Days 193 – 196


It’s Saturday evening and I’m avoiding going to bed.  I’m avoiding a lot of things – avoiding going out, avoiding meeting people.  I’m turning down kind offers of supper and fun.  I feel like a bit of freak in truth – bombed out by the chemo, looking weird.  It’s a bit shocking and I don’t feel like seeing people who I’ve not seen for a while.  It’s too much.  And also things are about to start turning around; last chemo shot on Monday followed by CT and PET/CT scans on the 20th and 23rd October which will show the state of play on a visual level at least.  I’d like to meet people with a smile on my face after such a long time.

I’ve had some disconcerting thoughts, triggered by an itchy rash on my lower left leg and some back pain at night.  I’m not sure, but could it be linked with having a drink?  I’ve allowed myself a bottle of beer staying out in the bus earlier in the week, and wine later in the week as my friend Denise and her daughter Nell were staying and we cooked fabulous curry, following Nell’s coinfident combining of spices learnt from a kind of survivalist soup kitchen in Bristol…relaxing my diet a bit, needing to relax a little bit.  But they’re scary thoughts because alcohol-triggered night-time back pain was one of the earlier cancer symptoms.  This time the pain came on at 3am, quite uncomfortable but not excruciating, and then was gone in the morning.  I don’t know, maybe my mind is playing tricks.

I wrote this a few days ago and now I don’t believe any of it.  I’m ok – the rash has gone; there are enough chemicals in my body to bring on a rash after all.  The back pain is probably from bad posture, sitting badly, slumping I expect when I should just be in bed, sleeping badly…

The weekend blurs I can’t really remember, except that I worked on the Vitesse on Sunday, cutting out some rusty patches in the rear wheel arches and welding in new patches.  Patching patches!  Re-doing repairs I did 25 years ago.  I’m going slightly nuts now.  And things go wrong – the gas cylinder topples off the welder trolley and smashes the regulator just as I was about to do the a final weld.  I stop and take stock.  I’m exhausted and dizzy and I should have stopped long ago.  I pack up and Ali calls – I fess up – I’m done up and done in.  She suggests supper in the bus if I’ve got the energy to drive west; the suns going down and breaking through the clouds over that side and of course its the right thing to do.

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We stay in the bus up at Carn Gloose – there’s no one else here, we’re the last people to see the sun go down.  Then awake at 5.30am to drive back to Penzance and get ready for hospital…