Until the next time

Monday March 28, 2005

We’re adjusting to the clock change but still feeling a degree of bewilderment as our body clocks adjust. Graham and I have felt at intervals during the day that it was later than our timepieces would have it when in fact they were an hour ahead. One day common sense will prevail and this silly hang-over from the past will be swept aside, leaving us all to adjust to seasonal changes in our own individual ways.

When I posted the journal update this morning I added a request to the notify, asking if anyone knew of a good, reliable web hosting service in the United States. I’ve been searching around for some time now to see if there wasn’t a better deal available than with my present UK-based host. The response was astonishing. So, for a large part of the day, I’ve been saying thank you nicely, clicking on over to yet another hosting service, investigating what they have to offer, and creating a decision table from the results. Not all measures are entirely objective, of course. The ‘feel’ of the organisation is important, too, as is a sampling of the websites hosted by them. In the end, I opted for PowWeb.com and have signed up with them for the next fourteen months. Almost all the other hosting services were good, too, but I’ve no intention of publishing my findings. It would be a hatefully invidious thing to do, and this is a journal, not an awards ceremony.

Over the next few days I’ll be be transferring files and will then transfer the oldgreypoet.com domain pointers to the new host. It ought to be invisible to visitors, and there will be no need for anyone to change bookmarks or favourites, or email references. At least, that’s the plan. Wish me luck.

So, there I was, more or less glued to my computer all day. Graham was busy painting the walls in the last room to be made-over, and Dolly was busy complaining that her litter tray had been moved. The little house was a quiet, idyllic, generally industrious place to be. Nice. Just the way we like it.

Until the spine fairy decided to have a little fun with Graham.

A great howl of agony rose up from the third bedroom. Dolly raced in from the living room, and I raced in from the study. There was Graham, pale, shocked, leaning on the windowsill, paintbrush in hand.

“What’s wrong?” I asked, taking the paintbrush away from him.

“It’s my back.”

“Oh, you poor sausage. Do you need a hand to get to your chair?”

“No,” he said. “Leave me be, and I’ll make it.”

I know that feeling. I know it so well. It’s all very well for me, though. A bout of back pain is something I’ve had to learn to live with over the years, so much so that I’ve developed a routine to deal with it. It’s a frightening thing when you’re not used to it, however.

So, a path was cleared for the invalid to make his way to a comfortable chair, the kettle was boiled, tea administered, and a sodium diclofenac tablet popped. It’s handy me having a good supply of these major back pain tablets. They’re very, very effective but not to be taken lightly and I had to work on a succession of doctors to secure my prescription.

Within fifteen minutes the pain had subsided and the patient was able to start getting mobile again. The rest of the day was spent alternating between gentle exercise and rest. So far the treatment has worked. Graham’s back became less and less painful, and there was no return of the agonies. He’ll be fine. The painkillers have prevented swelling and muscle mass tension, but we do have to expect one or two of those terrifying spasms as things settle down again, including that grinding ‘pop’ as the disc slides back into place. If indeed it really has become a little displaced.

Nasty things, backs. It’s unusual to find anyone who hasn’t suffered at some time in their lives. Chronic back trouble is much more rare, thank goodness. It’s not a condition I’d wish on anyone. The upside is that you do learn how to deal with it and that those who are close know that when and if an episode happens to them it’s something that will go away.

Until the next time.

Then, last thing, just as I was congratulating myself on an amateur nursing job well done, I made a mistake with my bedtime pills and popped a diuretic instead of my anti-cholesterol tablet. I had an interesting night.



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