Saturday, 18th May, 2024

[Day 1524]

I always thought that today was being the start of an uncomfortable weekend, ever since we were informed by the care agency that they would not sanction their care staff moving Meg out of bed until such time as a hospital bed and a proper hoist had been installed in a downstairs room. Accordingly, after Meg was safely put to bed, I set to work rearranging some of the furniture in our ‘L’ shaped lounge such that one half of it would remain a conventional lounge whilst the other half of the ‘L’ would be brought into use as a downstairs bedroom. The furniture configuration was actually quite easy and I was just left with a few indentation marks from the feet of chairs and the settee we had in that half of the room. But I deployed an old trick which I deployed 26 years ago and it works like this. You take an ice cube and leave it overnight in each of the indentations in the carpet. As the ice cube melts, the fibres of the carpet absorb the moisture and in the morning, the problem of the unsightly indentations if not completely resolved is certainly very much alleviated particularly with a hoovering immediately afterwards. This morning, Meg was confined to her bed but fortunately stayed fast asleep for several hours this morning. During this time, I raided the blanket chest which we keep at the foot of our double bed and brought some sheets downstairs for use on the hospital bed. I also took the opportunity of doing some much needed tidying up and throwing away and this took most of the morning. In the late morning, the hospital bed arrived and this was assembled by a very friendly Egyptian who had a degree in law but was employed in this country as an equipment supplier for the NHS. The bed took a certain amount of putting together and evidently connecting to an electricity supply. The bed is not the really fancy model that you get in modern hospital ward but is probably the generation beforehand. Nonetheless the orientations deployed by using a control remote are quite comprehensive as the total height can be raised or lowered and one can adjust the height of the head and the knees a well as a complete tilt upwards or downwards. I have had a chance for a little play on it and it really does seem very straightforward. When the care workers came, there was comparatively little that they they needed to do for Meg as she had been asleep practically all of the morning, So whilst we had some ‘spare’ time so to speak, the three of us made up the bed downstairs with the bedding I had managed to locate. I did find a complete duvet bought decades beforehand and all in its original packaging but I really need a duvet for a single bed. I may need to go online and purchase a single bed duvet but I am going to hold my horses for the time being. Firstly, the next few day are going to be very warm and secondly we have already pressed into service the sheet and the blanket that we acquire from the hospital the other day. It might be that we do not actually need a warm duvet until the it starts to get colder in the autumn so we can probably make do in the next few days. I was more than happy to let the two care workers make up the bed according to what they think of as being best, the only thing that we may need to do is get a more specialised mattress which if Meg is going to be in bed for more prolonged periods may be needed to avoided pressure sores not to mention the prevention of more blood clots.

Once the bed had been installed and the carers had left, I rescued the fish pie which had been in the oven for far too long. Nonetheless, I managed to rescue sufficient for a few mouthfuls of nutritious fish for Meg and the reminder for myself. As Meg had been asleep practically all of the morning, she is passively watching some TV which unfortunately on our bedroom model, does not have an Amazon prime stick installed on it. We are hoping that as from Monday, Meg will be sleeping downstairs and I am reconciling myself that after 57 years of sleeping with a married woman (i.e. Meg) I am going to have to get used to sleeping on my own from now on. Of course I have been used to sleeping on my own when I was doing my stints abroad (a term in Madrid and a month in Jakarta, Indonesia) but that is very different because one knows its is only for a temporary period of time which will end but now we are in a very different scenario.

I normally do not take a great deal of interest in football but there are intriguing matches recently. Many local people here in Bromsgrove are great fans of West Bromwich Albion otherwise affectionately known as ‘The Baggies’ but they have were swept aside by Southampton last night. Southampton will meet meet Leeds United in a play-off to see who can enter the Premier division next season in about two weeks time and these are often ferocious clashes. The FA Cup Final itself if often played about the time of my birthday but seems a bit later this year being held next Saturday. It is a Manchester City vs. Manchester United affair and one wonders what interest it will have for football fans who are not Mancunians. Having said that, some cup finals fail to live up to their excitement and this is normally greater when you have a much more lowly ranked team playing a much more highly ranked team just in case the underdog happens to turn the tables. But I must confess to enjoying Rugby Union much more than Association Football these days not least because in Rugby Union there is none of the nonsense of threatening the referee to try to get them to overturn a disputed decision.