Some of you may have noticed that I haven’t been around very much here on WP in the last few weeks. It’s been quite strange not to be posting daily on my various blogs, particularly in the last week. July is always a busy time of year, with a lot happening as the academic year draws to a close and my children are involved in various events to do with school. My partner too works in education and has been working hard with his students to stage an ongoing project with the BBC for the Worthing Birdman 2013 event in a couple of weeks time. They’ve been constructing a Leonardo da Vinci-style glider that will be launched off of Worthing pier with a new BBC TV personality attached! Should be very amusing 😉 I’ve seen pictures of the glider and it looks fantastic, but as it’s not been released to the press yet, I can’t share. But I will as soon as I have them.
As I say it’s been a hectic time. I’ve also managed to organise and book a week away in Venice, due to fly in just two week’s time. Unfortunately my friend who was supposed to be travelling with me has succumbed to the Venice curse and is medically unable to fly due to a rather unfortunate illness that cropped up just as we were planning our trip.
Then as if to add insult to injury, just as I decided to go anyway and made all the arrangements, my family including me have all become ill with gastroenteritis. I’m still not quite 100%, but improving, and hopefully I will be fully recovered by the time I fly. I really do not want a repeat of last year’s trip to Venice, hence the reference to the Venice Curse, that caused me to end up in hospital for a week with a mystery illness that flummoxed all the doctors, even though several types of heavy-duty antibiotics did the trick eventually. I remember when I made the booking last year my partner became extremely ill with a similar mystery illness. I thought at the time that it was a subconscious protest on his part that I was leaving him for almost a week with all three children (probably not untrue), but then I succumbed to it. I have never been so ill and for so long in all my life and it changed something fundamentally within me.
I know I’ve already mentioned this in various posts but there are some things that happen to you in life that leave a very deep impression.
A couple of years before my cousin had passed away at age 38 from stomach cancer, she also had the same genetic condition as me, though not considered life threatening, some of the related conditions and symptoms can be, of which her cancer I still believe was a complication of such. So naturally when I became ill just weeks away from my 38th birthday you can imagine the kind of turmoil my head was in, particularly because of my symptoms. I thought the worst.
I remember the whole time I was in Venice with a permanent raging fever, every time I slept I would have the same recurring dream of being stuck on a Vaporetto [Venetian water bus], going round in circles along the Canale di Cannaregio desperate to get off and not miss my stop. I had the image of its white marble bridge fixated into my mind. I had this same dream for almost three weeks solid thereafter until the antibiotics started taking effect and my fever began to subside.
I recall sitting by the water’s edge of the Grand Canal and thinking if there was anywhere that I would want to die it would be right there in Venice. As morbid as it sounds, I absolutely fell head over heels in love with Venice and could think of nowhere better to spend my final days surrounded by such beauty and serenity despite the hustle and bustle of the place, as we were on the subject.
It occurred to me just the other week as I was planning my return that the bridge over the Canale di Cannaregio is like my personal bridge over the river Styx. It’s a notion that sparks a sense of the dark satirical humorist in me, not least because I sense an unmistakable ounce of truth in there. Had I not the nous to go to hospital when I did I may not have made it this far. It was one of my more significant and sobering encounters with the Ol’Grimster in recent years.
So with a level of trepidation I look forward to my fast approaching week away. I shall not be beat [gulp]. But if I am, know that this journey has been fun, and I shall keep posting as long as there is magic fairy dust in my lungs. I have every intention of being well, and returning in one piece, preferably still twitching 😉
For now though, I hope to be able to come and visit all your blogs a little more frequently than I have been and have a good chuckle along the way. As someone recently said, WP is better than TV! 🙂
Have a marvellous day and coming week everyone!