When I was growing up we had a four-bedroomed house on two floors and in 1992 my dad inherited a little money from his brother and they were able to sell up and move to a bungalow in Dorset - which had always been their dream. But, with them moving away from the stairs in the first house I realized that in addition to getting older, every time I saw them they were probably significantly less fit than maybe they would have been otherwise - and I put that down to the stairs! My mom wouldn't have had it any other way in any case, but I guess looking at things from this angle is one way to "turn that frown upside down" isn't it!
I had to go out grocery shopping this morning so I left the two young men to get on with their work since they didn't need access to the house. When I got back though they were on top of my sloping roof and it was scorching! I felt so sorry for them as it was 32°C (90°F) and there wasn't a cloud in the sky! I had told them where my hose was and left the garage door open and they had been spraying each other down with cold water, but even so it was hot. So then I was running in and out with iced water and coke for them but even so, I just don't know how they do it! They had made good progress on the one side of the roof and I just assumed they'd go off to get something to eat but they said that they wanted to get that side totally finished before packing up and heading off. They eventually finished up at 4 p.m. and left for the day. The one young lad told me that the previous day they had put in a 14-hour day to get a job finished. You've got to be young, is all I can say!
On a slightly morbid note, I read somewhere yesterday about a file you can buy called Life in Motion! Basically, it's a rather jolly name for a file I would probably rename "here's a list of everything I own, all my passwords and who gets what when I snuff it"! Slightly less poetic but more fitting I think! Basically it's a file with eight tabs in it that you put together to "ease" things somewhat for your loved ones when you pass. To me that goes along with the whole "decluttering now so that they don't have to do it afterwards" kinda thing. I've been pretty good at filing my stuff and I've always told my boys that when I pop my clogs the first place they should looks is in a file called "important stuff", as that contains the most important papers they will need immediately. Anyway, this Life in Motion file, which I believe is available from Amazon, cost $50! Fifty dollars for a file/binder with eight tabs in it? No thanks. I have everything I need so I thought why not sit down every Friday when I'm doing my banking and just type up one thing for the file - which is what I did today!
The tabs that they supply are! (1) documents/emergency plan; (2) medical and insurance info; (3) property info - house/car/keys etc.; (4) banking info; (5) final wishes/funeral arrangements; (6) end-of-life decisions; (7) estate settlement/will; and (8) where to find important documents. Frankly I will add a (9) miscellaneous/info about my blog? - as I don't believe everything will fit neatly under 1-8! So since I got paid today and was transferring money/paying bills, I decided to type up a number (4) and put the details of my UBS bank account down on paper. I have four bank accounts, which might make me sound like Rockerfeller but is pretty easily explained. I have my former salary account (UBS) in Switzerland where my pension is now paid. We have a Swiss franc-denominated pension fund and I have my pension paid in Swissies because - well because I'm not stupid! I also have a savings account at the United Nations Credit Union. I kept this simply because it's more difficult for me to access money there so I throw a little in it every month in order to save for whatever. Then I have an account in the UK (HSBC) which I've had since I was 18 and if I close it they won't let me open another one, so I send SF 100 there every month and that gives me my pocket money whenever I go to England. And finally I have an account in France because that's where I live and most of my bills come out of that in euros. So you can imagine my boys would probably find all this pretty intimidating if and when!
So today it took me maybe 10 minutes to type up the UBS stuff. "This is the account number, this is where the bank is located, this is my password for e-banking" and so on, and it was really easy. As I say, I have everything all in one place but it struck me as making so much more sense to have a divider for each one and include all the passwords too. Morbid stuff maybe but I am more concerned with making my kids' lives easy as and when rather than worrying that if I write about my death it's gonna happen. It is - but not just yet hopefully!
I got my "one hour" of work in again today and I realize that by the time I look at my timer for the first time 45 minutes have usually gone by so it really is easy. While I was "doing" in the garden my neighbour wandered over for something or other. He's going in to hospital tomorrow for a fourth (or fifth?) operation to put stents into the veins in his legs as they are clogging up. Wouldn't you think with him finding walking more and more strenuous and this being yet another hospital stay he would give up smoking like the doctors have asked him to do? But nope, his wife gave up (after 50 years of smoking?) when she got the fright or her life and ended up in hospital with pneumonia last year and even now has a hard time breathing. Anyway, his wife is also making her own world smaller and smaller as she ages (she's 67) because she "can't drive in the dark (OK), is too afraid to drive down to Annecy (30 minutes away), won't drive on the motorway (OK) and can't drive him to the hospital because "she's never driven on that road before". I love her to bits but remember telling her ages ago that if she wasn't careful she would slowly wall herself in with all these perceived "inabilities" she has - and she was maybe 45 at the time! Well his daughter is going to drive him in tomorrow but has to be back at work on Friday for the first time since lockdown lifted so she can't pick him up. So I offered. It's no biggie to me but it brought home to me how much his wife's world is shrinking - and how stupid smoking really is!
And finally, I got one over on my friend today. He sent me a chatty message asking when we could get together (this weekend probably, for the first time since March). So anyway he tells me that all this walking he's being doing (a lot) seems to have paid off and he's pretty sure he's lost weight, but he couldn't say how much because he doesn't have any scales. Next thing I know he sends me a picture of himself in his underpants and yes, it would seem that he has lost quite a bit of weight. So then we go flirting back and forth and I'm saying "I think I'll need to see a bit more in order to be sure" - but that's just our usual kind of banter. So at this point I decided to tell him about the time last year, just before Christmas, when out of the blue he sent me a rather more raunchy picture. I've no idea why and it doesn't bother me in the slightest. I mean, it's not like I haven't seen it all before right - we dated for about five years! Anyway, what I had forgotten was that when someone sends you a picture it automatically gets saved onto your pictures (on iPhone at least). So last year, just after he had sent the picture, I was at my patchwork lesson when I was telling one of the ladies about a Christmassy-themed project I would like to attempt. I had seen it at a patchwork exhibition and liked it so I took a picture of it. So she said "oh can I see", so I handed my phone over to her! And that was when I realized his other pictures was probably saved onto my phone. Now I'm the kind that looks at someone's pictures and often swipes left to look at the next one, so I was hoping to god she wouldn't do the same and almost threw myself at her to get my phone back. Which I managed but seriously? When I told him this I was roaring laughing and he was horrified - as I reminded him this morning when he sent me his "I'm losing weight" photo! Moral of the story? Be careful who you send your raunchy pictures to!