Over the last few months, I’ve had  some issues with my shoulder (it supposedly got “frozen”), so in addition to an injection, I’ve been having some physio.   For me, the jury is still out as to the effectiveness of physiotherapy, although things have definitely improved.  The question is, would this have happened anyway?   Who knows?

The therapist probes into all sorts of muscles I never knew I had, and then I’m given some exercises to do at home.

Some of the exercises involve using a tension band, and some require weights.   As with the sessions on the bench, I’m never quite certain which muscles the exercises are aimed at.

Just the same, as stated above, things have improved, so I guess I can’t complain.



I’ve been wearing a wedding ring for over 40 years.    I can’t remember the last time I took it off – was it when some medical scanning procedure occurred?  If so, it was years and years ago.   However, I noticed that I’d lost flexibility in the finger, and it was then I realised that my finger become thicker over the years.  Not only was it now impossible to take the ring off, but in fact it was severely constricting the finger.

All attempts to remove the ring by the various techniques suggested on the internet having failed, I went to a local jeweller.   She took one look, and said there was no alternative but to cut the ring off.   She proceeded to do this, using a simple hand-held device.


She says that the ring, now in two parts, can be remade into a larger size – but not until my finger gets back to something like a “normal” shape, which might take a few weeks.



We’re off on a short trip to India next month.   To be honest, I’ve never had vaccinations specifically for travel purposes, but I got told very firmly by family members that I ought to have them for India.  I headed off to the GP, and despite me telling him that this was an “up-market” tour and we wouldn’t be off the beaten track, he strongly advised a number of precautions.   So I ended up with a couple of injections (which also included whooping cough, apparently regarded as essential in the presence of babies) plus a solution to be taken orally for cholera (two doses, taken at least a week apart).

You have to pay for all these, so the all-up cost – not including the consultation – was well over $300, including over $70 for each dose of the cholera vaccine.   I suppose oral vaccines have been around for a while.  In fact, if my memory serves me correctly, we may even have had a polio vaccine when I was a child that was taken orally.  And we were certainly made to drink “cough medicine”.   Be that as it may, it felt a little unusual to mix up an effervescent solution to which is added the vaccine, and then drink it.

The instructions state that the vaccine results in an 85% chance of protection for 6 months, decreasing to 52% at the end of the 2nd year.   Just the same, I won’t be drinking the water!

“Baby Shower” – the male perspective

I’ve heard of “baby showers”, but they weren’t around in the era when they might have impacted me.  However, time has passed and so I became indirectly associated with the planning of one.   Hmmm,  it’s a different world these days!    I put my head in for a few minutes and had some of the “bubbly” – but not my scene!   But there were some leftover nibbles, so I’m not complaining.

How many sweets are in the bottle?
No chance of getting thirsty!
Is there a party here?



I was in an aisle at the library that I don’t usually venture down…..and came across The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Anatomy.  Well, something different, I thought, and since I had recently read an article  about the operation of the gut which in a strange way had been interesting, I thought I’d delve a little deeper into the subject!

I know that anatomy is second nature to health professionals – for good reason –  but I certainly can’t say that I absorbed even a fraction of the information.   Just as well I never enrolled in a course that involved studying anatomy.   Soooo many names to learn!  I wouldn’t have stood a chance.     What amazingly complex things our bodies are!   I learned that the skin is 16% of the body’s weight, and that the lymph system is actually part of the circulatory system (and the immune system) in that it returns excess issue fluid to the veins, via  the lymph nodes which filter out and destroy bacteria and other harmful nasties.

Looking at the chapter about the arms. I paused to wonder if the scapula (shoulder blade) is actually attached to the rest of the skeleton.   No, it’s not, it isn’t connected by way of a joint to the spine, only by numerous muscles and ligaments to the ribs.   There is a “fake joint” called the scapulothoracic joint, where the scapula moves against the rib cage, but isn’t connected by any bony connection.  The only bony link between the shoulder arm bones and the spine is by way of the collar bone (clavicle), which actually serves as a strut to keep the shoulder away from the body.

And of course there’s a great deal more!

No gas

The oven in our gas stove has been troublesome for some time now, in that it sometimes went out unexpectedly.    But then, suddenly, there was no gas at all, in neither the oven nor the hotplates.    Our other gas appliances were working satisfactorily.

It was  a new problem for me, and googling for answers didn’t offer any easy solutions.  So we had to call the plumber.

So what was it?    There’s a flexible hose linking the gas supply to the stove, with a regulator on it.    Replacing the regulator solved the problem, but it re-occurred when the stove was pushed back into position – due to a kink in the flexible hose!   On reflection, that may have been the initial problem, perhaps caused by a slight movement of the stove maybe when someone leaned against it.

Anyway, the hot plates are now working better than ever:  the replacement regulator apparently allows a greater pressure of gas.   And the plumber’s bill was much less than the cost of a new stove.   But time will tell if all the issues with the oven have been fixed.