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Benchmarks and reality checks (part 1)

Posted Aug 01 2010 12:00am
An annual holiday is a good way of checking in on my long term recovery. My daughter says I'm a lot better than I was. Our shopping trip was longer than last year's and she said no way would I have been able to visit more than one shop and have lunch in a noisy restaurant. I was touched by her observation and her remembering that noise is a problem for me. I know she reads this sometimes, so thanks Rach!

So, long-term, my baseline is coming up. In the short term, like today, I'm crashing. I woke up with the tell tale headache and it took ages to make a decision about what to wear today. It's no surprise given the busy, near to normal, mixing with The Normals, week I've had - not to mention the travelling. I know, though, the crashing will mean a day of being quiet and not doing much, not a day in bed like it used to. So it doesn't even really qualify as a crash, just my body telling me to stop.

Last week I got the train down to Surrey.

 It was a bit of an ordeal. I had three changes to make and three bags to carry, which is OK if you are not using a stick. The picture is of Birmingham New Street and when I took it I was wondering where to go. I couldn't think because the noise was deafening with the diesels revving up in the enclosed space of the station. Consequently I got on the wrong train. It was slower than the one I should have been on, and so I missed my connection and had to wait an hour at Watford. 

Actually, the hour was blissfully quiet and I used it to garner my resources and gird my loins for the horror that is Clapham Junction in rush hour.

It was interesting how the accents changed as I travelled. The vowels got longer and more familiar. Radio 4 recently had a series about London which I mostly missed, but I did hear someone say how it was like a country within a country. I saw that for the first time. Even the clothes are different. And nobody, but nobody makes eye contact.

My Mother met me at Surbiton and we did that thing where you are on the phone to someone, trying to find them, and they are two feet away from you.
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