I guess everything is relative but, "relatively speaking", it's all go here at the moment. On Monday afternoon my friend who lives opposite me called and asked if I could come over as she wasn't feeling very well. She was complaining of having a pain like a really tight belt wrapped around her chest (oh, oh), but on the right side of her body, not the left, saying it was becoming hard to breathe, it was so painful. Thinking back on it, oddly enough covid didn't even pop into my mind, I guess because I know this friend has probably even less contact with the outside world than I do. So no, my first thought was "heart attack", not covid. I could see that she was having a hard time holding it together so I asked her permission to call the emergency services and she agreed. That alone told me that it was serious because "stiff upper lip" and all that. When I called them they asked to speak to her and she tried to explain her symptoms to them - but when she was put on hold for what seemed like ages, we hung up and decided to just take her straight to hospital ourselves. To be fair they called back almost immediately but we told them that we'd make our own way there. I would say she was admitted in less than 15 minutes, so the hospital was very impressive. And that was the last I could do because, of course, I wasn't allowed to go with her. Thankfully André was waiting for me back at the parking lot so we were able to make it home before curfew, although I think under those kinds of circumstances we wouldn't have got into trouble for being out after 6 p.m. Despite poor internet connection, she managed to send me a message later that night to say they had done a scan and discovered a pulmonary embolism and were keeping her in. I managed to get hold of her sister in Spain through FB and let her know what was going on, and she, in turn, kept the family in England in the loop - although maybe a little less "in the loop" for her mom and dad who are both 91 and who she didn't want to worry, since both have their own health issues. Next day mom called me to find out the latest news, so I told her they were keeping her in again to do more tests and promised her I would call her back when I knew something. So with my friend's permission I called mom later and told her about the embolism and that they thought it might have some kind of link to the fall she took on the ice recently. Who knows - I don't know how these things work. Anyway, they kept her in for a third night and it turns out she was also in the early stages of pneumonia so hell it was a good thing we took her in when we did! I called mom this morning to let her know that I was just leaving to pick her up and bring her home and that my friend would call her later. I know some people have mixed feelings about letting family know, but having been on the receiving end of not being informed when my dad was (frequently) in hospital because of being in Switzerland, I know that I would always prefer to be kept informed. At the very least I could call every night to find out how he was doing right? I obviously wasn't going to tell mom anything without my friend's permission but I do feel very strongly that it was the right thing to do! Anyway, it'll be all anticoagulants, antibiotics, blood tests and more check-ups for my friend for the foreseeable future, but at least she is now receiving the treatment she needs!
And while we're on the subject of hospital stays, M, I don't suppose you're out of hospital just yet but I bet you're glad that's over too aren't you. Get well soon mate!
In other news I realized this morning that I think I might be turning into my dad. When we lived in Birmingham our house was at the end of a short path that led down to just three houses, but it seemed like every time dad heard footsteps on that path he bobbed up out of his chair to see who was there. While I was living at home it was a poor, but not particularly rough area, but I understand it changed quite a bit (i.e. became rougher) after I'd moved to Geneva, so I guess I know why dad did it - and why they were both so relieved when they inherited a little money and were able to leave the inner city for a quieter coastal area! But now I seem to find myself doing the same thing. Oh I'm not worried about being murdered in my own bed, it's just that I have this terrible habit of going to look out the bathroom window when I hear a car stop outside. I think it's because I tend to live on the first floor and the door bell always makes me jump and then start dashing downstairs to answer it. But still, yeah, I think I might indeed be turning into my dad!
The other day I heard the expression "the silent to-do list", meaning all the things that you keep thinking "oh I must get around to doing ..." and yet you never seem to get round to - and it bugs the hell out of ya because it's constantly going through your mind. One of my main bugbears is my basement and yet I have been clearing it bit by bit - although admittedly not lately. Then there's the box of my ex's papers to go through and that's just sitting there looking at me screaming "sort me, sort me". So today when I returned from the hospital I decided I needed to get back to spending about an hour a day on what I now refer to as my silent to-do list. An hour really isn't very long is it, especially for someone who's retired. So here's hoping it'll stick this time!
In the spirit of dealing with irritating things, I took more pictures of my heating system in the basement which is yet again, leaking. It's not a tremendous amount of water - more leaking condensation I would guess, and it will dry, but I thought nope, Max, you've got to come back and get this sorted. Jordan seems to think he needs to put a more powerful "condensation pump" in than the one he installed, but either way, he's got to come back and deal with it. So I sent him the pictures with a "guess what" text and we'll see what happens. Then this morning, just as I was about to leave for the hospital, I saw that my neighbour's cleaning lady yet again parked partially blocking my driveway. At first I asked André to move his car, which would allow me to pull out, but then I thought nope, she can park her bloody car like a grown up because we shouldn't have to move two cars to be able to get off our driveway. Why the hell she parks like that I have no idea - I mean, it's not like there isn't tons of space here to park. Hell, she can even park in the driveway of the neighbours whose house she cleans! So I sent Isabelle a text message asking her to ask her cleaning lady to move her car because I couldn't get out. I don't know where Isabelle was but she didn't get back to me immediately so we ended up again moving our own two cars. This bloody woman does it every damn week! Eventually Isabelle got back to me, apologizing for the delay and said she will ask her cleaning lady to park properly in future as she hadn't realized that was how she dumped her car!
|My driveway is off to the left but by parking|
like this she blocks me up against
a wall/hedge. Hell, why doesn't she park in front of
the black car? Her car's small enough and that's
the house where she's cleaning!
Anyway, the good news is that I received my carte de séjour (resident's permit) from Annecy after just 15 days, thereby confirming me as "legal", and I now have everything I need to apply for citizenship. So thinking I'd start checking off paperwork, yesterday I went on the naturalisation site and just started uploading the documents they requested at each step. They didn't want the whole shebang first time round but they would need all 27 pages of my divorce decree because wouldn't you know the stamp that shows it was a notarized copy issued in the last three months is on the last page. Do you ever have that sinking feeling when you're dealing with officialdom, you've got all your paperwork together and you hit "upload" and then sit there biting your nails hoping page 18 of your bloody divorce decree doesn't "crash" the site? Well luckily it didn't and hopefully I can upload the next stage shortly while my time-limited documents are still valid!
And finally, André had to weigh himself the other day in order to fill out forms relating to the life insurance necessary for his new mortgage. When it turned out he was 10 kg (22 lbs) heavier than he thought I just cracked up. Well that was until I realized my usual pair of jeans have just about had it so pulled out an old pair from the cupboard - and nearly cut off my oxygen supply when I tried to zip them up! Cue André's turn to laugh, but I told him not to be so smug because if my zipper went when I exhaled I reckon the shrapnel would kill anyone within a 10 metre radius! It was just like the scene in The Big Bang Theory where Howard's (never-to-be-seen) mother, Mrs. Walowitz, goes clothes shopping and yells from the changing room "It's this dress. When I put my front in, my back pops out. When I put my back in, my front pops out. It's like trying to keep two dogs in a bathtub. We're gonna have to work as a team. Get in here, grab a handful and start stuffing ...!" Maybe Karl Lagerfeld was right when he said women who wear sweatpants have "just given up"!