Saturday, June 27, 2009

Paint Ball

Well - what can I say - we enjoyed our day but the temperature was in the high 27 C and humidity about 50% and so I struggled. All these youngsters off running around and shooting me :-)

However, the good thing was that we had a really great day out and even I enjoyed myself. I had some worry though as I felt some chest and arm twinges. I think I will take myself off to the Doc and see what he says about those. I've had these minor aches before but this felt a bit strange. It wore off after 3 or 4 minutes but even so - if it was just that I am unfit or something more to worry about I ought to get it checked out I suppose.

A great day - now off to have a shower and try and sleep in high humidity and high temperatures. we don't do A/C in our houses much in the UK - we do in our cars (which WAS a welcome relief) and so it could be a muggy night.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Damn cold

Has kept me off work - I was going in but when I woke up I felt pretty dreadful and don't feel a bundle of joy and charm right now.

What with the strange text messages I was getting, it came clear and as a bit of a shock to see that MJ had died. All that money and fame can't help you when the time comes can it?

We are getting very close now to my 3rd Anniversary which will be next Thursday 2nd July. It was three years ago that the symptoms really presented themselves. Having said that there were a few minor warning signs before then but, it was the 2nd July that all hell broke loose and this journey really kicked off.

I think that I will have to do a reflective either that day or shortly afterwards to explain what the last three years have actually meant and the journey to where I am now. This year I will be out for a meal during the day and so I may spend a bit of time having a few beers afterwards. Don't know about that yet...

Thursday, June 25, 2009

If at first you don't suceed

Use alcohol and plenty of it.

Not sure if it actually has done the trick but came home early and had a couple of beers and feel a lot better. I could have done without the sneezing though.

I should be OK again in the morning and I am really hoping that the weekend goes well. I have never been paint balling but everyone tells me it is a good day out. I hope so.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

It had better not be Swine Flu

I got up this morning and didn't feel great - then I got a cramp which really started off my day nicely :-)

I had to do my presentation which went down very well apparently and on the way back I wasn't feeling great. I got home, got changed and still don't feel really chipper. I've got very mild Flu symptoms so off to bed early and some lemsip and hopefully I'll be good in the morning. I don't need another dose of what I had at Christmas.

We are meant to be off paint balling on Saturday and so I hope that I am alright for that.

Let's see what a night's rest will do for me. Typical - I bet it was the sniffling woman who sat next to me on Monday on the train!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Getting on with life

Is sort of OK. It seems to be more normal to manage to last the whole week even though I am still tired and to get along without too much to worry about. There really is little to remind me that I was ill apart from I'm still somewhat overweight and the tiredness of course.

Tomorrow we are off to Slough for the AGM of the charity which will be nice as I am being driven there and back. As usual this afternoon was chaos making sure everything was there and that our speeches were all OK. I thought it was quite funny and my speech got altered again today and not by me and I'm delivering it :-) Oh well. It should be fun.

Looking forward to having an acting part as last time I was just the admin clerk.

At least I'll get a few extra hours in bed in the morning.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day

I don't need too much of an excuse to sit on my butt for most of the day. Today there was the F1 Grand Prix and it was Father's Day so a good enough reason. Some beers, watching the Grand Prix and falling asleep afterwards :-)

It's the European Athletics, US Golf and 20/20 cricket all going on there are plenty of distractions. I've been doing some more background work on the potential new job. Working on my pitch and making sure that I have all the requirements lined up and an answer to each of the role and candidate sections. The more I think about it - the more I like the idea of this job. The challenge alone makes it worth going for. To actually get the job would be really interesting and might make a few eyebrows rise. In fact, that would be a bonus in its own right to see what the reaction would be.

Saturday, June 20, 2009


The job deadline was Friday evening and I am hoping that I will at least get a chance to meet the team and have an interview. Of those who I know are also going for the job, I'm by far the youngest and also the one with the most recent and relevant business experience.

I suppose I ought to try and keep a level head. Id really enjoy the job and it would be something I could really get to grips with. It would fulfil an ambition long held and would really stretch me. I have tried to do the 9 to 5 that everyone recommends but it can get a bit boring.

Oh well, let's see what happens.

The Phoney War

It was called when troops sat out opposing each other for months on end whilst nothing actually happened.

Here I am, 6 months since the last invasive procedure and about 5 months since I was told I needed treatment and 4 months since I was told I didn't need treatment!

Gradually, life has returned to "normal". It isn't exactly "normal" yet as I still don't think that my family have come to terms with the fact I lived and I probably cannot get used to their subtle but very noticeable reaction to me. It isn't bad as such but I can't say things have returned to normal that way I still feel very different to the way I was and I'm sure that as my attitude has changed so the ability to adapt to my "take on life" must have changed massively.

I'm neither fish nor fowl at the moment. Neither ill or cured, neither well or not well. In limbo. I am making the most of being well though and that is the great thing.

We went out for a curry night this evening. We all had a great time and I have to say, the company was great and the food was excellent and suddenly, life is really worth living and your friends just grow more on you every time you hold an event like this. I hope we can fit in a few more this year - it really was an enjoyable evening.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Longer between posts

Means I am a busy chap and also that I have been concentrating on other stuff too.

It is interesting that I still haven't heard from the Hospital. I won't be forcing the issue until I get back from my holiday and the tickets arrived yesterday which has got me excited. L has finished school and gets ready for her 4 week expedition to Argentina. A is set to go to Rome and Venice.

I'm working out, after 19 years of not having exclusive access to Mrs. F. quite what we are going to talk about for 2 weeks.

The closing date for the "other job" was extended to tomorrow. I won't hear much until next week I guess. I am on parade on Wednesday delivering one of the key speeches at our Annual General Meeting. It is quite an interesting one too all about our new Mission Statement and the new ways we are tackling child poverty. The slide deck I have produced looks good and I hope with a bit more effort tomorrow it will be really polished.

Tomorrow night we have our curry night. Lots of us. My Nephew is driving over from Luxembourg to be with us and so I am looking forward to a good evening out and then it is the British Grand Prix over the weekend plus the golf and all sorts going on. I have a lot of computer based work to get through as well this weekend.

I feel well, I feel fit and I'm hoping that I get an opportunity of this job. It would be a lot more than I am doing now but it would just be so enjoyable too. I'm also beginning to wonder if I might get a flexible cystoscopy this time given the fact that I have had no treatment and they only had the slightest issue with the cells last time?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Life after Cancer

It may seem strange but I get a feeling that those of us who have gone through the stages and are blessed with clear pathology have worked out that you can now get on with life. The threat which isn't really far from removed, is nonetheless, a threat now and coming to terms with the chronic side of our diagnosis means that we are mindful and wary but must get on with our daily lives. It is an unfortunate fact that we probably still have to work and go through the day - to day existence to make a living and that having lived through the yukky bit we now need to move on.

I never thought I'd say it but I am back to an almost normals state of existence but with a few very keen extras to my persona added on. "No one died" is my mantra these days. Today, some trivial, minutiae transpired at work and frankly all that was needed was to bang a few heads together. "no one died" - they look at me funny when I say it :-)

Life is as back to normal now as I can make it. There are still hurdles to get through and things to be overcome but watch out life, here I come again.....

Monday, June 15, 2009


I have noticed that I am getting better at managing being tired and it is possible for me to snatch some sleep on the train into and out of work. Just enough to charge my batteries. I also grab a few moments at home if I can. I still get tired, the exertions of the weekend really did take it out of me. I am out at least two nights this week as well and I have yet to hear what the arrangements are for this job I applied for as I notice that the date has been extended to this Friday when originally it was last Friday.

It is an interesting job to go for and it will be interesting to see what process they go through from here. I'm not certain whether they will want someone of my particular skill set but I see advantages in me having quite rare skills to bring to the party.

I must arrange for my biopsies as well during the summer when all is quiet at work. Almost everything is finished and next week we have the AGM which sort of closes down our season's efforts.

Still feeling good and getting on with things. Wondering whether they have forgotten me :-)

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Off again in a few minutes

I got a call last night and I'm off out for a few beers at lunchtime with an old friend of mine. He is a member of one of my Lodges and lives alone so it is nice for him to get out and bend my ear about everything from cricket to politics. It is a lovely day here today so perhaps we can sit in the beer garden or some such thing.

Yesterday was a long and enjoyable day and looking back on it, as always, if you prepare yourself you can cover off most problems. There will still a few but the team coped well (they were mainly new) and I hope that it bodes well for the future of the Lodge. The chap that I may work for was there and as is only to be expected was in deep conversation with the members and so I only managed to say a few words to him and we gave a nod that sort of noted that my CV was in with him and he had seen it. It was a sort of audition and I hope I passed.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Almost done

Ready for tomorrow

It is always a nightmare as odd things happen and those odd things are exasperated because there suddenly appear many problems out of nowhere.

For example, there are three extra people to dine tomorrow but the guy who does the dining isn't back until late tonight and nothing can be done about that. Somehow we have to work it out on the day. That is one thing. Now what will happen is that maybe three or four people will fall out or realise they weren't booked in and all hell breaks lose but you just cannot plan or mitigate for this. Everyone thinks that it is just their little problem you are dealing with as an isolated incident - the trouble is there are lots of these all arriving in at the same sort of time and it just gives you a headache.

It was to have been my last meeting and I would have been free of all this turmoil. No such chance as I have to do another year and then can get a rest. So another three of these and perhaps then I can rest. My replacement is well known to me and will be able to pick this up without too much difficulty I reckon.

So all day has been knocking out lists and checking and re-checking stuff for tomorrow. I hope that it will all be alright on the night (or day) as the chap that may well be looking to interview me for that "other" job also happens to be at tomorrow's meeting. I need to be on good form as I it will be a public audition by the looks of it.

I need to be on top form then. No pressure there :-)

As for health - I am still feeling good and more interested in keeping my weight down than thinking about good old BC at the moment. I suppose you have to get try and think "normally" and I have done so much this week that it really has taken my mind off of things.

It has been a busy week

I have hardly had time to draw breath and spent most of the week out and working late and in meetings. Tomorrow (or later today) I am at home and working here ready for my final major Lodge meeting of the season. I will be glad when it is over it is a nightmare at the moment. Especially as hardly anyone is turning up and there are just so many gaps in the officers. So I imagine tomorrow will be busy.

It is the final day for submitting interest in this other job. I am thinking a lot about it and whether or not it is the right thing to do. I would dearly love the job and the chap who I'd work for is actually going to be at my meeting on Saturday.

Still no news of the biopsies - have they forgotten or what? Do I call or just put it back if it arrives. My holiday is now about 5 weeks away and I am going to get into holiday mode after this weekend I feel. I'm hopeful to hear something on the job front next week and I need to consider quite what steps I need to take to get into shape for the holiday. I must get my walking levels up even though I must do three or so miles a day now - I reckon that I should be trying to get a few 5 or 10 mile ones in if I am to do justice to all these wonderful cities we are going to visit.

Health wise - I continue to feel well if a little tired still. The fatigue kicks in often but it isn't debilitating like it used to be. I can get on a train - like tonight - and almost pass out listening to my music. I had a few minutes in my chair tonight as well. At least I get a lie on tomorrow. No more worrying spots of whatever it was and despite most things I am feeling well and fit. My brain is beginning to sharpen back to a point where I am beginning to be instantaneous with my wit now. Before I had to work at it. I wonder whether General Anaesthetic and the BCG has finally worn off?

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


Oh boy I am sooooo tired again. Today was my committee day and all went well and I got everything passed which was just great.

Then I had to meet a colleague and after getting home at the crack of goodness knows when last night (did I mention the bus!) I got 4 hours sleep and went careering headlong onto my meeting.

I am just home again now at 11 or so and I must get to bed and get to sleep.

All is well and work was OK but, in reality, the problems are only just starting to mount as things take on their new perspective. the potential new boss is around on Saturday - I need to be on best behaviour.

Bye for now!

Monday, June 08, 2009

Another health adventure

I had sciatica or whatever on Sunday which faded away. Waking this morning my old friend cramp got me in the other leg and I've been hobbling around. I just got another twinge in my calf muscle (and it is still twinging along). I wonder if my body is trying to tell me something?

I feel as well recently as I ever have and yet my body is conspiring to remind me that perhaps something isn't quite right. Work was - well a little boring today as I've actually done most things and got them ready and they are finished. The summer recess is coming and after this Wednesday the whole place goes quiet for 3 months or so.

Luckily I will be out with some friends tomorrow afternoon and evening and so I am looking forward to that to break the boredom.

Nothing else to worry about - keeping my eye open for tell tale signs of blood in my urine but it must just have been a bit of thread or cotton or something.

Still no word on the operation and the biopsies. Maybe that isn't such a bad thing if I am going for this other job.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Seems OK now.

It seems that it was all a false alarm and I'm not being complacent, I'll still be keeping my eyes open. It is amazing how quickly the fear of having a recurrence grips you and it isn't nice. I'd be pretty upset if that was to happen but I think I'd just have to be pragmatic about it.

I ended up this morning with what felt like a trapped nerve and could hardly walk or work. After a few hours - cold pack, ibuprofen and some volterol and things came back to manageable. I don't know if I slept strangely - perhaps I did.

I hope to hear this week about this other job I have applied for. I'd really like the job but I can see that there may be others better qualified to get it. It would be the challenge that I need to move on as I think I have moved on now. Gone is the need for a protective environment and I think I just need to take on a bit more responsibility.

Still no news on the Cystoscopy - there is always the next day or two or else it will be too late and it will have to wait until after my holiday - I don't fancy trying to do 5 cities in 6 days with a bladder that is wounded and needing to keep dashing to the toilet :-)

Saturday, June 06, 2009


I thought I saw something in my urine last night. I've been cautiously sitting down to go ever since and checking. Perhaps it was nothing. I am reminded that it is not far away from the anniversary of the presentation of my cancer. It started about now with a tiny show of blood in my urine and then went away. It was 2nd July 3 years ago (3 years - crumbs it doesn't seem like that) that it all kicked off in a big way.

3 Years and I've come along way since then. I can't be sure what last night's little thing was as, strangely enough, it could well have been a bit of fluff or bit of cotton thread and as I happened to be wearing red -perhaps it is that.

The trouble is you never seem to get away from these little worries and little scares. The thing is that it is a worry and must stay at the back of your mind. Lately, I have been doing really well and almost forgetting that I ever had BC or indeed that I am still being observed for it. In a way long may that continue.

I wonder if you ever really forget that you ever had this. I guess you must have the memory fade it out but it will always be there somewhere. I'm sort of worried and a little frightened too that it might come back. I don't know in what form and how I'd be able to take it if it did. It is probably best to just cross that road when you come to it but it is a niggle nonetheless.

Friday, June 05, 2009

The Smell of Cigarettes

Severely does my head in these days and somehow my clothes came home on Wednesday night stinking of smoke. Which is strange as I wasn't anywhere near anyone smoking all night. Perhaps it is because I haven't worn that suit in about 4 or more years? Strange. Then tonight I can smell smoke once again.

I can smell it now and whilst I knew people were going outside to smoke, it just seems to be lingering on or near me. Yuk

I used to smoke years ago and really dislike the smell of cigarettes. Cigars I can kind of live with but this smell of smoke on my clothes really is quite horrible as it churns me up. I think with aversion techniques and knowing what it did to me doesn't help...

Ho hum and still no letter. However a great night out at this Surrey Lodge. They sure know how to throw an evening meal - it was excellent.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Sheepish Grins

There were some sore looking heads and bloodshot eyes there this morning. Strange woman didn't appear - I think I may have had some explaining to do if she had!

What a bizarre evening.

Onto the more mundane matters of where my appointment for my Cystoscopy is? So far, not a word and I'm wondering whether I should again take the initiative and drop them a line to remind them. I was sort of hoping that they would have let me know by now so I could plan things out. If it gets too late I will just have to postpone until after the holiday.

Feeling quite tired today and I have another heavy day tomorrow as I am off to Surbiton in the afternoon for a Lodge meeting. It is a bit of a drag but the food is always good there and it will set up the weekend nicely.

That WAS interesting

I am a compulsive people watcher and I love seeing people at their best and at their worst. Tonight was great. I enjoyed myself as I did my duty and worked hard to make sure that everyone who turned up, that I met, enjoyed their evening. I was host and escort and usher.

Afterwards, many were, well, enjoying the freedom that alcohol tends to bring. I was having a drink but certainly not anywhere near dropping off the radar and into the interesting area. I really do enjoy watching people when they are loosened up and can say anything they want. It was so interesting I stayed far too long and "encouraged" many to perhaps say too much or regret their involvement in the morning. I am going to enjoy meeting up with the people I was with this evening and see if they can remember any of the things they said to me.

I was discussing the merits of two people not smoking and they had been off for a few days and weeks and were trying to start again. I was SO surprised when they looked at me as if I should be dead when I told them why I stayed off the fags....

Just an interesting evening and if I must enjoy people watching I must also learn not to "bait" them as mercilessly as I did. After all with that much drink inside them, I am surprised they could think straight let alone actually talk!

Also adding a by - the - by here to see if anything comes of the young lady hanging off my arm for 30 minutes telling me how much of a Gentleman I was and how I had been very kind and considerate. Frankly it was a little embarrassing but there you go - funny nonetheless :-)

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

The deed is done

I sent off my CV and carefully crafted letter this evening and then dropped a note to the boss to let him know that my name is in the frame. I'm not certain whether they will go for me or not. I think I can really deliver on the job.

Of course not everyone would take that view as I might be a bit young for the job at the tender age of 52!

Tomorrow I get to do some volunteer work at Grand Lodge when the Duke of Kent comes in to give out cheques to a number of charities in the public eye to celebrate his being 40 years as Most Worshipful Grand Master. It will be a nice do and I am looking forward to doing some active work after being sat on my bum of r weeks knocking out the annual review. Which looks good I have now decided. Mind you someone is going to get a thick ear as they didn't even mention that just some anally retentive comment about one word in the whole document. Bloody jobsworth :-)

Best get off to bed now as a big day tomorrow.

Oh dear

It always happens - I just seem to attract late nights.

today has been good - I finally got sign off of my Annual Review (version 16!!!). I went to a meeting and have just got home!

Was out at a festival of music yesterday then off to a friend's wedding reception and so I am getting quite tired by now.

Wednesday HRH the Duke of Kent is attending Grand Lodge and I am working as a steward that night - looking forward to that. Still not absolutely sure about this new job but feel that I ought to toss my hat into the ring anyway.

No news from the Hospital. It should be imminent - in a way anything after the weekend of the 13th June is cool for me. But that week is the best and no later as it may affect my holiday and I don't fancy that.

I really could do with working out some sort of strategy to cope with the next few months but there are so many things happening that I'm not absolutely certain what is going on. I may just have to grip on and go for the ride.