Sorry about this. I feel the need to share what happened today with those whom I consider to be cyber friends.
Last night, I finished my post awarding the 14th Photographic Competition on ‘Boadicea’s Chariot‘with:-
‘Captain Lawrence Oates was a fine man, by the way. I intend to follow his example for a while.’
I thank everybody for their kind comments on that post and feel, especially after today’s events, that I should explain. My planned and temporary waygoing was nothing serious but just something that I felt that I had to do for the sake of both myself and Mrs M.
I had a superb holiday in Australia with many utterly memorable events and encounters, all of which will be churned out in future posts. On the flight home and two hours short of Hong Kong, I started to get violent chills and shaking. I knew what it was, having had it before.
The treatment for cellulitis in the lower leg is antibiotics and raising the affected area higher than your heart to reduce the swelling. None of the former on the flight and the latter is not an option when you are in economy class. In any event, I was not about to own up to my illness. I knew it was cellulitis but the Chinese authorities might not have agreed with my diagnosis and I really did not want to be responsible for the quarantining of an entire Jumbo while they established whether or not it was something infectious.
By the time we got to Heathrow 19 hours later, my right leg was three times the normal size and I was delirious. Struggled on to the Embran flight but succumbed once home and ended up in hospital three degrees over normal temperature and with a severely blistered leg. Drip fed full of antibiotics for a week and then sent home for daily leg dressing by a succession of charming practice nurses.
Taking holiday and sick leave together, a total of seven weeks off work. I only went back last week, stir crazy and determined that I was going to do something about it. The plan was to lose a bit of weight, step up my level of exercise and generally get fit for purpose in the hope of warding off future cellulitic episodes.
Which is where Alfie came into my life three weeks ago:-
Mrs M’s dog, but I was just as besotted with him as he was with her. He formed part of my Great Plan. I have a completely sedentary job and decided last week that I should spend my leisure hours taking exercise instead of spending said hours posting on the Internet. Alfie was pencilled in for the long evening walks and I had already googled to establish which pubs in the area were dog friendly in case I found myself in need of refreshment as a result of my exertions.
Alfie was a three year old rescue dog, having been picked up as a stray. A lovely nature but we were told that he was highly nervous and liable to take off if not kept on a lead at all times when we were out. We were working on this and could see real progress as he came to trust us both.
I was at work this morning when the phone rang. It was the vet and she put Mrs M on. Mrs M had been on her way out to her Festival Chorus rehearsal. She thought that Alfie was fast asleep at the other end of the flat but the front door stuck slightly and, by the time she opened it, he was through her legs and straight under the passing Land Rover.
She knelt beside him and said his name. He wagged his tail. As she picked him up, he died.
So, it’s still a temporary goodbye. I am going to get fitter even if I will not have Alfie by my side as I do it.
And goodbye to Alfie too. We only knew him for three weeks but we gave him unconditional love and he gave us it right back.