A bit of catching up

It’s nearly three weeks since the keyhole robotic surgery to remove my cancerous prostate.  I am recovering well, but still have dressings over about half of the seven wounds because they coincide with my trousers waistband and tend to iritate.  I am still mildly incontinent.  I need to wear pads to catch the inadvertant leakages.

On the wargaming front I am managing about 30 minutes per day on the long-running Battle of Brighton 1940 in the shed before the cold drives me back indoors.  Indoors we have painters and decorators all over the house refurbishing after the July fire, and I am confined with the dog to the living room.

So I am spending my time catching up on several long-outstanding wargame campaign projects that have fallen by the wayside.

I have bought and painted five 1902 pre-dreadnoughts for my “Diplomacy Plus” campaign that is currently awaiting a Russo-Turkish naval battle off Sevastopol in September 1902.  The ships are replacement game tokens for “Axis and Allies 1914”.  I also drafted the battle rules, based on “Axis and Allies naval” concepts.  This is the first naval engagement of the campaign.

Strange that in real life the blue on the bases is very similar to the blue of the cloth.  Bases are 40mm x 60mm.


Today I have been sorting and basing some old 2mm figures for the next battle in my  early 1700 campaign.  France is attacking England in the Palatinate (sounds painful!).  Again, draft rules are prepared and await testing in this battle.  Most of the previous battles have been fought in 6mm.

Eventually I want my 2mm armies to be on a 1:1 figure:man ratio, but for the time being I am using approximately 1:3.  The photo’ shows a 1:1 squadron of heavy cavalry in line, in column and in rout.  All awaiting (re)painting.



Continue reading A bit of catching up

Life’s not so bad

Nine days ago I had my prostate removed by robotic keyhole surgery.

I was lucky.  I went to the doctor with a totally unrelated problem and after a blood test he decided that a prostate investigation would be useful.  I went to the hospital and had not only a biopsy that found cancer in the prostate but a full radioactive skeletal scan that located no further cancer but arthritis in my shoulder, which a specific x-ray search failed to find last year.

After investigating the alternatives I had two choices:

  1. Surgical removal.  This would involve keyhole surgery, followed by some weeks with a catheter and daily self-performed injections against blood clots.  Afterwards an appraisal of the results as to incontinence and the actual removal of all cancerous cells.  Potty training required, which I was not good at the first time around!
  2. Radiotherapy.  Four weeks of daily hormone injections, followed by 4 weeks of daily hospital visits for radioactive beaming, followed by up to three years of hormone therapy.  Effectively I would become a eunuch with all female menopausal symptoms, and the possibility of double incontinence.

Unsurprisingly I opted for the first option.

So, after nearly an hour cruising the Royal Surrey Hospital car park in convoy fruitlessly looking for a space my wife dropped me off at the nearest bus stop in time for my 10:30 am appointment.  10 minutes later I was able to attract someone’s attention to let me into the building and 15 minutes after that someone unexpectedly found the queue of patients at reception.

I was taken to a waiting ward and at around 1:15 pm was visited by someone with a patient survey form to complete before and after surgery.  I duly completed part 1 but never saw the documents again.  At 1:30 pm I was gowned up (has anyone ever seen a worse garment?) and taken for anaesthesia.  After basic numbing I had a spinal injection followed by full knock-out around 2:00 pm.

I woke up at 8:00 pm and was taken to the ward at 10:00 pm.  About an hour later I managed to accidentally rip out one of the needles in my right hand and bleed all over the bed, necessitating a complete change of bedding and gown, whilst still attached to drips and drains.

Next day I was hauled out of bed to move around, still attached to various inputs and outputs.  At around 5:30 pm I was discharged.

Since then I have been pottering around at home.  Each morning starts with an injection to thin the blood, followed by disconnection from and emptying of the night urine bag.  During the day I am now free to go to the toilet when I wish to rather than when I need to.  I am finding the catheter and bag option very user friendly.

I hope to be free of the catheter on 13th December, after which I will need to be “potty-trained” again.  On 12th January I will have a review and hopefully  know if I am free of the “big C”.

Life is looking more positive.  Christmas is cancelled, but here’s to 2018.