Wednesday, 1st November, 2023

[Day 1325]

Today was the start of what was going to be two busy days for us. We had an appointment for Meg’s eyes at the Kidderminster Treatment Centre some fourteen miles distant. We picked up our newspaper, enquired after the health of the newsagent and made our way to Kidderminster. We set off in plenty of time but by the time we got parked (just) and registered into the system we were about three minutes in advance of our allotted appointment time. Today I was unsure whether Meg was due to have a laser procdure on one of her eyes but it turned out to be a three stage ‘normal’ appointment. In the first stage, Meg’s vision is tested much like as in an opticians and the nurse could not have been more friendly and helpful. I took particular pains to thank her and she confided in me that her father had suffered from the same ailment as Meg and that probably helps to explain why she was so helpful. After this initial examination, there is a visit to another unit which takes photographs of the back of the eye and this was slightly more complicated as Meg had to helped from her wheelchair to use the specialisd equipment. Finally, we had a fairly long wait to see the consultant but fortunately I had taken with us with a flask of coffee and some Jaffa cakes so this helped to sustain us mid morning. When I saw the consultant, I eplained that we very sorry but we had to break the last appointment for a laser treatment because of a family funeral. He was very understanding about this and accompanied us to the reception desk to add a little more weight to a re-appointment for the laser treatment. This is now going to be in a month’s time in Bromsgrove so it is nice to have this booked into the calendar, as it were, and the travelling time to the local community hospital is so much less. We got home at just a shade after 1.00pm and made a lightning fast cooking of the lunch so that we would not feel too faint after a morning’s hospital visit.

After lunch, I was rather torn to two directions. Firstly, the evidence to the COVID enquiry by the Deputy Chief of Staff at Downing Street looked both interesting and compelling. Secondly, I was anxious to get started on the treatment of my newly acquired Captain’s Chair whilst the daylight lasted – I now understand more fully why my mother was always complaining about the fading of the light when we had the benefit of electric lighting. This I started wih some trepidation but ensured that I had some latex gloves on as the Orange oil I was using has no ‘nasty’ added ingredients but should nonetheless not be splashed onto raw skin. Ealier in the day, I had filled up one or two little screw/nail holes with some filler so I was all ready to go. I started on the legs first as these seemed to be the most denuded of oil i.e. the wood looked anaemic and dry. The chair took some doing as there were a lot of what you might call ‘twirly’ bits in the design – there must be a techical term for this but I not been able to discover it. Finally I worked my way to the top which has its fair share of eight vertical twirly spokes but which are easier to oil. I must say that at the end of the day, I was more than pleased with my labours. After a first treatment, the results were very pleasing and after the initial treatment, the buffing up process was quite easy and straightforward. I used only about 5-10% of my bottle of oil so have a lot left over for futher treatments and renovations. I think I will give it two more treatments (Thursday and Friday) and then have an assessment whether to add the ‘coup de grace’ by adding some beeswax polish over the top of it all. I have tried to ascertain from a variety of websites whether orange oil is superior to linseed oil for furniture restoration but have not got a definitive comparison or explanation. However, there were a slew of sources that sang the praises of orange oil which seems to be able to remove surface dirt and dust as well as replenishing oils which had dried out from the wood. I wish, though, that I had taken a photograph of the chair in its ‘before’ state so that I could make a more exact comparison of the effects of the treatment. I might be able to get this if I hunt through the original eBay listing of it and take a screen grab of it.

Tomorrow we are expecting the visit of two nurses who between them are concerned with Meg’s condition. I suspect that they have a plan so that Meg is interviewed in one room and myself in another. Last night, during the night, I sent a long letter to our closest friend in Spain explaining in detail how I was managing/not managing to cope with Meg’s condition. Their family dog, a red setter, had died in the last week, so the family are still in the course of a grieving process for a much loved member of their family life. I commiserated with them and hope that they are managing the grieving process for practically a family member.