Zone Doubt, a.k.a. 'Surreal Я Us'...

Joules, trusted by... dozens... to make a drama out of your crisis...

Other sites:

:: JAT :: WaveWrights :: Publications ::

I live to write. It's not wise to get in my way.

... I'd write my autobiography, but no-one would believe it....

If you come across any words you don't recognise in this blog, take a look at the Taylorspeke Glossary in the left-hand infopane, you'll usually find a definition there.

The Poppy Tales

(Transformers fanfiction!)

Transformers mini-comics here.

Adventures in Orchids

Apparently I am now collecting them...

There's room for one - or maybe two, at a pinch - more on that bedroom windowsill (the only one in the house that's ideal for them). Let's see what I find. Well, that didn't last long...

EO - Everlasting orchid. Phalaenopsis. I've had this orchid since 2007 and it just keeps flowering...

AO - Alien face orchid. Phalaenopsis . Bought 2018 - lovely little flowers, all different patterns!

RO - Rescued orchid photo to come when it flowers. Phalaenopsis. Rescued from a bin up the road in 2019. Classic!

TO - Tiny orchid. Phalaenopsis. Bought at Tesco 21.8.20. It just begged to come home with me. How could I say no?

CO - Crimson orchid. Cambria. Another Tesco find. This one may be going to live in Ken's room once we've redecorated and put up the new shelving; it prefers a cooler, less sunny windowsill. If so, I'll need to find another cambrian to keep it company.

GO - Golden orchid. Phalaenopsis. Saw this one when I bought CO and left it behind - then immediately regretted it as soon as I got home. Never seen one like it before. Ken, bless him, went back over to Tesco in the rain and bought it for me...

DO - Dendrobium Orchid. Smells of wisteria, so beautiful...

RO2 - Rescued orchid no 2. Phalaenopsis. This is the one I rescued from the wall along the road middle of 2021.

PO. Pink orchid. Phalaenopsis. This is the one I bought at Cabury Garden Centre on special, late 2021. It's much happier here!

TWO. Teeny weeny orchid, Phalaenopsis. Rescued from Tesco end 2021 (I think).

My IMDb ep summaries

Arthur of the Britons
Star Maidens
The Starlost
Space Rangers
The Sentinel (part: seasons 2 and 3)
Swamp Thing (part: season 3)
Gravedale High
Transformers: Armada
Transformers: Energon
Transformers: Cybertron (part)
Misfits of Science (four eps)
Zoo Gang
Jupiter Moon
Transformers: Beast Wars (part: seasons 2 and 3)
Transformers: Beast Machines (part)
Vampire Princess Miyu
Nathan Barley
No Heroics
Undermind (3 eps)
Will Shakespeare (Tim Curry version)
12 Kingdoms
Trigun (ep 8)
Hyperdrive (season 2 ep 3)
The Café

For later:

Missing Earthian ep
Missing Haibane Renme eps)
(And possibly Marine Boy...)

Silver birch at Eastwood 


"Autumnal - nothing to do with leaves. It is to do with a certain brownness at the edges of the day... Brown is creeping up on us, take my word for it... Russets and tangerine shades of old gold flushing the very outside edge of the senses... deep shining ochres, burnt umber and parchments of baked earth - reflecting on itself and through itself, filtering the light. At such times, perhaps, coincidentally, the leaves might fall, somewhere..."

(Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead Act 2: Tom Stoppard)


I love this time of year. I love the colours, the sharp slant of sunlight on the trees, mosaics of acid-yellow and harts- blood, velvet and darkness and a haze of mist-grey over the hills. I love its immanence, its mellowness, the tang of frost just around the corner of the year...

Watching the little birds in the goat-willow in my garden, I realised something more.

I love this land with a fierce, possessive love, deep-rooted in two thousand years of history. From the frosted beaches and cloud-brushing peaks of the north to the wind-haunted meanderings of the rivers of the east, from the sensuous rolling patchworked hills of the south to the demanding dark moors of the west, this land seeps into bone and blood and synapse, mother of motley nobility, culture, individual freedoms. It can be known. It can be understood. It can be felt deep inside.

I love its effortless eccentricities, its vigour and vibrancy, its flawed perfections, its silent strength and tenacious resilience, its hard-won tolerances and intense and variable beauty, the profound energy in its sacred mythical landscape.

Home and more-than-home, the forces that shape and protect and bind, in me, as I am in the land. Love returning love in the stillness for those who'll only take the time to listen...

(Joules, Autumn 2004)

All photographs taken by Joules unless otherwise specified. All photographs © Joules A Taylor or other specified individual.

In Memoriam

17.03.09 - Argent

25.07.08 - Raptor

18.12.07 - Quyn

02.12.06 - Ryme

Currently enjoying:
Transformers - IDW, Prime, Animated, Rescue Bots.

Currently reading:
Various Transformers books and graphic novels.

Currently working on:

Currently chuffed with:
My garden

Currently miffed at:
Nestlé, Nonpres Tinyhands Fart, Toadface Farage

Currently maintaining:

Blog Pics
I've gathered some of my pages of photos together: the page of links is here. I'll be adding more as time goes by!

Evil Squid
A Little Glossary of Taylorspeke
(in no particular order)

plit popints - n. Typo for 'plot points' typed on a keyboard with more than half the characters worn off...

[PING] (alt [ping]) - n. A brainwave. The text equivalent of a lightbulb going on blindingly over someone's head. Usually mine. And usually at the most inconvenient of times. [sigh]

TPTB - The Powers That Be.

wulmet - n. A person of little or no talent who somehow inveigles himself into a position where he is in power over other, far more talented people and uses his position to downplay them in order to try to make himself feel superior.

biteable - referring to an anatomical part vb, tasty.

Flatterfed - vb. 27.02.08: my typo for flattered, but since it's so cutely apt I thought it would fit nicely here. Lutra defined it as "the lovely warm feeling of satisfaction resulting from enthusiastic reviews..." (which I've been getting for my MB fics).

Composted - vb, 'compos mentis', mentally capable of working. Contrast with uncomposted or non- composted, not 'compos mentis', not capable of working, hungover...

Cumbles - n, cucumbers.

Kewp - how Ken says 'thank you'. We rather like Lutra's 'nanx', too...

Musekick - noun, music, without which I cannot work.

'feinne - noun, caffeine, essential for correct mental functioning, especially first thing in the morning. I prefer mine in the form of SodaStream Diet Coke. And on that subject...

Skoosh - verb, noun. To skoosh - to add CO2 to a sodastream bottle filled with water to make it fizzy, prior to adding Diet Coke syrup (or just drinking as sparkling water). A skoosh - a bottle of water that has been skooshed. Skooshy - something that has been skooshed, water, or that whipped cream that comes in tins you have to shake then upend and press the nozzle...

Shoogle - verb. To shake gently, for example, of roast potatoes in a roasting tin to ensure they're covered with oil. I have vague memories of this being a real Scottish colloquialism...

Stegasaurus - n, spider of the genus tegenaria. Why? No idea. I just find it easier, that's all...
Edit 08.09.07: Lutra thinks that Brian is a good name for a mini-stegasaurus. From now on, any 'Brian's in the posts may be assumed to be a tegenaria. Except where otherwise specified.

Viterals - noun, vitamins + minerals. Also a pun on victuals.

Splish - verb. A combination of slosh and splash.

Parrots - noun, paracetemol (from the old joke "Why are there no aspirin tablets in the jungle? Because the parrots eat 'em all...")

Maggles - noun, magpies. As opposed to non-magical people.

Flamewings - noun. Swifts. So called because the first time we became aware of them was an early summer evening when they were flying high, the light from the setting sun seemingly turning their wings to flames. Lovely little birds. We always know summer's arrived when we hear their high-pitched squeeing.

Murfs - noun, moths.

Peasant cut - noun, roughly cut up into big chunks, e.g. vegetables chopped in a hurry for a hearty stew or soup. By extension, anything prepared in a hurry - haircut, material, even a first draft of a story...

Giraffe - noun, a carafe (of wine, coffee or water, for example).

Shrumps - noun, mushrooms.

Splings - noun, Kai's spelling homework: by extension, any spelling.

Tyops - noun, typos. var toyps, typso, psyto, psoyt, etc. Usual result of a dose of the fingerials (see next entry).

Fingerials - (pr. fin GEEE ree yalls) noun, fingers that will not type what you want them to.

Haddock - noun, time, of which I never have enough. (Origin of this term here.)

Sleep - noun? vb? a.k.a. sheeeeeeeeep.... I used to know what this word meant...

The Updates Blog

The place to stay notified of WaveWrights' Fiction updates: Zone, Darkside, DarkRealm, Matrix, Vault, Safehouse 13...

my computer gremlin Butch. click the pic to see the larger image

Butch, my computer gremlin. Click the pic for larger version, and read his adventures here...

Butch by the talented 


A gift for me! Butch by the very talented Sylverthorne. Click pic for larger image.



This is MY haddock. It was caught exclusively for me by Talon. No, you can't have any. I need all the haddock I can get!!

A'lestrel by Valkyrie.

A'lestrel - a gift for me from Valkyrie...

Albino Alsatian Benten (c) MEBird 


Another gorgeous Valkyrie gift for me - Benten the Albino Alsatian! Click thumbnail for larger image.

Radittsu, an oekaki for my birthday 04 



Oekai by Bakayaro Onna - Radittsu at his sexiest...

The Zone Plant from
The Zone 



OrganicHTML (which alas no longer seems to exist...)
[::..My Regular Reads..::]
:: Astronomical Pic of the Day [>]
:: What is Space... [>]
:: Dark Roasted Blend [>]
:: BLDG [>]
:: Watchismo Times [>]
[::..Fun Places..::]
::PALEOMAP Project
Absolutely fascinating.
:: Skymap
Check out the night sky where you are!
[::..Useful Sites..::]
:: GreenNet
First stop for environmental matters
:: The Forest of Avon
Our local community forest and places to visit
:: The Guardian
Online Guardian Newspaper.
:: Symbols
Exactly what it says
:: World Timeserver
For checking the current time around this world
:: Universal Currency Converter
Actually it's just a terran-global currency converter, not universal, but it's still useful...

So what is it with the haddock? Am I some kind of fish freak?

I'll leave that to others to decide.

The tale (or tail if you prefer) harks back to October 2000, when my GoodTwin and I, ably assisted by Sue, ran the first UK Professionals convention...
It's common knowledge that I never have enough time, and I was determined not to bewail the fact that weekend: hence I promised not to use the 'T' word...
Of course, that didn't really work (if nothing else I had to let the trainees know what times things were supposed to be happening!) so we decided a substitute word would be employed instead. There were several suggestions. Banana came very close to being chosen. However, I eventually decided that 'haddock' fitted the bill nicely. Ever since, haddock=time. Hence the title of my forthcoming autobiography,
My Half-Life in the Haddock Space Continuum....

Normally I wouldn't, but these were just irresistible...

How could I resist?

Just too adorable...

and to complete the rainbow...

These Too-Kawaii Kitties
were adopted from
Ghost's Anime Page (which appears to have disappeared, alas...)

Useful sites:

Yamato -
Fabulous anime figures

Anime Lyrics
A huge selection... evil popups

Anime still needed to complete series' I'm collecting... Many thanks to everyone who has helped me acquire the collection!
Ai no Kusabi

   Dj: June Special
   CD: Ambivalence

Cyber City Oedo 808

   All 3 eps on Video, dubbed
   Dj: Cyberage 1-3
   Illustrated Book 2 (Benten's) in Japanese

From Eroica with Love

   Manga Vols 1, 9, 11

Mirage of Blaze

   DVD Vol 1 (eps 1-4)

R.G. Veda

   English Manga: Vol 1
   Japanese Manga: Vol 1-7 complete
   Tarot Pack
   R.G.Veda video

Twelve Kingdoms

   Anime Vol 1-12: complete

Under the Glass Moon

   Manga Vol 1, 2
Vol 3 needed

Vampire Hunter D - Bloodlust


   Vampire Hunter D Book 1

New Vampire Miyu

   (Studio Ironcat) Manga Vols 1 -5 (complete)

Yami no Matsuei

   Viz Manga: English translation, Vols 1 - 11 (complete: I believe vol 12 is only available online)
   Japanese 3-DVD set
   Central Park Media: Descendants of Darkness Vol. 1, English/Japanese subbed.

[::..Joules SPfied..::]

... this is Terra? How the hell'd I end up here...?

(Thanks, Lutra, for the quote!)

07/01/2002 - 07/31/2002
08/01/2002 - 08/31/2002
09/01/2002 - 09/30/2002
10/01/2002 - 10/31/2002
11/01/2002 - 11/30/2002
12/01/2002 - 12/31/2002
01/01/2003 - 01/31/2003
02/01/2003 - 02/28/2003
03/01/2003 - 03/31/2003
04/01/2003 - 04/30/2003
05/01/2003 - 05/31/2003
06/01/2003 - 06/30/2003
07/01/2003 - 07/31/2003
08/01/2003 - 08/31/2003
09/01/2003 - 09/30/2003
10/01/2003 - 10/31/2003
11/01/2003 - 11/30/2003
12/01/2003 - 12/31/2003
01/01/2004 - 01/31/2004
02/01/2004 - 02/29/2004
03/01/2004 - 03/31/2004
04/01/2004 - 04/30/2004
05/01/2004 - 05/31/2004
06/01/2004 - 06/30/2004
07/01/2004 - 07/31/2004
08/01/2004 - 08/31/2004
09/01/2004 - 09/30/2004
10/01/2004 - 10/31/2004
11/01/2004 - 11/30/2004
12/01/2004 - 12/31/2004
01/01/2005 - 01/31/2005
02/01/2005 - 02/28/2005
03/01/2005 - 03/31/2005
04/01/2005 - 04/30/2005
05/01/2005 - 05/31/2005
06/01/2005 - 06/30/2005
07/01/2005 - 07/31/2005
08/01/2005 - 08/31/2005
09/01/2005 - 09/30/2005
10/01/2005 - 10/31/2005
11/01/2005 - 11/30/2005
12/01/2005 - 12/31/2005
01/01/2006 - 01/31/2006
02/01/2006 - 02/28/2006
03/01/2006 - 03/31/2006
04/01/2006 - 04/30/2006
05/01/2006 - 05/31/2006
06/01/2006 - 06/30/2006
07/01/2006 - 07/31/2006
08/01/2006 - 08/31/2006
09/01/2006 - 09/30/2006
10/01/2006 - 10/31/2006
11/01/2006 - 11/30/2006
12/01/2006 - 12/31/2006
01/01/2007 - 01/31/2007
02/01/2007 - 02/28/2007
03/01/2007 - 03/31/2007
04/01/2007 - 04/30/2007
05/01/2007 - 05/31/2007
06/01/2007 - 06/30/2007
07/01/2007 - 07/31/2007
08/01/2007 - 08/31/2007
09/01/2007 - 09/30/2007
10/01/2007 - 10/31/2007
11/01/2007 - 11/30/2007
12/01/2007 - 12/31/2007
01/01/2008 - 31/01/2008
01/02/2008 - 29/02/2008
03/01/2008 - 31/03/2008
01/04/2008 - 04/30/2008
01/05/2008 - 31/05/2008
01/06/2008 - 30/06/2008
01/07/2008 - 31/07/2008
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01/12/2008 - 31/12/2008
01/01/2009 - 31/01/2009
01/02/2009 - 28/02/2009
01/03/2009 - 31/03/2009
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01/02/2010 - 28/02/2010
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01/05/2010 - 31/05/2010
01/06/2010 - 30/06/2010
01/07/2010 - 31/07/2010
01/08/2010 - 31/08/2010
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01/11/2010 - 31/11/2010
01/12/2010 - 31/12/2010
01/01/2011 - 31/01/2011
01/02/2011 - 28/02/2011
01/03/2011 - 31/03/2011
01/04/2011 - 30/04/2011
01/05/2011 - 31/05/2011
01/06/2011 - 30/06/2011
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01/01/2014 - 31/01/2014
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01/11/2014 - 30/11/2014
01/12/2014 - 31/12/2014
01/01/2015 - 31/01/2015
01/02/2015 - 28/02/2015
01/03/2015 - 31/03/2015
01/04/2015 - 30/04/2015
01/05/2015 - 31/05/2015
01/06/2015 - 30/06/2015
01/07/2015 - 31/07/2015
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01/10/2015 - 31/10/2015
01/11/2015 - 31/11/2015
01/12/2015 - 31/12/2015
01/01/2016 - 31/01/2016
01/022016 - 28/02/2016
01/03/2016 - 31/03/2016
01/04/2016 - 31/04/2016
01/05/2016 - 31/05/2016
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01/01/2017 - 31/01/2017
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01/03/2017 - 31/03/2017
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01/09/2017 - 30/09/2017
01/10/2017 - 31/10/2017
01/11/2017 - 30/11/2017
01/12/2017 - 31/12/2017
01/01/2018 - 31/01/2018
01/02/2018 - 28/02/2018
01/03/2018 - 31/03/2018
01/04/2018 - 30/04/2018
01/05/2018 - 31/05/2018
01/06/2018 - 30/06/2018
01/07/2018 - 31/07/2018
01/08/2018 - 31/08/2018
01/09/2018 - 30/09/2018
01/10/2018 - 31/10/2018
01/11/2018 - 30/11/2018
01/12/2018 - 31/12/2018
01/01/2019 - 31/01/2019
01/02/2019 - 28/02/2019
01/03/2019 - 31/03/2019
01/04/2019 - 30/04/2019
01/05/2019 - 31/05/2019
01/06/2019 - 30/06/2019
01/07/2019 - 31/07/2019
01/08/2019 - 31/08/2019
01/09/2019 - 30/09/2019
01/10/2019 - 31/10/2019
01/11/2019 - 30/11/2019
01/12/2019 - 31/12/2019
01/01/2020 - 31/01/2020
01/02/2020 - 29/02/2020
01/03/2020 - 31/03/2020
01/04/2020 - 31/04/2020
01/05/2020 - 31/05/2020
01/06/2020 - 31/06/2020
01/07/2020 - 31/07/2020
01/08/2020 - 31/08/2020
01/09/2020 - 30/09/2020
01/10/2020 - 31/10/2020
01/11/2020 - 30/11/2020
01/12/2020 - 31/12/2020
01/01/2021 - 31/01/2021
01/02/2021 - 28/02/2021
01/03/2021 - 31/03/2021
01/04/2021 - 30/04/2021
01/05/2021 - 31/05/2021
01/06/2021 - 30/06/2021
01/07/2021 - 31/07/2021
01/08/2021 - 31/08/2021
01/09/2021 - 30/09/2021
01/10/2021 - 31/10/2021
01/11/2021 - 30/11/2021
01/12/2021 - 31/12/2021
01/01/2022 - 31/01/2022
01/02/2022 - 28/02/2022
01/03/2022 - 31/03/2022
01/04/2022 - 30/04/2022
01/05/2022 - 30/05/2022
01/06/2022 - 31/06/2022
01/07/2022 - 31/07/2022
01/08/2022 - 31/08/2022
01/09/2022 - 30/09/2022
01/10/2022 - 31/10/2022
01/11/2021 - 31/11/2021
01/12/2022 - 31/12/2022
01/01/2023 - 31/01/2023
01/02/2023 - 28/02/2023
01/03/2023 - 31/03/2023
01/04/2023 - 30/04/2023
01/08/2023 - 31/08/2023
01/11/2023 - 31/11/2023

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Day +88 

Wow. Eight hours sleep last night, probably the most I've had in a year!

Did I mention I found a Transformer advent calender at The Range?

Of course I bought it for me - you're never too old for an advent calender! - but then felt a bit guilty, as we really can't risk Kai having one because of his clean diet. So I gave it some thought, and over the last week have made him what may be the biggest advent calender in the world...

There are individual mini chocolate bars in the pockets (and a few non-edible fun things as well). I'm quite pleased with the way it's come out. Yes, it's simplistic, but I didn't have a lot of time (had to make it while Kai was asleep in the mornings).

The wol isn't quite as pretty as I'd like, but the 25 on the wing works well, I think.

And because I don't trust anyone -

It's very large - four and a half feet in length and correspondingly wide. Kai seems quite chuffed with it though!

He's feeling a bit better today - we went over to the nature reserve for a walk this afternoon. The report on Friday was that they couldn't find anything in his blood review, and he has no infection markers, so they think it's either a virus or the meds (same as the Thursday doctor). However, to be absolutely sure, he's booked in for a head MRI next week (because of the headaches he keeps getting), and then he'll have a thorough ear exam (to check if his occasional tinnitus has an obvious cause). Fingers crossed...

Labels: , ,


Blogger GoodTwin said...

What a super idea. I love your wol!

Glad to hear it doesn't seem to be anything serious. I have everything crossed.

11:28 pm  
Blogger Joules *Dances with Haddock* Taylor said...

Thank you - and thank you. He was snuffly tonight - it may be the first cold of his slow climb back to normal immunity. None of us are going to enjoy that process...

12:29 am  

Friday, November 28, 2014

Day +87 

So after three days of Kai gradually feeling worse and worse, tonight he was worried enough for me to get him into the BHOC (his temperature is fine, rash the same, no obvious physical problems just increasing weakness, muzziness, pain and general ickiness). Bloods taken for review, ecg run and throat swabs taken, and he's staying for what's left of the night so they can repeat the blood review in a few hours, prior to him taking his tacrolimus meds. The dr we saw couldn't find anything obviously wrong, so she thinks it's either a virus brewing in the background, or drug toxicity. We should know tomorrow, before he has his pentamidine nebuliser.

I've just got back. I've been up since 7.30 yesterday morning, and really need to be up by 8 this morning. Is it worth while going to bed? I ask myself...

Labels: , ,


Sunday, November 23, 2014

Day +82 

Everything still going OK. We went for a walk this evening and watched the sunset at the Callington Rd Nature Reserve - very pretty and of course I forgot my camera...

We did watch Tf: Age of Extinction on Friday, and all enjoyed it (I loved it!) Both Kai and I want to watch it again soon, as it's so detailed it's very easy to miss things even the second time around.

We've nearly reached Season 3 of The Sentinel too - and I've picked us up the complete Twin Peaks, as Kai expressed an interest in it, and it is, of course, the definition of a cult classic. Will start that after The Sentinel.

Labels: , , ,


Thursday, November 20, 2014

Day +79 

Another catchup...

Monday's appt was a little worrying - they thought, from his previous blood review, that Kai might have Epstein-Barr virus (extremely common, apparently, the one that causes glandular fever). Luckily his Monday review came back with all the virus markers negative, so that's all good. His RBC and platelets were down on the previous week, but not enough for them to worry about. We'll see what happens next Monday.

Sains had How to Train your Dragon 2, so I picked it up - along with Transformers: Age of Extinction which we're saving 'til Friday, since it's 2 hours 40 minutes long. HTTYD2 is an absolute delight, well deserving the 8.1 the IMDb gives it, hugely enjoyable. Although it rather threw me that the head of the Bewilderbeast looks startlingly similar to Megatron/Galvatron's head in TfP: Predacons Rising (best image I can find is here).

Later edit: there's a similar pic of the bewilderbeast here for comparison, but that image is a spoiler so only go look if you've seen the film or don't mind spoilers.

Kai is feeling generally noticeably better, we're still going for walks nearly every day, and his hair has started growing back. Not enough to tell what colour it's going to be, yet, but enough to provide some protection from the cold (over and above his hats, that is). I have his permission to post this photo (make the most of it, he doesn't like doing it!) so you can see. He's also looking much better these days: everyone at the BHOC keeps remarking how well he looks!

Finally remembered to ring for the results of my x-ray. News is basically good - my hip joints are normal with no unusual wear and tear, and no arthritis (yet), but I have a section of 'unfused bone' at the top of my left femur that might be what's causing the pain. I have to make an appt with Dr Reading for an examination, and may be referred to a specialist. Oh joy. In the meantime, it's not something to be too worried about, so I suppose I just take it as easy as I can manage and not carry anything too heavy. (Yeah, right.)

Otherwise things are trundling along as normal. I'm hoping to get back to Poppy before Yule...

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Sunday, November 16, 2014

Day +75 

... where did the week go?

In brief - slow (very slow but noticeable), steady improvement. Kai's been out for four walks (one with Ken) and is finding it easier all the time, though he's tired the next day. He's determined to get strong again as fast as he can though. His excellent appetite should help!

Yule shopping is well underway (folks' parcels were sent off Thursday and arrived yesterday).

Picked up How to Train your Dragon - in advance of HTTYD 2, which is supposed to be out tomorrow, hoping to pick it up right away - and watched last night. Absolutely loved it.

Garden tidy-up continues. At some point I have to fill in all the gaps in the greenhouse with bubble wrap and set my sulphur candle going (then perhaps my cucumbers will grow next year). Everything is now planted except the viburnum - it's not going to sit well where I had planned, so we're going to have to find another position for it.

Still desperately tired. And aching. Legs seem to be getting worse: now waking up at least twice a night with the pain. I forgot to ring for x-ray results on Friday: will try to remember after tomorrow's BHOC appt.

Trying for an early night. Think it'll happen?

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Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Day +70 

The garden is pretty at this time of year, even on a grey drizzly day...

Monday's appt went well, everyone still very happy with progress. It was cold and sunny: we went for a nice longish walk in between blood review and seeing the doctor. There's a pretty 'woodland' walk along the side of the hill behind the hospital (I'll try to remember to take photos next time. It's very pleasant and flat, designed for patients to get some fresh air, gentle exercise, and see something natural rather than walls), then a little way down and back up 'cardiac hill'. Kai managed it better than me, although he is very tired today.

We got back before ten (would have been earlier but I had to pick up some more MMF at the onsite Boots) to find my trees had been delivered and left on the patio area, as requested. Made Kai lunch, dived out for a Sains shop (specifically to pick up X-men: Days of Future Past) then we planted them up in the veg bed. Going to look beautiful next spring! I'll take photos then, they're pretty much bare branches right now.

After dinner we watched the new film, and enjoyed it, though I could see the plot holes this time round. It was fun though!

Today is dull and drizzly. However, it seems the problem with the DVD recorder is just with one tape, as it will happily record everything else, so I'm still transferring stuff. Ken's archived material today - the 1987 Second Tiverton Fire Show (great fun, and Ken was in it), a Wire programme filmed at the Galleries that Ken was also in, and currently the Most Haunted Live (2007) which was filmed in Bristol. All four hours of it. [headdeskheaddeskHEADDESK] I cannot adequately express how much I hate that programme. I shall need to bleach my brain when it's over, and I certainly deserve a medal...

Hoping to finish the curtain for this room after lunch.

I probably forgot to say we're watching The Sentinel, an ep a day - halfway through Season 2 now, and thoroughly enjoying it. It transferred surprisingly well and the quality is fine.



Sunday, November 09, 2014

Day +68 

Two thirds of the way through...

It's been completely manic. In the past four days Kai and I have been for two walks while the weather's been nice, one of them to the Callington Road nature reserve; I've done vast amounts of Yuletide shopping; Ken and I have planted the tamarind, cornus and escallonia out the front, the two red cyclamen and the new hibiscus out the back, the tulip bulbs are planted, and Ken's dug the holes up at the top ready for the trees tomorrow; I went to Sth Briz Community Hospital for my x-ray, via the town to search for scarves for Kai (he's feeling the cold, and not having any hair isn't helping. I found a couple of quite nice ones in charity shops); we're nearly halfway through The Sentinel season 2; and we found time to watch Winter's Tale, which I picked up reduced at Tesco. (We enjoyed it. It's only inspired by the book - which is one of my favourite five of all time - but it gets across the ambience of the work surprisingly well. I could have done without the heavy-handed angel/demon thread though).

There was a lot more but I'm tired and my memory is a bit hazy. I still have to plant my irises, and X-men: Days of Future Past is out on DVD tomorrow - will need to pick that up - and I still haven't finished my last curtain, but otherwise the basic clearing up and sorting out of the house is not far off being done. There's always fine tuning, of course, but I do that as I go along.

Have decided to do duck à l'orange for the 25th December, been a while since I've made it and we do like it. Unfortunately I've left it too late to organise anything for our anniversary this year: the Glassboat is booked solid right through December and into January. Pity - it's our 25th and it would have been nice to go there. However, with Kai recovering we've decided not to bother with anything very special out: I've bought a good pork joint to roast and we'll all watch a film together after dinner instead.

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Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Day +64 

Another quick update...

Monday's appt went OK: he was given prednisolone (steroid) tablets to take.

Tuesday Kim picked me up and we went to Almondsbury Garden Centre, where I bought a Greensleeves apple tree and an Opal plum tree with the cash the in-laws sent for Yule presents (and which arrived that morning!) They're being delivered on Monday and will grow very happily up in the veg bed. Dropped into B&Q on the way back for large plant pots: going to try to get Kai's little trees repotted tomorrow. It was a lovely trip out and fantastic to chat again. Thanks Kim!

Today's appt was very quick. The biopsy came back saying it wasn't GvHD, although the staff member (don't know his rank - not a doctor but more specialised than a nurse...) said it still could be and the cells to prove it may not have been in the sample... The rash has faded almost to nothing, though, and Prof Marks has said Kai can stop using the cream and start reducing the steroid tablets from tomorrow. Everything is still going very well (I think he said the chimaerism has sorted itself out? It got a bit technical at that stage. I'll try to find out more on Monday), the tiredness is only to be expected, and he must try to keep a little more active. Oh, and around day 100 he'll have a full blood work up, lung function test, and (oh joy) another bone marrow biopsy. Hopefully the last...

The weather was gorgeous today, after yesterday's rain, and we walked down to the park after we got back. Kai managed to make it to the top of the hill - first time since he fell ill! The view from there is lovely:

We've worked out several other walks we can do that won't require too much work, too, so will be incorporating them into the schedule.

And my doctor rang. She's organising a hip x-ray for me: I'll get up to the South Bris Community Hospital (again) on Friday.

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Saturday, November 01, 2014

Day +60 

Catch up again - it's been busy.

We were all set ready to head to the BHOC for Kai to have his skin biopsy and pentamidine (which Prof Marks says he should start again to make sure he's protected against respiratory problems over the winter period) on Thursday when they rang us - ten minutes before the taxi was due to arrive - to postpone until Friday as the pentamidine wasn't ready...

[growl] I had my Friday all sorted out, me into town to get shopping at Wild Oats and Better Food (it takes proper planning as they're so far away) and pick up presents as I made my way back into town, then I'd planned to head out to Wyevale Garden Centre via Toys Я Us (to check Transformer figures) and Pets at Home to pick up crickets for Rosa. However, Ken had got annual leave that day and volunteered to take Kai in so I could still have my day off, bless him. Though actually, by the time I got back after that sortie I was too tired to go out again, so used the time to get some bits and pieces done in the house.

Went to Toys Я Us/Pets at Home/Wyevale today instead (in that order - walked out and got the bus back). Wyevale were having their end of season sale: bought a pretty mauve hibiscus to accompany the blue one, a japonica for screening, and a good tall cornus, also for screening, all at half price. Also picked up a viburnum, hopefully for screening at the back. We have a lot of planting to do and it's supposed to rain tomorrow...

Kai is still feeling rough. He came back with a steroid cream, which I've been helping him to apply but which so far hasn't done much good. He's aching and his skin hurts and he's completely exhausted all the time - going to speak with the doctor on Monday.

We both spent Samhain in the Endless Forest... Last year I was but a faun and it was snowing: this year I was a stag, and it was mist-shrouded with blood red flowers falling like leaves...

We joined everyone (and the Big Zombie Deer, the focus of the Samhain romps) on the bridge at the pool...

Travelled to the ruin (baying produced huge bubbles instead of sounds last night! Great fun!)

Then spent some time at Die Drinkenplatz, where strange and mysterious things happen on a normal day. Last night we had rainbows...

Random roses -

A lightning strike (Kai tells me I should post that one to the forum, as to his knowledge no-one has ever screencapped a lighting strike before. I'd like to blame my superfast reflexes but actually it was just luck...)

Giant rocks appearing from nowhere -

And strange pods that puff out square... uh... bubbles? Smoke? Seeds?

Then we all headed off with the BZD and suddenly everything went dark...

Then an eerie - but very pretty - reddish light came over everything...

And we ended up at the 'playground' -

... where the light once again changed to red...

All very exciting and lots of fun!

Tonight it's just been noisy here. I think everyone celebrated firework night tonight instead of the fifth, but no doubt there'll be nothing but bloody fireworks from now until next weekend...

Oh, and my blood tests came back normal across the board. Which is good, though it doesn't help to explain the constant pain. Will have to make another appointment and see where we go next.

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