Wetlands and Dogs

These last few days Benji has been very reluctant to go out for out early morning walk. I can understand this – it  has been very cold. I thought that I would leave the walk to later in the morning – say 8am instead of 6am. I also thought it might be a good idea that we go to the Wetland instead of a local walk. It was a cold but lovely morning this morning and the  ponds at the wetlands were like glass – no breeze at all – not a ripple.

Wetlands this morning

However I  decided it was not such a good idea. There were a good number of people about and all of them had a dog, or dogs/. Benji does not get on well with strange dogs so the walk really wasn’t much fun for him. I think we will just stick to the local area in the morning and go to the wetlands in the afternoon when it seems to be a lot quieter. The interesting thing was that all the people with dogs this morning were males.  If I want to go to the foreshore I have to remember to take bags with me as the council has not yet replaced the dog waste bags that it removed for the upgrade.

Benji is a rescue dog and we have not known what his true age was.  In October of this year it will be

Hello peeple..

four years since we adopted him. At the time I was told he was three years, so plus the four we have had  him, that would make seven. I always felt he was older and it turns out I was right – he was born in November 2010, which means he will be nine years, not seven, this year. All of this is academic because in the end I don’t care what age he is, he’s my boy and I love him dearly. However, it may go a ways to explaining why he is so reluctant to get out of bed and get out of the house at 6am on a winter morning – and – I shall have to take the pace at which I walk into consideration and slow down a tad. Of course the reluctance to get out of  bed and get out of the house on a cold winter morning could simply be a kind of human trait, since sometimes we are pretty reluctant to do similar ourselves. I had out longer than usual last night and he actually did slow down and he seemed to me to be a bit tired, so I lifted him up on my shoulder and carried him for a while. One of the neighbours asked  “who was taking who for the walk?” After a little while I put him back down and he seemed to have a lot more energy

This coming weekend is the weekend of the Whyalla  Show (Fair). The RFDS will be on display again this year but  I will not be attending this year as I will be in Adelaide for a Presbytery Meeting. We have Yogi here! Jim took what is believed to be a slight stroke and was taken to hospital. Fay is spending much of the day there so she asked if we would look after Yogi for a few hours. I said I would and went down and collected him at 8am this morning (Wednesday) I  said before that he has not been a well dog and he has certainly lost a fair bit of weight and he is crying a lot, but that could be because this was all so sudden and he is anxious  and does know what is happening. At the moment he is a sad little dog, but Benji and me will look after him for a bit.. Yogi was only here for a few hours and he “cried”much of that time. I held him up on my lap but I had to be careful and not put Benji offside.

As it turned out, Jim did not have a stroke – not even a minor one.  He underwent a brain scan an ECG and various other tests and when they proved negative he was allowed home. When I took Yogi back home Jim was

Benji at the Long Beach

sleeping.  He will check in with the hospital every few days for a little while to make certain everything is ok. However they really don’t know what caused the turn he had. Fay was chastised by the doctor because she drove him to the hospital instead of  calling an Ambulance. Her comment was that  the ambulance can take too long to arrive and is was  quicker to drive him to hospital.  That’s a worry…

 

Hospital, Fires and Dog Problems.

Benji and Max walking – before the heatwave,

Friends, Jennifer and Milan,  have left to go to Western Australia (Perth)  Because of the covid-19 and border restrictions, they have not seen their children and grandchildren since Christmas 2019. They asked  me if we would look after Max – the Pug –  for a couple of weeks and I reluctantly agreed. Max is a lovely, calm and very placid dog, but last time Max was here  he and Benji did not get along too well. I was concerned for Max because all terriers can get very nasty if threatened, or think they are being threatened.  It’s only been a few days but Benji is older and wiser and the dog-door helps because Max spends much of time wandering in and out of the house and  just wandering around the back. I have been out walking with them and for the moment Max needs to stop and smell everything .That aside, they walk well together and  they are getting along fairly well. However, and here I delve into history. Many moons ago in the UK there was a Ballroom Orchestra led by a man called “Victor Silvester” –  you may remember (Galivanter) that he had a catch phrase associated to him – “slow, slow -quick, quick – slow”  Well being out with Max is like – “Slow, slow – slow, slow – slow. At night Benji and I generally go on a : Block Walk:  from the house to the end of town i.e. the end of the street. This distance takes Benji  and me about 8/ 10 minutes  about 20 mins there and back. With Max, it’s 20+ minutes just to get there- and that’s when  he’s not stopping every three feet. He is the most unflappable , placid dog you could imagine. He’s a Pug – a very overweight Pug – calm, quiet and peaceful. Sort of reminds me of me, really – except for the overweight bit!!  :o)

Annabell has not been too great this week and tiredness is only part of her problem but we are getting there. The Ultrasound should give us more information in what is happening. Annabell says it’s like being a teenager again only with the “Month” happening every few days. Poor thing!  The Ladies Coffee Group starts back tomorrow (Tuesday) so  she is quite looking forward to that.  I have to remember to remove the dog seat cover tomorrow since I will be picking up two other ladies. I’ll give the car a clean out and a spray so it will be nice and fresh for the ladies.

With South Australia in the midst of a heatwave (37 – 43C) the dogs and I are out only in the morning (05:40) and even then it’s only for a short walk, Yesterday the temperature was 38c and today it is expected to be around 42c and the same again tomorrow. The fire ban across the State came into effect at midnight last night. We have one large fire in Tasmania – contained but not

And it’s gone 8:30 already

controlled – and we had a fire at Salisbury. The Salisbury fire was believed to have been the work of an arsonist. Never mind, a severe look and a talking to by a Magistrate together with a good suspended sentence should sort things out – just like it did during the fire season last year. The favoured word by magistrates in South Australia is “naughty “, a term most  people would not use in reference to a 18/19 year old male. Well, a week of heat and back to  low to mid 20c for the next six days.

Annabell’s tests at the hospital here were  completed without any problem,  so that’s good. The results will be sent to  the  Clinic at Flinders Medical. At the moment  she is taking things fairly easy. My frustration is that I cannot go anywhere – no – not because of Annabell  – but because of having Max. Took a run out to the lighthouse on Sunday afternoon. Took four photographs and drove home.  I got Benji out and got his harness on, then lifted Max out.  I had foolishly left the front door open so Max moved to the door,  jumped in  plonked himself down in the seat well. and refused to move. I took a couple of photographs, got Benji back in the car and drove home, concerned about getting stopped by police and fined for having an unrestrained dog in the  car. As for other things – I have just about given up  making up the setps on my Fitbit and I don’t think I am going to get anywhere until Max goes home in two weeks.

 

 

Still wandering about.

Adelaide.

This time last week we were heading to Adelaide. Tomorrow it will have been a week since the hospital and she seems to be getting along fine. As far as I am aware, there are no problems – which is good. Since we came home the weather has been odd,  fluctuating between, heat, rain, wind and then back to heat again. The morning’s out with Benji have  been cool to cooler and have generally required some sort of jacket on my part.  Jim didn’t go to Western Australia due to closed borders, although he is still talking about early next year if the borders are reopen. The fact that Western Australia is closed does not surprise me in the least – they never wanted to be part of the Federation in the first place.

At least here in South Australia everything  is almost back to  normal – whatever that is. The Church reopens today so we are happy about that. The wearing of masks outdoors is no longer mandatory and we have a log-in system in place when we have to enter any  shop, chemist or supermarket. It is accessed by smartphone, but if a person does not have a smartphone, he or she may sign in with name and telephone number. The idea being that if an outbreak occurs the government  Covid-19 tracers can contact the people who may have come into contact with the affected person and decide if quarantine is necessary. The information will be destroyed every 28 days.

Annabell is well. She gets tired but everything thus far is well. The exciting news is that the $141 Million extension of the Tonsley railway line will open this week.  This means that the rail line now

Rundle Mall

extends to the Flinders Medical Centre and the Flinders University. From the new station to the front entrance to Flinders Medical is only a few minutes walk. Too much for Annabell but I have taken that into consideration and I will  get a wheelchair from the hospital here and take it down with us. OOO — might even get her into Rundle Mall shopping center. Ah! Be still my beating heart. The Flinders medical people want some extra tests so I have to take her for tests and an ultrasound next week, but that will be done locally at our hospital here.

Farewell to 2020

Have been looking after Annabell and then Christmas and New Year intervened  and with it more trouble with WordPress , my frustration with my lack of ability to comment on anything. Well, yes, I could still write a post but with everything that has been happening of late, I seemed to have lacked the opportunity to do this. I was slowly reaching the stage where I was considering if it was really worthwhile to continue, but it’s like my photography – not great but I enjoy doing it and I greatly enjoy exchanging comments  with some very lovely people. On that subject I do believe I have fixed the WordPress problem but I wont know until I try to comment on a post. Although, having said that I have commented on one this morning and it seems to have been ok

One of our former Elders is going through what could be their last weeks. Then again she was not expected to see Christmas and New Year and here we are. When the end  comes I will be going down to Adelaide to represent the people here. I had the joy of working with this lady for many years and we missed her greatly when she moved to Adelaide.

Benji on his outside chair.

About an hour or so ago I tried another comment and failed, then I tried the same post again and I succeeded, so it seems to be a bit touch and go. I did not find WordPress a great help in this matter

On The Road Again

Part of the Main Entrance at Flinders.

Again we are waiting on  conformation from Flinders regarding the arrangements for next week. What I know (perhaps) is that she will be admitted sometime on Friday for an operation  (procedure) on Saturday, recovery and tests Sunday and discharged Monday. It is not an “operation” as such but it does require anesthetic. Anyway, that’s what we were told, but that could change and until we get the letter we wont know. It makes it difficult for me to try and book accommodation. Still, not to worry I do have a tent, sleeping bag and stuff  :o)  It’s been a strange week and despite not reaching the  predicted 43c it has remained in the high 20s  but still fairly warm. According to our long range weather forecast this will be a warm but wet summer – lots of rain and perhaps some local  flooding. Some of that forecast rain will start this weekend.

Saturday and still no word from Flinders – and it is raining. Not that the two are connected but I just thought I would mention that the for

Sorry I ,missed it this year.

ecast rain is here. No walk this morning. If it clear up I’ll take Benji for a walk round the wetlands later in the day. I meant to say in the last post that I am very sorry

about missing Thanksgiving. Of course I don’t celebrate but I generally make a post and this year I didn’t. I was  in Adelaide and otherwise occupied. Apart from which I didn’t have my computer and my laptop (Apple) does not have this program. (WordPress)

Annabell is well – she gets tired easily but otherwise not too bad.  I let her sleep and if I do go outside I generally take the mobile(cell) and the cordless with me – one phone for each ear  :o) I have never been involved with cancer so I was unaware of the Cancer Council or the fact that they operate two lodges, the Flinders Lodge and the Eastwood Lodge. Both of these offer accommodation for cancer patients and their carers (if necessary) if and when they have to come to Adelaide for treatment.. I have only just found this out and had I known I could have made use of the

facilities when we last were down. There is also a volunteer transport service from the lodges to the treatment centers. Now that I do know this I will telephone them tomorrow and see about accommodation although I can’t book it because I still do not know the dates. The hospital telephoned today and although Annabell was on the phone for the best part of an hour, we are still no further forward. We now know that her “operation ” will take place around 8am on Monday 14th December and all being well she will be released late afternoon on the 15th. However, there  is still the need to meet with the anesthetist on Friday. However, that could be done by telephone that’s up to him to decide and we wont get told that until Thursday. If it is by telephone, I can delay the drive to Adelaide until Sunday, which would be a great help. We have also been told that what they are going to do works for most people, but not all. We will work on the assumption that it will work but the major surgery is still possible in a year or so. Exterlunt!! The Anesthetist telephoned and we did the consultation by telephone. That being so, we will get the blood tests done here in the morning and I wont have to leave for Adelaide until Sunday morning for admittance to the hospital at 7am Monday morning. We have been told that Annabell is the first on the list Monday morning – so that’s  good.  Still  no church but we believe most of the restrictions will be lifted on Monday so we should be back the following Sunday – 20th December.  We will see what the Premier proposes next Monday.

Adelaide and back again !

It is not an offence to  lie to trace connection investigators – they are not police. However, the police and the state government are looking to see if there are legal ways that the person could be

My precious ( again)

charged for all the millions of dollars damage and the disruption to lives that this lie caused.     However, it was not all so serious. I said that I went  back to get bread and the shelves were empty. Panic buying had started. Anyway, I went back down early the following morning – now wearing a facemask –  and because of the  performance of some people, there were police officers inside and outside the supermarket. Whilst waiting I talked to one of the Officers. I told her that there was never a point in my life where I ever thought I would be standing talking to a police officer whilst I was wearing a black mask…. Life is definitely strange. We organised with John to come over Thursday, Friday and check in and feed Benji. All being well, we should be home mid afternoon Saturday.   Cannot say I am actually looking forward to the hospital visit but not for any reasons you might  think. The temperature on Friday and Saturday  are both going to be over 40c and I have to drive on  both days. Just as well I have a good A/C in the car.

Flinders Drive and the entrance to the Medical Center

After a number of conversations about the fact that the Flinders Medical Centre is  generally unknown to me and I have no idea where I am going and that the traffic in that area is very heavy, we decided to go down tomorrow (Thursday). If we leave it until Friday morning, all it would take is one setback  or traffic delay and  we could miss the appointment and goodness knows when we would get another. Specialists are not an easy group to pin down. I spoke to John and he is quite happy to come over after work on Thursday and look after and feed Benji. He will also take him for a short walk. Same on Friday and he will look in on him Saturday morning. As I said, it’s not the best solution but  I really feel  a kennel would be a lot for him to  cope with. I have an old shirt all prepared ( I wore it for a couple of days) and will set it down on his bed tomorrow morning.

The drive down to North Adelaide was quiet and uneventful. We stopped twice, once for a break and coffee and the other for fuel, arriving at just after 2pm. I got Annabell settled in then I went into the city to do some shopping. We had a quiet Thursday and in the morning the hospital telephoned ( they have my mobile (Cell Phone) number) and asked if we could come in earlier as they had two cancellations. We did that and the people, doctors, nurses and support staff at the Clinic were wonderful and could not do enough for Annabell. I was really impressed!  By now I suspect that most of you realize that Annabell has cancer.  However, the good news  is that it it is confined to one area – has not grown and has not spread.

Somebody was glad we were home.

That’s the first good part.. The second good part is that the cancer is in the lining of the womb and  the  specialists (Cancer & Gynecology) now feel that surgery  that was discussed  is not necessary. They have another choice and we (collectively) have decided to take that choice. It will mean  back and forth to Adelaide every three months for the next year.

Friday was not as bad as we had feared. It was hot but it did not reach the predicted 41c. Likewise Saturday, but I thought it best to get away early before the heat set in. I also have to say that I achieved a first for me – I drove from North Adelaide to home without a stop – just under 400 klms. Left North Adelaide with a full tank of fuel. John was still at the house when we arrived at 11:40 and he stayed for lunch. To say Benji was glad to see us is an understatement. It is now Monday and I still can’t move without him following me to make sure I am not escaping again  :o) And if he is not with me he is with Annabell, guarding her.