Home for the moment.

We returned home on Wednesday after the unexpected second trip to Adelaide and the day surgery. Although as I said, I did manage to spend some time on Tuesday at the Marion Shopping

The Flinders Lodge

Centre. Now we just wait for the reports and the telephone call to let us know what is to happen next and if, or when, we are due back in Adelaide. When we left the hospital my intention was to push the wheelchair to the train station, get the train back into town and a taxi from there to the Lodge. The  Hospital were not at all happy with this arrangement in that  if anything happened you cannot turn a train around as you can a motor vehicle. So it was a taxi from the hospital to the lodge. Getting home was a concern in that we discovered that several dog toys had found their way into my case. No idea how they got there and the fact that they had Marion tags on them must just be a coincidence.  I’m sure Annabell believed me!!  On the Friday I went to the garage to see what was happening to my car. It seems the initial assessment was incorrect and it was not the ignition system as thought so the replacement was removed and my own system restored. The company called Ford and asked their advice on the problem. They suggested it was a unit that assists the computer to operate and that seems to have broken down – but whatever the reason, it was not working. So a new unit was sent up from Adelaide and to install it required two sets of keys – it also requires two people and the keys must both be synchronized, failure to do so, renders the keys useless and means a new set of keys and the programming and the cost of new keys.. And yes, before you say anything – I figure I might have been cheaper  and probably less stressful getting another car. However, all that aside, I may have my car back on Monday or Tuesday. I am beginning to feel really bad about having this car for so long. I did not think anyone expected it would be this long that I would have the  car.

We were due to go out to a function last night but Annabell was weary and tired and I will not go on my own without her, so I stayed at home. I

The normally placid Nepean River.

worked it out that it was better for me to stay at home and keep her company than have to field all the necessary questions about her health. :o)

Strange kind of day yesterday. I was out walking with the dogs and I thought about what I would write. I would remark that it is Autumn and the day was a very warm and sunny 32c with just the most gentle breeze.  That was in the mid-afternoon. As the afternoon wore on the sky darkened, the breeze became decidedly chilly and next thing we know we were in the middle of a major thunderstorm. Haven’t seen so much rain in ages. There is major flooding in several of the Eastern States and it is believed that the  major fronts are heading in this direction – one from the north and one  through Sydney. And Sydney is in  a bit of trouble in that one of the major dams is expected to overflow.— The dam has overflowed and the staggering amount  of 450 gigalitres will be released. There is talk of an evacuation of Penrith – and that’s serious. Thus far, 18,360 people have been evacuated

Up here there are no rivers to flood and if there is any flooding it will be at the roadways as the floodwater drainage system get overloaded. However, for the moment there is really no serious rain on the  present forecast.  Shortly after lunch I went  by taxi to the workshop and collected my car – all tickity-boo ( all repaired) So it is a happy Monday, now that I have my car back. This afternoon I will take the Toyota,  make sure the fuel tank is full and  then return it  to its owner. Annabell has bought Rene a small gift of Swarovski Crystal  as a “Thank You.”  Without that car we would have been in trouble and would have had to cancel Adelaide. We are most thankful for her kindness.

Return to Adelaide (apology to Elvis)

The trip down to Adelaide (Monday 15th) was again uneventful. Some problems in getting to the Greenhill Lodge and trying to cross lines of traffic on a main road. I am so thankful for Traffic Lights and I was able to do it very quickly before the lights changed. Once I got Annabell attended to I went for a short walk around he area to plan my ” Escape Route” for Wednesday and the crossing of two lanes of traffic on a fairly busy road. However, I do intend to start out at 05:30 so it should be reasonably quiet at that time in the morning. I will get her home and home ad hope this will be the last trip at least several months. I have to say through that this Greenhill Lodge is easier to get to that the Flinders Lodge irrespective of the traffic lane cross. Not quite as good perhaps since Flinders Lodge is newer and more modern, but Greenhill is currently being upgraded and half of the lodge is closed down which is why there were no places available at Flinders this week.

The other problem I have here is that there is only one bed in each room downstairs. There are two beds in each room upstairs, but there is no lift and stairs are just out for Annabell. However, there is a fairly large recliner chair which can make a half decent bed for me. Did that last night (today is Tuesday) and although it was not the best idea, nor the most comfortable, I did get a decent sleep. This morning we get the train out to Flinders Medical and she will be admitted for Day Surgery. I will wander off for a few hours to the large shopping mall at Marion. I’ll spend some time there and then get back to Flinders and wait there until she is ready to go.

Poor Benji – his people abandoned him for three days – then they came back – now they have abandoned him again for another three days. I hope this time, though, we will not have to leave him again for at least three months. Annabell and I have had a discussion regarding this tripping to Adelaide and we believe that the next visit will be the same as this one. We come down Thursday and Friday for tests and examination, go home and come back again on the Monday and we were considering staying down here for the duration. I worked out the costing taking fuel and accommodation costs and meals into consideration and we will be very much cheaper if we go home on the Saturday and return again on the Monday. Annabell expressed concern regarding me and the stress of so much driving. I am quite able to drive to Adelaide and back, every three months.

Wednesday 17th. Left Greenhill Lodge at 05:30 this morning and covered the 330 miles in a reasonable time, allowing for a half hour stop for coffee in Port Wakefield. It was a good drive home, clear weather all the way. Annabell managed to nap a couple of times.

Oh I don’t know with this new WordPress system. I am having difficulty in finding anything and doing anything. Don’t know why they changed it. There was nothing wrong with it in the first place. There must be an alternative somewhere.

Continue reading “Return to Adelaide (apology to Elvis)”

Adelaide – Back and Forth.

Nightly visit by the Cockatoos to Flinders Lodge

The drive to Adelaide on Thursday was uneventful and quite pleasant.  Getting to the Flinders Lodge was fairly easy. Once I had her settled in, I walked up to Norwood and did some shopping. Was interesting walking past  the Norwood Church, which is where we hold the conferences. Anyway, did the shopping and started back to the lodge. I took a wrong turn at the north end of Norwood Parade. Of course, I never get lost. From time to time I have become geographically misplaced, but never lost. Anyway, I made my way back to the lodge, After dinner we had a quiet evening. Annabell read and watched some television and I pottered about on the laptop. Can’t really do a lot since most of the programs I use are not on the laptop.

Friday afternoon and a taxi to the railway station. We used the wheelchair and into the station. There was only a short wait before the train came in and we boarded. Spoke to the train driver and he wanted to know if we would need the ramp put out. I said not and we would manage just fine – which we did. The  train journey was quiet and   took us on the extension and up to Flinders within the 37 minutes.   As it happens, I had made a mistake when I was last down. I assessed the distance from the train station to the main entrance of Flinders Medical, which I had walked,  but as it happens, the Cancer Clinic is only half that distance so we arrived in plenty of time. Not that it really mattered because the clinic was running late and it was 50 minutes before she was seen.

Overall, everything seems to be fine but the Surgeon is unhappy with the progress and would like to see it happen a lot quicker than present. That being the case we will be back down on Monday for Day Surgery on Tuesday and instead of 1 unit they will insert 2 and leave them for three months – we hope. I say hope because although I am very concerned for Annabell.  Travelling back and forward to Adelaide so often in a short space of time is tiring – (650 miles round trip)   The Flinders Lodge is fully booked  this coming week so we are booked into the Cancer Council Lodge  at Greenhill. I’ll have to find out how to get to that one.

Since the computer crash before we left for Adelaide, nothing seems to be the same. I lost  WordPress and I have this program. Not entirely sure what it is but it does say WordPress so I suppose this is it. I am having  problems with it – which is fantastic because what I need right now is more problems, otherwise I might get bored.   :o)  However, it will have to wait until the return from Adelaide this week. Take care all.

Things fall apart!

I used the sroller for just one day. After that, Benji was fine and quite happy to walk. I think, perhaps, he just had a bad day, but it is fair to say that he enjoyed the experience. However, Annabell said that I really have to come to terms with the fact that he getting on in years. If the adoption papers are correct then he will be 11 in October.  I have said  to several people already that my car will not be ready for some time.  I went to the repair place, and the electrician (Auto) has been off sick and from what I saw, not a lot seems to have been done to the car.  I did retrieve  Annabell’s parking permit, which we need.  I will have to go and see the  friends who loaned me this car and  ask if they will allow me to

take the car out of town –  to Adelaide – since I have to take Annabell to the clinic next week. Driving around town is one thing, driving to Adelaide and back is something different. It’s not something you can just do without asking if it would be ok. As it  happens, it was no problem and  I can take Annabell to Adelaide as planned.

I am taking Annabell to see her doctor this afternoon as a follow-up from the visit to the emergency dept. at the hospital on Monday. I also want a note from him to allow me to  borrow a wheelchair from the hospital for the Adelaide visit – unless, of course, I am forced to cancel it. I should know the answer to that very shortly. The good news is that I will be taking to Adelaide next week. There is no problem with me taking the car to Adelaide and back. This is a long weekend here in South Australia so I will pick up the wheelchair on Tuesday Morning.

I did pick up the wheelchair. Last time I did this it was so simple, not so this time. Telephone calls, forms and  more telephone calls later, I finally signed to accept the wheelchair. At one point I actually went away and had a coffee in the hospital tearoom until the permission came through. Anyway, we have it now.

Today I will get the car packed, last minute arrangements for the boys to look after Benji and tomorrow we set off for her  appointment at the Flinders Clinic. Tomorrow after I get her into the hotel and settled I want to go into town to do  a few things. I am supposed to go to the photography  club this evening, but I’m not sure I will.

Anyway, to bring you up to date, my computer crashed and I lost most of everything. At the moment I have got some things back although not quite what they were. I have also lost nearly all of my bookmarks which were part of Opera. I suspect they are still around the computer some place but I can’t really do anything until I get back from Adelaide at the weekend. Even this is not the way it was. WordPress  is very different from before. I just tried to upload a photograph – that didn’t work too well – as you can see  :o)  LOL I’m not even sure that I will be able to post this – although I expect so. And, NO I am not growling – just making observations.

Cars, Dog Stroller and Cars.

What now my love, now that you’ve left me, how can I live through another day?

It has now been seven days since the car was towed away and the  repairs started. The unit for the ignition system was supposed to be over here from Port Pirie yesterday and, I imagine, fitted yesterday and today. I would like to have the car back  sometime today, but, to be really honest, I am not very hopeful. Today, being Friday, summer officially ends in two days and Monday 1st March is the 1st day of Autumn (Fall)  Summer begins on 1st December and ends on the last day of February, a total  of 90 days and from that total we have only really had 14 days when we could say “Summer is here.” A total of three heatwaves – 5+4+5-  there has been a lot of rain, there is flooding in Queensland and people being evacuated – cyclones in the north have meant heavy rain here accompanied by high winds. In fact I don’t recall seeing all that much on the weather charts but high winds. Well, that’s not strictly true, sometimes the forecaster  forecasted  “damaging winds 95kpm+)  I answered a comment by Tippysmom the other day and I said it was a nice day with a gentle breeze and it was for about half the morning before the wind increased. I took Benji out for a walk and before I was halfway through the walk I was struggling  and ended up carrying my hat rather than wearing it. In fact, the long range forecast is for more rain

I am concerned in that it is not very long before I have to take Annabell to the clinic at Flinders medical and I still don’t have a car. Yes, I realise that the  visit to the Clinic is ten days away but that’s wont stop me from worrying. Yes I worry, it’s my job  :o)  I worry, Benji does the relaxing – we share the load – that’s what friends do!

Lovely day for a stroll

I am beginning to believe that the birthdate on the Adoption Papers for Benji – 2010 –  rather than the Microchip birth date – 2012 – is the correct one. That would make him 11 this year. I have noticed that he is starting to slow down just a bit and it was very noticeable this morning when he started tiring and dragging towards the last 200 yards of our morning walk. I thought he looked

so tired that I lifted him up on my shoulder and carried him the rest of the way. This afternoon I wanted to go for a walk and he came with me. We had not gone far when he really started to slow down. I turned around and came back home. I got the  “Dog Stroller” out of the garage, cleaned it and put a thick blanket in there for him to sit on. Lifted him him in,  attached the harness and off we went. He loved it, sitting there watching everything around him and still being out with his daddy. Can’t get better than that. ( I have to mention that it is over 34 years since I pushed a pram for any distance and I forgot how tiring it is on the arms)  I also took a bottle of water and a collapsible bowl so we could both have a drink.  Well, yes, I got some looks from passing motorists, but who cares. Benji was comfortable

John & Rene’s Toyota Camry which I am now  using.

On the subject of friends, a member of the church heard that I did not have a car so  she phoned another friend who telephoned me. She asked if it was correct that I did not have a car at the moment and wanted to know how I was getting about. I said either I was not or I  was by taxi. She said that they have a spare car and I was welcome to use it. I said it was ok and my own can should be back soon. I thought that was that until she  and her husband dropped off a Toyota Camry in my drive. They handed me the keys, said it was registered until June and I can bring it back when I no longer need it. So there we are, I  have a car- now  I can take Annabell out as needed. Just as well since I ended up at the Emergency Dept. at the hospital with her  last night. She was not a well girl – had another infection.

Car Problems B

At the Ada Ryan Gardens where all the trouble began.

Old but it just perfect for this week.

All of the foregoing on the previous post happened on the Thursday. On the Friday morning I went out and tried to start the car – and it did. It was running smoothly so I decided to go down to the shopping centre and get some things for Annabell. Got into the car, put it in reverse and slowly backed out. Got the car out onto the roadway when it died. Nothing I could do to restart it and it was blocking the road. Fortunately some neighbours came to help and with their aid we pushed the car back into the driveway I called out the RAA again and the usual hour later the mechanic arrived. By this time I was really convinced it was the battery. The mechanic arrived and the first thing he said was that there was nothing wrong with the battery. He checked the computer again and everything was fine. He ran a few more tests then went underneath the car and banged some area with a mallet ( all very technical)  Turned on the engine and the car started right away. We left it running whilst he did some more tests then told me what the problem was – the fuel pump was malfunctioning. I need a new fuel pump. Okay, called the mechanic I use only to discover that he is presently in Adelaide and wont be back for a couple of days. So no car.  Annabell had an appointment so I called Andrew and he came, took her to her appointment, waited and brought her home. It was also arranged that he will pick us up for Church on Sunday. John has a SUV and Annabell cannot get into that. So that’s it for the moment. It has been an interesting few days.

Nice and peaceful. He still get to go out for walks !

Took Benji out this morning as normal then took out again for a walk in the afternoon. Probably just as well since the evening erupted into a thunderstorm with the heaviest  rain I have seen in a long time. Did try a walk on my own between rain storms – that didn’t work too well – got soaked. The cool change that was forecast for Friday never eventuated. Most of Saturday was  nice and the sudden  quick change and the thunderstorm took most by surprise. In next to no time, the main water tank was overflowing then the  big blue waste bin that I use for overflow was itself, overflowing. With the thunder and lightening and the crash of the rain it was all very spectacular – and very noisy. We did loose power but only  for a few minutes and it was back again.  The steelworks lost power and Andrew and his team were called out to get the plant back up and running. When I spoke to him he told me they were at the plant from just after 5pm Saturday  to almost 1am Sunday morning.

The car was repaired this morning (Monday) and a new fuel pump was put in. Car fired up nicely and we drove down to the church to collect my case

The Ada Ryan Gardens

and our stuff left there after the service yesterday.  Got the car out of the driveway and drove to the church. Got the cases into the boot and drove out the gates and stopped while I  closed and locked the gates. Back to the car, which would not start. Anyway called out the RAA and a taxi to take Annabell home. I stayed with the car. Now it seems we have a major electrical fault so the car was towed to  the Autoelectrical place and  and we wait to see what will happen next.  I might have it back in a day or two. Oh look – flying animals in the sky!!!



Car Problems A

New Flinders Station

There were a number of things  that I wanted to do while I was in Adelaide. First and foremost was to get down to Central Station and confirm that there was a lift from the ground to the concourse I have never used it and I didn’t know. People said they thought there was, so I had to go and confirm that there is. Secondly I wanted  to see for myself how long the train took to travel from Central to Flinders and lastly I wanted to know  the distance from the train station at Flinders to the entrance to Flinders Medical. The train was going to sit at Flinders for ten minutes – without really rushing and walking at a normal pace I walked from the train to the Entrance to the Hospital and back to the train in eight minutes. Yes, it will take me a tad longer pushing a wheelchair, but it’s flat ground and doable. That was the first thing and finding all that out saves me the stress of  driving to the Flinders Medical or the expense of taxi fare there and back ( $80). The other thing was to go to a camera shop and buy a new lens. I wanted an 18-55mm lens as the one I have is not

Benji at rest
Sometimes it’s all just too much!

so good. I wanted the new version. I arrived at the shop and asked for the lens. The  salesperson asked if the lens would fit my camera. I said it would since I already

have  that lens. He wanted to know why I wanted a second lens – seemed odd. Fair comment so I explained that I wanted to replace the lens I had with a new up to date version. He then suggested I should ungraded to a better lens – larger and more expensive, and yet another lens, even more expensive. I thanked him for his time and trouble and left – no lens. I have since found the lens on line in a shop I have bought from before – and it was cheaper –  despite the postage from the USA, so that’s on its way here.

The meeting on Saturday was interesting in that we still have not come to terms with Covid-19 so we did not have a full physical meeting but rather two meetings linked by a Zoom system and from what was said this is going to happen for some time to come. Back to the future indeed  when we used to have two separate  units. Now we call them “Hubs”

Sadly the present weather conditions mean that I cannot take Benji to the wetlands. I did go down – briefly – to check out the pavers and the bitumen and both were too hot to the touch for me so

At the Ada Ryan Gardens where all the trouble began.

too hot for wee paws. Apart from which, there is not really much shelter at the wetlands, except at  the barbecue area  just beyond the carpark and of course, at the kiosk. The beach being much the same, we went back to the gardens for a little while. Getting to the gardens was a problem in that the car started playing up. I only just made it into the carpark when it died. Pretty rotten parking, but not much I could do about that. I called out the RAA ( Royal Automobile Association) and they arrived about an hour later. The mechanic  tested everything, the car started, he logged into the car’s computer and everything there said all was well. The car started again and ran fairly smoothly so I drove home with the RAA vehicle following me. It cut out once, but then started up again and we drove home. I just put the car in the drive with the intention of  getting it under the carport later. That didn’t work too well and it’s still out there.