colony of penguins ( Yes thats the correct word for a group of penguins.) they all huddled together when a bird was trying to attack them to pinch one of them for food. One of the young chicks actually stood as tell as he could and put his flipper out to the side the protect the others behind him, a bit like a person would do to protect another person.

A snapshot taken on TV screen. Everyone, altogether now say ‘awwwwwwww’
penguins This series should win awards for its footage. Some of the footage shows things never, ever shot by camera before. To me, this series is a absolute masterpiece. Check out the BBC website for this programme at this address. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p01460gm

Had some news tonight that a little niece of ours, K, has been taken to and kept in hospital overnight. She is feeling really unwell. She has a rash, bad tummy and being sick. The hospital say it is not Chicken Pox. Now I know, there is Scarlet Fever doing the rounds these days, even though the NHS website say its rare in the UK. I may be wrong but is it just a coincidence that Rickets and Scarlet Fever are coming back, when the UK is now in poverty? Anyway, I hope our little K recovers quickly and comes home soon.
On a similar subject, my Grandson J, who is only 8 months old, is feeling very unwell at the moment as well. He is not able to keep any food down and is being sick as well. The doctor has been out. They said he is not dehydrated but he does have a slight temperature, also theres no rash on J as there is on our niece, so hopefully its not the same thing. His mum is absolutely shattered as she has been up since 3am yesterday. We send our love to both K and J, and wish them both a speedy recovery.

Tomorrow, I have the joy ( sarcasm ), of going to see the physio. Another session resulting in pain. Also, on Wednesday, I have to attend an Occupational Health assessment that was arranged by my work. Thats going to be fun. ( sarcasm yet again ). If its anything like the one I did in the past, then it will involve lifting boxes, pulling stuff, hand eye coordination stuff, and all manor of things like that. I’ll let you know how it goes.

To end on a happier note, here is the joke of the day:

What is blue and goes ‘ding dong’?
An Avon lady at the North Pole.

I think I’ve got the cleaning bug

What an awful night sleep I had last night, or didn’t have, as the case may be. So much for taking my tablets earlier so that they kicked in and made me tired. Today’s plans have been well and truly scuppered by the weather. I had planned on taking G to the Metrocentre as she is wanting to buy some clothes from Jayne Austin, but since last night, it has done nothing but snow. According to the forecast, it is going to snow all day into tonight. When I got up, there was two or three inches of snow already on the ground. Considering G has had a bad chesty cough, and is taking antibiotics, I decided it’s best not to drag her out in the cold.
Instead of going out, I set about finishing off reinstalling the updates and anti virus on G’s laptop. She seemed happy that she could go on Facebook on a big screen rather than on her iPad mini. I think the idea is eventually to take it to G’s grandparents and leave it there. We will hopefully teach them how to use the internet and do their banking online, look for holidays and order their car tax etc. They have never used a computer before so it is completely new to them. It will be like teaching an Ardvark how to do open heart surgery. I reckon the Ardvark wont get as stressed as the grandparents will. When G ( who is only 12 ) demonstrated the internet when they had broadband installed a few months back, they were absolutely amazed, as if she had done something magical that you would expect Harry Potter to do, like turning a rock into a pony or something. I’m sure they think, if you press the wrong button at the wrong time, the world will implode or something just as horrendous. After succeeding ( eventually ) on the reinstall, I set about doing the rest of the dreaded shredding. There wasn’t much left, or so it seemed. While doing the shredding, I was also in a Google+ hangout with my good friends Marc ( marccorn.co.uk ) and Carl ( lifeofcarl.co.uk ). Its always nice to have a hangout with all 3 of us on at the same time. We get along really well and have such a good laugh. Marc joked on and called us the 3 musketeers. I quite like the sound of that. I hope it sticks. After about an hour of shredding, the pile din’t seem to get any smaller. It got to the point where I thought I was trying to shred the contents of Mary Poppin’s carpet bag. You know the one. The one where she pulls mirror’s and coat stands etc out of it. The pile felt never ending. Never ending to the point where my shredder decided it had had enough and cut out. When it decides to have a huff like this and spits its dummy out, the only option is to unplug it and leave it for half an hour, like a misbehaving child that has been sent to the naughty step. After we had all had our tea, I switch the shredder back on, only this time D took over and did the remaining shredding. Eventually we got to the end. Thank the lord.
Now you would think that as it was about half 6 at night, we would just settle down to watch the normal Saturday trash TV ( as I call it ), but no, not a hope. I don’t know what it is at the moment, but I seem to have gotten the cleaning bug since our lovely new wallpaper was put up. I’m wanting to sort loads of stuff out that we have put off for years. This time was the case of the corner cupboard under the kitchen bench where pans are kept. I will rephrase that. Where pans should be kept, but in reality, its pans, baking trays, thermos mugs, deep fat fryers, in fact anything that needed at some point to be hidden out of view, was stuffed in this cupboard. After we finished being ruthless and binning loads of stuff we have not used in years, the cupboard looks really empty. I was really happy that for once, we can go in there and not be engulfed in a landslide of kitchen appliances and utensils. I was so happy, that as soon as D sat down for a rest, I made the decision to start on another cupboard as I was sick of unused tuppaware boxes, that have long lost their lids. So away we went again. Going mad and binning absolutely loads of tines, and jars of out of date herbs and spices, tuppaware, opened and half used jars of beetroot and pickled onions. Now after this cupboard, we didn’t do any more. That was it for the night. I think if I had started pulling another cupboard out all over the kitchen floor, I wouldn’t be here to type this blog post. I would of been beaten to death with the nearest pan, with the added possibility of the half used jar of beetroot being inserted somewhere it shouldn’t be.
D then sat on the sofa to watch some TV, while I decided the time was as good as any to start doing my finances on the new spreadsheet Marc sent me, so that I can keep a check on my incomings and outgoings. I have never done this type of thing on a long term basis before so I am going to have to be strict with myself. It took me a while, making sure all the data I put in was correct.
One thing I have noticed recently, is that something has changed with D and myself in the last couple of weeks. I don’t know what it is, but we have, all of a sudden, changed the way are doing everything. Like since the wallpapering, I am always looking for the slightest bit of rubbish left lying around or cups left out etc etc, and also we are now, for some reason more focussed on our money and what we are spending. Its strange. Its like a switch has been flicked. I’m not complaining at all. I’m quite enjoying it. There has been a couple of occasions where I have caught D having a giggle at me for looking around to make sure everything is tidy. I’m not so sure G like the new me, as I’m always asking her to put stuff away. She is your normal kid, whereas she leaves a trail of cups and plates and whatever in her wake, like a mini whirlwind has just went through the house.
D has fell asleep on the settee and is snoring peacefully in her sleep while I am left with 90’s music playing on the ‘Magic” music channel that she put on. She could of at least made it 80’s music. That would of been more preferable.

Joke of the day:

A cowboy walks into a bar wearing a coconut filled chocolate bar instead of a hat.
“Whats wrong with him”? asked the barman to one of the regulars.
The regular replied ‘Oh he’s got a bounty on his head”

If anyone would like one of their jokes to appear as joke of the day, please email steve@thewrighttimes.co.uk and tell me the joke and your blog address.
I will obviously credit you with the joke.

The time has come where I must head of to my bed now as I can feel my eyeslids getting heavier and heavier. Lets hope that tonight is the night I get some sleep. I have doubled up on the tablets tonight in a desperate attempt get some sleep.
P.s. A great song has just come on the TV. Its MC Hammer’s U Can’t Touch This. I love the dancing on the video. Those 80’s style clothes are fantastic. God, I remember when I used to go out drinking wearing dress jacket complete with padded shoulders and chino’s. I thought I was the bee’s knees. Apparently chino’s are coming back in. I do hope so. I used to love wearing chino’s. Really comfy and smart trousers, they were.

Fixed at last

Its taken 3 % and a half hours to update G’s laptop after a rebuild. 111 updates. I’m knackered now. Off to bed ski. Night everyone zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

A boring day half wasted

Before I had even woke up, half of today was already gone. It was midday when I woke up from my drug induced sleep. Before anyone starts jumping up and down shouting about how bad drugs are, and how much damage they cause to you and society these are prescribed drugs. I’m having to take Tramadol and Paracetamol for pain and Amitriptyline to help me sleep. The problem I find with Amitriptyline is that, instead of them taking effect before I go to bed, they seem to have a delayed response. I find that it could be 4am before they kick in, and up until then my left leg and right arm love doing their version of some deranged river dance. Every couple of minutes, I feel an almighty spasm building up in my leg then a twitch that’s so strong my whole body jumps. My arm has a slightly different feeling. That just gives, what I can only describe as a strong, tickly ache with numbness in my wrist hands and fingers. Thankfully this is my right arm not my left.

Some people would say a big resounding ‘YES’ to sleeping in until noon, but in my case, I had things I have to do. When I did eventually get my backside out of my pit, I settled down at my desk with a lovely hot cuppa and went about ordering my new car tax disk and a replacement driving license online. My current driving license is in a pitiful state. Once you manage to free it from its wallet, it virtually falls into a load of worn out paper. It was a laugh when I went and bought our cars and had to provide the driving license. They had to piece it together to photocopy it, like some sort of jigsaw. Heaven help me if the police ever stop me and ask to see it. Ordering the driving license is so much easier that having to dig out all your paperwork, drive or get the bus to your local Post Office, stand in a queue, and got back home again. Whereas, within a few minutes, you could have it ordered on, when doing it online. I wish everything was as easy to order online as a tax disk.

After getting all that out of the way, I had to make yet another car journey to the local Ikea. As I was in no rush, and by myself, I had to make a visit to the Ikea restaurant for coffee. I like the Ikea coffee so much, I even buy some to make at home. The good thing about the restaurant is unlimited coffee, which is 90p, or if you show your Ikea Family Card, Monday to Friday, it’s completely free of charge, so I make a point of filling up on it. After my coffee, I went about doing what I initially went to Ikea to do. That was to buy some insert compartments for our new shelves then set off to pick G up from her Grans then go home.

Once we got home, this is when the fun really started. I say fun, in the loosest possible way. I had the monotonous task of shredding all the paperwork we had sorted out in the last week. Thankfully, I was able to delegate G to do some. That’s the great thing about being a parent, having the power to persuade your child to do jobs for you. Two and a half hours later, she was still at it, and had only got half way through, due to the shredder overheating and having to be switched off for half an hour. G did well, bless her. There was a lot to do so it’s not surprising she only got half way through. That can be left for another day.

Tomorrow, I’m sure, will be lot more interesting. G and I are hopefully going to have a father daughter day out. I know G wants to buy some make up, and no doubt we will go for coffee somewhere. Time will tell.

Joke of the day: ( Courtesy of my Dad )

Q: What side of a bear, is the hairiest?
A: The outside.

Reply from The Metrocentre re: Vapour e-cigarettes

I have received a reply back from the Metrocentre Management about their decision to ban electronic cigarettes. I reads as follows:

Thank you for your email.

With regards to our policy we ask people not to use electronic cigarettes in Metrocentre. We made this decision to avoid any confusion to shoppers and security staff as they can look very realistic from a distance. Smokers of both electronic and traditional varieties are provided with dedicated areas outside our centres. This policy is in line with many visitor attractions across the UK.

As far as retailers are concerned they each have their own policy on e-cigarettes and you will need to check directly with them.

With regard to VIP our Head Office are meeting next week to discuss the sale of e-cigarettes.

If you have any further queries please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Yours sincerely,
Metrocentre Management

————————————————-

Next week may be too late as VIP are having to be out of the Metrocentre by 28th Feb.

e-cigarettes are a lot bigger that normal cigarettes, but granted that may be hard to tell them apart from a distance away but as you get closer its easy to tell, especially if the electronic ones have a green or blue light on the end of them.
Personally I think this decision is still a bad one.

Let me know you thoughts on this please.