I have missed my blog updates in the last couple of days, so here are some of the highlights (and lowlights?) of the last coup[le of days.
Wednesday 19th April
Our mains-powered smoke alarm decided at about 3:30 am that it needed a new back-up battery and would not stop reminding us. It was fitted by a builder, so of course we had no instructions for it. After finding online hints about how to dismantle it I had to go to the shed for the stepladder and a screwdriver. Luckily we had a couple of spare 9 volt batteries in store.
I had to switch off the electricity supply, so then I needed a torch and a magnifying glass to read the tiny instruction label about where to slot the screwdriver. A third hand would have been useful at this point. Anyway, by 5:00 it was fixed, but I was now wide awake and could not get back to sleep. Instead I did a couple of sudoku puzzles and a game of scrabble against my iPad before getting up.
The next issue was programming the new “universal” remote controller for our TV. The original one has decided to reprogramme itself so that the on/off button only mutes the volume and various other buttons do odd things.
I placed a small bet on one of my syndicate racehorses running at Cheltenham. he was the clear favourite but was later withdrawn because the ground was considered too hard for his hurdling.
I had as one hour session with my therapist, during which we spent about half the time talking about horses. I guess he learned a lot about me in that way.
I started to prepare for a wargame after a long hiatus. I don’t have enough of the necessary models so I looked at downloadable paper models and tokens before blighting the bullet and buying two small armies for a period I have not covered before. By small I mean in both numbers and size. The figures are 3mm tall.
While I was doing this a number of messages popped up on my ‘phone from members of UKAT Alumni, the post-therapy support group. It seems that many of my fellows are not coping with addiction recovery as well as I. I responded as well as I could to their pleas for help.
With my expected afternoon’s enjoyment of watching “my” horse race denied, I mowed the front lawn instead, which involved stopping every few paces to kick a ball for Sparky. It’s a Pavlovian dog thing: Grass-cutting toy means play ball.
In the evening I received a call from my cousin advising that my last surviving Uncle is in hospital and not expected to last more than a few days.
Thursday 20th April
Since I could not make any progress with my planned Romans vs Celts wargame until the new armies arrive I started to investigate the next game in the Wargames, Soldiers and Strategy magazine. The fictitious“Battle of Dorking” from the novel of the same name. I have the book so I was interested. It involves Prussia invading England in the 1890s.
For this one I know I have some 6mm figures, some of them painted. It’s just a case of locating them! Alternately I may play this using my Red Army vs Blue Army system on my squared card table. To be decided.
I called my brother and sister to tell them of our uncle’s situation. My sister is on holiday, en route to Barnard Castle with her camper van. She said she thought it might be “a sight for sore eyes” (British political joke).
I then called my 90-year old aunt for a chat. ±She is about to become the last of her generation in our family, having already lost her older sister and two younger brothers. I cheered her up with my call.
It was a beautiful clear morning so I set to with more digging of the garden. There were two dead shrubs to dig out. One I have managed and the other I have cut down to ground level and will dig out later. The weed-killer that I applied around the paths and patio three days ago seems to have helped the weeds thrive!
In the afternoon I took Spark for a walk for an hour or so, but will blog about that separately in “Walks with my dog”.
Knowing we planned to go shopping this evening I tried to find an AA Zoom meeting in the afternoon. The 3:00 meeting listed on the AA site did not exist and the 3:30 alternative had an incorrect passcode published. The AA meeting finder is a useful site, but too much of the information is out of date. A few days ago I logged into a meeting. The host, without a word, muted me, switched off m,y video and closed the meeting. Not very welcoming for a newcomer!
In any case , the Memsahib arrived home early and we went to do the week’s grocery shopping. I had to drive home again for my wallet.
By the time we returned home and had dinner it was past 8:00pm, so I went to my trusty 9:00 international Zoom AA meeting, and thence to bed.