Saturday, December 14, 2013

Live ... love ... now

(Image: In the moment ... bicycle happiness)

It was so quiet and peaceful.

One minute we were talking about lemon drizzle cake and the cups of tea we would have once home by the fire, and then it was as if someone had flicked the record player off-switch.

A soft little slurring of tea-time words, and my mother crumpled into my arms where we were walking on the road.

And as she glided onto the tarmac all I could see was my past and my future in her beautiful pale and unusually quiet face.

Whispering 'Mum, Mum' I could find no pulse or signs of respiration, and I knew I had to get her out of harm's way before I executed the next plan - shit, what would that be?

As I moved her to the pavement my thoughts were galloping around my head - resuscitation, start, should I, phone help, no phone, fuck - and then an angel in a 4WD drew alongside.

Still no signs of heart-beats or breaths, but our angel had a phone and within seconds was giving cool clear brief facts to an emergency despatcher, and then like butterflies from nowhere, little jumbled words fluttered into the mix ...

"Hello, darling," my mother said to our angel, "how lovely to see you!"

A whirl of blankets, coats, scarves, snippets of chat, unqualified joy expressed by my mother as her chirpy muddled consciousness returned and made out the 2 of us right next to her on the ground - then the arrival of the paramedics - oh joy from me!

The jolliness, the efficiency; my mother's day was now up there with the best of them as the best roadside assistance team ever did their roadside stuff ...

... but with a blood pressure of 70/30, we weren't going home to drizzle cake or even to the roast in the oven right then - only to turn things off and grab my phone.

Wending our way to the nearest A&E my mother inquired:

"Have I died? Am I in heaven?"

"No, pet, you're in an ambulance."

"Well ... it's heavenly!"

"Ahhhh, bless you."

Disembarking at Kings Mill Hospital, A&E was armed with patients and nurses and doctors (and most wonderfully, ward-staff making cups of tea) and computers with screen savers, mind-numbingly flashing 'consent & capacity' in a hi-vis vest sort of a manner ...

... and machines for bloods, ECGs, BPs, and then there was a trip to x-ray department with my mother hilariously declaring to young radiographer that:

"It's rather pointless me having a chest x-ray as I've never had a chest!!!!"

And then some time after midnight, we were allowed home ... to drizzle cake and cups of tea!

What an afternoon and evening!

My mother had gone from a dramatic transient loss of consciousness to thoroughly enjoying an unexpected social evening hosted by Britain's NHS; one with all the trimmings of kindness and care and devoted attention.

No doubt there will be some further tests at some stage, but right now she's here to cuddle and cherish, and to tell her how much we love her and to make her cups of tea (and drizzle cake) ... and to sing all her favourite songs with her too!

So as I put on 'The Sound of Music' CD, purchased last week after BN1 sent me this link, and I heard those opening birds tweet their little Austrian tweets, and I dissolved into tears, I remembered what one of the ambos had said to me on the way to A&E last night ...

'Put nothing off ... live now ... don't save'

Got it: living and loving right now ... CHECK!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

♩ ♪ ♫ ♬ Give me Peaks, lots of Peaks under cloudy skies above, don't helmet me in ♪♫

Australia's interminable defence ...

... of its pathetic bike helmet laws ...

... could be considered ...

... a longwinded,

... and irrelevant

... fillibuster,

... which in and of itself has permitted ignorance

... to flourish alongside an ugly vigilantism

... whether cyclists are helmeted or not.

(Disclaimer: photographs included in this post bear no relevance to issue discussed, and could be considered a longwinded and irrelevant opportunity for continued raving on flourishing infatuation with the Peak District)

Monday, December 2, 2013

A question of risk

It's been argued in the past that it could be ...

... more dangerous to garden ...

...than to bicycle.

And that set me thinking maybe it's more dangerous to use walking boots for hiking purposes ...

... than it is to use bicycles for cycling purposes.

Anyhoo, notwithstanding mild anecdotes and whispery speculations, I know it's definitely more dangerous to do none of the above and just plump for the car!

Thus I grandly declare that all we need are more bikes!

... and a shift in perceptions.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Wilfully stupid - Australian politicians

So glad I'm here in dear old Blighty ...

... eating Bakewell Tarts

... admiring Raleigh bikes

... observing bicycle clips

... viewing British Minsters (Southwell) & British Sugar (Newark)

Yes here in England, and not ... not in Australia ...

... listening to douche-bag politicians witter on about the perils of relaxing helmet laws in Queensland.

Oh fuckety fuck ... Australia, you do my head in sometimes. Just repeal the daft law and get on with it!

Friday, November 29, 2013

Hi-Vis and where it should be left

Earlier this week, Police were stopping cyclists in London to let them know that:

... it might be a good idea to wear a helmet!!!

WTF - it's not even law in the UK so why on earth did the police pick on hapless cyclists to dish up their unwarranted police advice to?

How disturbing is it that UK police have taken it into their own hands to experiment with unlegislated restrictions which we know are nothing more than helmet promoters' marketing strategies.

No-one should ever be stopped by the police for something the police think ought to be the law yet currently isn't.

Among other things, this police exercise is an outrageous breach of civil liberties, and should make us want to vomit when we think of what's ahead for the UK if they go down this mandatory-helmet-law-pathway.

Haven't the police got some real police work to do?

Thursday, November 28, 2013

The Peak District: is there anywhere more beautiful?

If there's a god, she's definitely from the Peak District ...

What a place ... unbelievably ... breathtakingly ... beautiful ...

I can't get enough of it,

... and every spare minute I have I find myseld racing up there,

... to walk and explore,

... to think and to breathe,

... and all this can be achieved without the attendant pleasure of CCTV! (Sorry, GCHQ & NSA guys, you just can't watch me eating my cheese and tomato sarnie when I'm here! ... or can you? hmmmm)

And whilst I've been travelling to and from the heavenly Peaks, Radio 4 has been dishing-up many conversations on cycling and Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs) and women.

But what really gets my goat is how all these cosy little chats are blatantly underpinned by an outrageous dose of helmet promotion ... in fact I am witnessing here in the UK the very same aggressive marketing tactics that were utilised in Australia 20 years ago, namely brainwashing of the media so they turn into a permanently ready cheer-leadering' squad for helmet compulsion ... sigh.

Doesn't the UK realise Australian cycling has all but gone out of the window for women.?

And that helmet laws follow helmet promotion in close succession?

And that with helmet laws, people like me are criminalised for a normal everyday activity which ought to remain a health issue rather than a criminal one.

Who wants a criminal conviction for riding a bicycle without a helmet?

Essentially, we should be copying 'all-things-bicycle-Dutch-&-Danish' and then we might finally get it right for women and children.

But back to moors and mountains, in some hilly spots around the world they put their babies on sledges; in the Peak District they put them on edges ...

... sans hi-vis vests, sans helmets.

I ♥ the Peak District!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

England - better at bikes than cricket (hehehe)

♩ ♪ ♫ ♬ Oh I do like to be beside the seaside ♪♫

♪♫ ... oh, and the Norfolk Broads ♪♫

♪♫ ... and Southwold in Suffolk ♪♫

♪♫ ... and Walberswick too ♪♫

Where with a few other passengers, you can catch a ferry back to Southwold ...

... to see more beach huts

... and bicycles

... and peeps using transport

... other than cars!

(Oh, ok ... and maybe the odd tractor or two popping into town for bread and milk as well!!!)