Thursday, October 30, 2008
oh readers, what can i say? i have yet again neglected you. himself has been home for over a week and i have failed to write a word. this is because herself has been run off her feet keeping things afloat. there is walking young dave and i, cleaning, cooking (this last said with my paws over my eyes) and work. she is worn out. but she is very happy not to have to go backwards and forwards to the hospital any more. not least because one of the nurses mistook her for himself on the last day he was there. now i know she has been looking tired with all this upheaval but with the best will in the world she does not look very much like himself. for a start he has curly hair. and baggy eyes. and more to the point, a beard.
i think possibility of resembling someone with a beard is the thing that upset her most. she is reaching the age when ladies start to grow beards. she often jokes that she needs to grow one in order to keep up with the rest of the family. my boy is sprouting whiskers. in spite of young dave's attentions i still sport a tidy growth on my rather handsome chin. and as you will see from the picture, young dave's beard is coming along well. but at the moment herself is beard-free. so to be mistaken for himself set her off in a humph.
himself was more worried that a nurse with such poor eyesight was in charge of inserting fine needles into veins in his arm...
Monday, October 20, 2008
dear readers, i am exhausted! herself has been unable to sleep for some time and has taken to getting up at 5am and cleaning the house! while she has at least had the decency to refrain from hoovering until more civilised hours, it has been very stressful for young dave and i, dodging out of the way of the bleach. it seems that when himself comes out of hospital he will be prone to catching any illness that passes his way. this is because the drugs they give him to make sure his body doesn't have a row with superkidny also make sure his body doesn't have a row with any other germs.
herself had not quite grasped the level of cleanliness needed until she was pacing the corridors with the gypsy on the day of the operation. as regular readers will remember, the gypsy has had experience of replacement kidneys as the bionic boy has had two of them.
"you have to degunk the shower head, you know," she casually threw into the conversation, "and then bleach it - all sorts of germs can live in the shower head."
i would have thought that given the shower head spends its whole life having a shower it would be the cleanest place in the house but apparently not. and then there was the bathroom sink, which has been decidedly sluggish lately. that had to be unblocked with evil powder. the bathroom walls were cleaned with neat bleach and the venetian blinds in the bedroom had to have a going over with anti-bacterial spray. this latter job has been on the list since the peeps moved into the house but somehow herself has always found something more interesting to do. having seen how long it took when she finally got round to it i can see why.
a gate was screwed to the wall at the bottom of the stairs. this is to keep young dave and i downstairs. herself has craftily fixed it at a place where i cannot get a proper run at it to jump over. so young dave and i have resorted to sitting looking pitiful at the bottom of the stairs.
then there was the car. young dave and i, and of course all the other dogs who have travelled in it, have left our mark in terms of hair and mud and of course aroma. herself has been meaning to give it a good going over for months but she has been too busy not cleaning the venetian blinds. so her maamship took it to a place where they will hoover and clean it for you. the car cleaning man was somewhat aghast at the state of it.
"its not my car!" said her maamship, "it belongs to my dirty friends! they have dogs!" this latter comment was superfluous. anyone with half an eye and a quarter of a nostril would have been able to deduce that the owner of the car had dogs. it did not require a forensic legal mind. in fact you could probably have made a new dog by sticking together all the hair. that is if you had time in between not cleaning the venetian blinds and bleaching your existing dogs. the car cleaning man explained that he reluctantly had to charge extra due to the extreme hairiness of the car. her maamship was so busy standing as far away from the car as possible in an effort to dissociate herself from it that she willingly paid over the surcharge and hot-tailed it out of the place in a cloud of pine from the little smelly tree that the man hung inside it in a vain attempt to overpower the canine miasma.
after all the preparations herself rushed off to fetch himself from the hospital. but it was not to be. himself explained that he had become so popular that the hospital wanted to hang onto him for another day. he had to have more tests and more tweaking. he was not a happy bunny. but today is a new day and he may be allowed home to us. i hope so. i have missed him...
Friday, October 17, 2008
dear readers, here is the picture of super kidny as promised. you will see that my boy has dispensed with an unnecessary 'e' in the interests of economy.
super kidny is firing his ak47 at the bad cells who have very much inferior weapons. you will see that he is on a drip which i assume refills his gun.
uncle martin is much better today having been in pain yesterday and he is probably going home today. himself has had quite a lot of tubes removed and is planning on a shower later, after which he will jettison the flowery dress and stockings in favour of his loungewear.
i will update you further once herself has been to the hospital.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
dear readers, what follows is reliant on a report from herself, as for some inexplicable reason lurchers are not allowed into hospitals. i can only assume that this is because they are worried we might catch something from all the sick people, but i would have been happy to take that risk to see himself after his op. but we were left in the care of her maamship, who also had the job of keeping my boy out of mischief.
himself and uncle martin had the transplant yesterday. they had to get there the day before in order to make sure they didn't go out on the town and get beered up. herself was picked up by the gypsy at 5.30am and they drove up to london and arrived in time to give both brothers a good send off. it sounds as though the brothers were dressed rather oddly, with white stockings and blue patterned dresses. it was too dark for a photo but in any event himself might be slightly embarrassed to be displayed on the internet in drag, especially as he has a rather fine beard.
the brothers went down to theatre at 8am, leaving herself and the gypsy to wander the corridors of the hospital, reminiscing about previous occasions when they had done the same. the gypsy's son is bionic. he has had a lot of surgery in his short life, including a metal back brace being inserted to keep his posture up to scratch. he has also had two kidney transplants, one from the gypsy herself. so a better companion for yesterday was hard to imagine. the gypsy has a vast knowledge of things medical, and especially things kidney-shaped. she also has a nice line in interrogation of doctors. she was able to put this to good use when my boy was born. herself rightly foresaw that himself might be a little shy about telling doctors what was what, so she took the gypsy along to make sure things were just so.
anyway, the ladies (and readers, i use this description very loosely indeed, as neither of them is particularly ladylike), roamed the hospital and its environs, alternating between laughing and weeping. herself took a couple of photos, but didn't really have her heart in it. the day dragged. uncle martin came back to the ward at about 2pm, looking sleepy but cheerful. himself had to have various scans and tests and it was not until 4.30pm that he was back on the ward. by this point herself had melted into a tearful jelly. himself was attached to an array of pipes and tubes and bags were collecting things that ran out of him. herself sat by him, stroking his beard and weeping with relief.
the nurse who was looking after himself and uncle martin described the operation. the kidney had apparently carried on peeing even when attached to neither brother. this kidney sounds a most amazing chap, a superhero among kidneys. my boy has made a card for himself and uncle martin, with a picture of the superhero kidney wielding an ak47 and shooting at bad cells. i will ask herself to scan it in and if that is possible i will post it on my blog.
herself and the gypsy left the hospital at 7, leaving himself and uncle martin watching football on the tellies above their respective beds. when they got home, they spoke to himself on the phone. my boy was very pleased to hear himself sounding perky. himself asked what my boy had for tea, a sure sign that he was on the mend. my boy asked about himself's day:
"so how was your day, apart from being unconscious?" herself and her maamship burst into giggles.
"what's so funny about asking that?" said my boy, "he can't tell me about the bit when he was unconscious, can he?"
Friday, October 10, 2008
we thought we were on the home straight as far as the operation was concerned, but true to form, life has thrown us a googly. himself started coughing last weekend and by monday morning was in a bad way. herself said he should stay off school. himself was worried that his colleagues would run into problems with their equipment if he wasn't there to sort them out. herself said he would have to worry about a different sort of equipment if he didn't behave. her maamship suggested that herself hide all his pants (for my american and canadian readers, this is pants in the british sense - ie underwear). fortunately, himself stayed at home.
the cough got worse. in the middle of wednesday night herself e-mailed the transplant coordinator to see if himself should have antibiotics. the transplant coordinator is a most impressive individual who gets things done. even the doctors do what she says. first thing on thursday she was on the phone. himself had to go into the hospital for a chest x-ray. luckily my boy was at school as this is the sort of thing that freaks him out.
after a fair bit of waiting around a picture of himself's lungs was taken and the peeps went in to see the consultant. the good news was that the lungs were clear. nothing was lurking down there. the bad news was that unless the cough gets better the transplant will have to be postponed. it will be too risky to do if himself is ill, as the anti-rejection drugs will remove any immune system that he has left.
so we are waiting and hoping that things will look up.
Thursday, October 09, 2008
dear readers, it is hard to know where to start with this post. things have been hectic since i was last in touch.
in view of the fact that himself is about to go in for surgery, herself decided the time was right to re-make the garden and have laminate flooring put down in the living room. the flooring i can go along with. young dave has been somewhat leaky since he arrived and the carpet was very much the worse for wear. this wasn't helped by his habit of chewing the corners. presumably he didn't like the taste of the middle as this was where most of his accidents happened. as himself has to be careful about germs after he gets his new kidney, the carpet had to go.
but the garden? i suppose herself had a point in that if it wasn't done before the op it couldn't be done until the spring which would be too late for getting a lot of things planted. and i always like it when our builders are here as they are very careless about supervising their lunches. this time i liberated a sausage roll or two.
our builders are called mick and martin. they are brothers. with them come craig and mark. mark is a most unusual young man. he can ride a unicycle and has strange body piercings, including a sort of metal loop in the back of his neck, which i assume is for hanging him up at night.
the job the builders were doing in the garden involved building a deck across the end and building a raised bed to prevent young dave from digging up the vegetables before they are ready to eat. but first the shed had to go. mick lent herself a wonderful tool that she has coveted for a long time. it is called a sabre saw and is very scary. herself is unphased by power tools, and has a domestic use chainsaw certificate over her desk at work. but mick the builder drummed into her that this was a dangerous tool. so when the time came to take down the shed, herself was suitably careful.
however the main problem with herself's shed demolition technique was not so much the tool but the order of work. mick the builder had made it very clear that the roof had to come off first. but when the roof refused to budge, herself was so keen to get on with the sabre saw that she simply started on the sides. there is a fundamental principle in demolition that you should not demolish the bits that are holding up other bits. but somehow this had passed her by. it is not the first time that this has happened. it was not until two of the walls had gone and the roof was leaning at a rather rakish angle that the folly of the methodology dawned on her.
luckily it was at this moment that mick the builder phoned to arrange a delivery of timber. hearing the panic in herself's voice, he reassured her that if the shed would not come down willingly it might be more amenable to the attentions of proper builders and that she should not risk hospitalisation. even more luckily, the heavens opened and rain stopped play. herself retreated inside with the sabre saw.
anyway, the chaos is over. apart from the small matter of shifting a ton of gravel through the house that is. then there is the business of filling the raised bed with a couple of tons of topsoil. but the latter will have to wait until himself has recovered from his op, so we are probably looking at january now. i have to say i breathed a sigh of relief when i heard that. it is all rather stressful for a chap my age.
my boy came home yesterday with his own tale of mud. it seems that in pe his class were learning how to play rugby. this appeared to involve being made to roll around in the mud. my boy was not keen on this and spoke firmly to the pe teacher.
"i think you must have the sort of psychological defect that makes you like watching children rolling around in the mud!" he squawked, mid roll. when this had no impact on her, he tried another volley.
"its a wonder you aren't taking pictures!"
a career in diplomacy beckons...