We look down each row
Longing for a glimpse of you.
Running and leaping.
Bonnie loved to be free an run through the vines – she loved the smells and would run of for miles – one evening she came back too late and was hit by a car – we miss Bonnie and still expect to meet her at the end of each row of vines we pass.
Like many, I think I have a book “in me” – I started to write down an idea which filtered into my head many years ago, but believed, then, the story demanded a little more credibility to “work”.
It is a fantasy mashing together Greek mythology with particle physics. CERN were beginning to build their huge new accelerator and my plot conjured Erato to deliver a sensual warning system, guiding a scientist away from making an error which could cause, literally, a world-smashing climax for the search for a missing particle.
Had I written 25 years ago, of particles exceeding the speed of light and unseeable fields of force filling all empty space, it would have appeared ridiculous so I deferred my story and waited until published science could catch up with my own lack of knowledge.
Now it seems accepted that the speed of light may not be a boundary and that there may be an connection to universal forces – so, if you are searching for bosons, perhaps the twists of fantasy in my möbiun pathway may, perhaps, a-muse.
Now all I have to do is write it down, so will call on Euterpe to assist. Watch this space
A long time ago I met David Essex at a house he was renovating in Marylebone – I liked him.
Now I say “Rock-On” as I can start getting my own act together after having just spent nearly a week in intensive care, plugged into scanners, computers, dopplers and the Beziers traffic light system it seems – I had a bit of a problem last Thursday and got rushed to hospital – the “clouds” in my brain were looming into a storm so something had to be done, and quick.
Whatever, at least we know now some of what it isn’t and that I have more heart problems, now I know I will never be an astronaut – so, more tests – soon I will glow in the dark….
Even a few days lying pinned to a hospital bed by miles of pipes and wires helps to focus the mind wondrously, as well as providing time to read a variety of books.
Here I am, home again at Villa Roquette, full of the joy of living and raring to go – Rock On
I started this blog with part of the first line from Andrew Marvell’s “To His Coy Mistress”
Had we but world enough, and time,
This coyness, lady, were no crime.
Are the first two lines – and they are driving me to distraction!
In an effort to write something – I have been writing about why I am having problems in writing. Luckily I have these spare blogs, once popular, but now in dusty side-roads of anonymity, where I can publish with impunity knowing only a couple of friends and myself will read them – but it is publishing and writing something.
The reason those lines of verse are irritating me seems to be for the same reason I have not been writing or working efficiently. – The series of mini-strokes I have unknowingly had over the years has left a lot of “holes” in my brain – areas where, probably, high blood pressure has damaged the tissue. This seems to have affected my ability to concentrate and parts of my memory.
The great news is that I can stop any further damage and hopefully I can retrain myself to improve memory and ability again. The brain is a wonderful thing and can compensate for a lot of lost or damaged tissue.
But is is not going to be easy. It is like learning again how to think, it is going to be a long process and take years.
So here I am on the first lap. I decided to learn some verses. But holding one line in my head is proving a mammoth task. For five days I have tried to recall the first two lines, and I am only just getting there, but the words slip away in moments.
I can recall verses I learnt many years ago – I still can recite the opening chorus from Henry V learnt when I was 12, but it is hard to recall a series of numbers greater than six in a row I have seen only seconds before.
Oh well – I will keep trying – I will keep training and try to get some intelligence and ability back.
I love the poem, especially as Carole summed it up by saying all it means is “Get Your Knickers Off”
Had we but world enough, and time,
This coyness, lady, were no crime.
We would sit down and think which way
To walk, and pass our long love’s day;
Thou by the Indian Ganges’ side
Shouldst rubies find; I by the tide
Of Humber would complain. I would
Love you ten years before the Flood;
And you should, if you please, refuse
Till the conversion of the Jews.
My vegetable love should grow
Vaster than empires, and more slow.
An hundred years should go to praise
Thine eyes, and on thy forehead gaze;
Two hundred to adore each breast,
But thirty thousand to the rest;
An age at least to every part,
And the last age should show your heart.
For, lady, you deserve this state,
Nor would I love at lower rate.
But at my back I always hear
Time’s winged chariot hurrying near;
And yonder all before us lie
Deserts of vast eternity.
Thy beauty shall no more be found,
Nor, in thy marble vault, shall sound
My echoing song; then worms shall try
That long preserv’d virginity,
And your quaint honour turn to dust,
And into ashes all my lust.
The grave’s a fine and private place,
But none I think do there embrace.
Now therefore, while the youthful hue
Sits on thy skin like morning dew,
And while thy willing soul transpires
At every pore with instant fires,
Now let us sport us while we may;
And now, like am’rous birds of prey,
Rather at once our time devour,
Than languish in his slow-chapp’d power.
Let us roll all our strength, and all
Our sweetness, up into one ball;
And tear our pleasures with rough strife
Thorough the iron gates of life.
Thus, though we cannot make our sun
Stand still, yet we will make him run.
I have been chatting in this personal blog about some recent discoveries about my health. If you are reading this then you probably know me, I don’t advertise or promote this blog but writing in it helps me to sort my personal priorities.
It is too easy to take good health for granted – until something goes wrong.
There is so much information about diet, exercise, life-style, stress and general health that it is easy to get overloaded with the information and do nothing. Many people are getting fatter, life seems full of events causing stress and anxiety with financial meltdowns and political stupidities.
For several years have had health problems, mostly heart problems. I had a series of operations six years ago and was very grateful for getting through them with the help of the fantastic health services in France. But it seems the cause of these problems was also creating damage to my brain which I was not aware of.
A few weeks ago I was typing at this computer, I lost balance and fell off my chair – yes I had a few glasses of wine, but no more than usual for the evening, perhaps three glasses, or truthfully perhaps four or five – anyway, I could not get up off the floor, could not walk and could not coordinate my hands or feet, by now I was stone cold sober and scared.
Being in France I was able to get a MRI scan very quickly, the results are given to you within 20 minutes and a consultant appointment fixed in a few days.
The scan showed a lot of damage to my brain, done over a period of many years, but the damage had accumulated leaving a lot of “empty” areas, the recent “stroke” had tipped the balance to a very noticeable effect.
Now I was really worried, this explained a lot, my lack of concentration, inability to work on many of the Internet and marketing projects I would normally have done very quickly, difficulty in walking, rudeness and lack of consideration to others and other daft things. Basically I have been having a long series of mini-strokes, plus a couple of larger ones and these had permanently damaged my brain.
High blood pressure was probably the culprit – so medication to help this and a strict diet are immediately in place (yes I am fat) – I have also been developing intolerances to many foods over the last couple of months so now all alcohol, milk products, wheat products and sugars are totally off-limits. I’m especially careful to avoid any processed foods or any food with fructose in it as this seems to be as bad as, or possible worse than, alcohol and seems proven to be a major cause of obesity.
So what effect will the damage to my brain have? Some things can be assessed – intelligence, IQ, “tests” can indicate something (it depends on the definition of intelligence). The last tests I took were over 30 years ago when I was working on some research into psychometrics. These indicated an IQ for me around 152 to 162 (depending on the test structure) – other tests for motivation and stuff put me in some interesting categories. But without doubt my IQ is now very different (ummm, much lower)
I am using some techniques to evaluate if I can retrain my brain and compensate, using other parts to replace those no longer active – in the last few days I have been able to improve reaction times and memory. Deductive reasoning etc seems much harder to improve, there is no doubt this will take time – a long time perhaps.
However, I see this as an opportunity. For most of my life I have found most things very easy, but at the same time I have been intolerant of the “stupidity” or “inability” of the mistakes of others – clearly not a very intelligent attitude. But now that I am finding it difficult to quickly “see” the answers to everything, I must think, consider, use experience and ask for the help of others to achieve my objectives. There are still many things I wish to accomplish and I must rationalise what is really possible – I hope to focus again on photography, with less buzzing around in my head I seem to be “seeing” and visualising with a much stronger “feeling”, I still have the technical skills.
Learning the problem is the first step.
Clouds are gathering
When I first saw images from space from the Apollo missions, I was fascinated by the beauty of the Earth’s surface. I had assumed that it would look like a terrestrial globe, the sort of thing you find in posh antique shops and which I remember from the classrooms of my schooldays – but the living, breathing sphere of swirling cloud suspended in infinate blackness was breathtaking.
I see clouds as things of beauty and life, but often they are used as portents of doom and destruction. Like Kali, they are both. Recently I have been thinking a lot about clouds.
The grey clouds now gathering as harbingers of a financial storm will wreak havoc with savings and pensions as the true meaning of quantitive easing hits home – the dark ominous storm-clouds being blown around the planet towards strenghtening giants by winds of imperialism are making the air electric, the ennervating crackling only able to be eased by a great tempest as the pressure rises to be suddenly released in shock and awe.
Without clouds there is no rain and without rain there is no life. After a desert storm can come flowers, but too much rain will wash away the soil leaving a barren wasteland.
I started writing this as a jolly good reason to come to stay with us in Villa Roquette, our spiffing home in the golden heart of Languedoc, the real South of France. I am looking out of the window at fluffy clouds in a blue sky, the climate is mild and our village has only a few discrete decorations – some of our guests are here to be with their families for Christmas and calling it Christmas, not ‘the winter holiday’ – we are very lucky as we have not got any money to lose and no debts to worry about so the mahem created by the finacial beserkers is something I can only observe and await the inevitable outcome.
So opt-out of the bad weather, crazy politics and sad money-men, come to stay with us in Villa Roquette
Stay in our fully serviced and equipped studio apartment (from only 25 euro a night) – our King-Sized B&B suites from (only 45 euro a night for two including breakfaast) – or a fully equipped apartment catering from two to sixteen people (big enough and private enough for three generations together).
Golf, fishing, cycling, horse-riding all on your doorstep, near the Mediterranean and steeped in history, come for a day, or stay for a year – you will be made welcome and can see the clouds drift away.
Recent blog posts:
Off To See The Wizard Health care in France and my Personal Experiences Recently
Fractional Ownership In Languedoc Is it a Way to Buy Property in Languedoc
The Wonderful Wizard of Oc Why I Am Changing My Life
France is Best for Family Life How to Find Happiness
Bring All the Family to the South of France Bring Three Generations (or more) Together in Our Home
You Don’t Need a Weatherman The Winds of Change in Europe
Do write to me if you have any questions about life or living in France. I promise to reply and help if I can.
Wishing you health and happiness for next year.
When I was five I spent a few days in Hospital, I was in a small private room and it was the first time I had ever been alone, away from home. I was very unhappy and homesick, but one day I was enthralled by some low, white fluffy clouds outside the window of the hospital which I could see from my bed. They were very low, it seemed as if I could open the window and reach out to hold them in my hand. These clouds stayed around for a few days and helped me cope.
About twelve years later I decided to learn to fly. I had never ever been up in a plane, let alone fly one, but I booked some lessons at the flying club in Cambridge and a few hours later I was “in control”. It was in a Cessena 150 and in a few seconds I was in the same cloud formations I saw as a very small boy – I remember flying through a small cloud and then I was above them looking down on the fields surrounding Cambridge, the clouds were my friends and in the hundreds of flights I have taken since then, all over the world, I have never lost my love of clouds.
I saw some other clouds last week, but these will not be so friendly, they were found on a MRI can I had of my brain and I am told this is not a good thing. Probably caused by years of high blood pressure, partly as a consequence of probably drinking too much and a rather “exuberant” life. This cerebral weather pattern signals a radical lifestyle change for me and starts a personal metronome. Each “tick” reminding me to do positive things and aim accurately at my targets while I can.
Granny Weatherwax is an expert on “headology” – I could do with someone like her here in Languedoc, but as I don’t live on Discworld I went to see the nearest thing in Beziers.
A scan on a space-age RMI scanner last week indicated my brain is beginning to look like a swiss cheese (no surprise to anyone who knows me), so today I had an appointment with a specialist who can analyse the CD and photos they gave me and to run some more tests. There were no broomsticks or pointy hats in evidence which was a little disappointing.
He seemed very interested in all the “empty” spaces shown in my brain and then had me plugged into a sort of electric hair-net for half an hour while lights were flashing off and on. I decided to think of naughty things in case he got a picture on his equipment, but I suppose everyone does that. The lady operating the apparatus was very nice and nothing like Nanny Ogg.
Medical services in France are absolutely wonderful, no waiting lists, immediate attention, polite staff and you get help, advice and your results immediately.
Back in the doctors consulting room he took time to explain his findings – it seems I have had a lot of injuries to my brain going back a long time, maybe caused by high blood pressure, but I was once a stunt-man in the movies falling off motorbikes and stuff and that this has created many small (and couple of large) areas of damage. – That’s it, simple and straightforward and it explains why I have not been able to concentrate for some time and why I have been unable to write (or do anything useful) for some time.
There’s nothing I can do about it except avoid stress and live a regime which helps keep my blood pressure down – which is one reason I am writing this down, to help me get to grips with things
The empty bits of my head will not “fill up” again, gone is gone – but I understand the brain is a clever bit of tissue and whatever the bits I have lost did, I may be able to get other bits to do instead, sort of parallel processing.
At least it explains why I have been very ratty with friends and why I can trip over my own shoelaces – so if you see me smiling at everybody and wearing wellingtons in future, you know why.