23 August 2017

003/100 days of aspirin


I'm not one for having a regular pattern, day after day. My weekends tended to be amorphous, after the necessary structure of a working week. Sometimes a clearing of the decks (housework, admin etc) on the Friday to clear the time for whatever would come up; sometimes planning outings, activities; sometimes idling all weekend and getting the essentials completed Sunday evening.

My days now will tend to the same lack of rhythm if I don't put a structure around them, but as I tend to resist structure I will be mentally kicking myself into place. I have some short term goals which will help (crafting), & some regular challenges (writing, game playing).

The day today is not helping. After an hour or so of hazy sunshine, a pale cloudy day has set in. Cream and grey. Omnidirectional light. If the sun can't get into a rhythm what chance have I?

22 August 2017

002/100 days of aspirin

I've been reflecting on my attitude to breaking my ankle/leg, especially thinking of the way I handle adversity.

I always suspected that I didn't have the "Dunkirk spirit"; the ability to be cheerful when the chips were down. I suspected, as I am generally bad tempered and irritable at the minor niggles, that I would be grumpy and ungracious in the face of major problems.

The first day I broke my ankle, once it was clear that I'd need surgery, & that would be the following day, I had a mental flurry of things I needed to organise. Things to get from the hotel, flights and car rental and hotels to cancel. People to inform.

Information to gather on what was going to happen next. My adult organisational skills ticking busily over.

But, my childhood training came to the fore as far as attitude. It wasn't a voluntary thing, I said please-and-thank-you to the nurses, the porters,  the doctors, the cleaners. I tried to  be nice and pleasant, to make myself liked and 'no trouble'.

I hate asking for things normally but now I have to, and perhaps it's this that makes me revert to a childlike state of social skills? Eagerness to please authority and be considered in the normal scheme of things - if I'm nice then can the nurses find me something to read, a phone charger?

And patience. Especially in the hospitals and clinics, when you can see  the organisation and prioritisation going on around you. Yes, waiting for hours is a pain, especially because of bureaucracy, but it gets done, thoroughly. And impatience only hurts me.

So I am pleasantly surprised to discover resources in myself that have helped me cope with the injury so far. 4 more weeks off my feet though!

21 August 2017

001/100 days of aspirin

I refused to countenance a month of injecting blood thinners into my tummy. Welsh hospitals recommend this if you have limited mobility, but the Scottish one didn't... so I've a packet of 100 soluble aspirin to work my way through... something enough to act as a daily prompt on the whole recovery thing? Anyway, nice reflections in the glass.

19 August 2017

Gostegodd 008

For Prediction Fiction here
This weeks words: purse, theatre, travesty

The room didn’t really need cleaning, it sparkled like an operating theatre. The sleeping pod had been left out, though the green snuggler had been carefully folded and aligned with the pods corners.

Rioja pursed her lips and hissed her breath out. It was really too tidy in here. The tall man’s quarters were as secretive as his blank navy stare. The clothes were all unpacked, dark and spaced equidistantly in the closet. Nothing in any of the pockets.

She’d imagined being a daring spy, but the illusion crumbled to travesty in the face of the strangers carefully organised defences.

Ellis 003

For Prediction Fiction here
This weeks words:  purse, theatre, travesty

A nice cup of tea at my elbow, just the thing for a dirty stop out with a fractured memory.
Tea solved everything.
I wish.
Clearly, me being a Detective at the moment was a travesty.

Jasper was rinsing out his mug in the sink, waiting for me to come around.

“I’ve got your purse,” he said. “You left it at the club.”
Oh shit.
“Don’t worry, no warrant card,”
Thank fuck. The relief made me blush, stinging pink.

Jasper  just laughed. “What made you get up on stage, Ellie? I thought you’d left aside childish dreams of the theatre?”

16 August 2017

Glad of the sun...

I've not been outside since arriving home on Saturday, three and a half days ago, but I am very glad it is summer, and the August weather isn't too capricious. The sun has been out, flirting with fluffy clouds and a healthy breeze. The leaves have been almost constantly moving, on the rowan tree in the garden, and across the road on The Bank. The memory of the trees I used to play in as a child so strong that every time I look out, the regrown tree seems misshapen. It must have been regrowwn for twenty years now, but I still think of the curved fork in the trunk, and am reminded of the omnipresent nature of change.

I am getting around OK now. Still honing my technique on the crutches - yesterdays efforts rubbed up a sore patch of skin on my wrist - but I am much more mobile now than when I first practiced on Friday, three hours after the operation. Lifting tins of baked beans around at different angles to build up some arm strength, so I am not taking all my weight in my armpits. Today I find that I can get off the bed almost one handed, using the left just to steady me as I come upright.

The sun is behind me now, as I have moved to the cooler back room. I've a new throne of armchair, footstool, towel-clad plank as a table for laptop and phone, and coffee table beside me; a small pile of books within reach. The sun is starting again each day, picking myself up and making physical efforts. Making mental efforts in order to make physical efforts. Setting myself little goals for the day, without planning myself into orderliness and frustration. Today, I need to think about the WordCloud August competition - 400 words on the sea...

15 August 2017

But when I opened my eyes

But when I opened my eyes
the green clifftop faded, the springy grass underfoot,
the bobbing cow-parsley tickled no more.
You had gone on ahead, bouncing footsteps on the trail,
hand hovering over shreds of dirty wool caught on the tiny fists
of barbed wire.
The expelled air rush of the sea below
underneath the wind.

But when I opened my eyes
I was anchored to the bed, encased in a stone boot
gasping for the wind.

A 3-minute prompt piece for the Cardiff Bay Writing group on facebook
Yes, from a dream, of going walking or hiking somewhere, waking up and not going hiking anywhere...

14 August 2017

Ellis 002

For Prediction fiction here
This weeks words: cower, feature, maggot

I rubbed my cheek and glanced in the mirror. Not a pretty sight, mascara featured heavily, just not where it was supposed to be. Worse was the churn of maggots chomping through my cognitive brain, I had only the vaguest impressions of last night remaining.

“Ellie,” called my boss, Jasper. “Come on!” as I hobbled to my apartment door.

* * *

“Ellie!” Jasper shook my shoulders, I must have crumpled to the laminate floor as I opened the door. I cowered at the sharpness in his voice.
“Ellie, this isn’t like you, what’s the matter?”

Dizziness, and the world blinked off again.

12 August 2017

Triple cast

I didn't take a picture of the second cast, so here is only the 1st and 3rd of 3 days.
Ahead of the long road home. I've never broken any bones before. I'm not sure what to expect. Knowing me, my cheerful "things are being fixed and I'm getting through it as best I can" will be eroded over the follwing weeks with grumpiness and frustration at my physical inadequacy, and low level pain/discomfort is less bearable to the temper than a dramatic event...


06 August 2017

Ellis 001

For Prediction Fiction here
This weeks words: earring, park, spearmint

The pain in my jaw woke me, my once dancing dangling earring embedded in my sore cheek.
I’d never had a hangover like this before. Like a tonne of sleep had been hurled at my head so hard my brain was having trouble remembering it was supposed to be inside my skull.
And my mobile trilled incessantly.
“DC Ellis, will you be delivering your report in person since it’s already ninety minutes late?” snarled my boss.“Er,” I mumbled.“Buzz me up, I’m in your car park. We need to talk about your undercover shift at Spearmint Rhino last night.”

Gostegodd 007

For Prediction Fiction here
This weeks words: earring, park spearmint

Rioja hadn’t been assigned to manage the quarters of the tall stranger, but she’d swapped with Anneca after describing the jewel chest of the woman she had been allocated to.

Jewelled earrings and thick ropes for twining in the hair, around the arms and neck, in luscious wine reds, and the brilliant spearmint of a stun-gun discharge. By the armful! So tempting, but Rioja had dozens of long-orbits left on the ship; Anneca only a short term hire. A parked favour in case their paths crossed again.

Her back against the closed door, she wondered where to start…

21 May 2017

Gostegodd 006

For Prediction Fiction here
This weeks words: flaccid, lullaby, sack

Stonesblood. Mark didn’t know how old it was, but it had that preserved look of planetbound cities. Of course, there were towers, with cracked bells clanging out sonorous lullabies. Flaccid socks of gaudy materials designed to flap when the atmosphere span at a different speed to the rock. A whole language built up around those.
Rock everywhere.

The walls, rock dozens of hands thick, conjuring up armies camped outside, waiting for their opportunity to sack and loot the riches inside.  Stealing money was very different these days.

He passed through the scanners; and let his breath slide between his teeth.

12 September 2016

Renting a Mustang

For Prediction Fiction here
This weeks words: fob, indigo, prevent

I waited impatiently, two cars behind you at the lights.

You had ignored me for eighteen months last time, this time only two days after fobbing me off with some lame but plausible line. You weren’t to know I had prepared myself this time, nurtured my indigo bruised heart inside its shell before handing it to you along with a hammer. Thinking myself prepared for rejection but god, however can you be when it comes a different way each time?

The lights changed, one more set before the viaduct. Engine revving greedily. I will prevent you from ignoring me again.

11 September 2016

Dark River 016

George, a pale plastic hero
"Give me the helicopter!"
Heat or humans, sixty-eight people outlined

We missed one

Glasses watched the travellers
Every person kind, impossible to hide

dark river 013

Storm children,
their mouths ice crystals

and a blue nylon parka

Thirteen long boys
taste the snowflakes

03 September 2016

Gostegodd 005

For Prediction Fiction here
This weeks words: channel, hike, petrichor

Mark hiked his carrysack crosswise over his shoulders, ready for the short freefall shuttle trip down to the planet, and to the unyielding Petrichor. The city complex was also called Stonesblood by those who came to make complex trades with it’s hard but slippery inhabitants.

He and the dozen others were channelled through the scanners at the shuttle door. Mark wasn’t entirely sure that his credentials would pass muster, but they were the best the Wrthiannau could make. If not, it was all over, and the implant on the palm of his left hand would be activated.

The suicide button.

01 September 2016

#awakeaugust 31

A pick me up at the end of an era, kind words, hugs and an espresso martini. A new veneer of sophistication

31 August 2016

#awakeaugust 30

Autopilot / sleep driving.
This is my penultimate time on this route, and for lack of attention (and checking out how badly my hair is blowing around in the wind with the top down), it comes very close to being a last route anywhere. Slamming on the brakes  and pitching forward, finishing a metre off the bumper of the little read car in front. The queue for the roundabout starts so much sooner at 8am rather than 6am.
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