Monthly Archives: January 2015

Far from home..

Once of the ‘perks’ of having a hefty commute to work means you have time to ponder – pondering whilst driving over the last few days is what has prompted this silliness.

Obviously over recent months I’ve been further away from my home town both in living and certainly in working terms than I’ve ever been, but will always consider myself a dyed in the wool Nottinghamian. Β Of course, that I now live about 14 miles from that city and work a further 40-odd miles away would suggest I’ve not really spread my wings that far, but it still feels quite significant sometimes when I catch myself in ponderous mode.

So it’s funny that sometimes your habits or observations can echo life.

I shall explain what I’m yammering on about. Β It’s been a habit of mine for years to listen to BBC Radio Nottingham on the way to work – indeed, it’s proven a most fortuitous habit really if you think about it – but anyway, I’m lucky enough in Hathern to still be comfortably in the range of my erstwhile local radio station so I still get to enjoy Andy Whittaker’s dulcet tones as I blearily drive to work.

However, as I hone in on Tamworth Services you start to get a bit of static on the airwaves (how many Levellers references can I sneak into here? πŸ˜‰ ) and normally it will start to fade into nothingness around 10 miles out from Solihull. Β Very occasionally, presumably depending on atmospheric conditions or something, I’ll retain a faint signal all the way to our overspill carpark as I pull up – and the signal is still tantalisingly available when I return to the car to head home, but usually it’s either died or bizarrely turned in to BBC Radio Oxford for some reason.

In my head at least it’s a neat metaphor from being further away from the familiar than I’ve ever been – of course, familiar is an interesting choice of word there as it derives from the same latin root as family – and that is probably what has kept me sane throughout all of the literal versions of these themes that I’ve been pondering over the last few months.

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Bloody hell..

As ever the weeks wimble on by and I don’t think of anything to add to the blog.

It’s the time of the year when people traditionally sit and reflect a bit and maybe plan for the future – I’ve never really been very good at the future planning part – although I’m very prone to reflecting. Β This time last year I was lying awake in a ward in the London Clinic having foolishly nodded off earlier in the evening and thus being wide awake awaiting the next morning when I’d be of to theatre to be anaesthetised and undergo an operation.

And it all went bloody well – last I heard the recipient of my stem cells, a small boy, was still alive and doing well having obviously been in a very bad way indeed.

One of the things I’d idly planned for the future for ages was to start giving blood. Β Mainly because it’s a good thing to do, partly because I’ve got it into my head my blood group is B which is relatively unusual (that may well turn out to be wrong – although certainly with blood groups in my family it is certainly a possibility).

So today I registered at and made an appointment in March to do that very thing. Β I’ve avoided it in the past because I absolutely hate needles and letting blood – I passed out when I had to give samples to Anthony Nolan prior to my donation (although probably because I did it early in the morning on an empty stomach as much as anything!).

You can’t donate blood until a year after donating bone marrow hence the delay, there’s also a time lag after having a tattoo or piercing so my awesome Ferocious Dog tattoo in August was quite well timed on that score.

If nothing else I’ll at least get to confirm what my blood group is!

Of course another Christmas and New Year has been and gone – it was great to take some time out and spend some time with family and friends whose generosity and warm spirit was as appreciated as ever, it was definitely good to get some down time, even if my immune system took a break and let a cold get me earlier in the month.

On the work front I’m finally feeling like I might actually know what I’m doing a bit more – still lots to learn, but that’s true of any job. Β I guess the rest of the year is about sorting out all the other things that occurred over 2014 that’s left pretty much every area of my life fairly dramatically different and somewhat transient.

Maybe that might even be fun. Β But anyway, I’m not big on resolutions but I think signing up to give blood is a pretty good one – if you haven’t then maybe you should too, it’s dead easy to register and find donation sessions near you online.

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