Grenfell Fire Anniversary – 1 Year On

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Image from Google

It is a year today since the horrific fire which killed 72 people at Grenfell Tower in London, UK.

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Image: Evening Times

I for one will never forget the footage of the fire from afar on the TV. I cannot imagine how the surviving residents of the tower as well as the people who live in London, especially near the tower will ever be able to put it behind them. 

This is a wake up call for the penny pinchers. I hope they get all that is coming to them once the inquiry is over. 

In the meantime, I hope that all the survivors get what they need to find resolution, hope and for some, basic accomodation. 

Green is the colour that local school children, affected by the fire, to represent the tragedy and the community as does the green heart.

 

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Image: Eastern Eye

 

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Bucket List – Hay Festival

I have a long Bucket List. On it are a lot of things including sleeping under the stars to visiting a jungle.

Most people seem to think of it of a list of things to do before you die. Of course I get this but I don’t think of it like that. For me it is not a rush to see and do it all by death, but a focus to take pleasure in, to aim for more experiences things in life. I want to experience all that I can; the list is really so I don’t forget anything.

So one of the things on this bucket list was to go to the Hay Festival. This is a literature festival that takes place each year in the lovely town of Hay on Wye. It is situated on the Welsh side of the English/Welsh border in the county of Herefordshire.

http://www.hay-on-wye.co.uk/  Here is the town website.

Hay is famous for it’s bookshops of which there are over 20 situated in it’s small streets. It is also a very pleasant place to spend the day with all the other lovely shops, cafes and pubs. The famous Offa’s Dyke runs past the town. It is a 177 mile path which follows a Dyke built by King Offa along the whole Welsh border. I would like to walk it in the future but will have to wait until I retire if I want to do it in one go.

20180601_Hay sign

Image: Own photo.

The town started having a literature festival in 1988 and has since become one of the world’s top literary festivals. It has been on my list for a long time.

The festival runs for about 10 days but we went from Wednesday to Sunday last week. Instead of buying a ticket for a lot of money and trying to get into things the Festival organiser charge for each show. Tickets range from £6 up to over £20.00.

First night,we saw Dara O’Briain. He is doing  The Voice of Reason Tour. I laughed so much that at times I coudn’t breath.

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Image:google images

It was a good start but we hadn’t booked any other tickets. We leafed through the booklet with all the acts in and decided on Marcus du Sautoy, talking about measuring infinity and I opted to go to a session talking about resilience in the NHS.

Over the next few days we say Alice Roberts (anthropologist) and Chris Bonnington (Mountaineer). There was also a storyteller giving us a taste of his book ‘The Assembly of the Severed head’.

The whole event seemed to run very smoothly apart from the odd technical hiccough.

One of the best things was that once a session was over the writer would go to the festival bookshop and sign their book. Each hour or two you could walk in to the shop and see maybe JoJo Moyes or Jilly cooper. I was pleased to see Monty Don in the flesh.

The whole experience was great and I will be going back next year.

The whole festival is held undercover, including the walkways between marquees. Some of the other more pleasing things were the areas just to sit and think like this marquee complete with chairs:

20180601_Hay marquee at night

Image: my photo

Each even had a chalkboard outside which was hand drawn individually, here is the one for Alice Roberts and her 10 species that changd the world with the artist who’s name I think was James.

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Image: my photo

The whole site was clean and tidy at all times. No piles of plates and cups all over the place. hay festival is the first all reusable cup festival in the world (they say) All the cups were plastic and they were all collected for recycling:

cups at hay

Image: my photo

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Current Themes – An Update

 

Its Sunny June and time for an update.

Health and Fitness:  I have been having a rest since doing the moonwalk. One; to recover whole body fitness but also because of some ongoing foot pain I have. I have my sights set on the Couch to 5K still but I need to make sure I don’t injure myself first.

What I have found is that my fitness has definitely improved. I can work longer and harder on the allotment. The only thing slowing me down is tiredness and heat. It has been very warm in the UK over the last few weeks and I am feeling it.

Making Money: Still spending but have managed to earn a bit extra. Nothing amazing though.

Prepping: Nothing new here.

Decluttering and Minimising: I have been away or busy a lot in the last few weeks but have managed to turf out another 2 bags of books and knick knacks. DD is away for the week so I have an opportunity to get rid of some stuff out of her room.

Refuse, Reduce, Reuse and Recycle: Talking to a colleague today about cotton, washable sanitary towels. She is the first person who has said anything about them to me although I have had conversations with other women about them. Lots of Pintrest patterns available.

Went to Hay festival and they had all the beverage sellers using the same plastic cups which were collected for recycling. It shows that where there is a will there is a way.

cups at hay

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Cancer Update: Oncology Review

It is two years since I went back to work and life is looking good. Apart from the obvious stuff like side effects of drugs and less stamina I am lucky to be able to get on with life.

I had a review with the oncologist in the week. She has started me on Anastrazole, and aromatase inhibitor which stops the production of oestrogen in women. They are generally used in post menopausal women because they can’t stop the ovaries still producing oestrogen.

Here is simple but good explanation of the ins and outs of the drug:

http://www.breastcancer.org/treatment/hormonal/aromatase_inhibitors

There will hopefully be less side effects and I will be able to drop my us of Venlafaxine, which has been brilliant although I still get hot flushes.

I may have more joint pain, nothing I haven’t had already, and develop osteoporosis. That means that I will be having a bone density scan in the next few months.

I will have to keep an eye on my heart as well as it can affect your ticker. I have a family history of heart disease so am especially aware anyway.

While there I took the opportunity to ask about recostruction surgery. I am not that body concious to be fair but can’t get on with the image I see in the mirror when I have no prosthetic on. It is worth investigating. Anyway she has referred me to the Breast Care Nurse specialists and I will see them in due course. I will update when I know more.

I am very lucky living in the UK. Recosntruction is free as part of the treatment pathway for breast cancer.

Posted in anastrazole, cancer update, Health and Fitness, menopause, oncologist, plastics, post op, Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Current Themes – An Update

Its mid May and time for an update.

Health and Fitness:  Well I did it. i completed the Moonwalk, 26.2 miles, overnight in 10 hours. Had I thought about doing this a few years ago I would have just laughed and said ‘No Chance’. Here I am today saying I have done it, what is the next challenge!

It wasn’t easy. At 5 miles I was saying to myself that I was a fool. My feet and ankle hurt even before I stasrted. At Mile 8 I told my friends to go on without me as I was so slow. I then just plodded on. chatting to people, listening to music, just saying ‘I can do another five minutes’, ‘ A mile is only 20 minutes, I can do that’. So I am happy.

I will be doing it again next year, a load of people from work want to do it with me. In the meantime the next challenge will be the Couch to 5K again which I will start in a few weeks when I have recovered.

Making Money: Still spending but have managed to earn a bit extra. Nothing amazing though.

Prepping: Nothing new here.

Decluttering and Minimising: Now the walk is over I have started to clean and clear again. Son No 3 decided he wanted to replace his drawers with a wardrobe. This meant we had to clear out his room, redecorate and at the same time he sorted through all his clothes. Books have gone by the bag load and other clutter. I am about to give a bag of stuff to my MiL for a tabletop sale at her church.

Refuse, Reduce, Reuse and Recycle: Working still on getting everything in glass or loose rather than plastic. Reuse of the week is lollipop sticks for the allotment as the weather has warmed up.

Posted in Avoid, Reduce, Recycle, charity marathon walk, cleaning and clearing, decluttering and minimalism, Health and Fitness, Making Money, Prepping, repurpose, Update on current themes, walking | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Current Themes – An Update

Its mid April and time for an update.

Health and Fitness:  The diet is non existent, good job I am doing all this excercise.

The shin splints has mostly gone but I have been having ankle pain. I have managed to walk 15 miles a few weeks ago and hope to reach 18 tomorrow on a training walk with a friend. Got to pull my finger out now as there are only three weeks to go before the Moonwalk.  I have been held up this last week by a heavy cold that had me brathless on the flat. It has nearly gone now but i have some residual catarrh and a cough. The third in the last 6 months, bummer.

Sleep still an issue. I can’t see that changing until I at least change my meds. I will be seeing the Breast Care Nurse Specialist in the next month or so will know more.

Making Money: Spending money more like it. Been away for a few breaks and done some other fun stuff. The rise in temperature here has meant more outdoors work so the money making is taking a back seat right now.

Prepping: Nothing new here.

Decluttering and Minimising: More stuff has gone but not a lot, can only concentrate on one or two things at a time and this isn’t a priority

Refuse, Reduce, Reuse and Recycle: Plastic avoidance continues but it is really hard. I have been drinking water from proper reusable bottles, taking sandwiches and food I can pack my self when out and about but everything elses is plastic. Even the teabags have it.

Posted in Avoid, Reduce, Recycle, charity marathon walk, cleaning and clearing, decluttering and minimalism, Making Money, plastics, Prepping, walking | Leave a comment

My Favourite Place: St Donats – Atlantic College, Wales

Every few years I go to Atlantic College in St Donat’s in Wales for the Beyond the Border Storytelling Festival.

There are two favourite places here, greedy eh?

The first is the walk as you arrive for the festival. you walk through the woods, lit by strings of lights which give the place a sort of mysterious feel as you look into the dimness beyond. I always have a letting go moment. A big sigh of relief and peace, as if I am passing from our normal world to another.

fairy woodland at dusk

 

Then you come out of that onto a field that slopes down to the sea. I always love this as I live inland. this is often my first sight of the sea of the year.

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On a night when there is a clear sky the moon makes the sea glitter magically.

The festival is full of people and colour but the thing I really enjoy is exploring the gardens which are stepped down the hillside facing the sea. There are several garden rooms; the blue garden, the beast garden but the best for me is the rose garden. It has seats and places to tuck yourself away so you can contemplate the world.

rose garden at BYTB

 When I can’t sleep I take myself off to this lovely place and explore my memories of it. You can see why I use it as my header photo.

 

via Photo Challenge: Favorite Place

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