Tuesday 20th September 2011

A Visit to my Father


When I went to bed last night, I was uncomfortable with a lot of wind. Gradually over the course of the night, this passed and everything seems OK this morning.

Today, I am visiting my dad, who lives just North of Birmingham. I haven't seen him his year and have been meaning to do for several months. This seems to be the right week in my treatment cycle. He is 87 years old and his determination in the face of quite serious ill health has been a great inspiration to me. Today, he looked very fit for his age.

A treat! Instead of the usual cereal for breakfast, we stopped at a Little Chef just North of Oxford for an Olympic Breakfast. This means that we don't need to worry too much about lunch.

My dad lives in a flat in sheltered accommodation. He had thoughtfully arranged a chair that I would be comfortable sitting in. As a result, we were able to stay for about 2 hours. 

My sister, Lynette, was also there. She has life very hard at the moment. She has to care for a husband, Jim, who is undergoing treatment for Leukemia and has to be a child minder because her son has separated from his wife and their daughter, Chloe, needs to be looked after when her dad is at work.

Everywhere I turn, I seem to find people whose situation puts my own in perspective. Jim is taking an experimental drug which seems to be managing his Leukemia.

I hope this visit reassured my dad that I am doing as well as I could possibly be, given my cancer and the treatment.

The trip North took around 3½ hours including a break for breakfast.

Coming back South, we took longer. We stopped for a panini almost immediately.

Sue still has to do all the driving, so we needed to stop again at Meon Valley. This sets of services has been rebuilt recently after a fire. For someone with crutches, the new design is really bad. The entrance is right at one end. The toilets are right at the other end, past all of the retail outlets.

Because we had a relatively long stop, I had to do the trek to the toilets again, to make sure that we wouldn't need to stop again. At least the rain that was falling further North has held off here.

My shoes for the dinner on Saturday arrived today. They are ideal. Sue agrees that they look respectable and are very comfortable. My feet are quite swollen after my trip today, so this was a good time to check the fit.