Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Travelling Road


My birthday in Cambridge with Tony; I had never been to Cambridge before... I suppose with having lived so near to Oxford for so long, Oxford is where we always went!


River boat tours, punters punting...


Lots of tourists... of course!


The weather was lovely, which is good, and a new memory... reminding me of other memories...

So I have notes to transfer onto here, went out this morning without my phone!  Yes, unbelievable, I never leave my phone, or phones behind and once I knew I had forgotten them, I felt like I had left my arm behind in the house!!

Last evening I came home from Malaga airport to our home, and was nice to walk into the house with people here, and they're here till I go to work again, nearly... But Pippa is not here, she is still in the doggie hotel, it wouldn't have been fair to bring her home today and take her back tomorrow... I miss her...

This morning I left early to go to Aldi, got there at 9am, and now, well then, having coffee at La Trocha while I wait for the shops to open at 10am...

Just now driving I asked Franco out loud "where are you?" my make believe games hurt, but for the shortest of moments I can almost believe, I though him just now, still in hospital - not good for him, I know! But for me - hope, and any amount of hope keeps me... keeps me? I don't know where it keeps me. Oh yeah!  In denial.

Plans today! I changed my plan and just didn't care, so here, not on the coast, struggling to park and time wasted driving, have to get a few things for work on Friday - Feeling worried, nervous, scared even... But its one week only!

Had a good week at Tonys, Sunday we went out for a long drive, ending at a garden centre and then home; Saturday we went to Milton Keynes which was great... always love going there, I suppose because its a rarity now for me...

Every day bar one I went on Tonys VR... Who knew! I'm a gamer! Only I was waiting for VR!  No motion sickness at all.  Franco would have been very proud of me killing all the zombies, shooting them in the head with quite good accuracy!  I have put them on my YouTube... hang on will get a link...

That takes you too my Channel I think...

I am hooked! I am hoping they still have the Oculus Rift store in Plaza Mayor.... I'll be there every week for hours!!

Today, this morning on my way out, the air smelled so good, warm and fragrant - a day to drive and travel... Franco and I would have gone far today.

Notes finished, I am surprises I could read my handwriting, so very old Skool!!


Perfect cosy spot! 

Monday, July 17, 2017

17.07.17

Been staying with Tony and Kate since Tuesday last week... Been a good week, just being here...

Time in my head alone is limited when I'm not alone... of course lots of time it's still just my thoughts, my sadness, just me without Franco.

Franco had some beautiful words on his memorial Facebook page on the 12th, he was loved, and is missed...

Today we had planned a big thing, a special date for my birthday, 17.07.17... palindrome... we were going away somewhere special; as always special, but we'd thought of somewhere in Italy...
Tony and I are going to do something, I should be responsible for myself now, instead I've shifted the responsibility onto my son... sorry honey...


I'm barely here, a thin wisp of myself
I survive each day and don't know why.
Who am I now?
Why did Franco have to die.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017



It would have been Francos 60th birthday today...

I still don't understand, still can't comprehend... still cannot except the reality of him dying...

I just listened to him tell me he loves me on a message he gave me...

...and I feel such a loss my heart bleeds tears;


I'm not at home, I wouldn't have survived this week at home, but I am missing our Pipster, I feel guilty leaving her in the doggie hotel, she shouldn't be there, she should be at home with us...

I'm at Tony and Kates in England, wishing I could turn back time, and change something, do something, anything that could have helped or stopped what happened to Franco.

I'm just so sad. Franco made me happy, all the time, he was my happiness, he made me smile every day, told me everything would be okay... Until he told me last November that it wouldn't be.

He told me to sit down, told me what he had been told, and that I had to be strong...

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The impossible road...

Tomorrow is Francos birthday, not in a good place in my head, yesterday or today so far...

And as I approach another 'first'... I have to say I have 'firsts' every day... The first breathe I take each day as I realise Franco is not next to me...

Each day I go out and Franco is not next to me, or at home when I return... When I find he is not upstairs, or on the terrace, or going to call or message...

My firsts without Franco are with me everywhere every day...

And this is the truth of the truth, the heart of my heart... my reality... my thought as I sit here right now...

*Franco I know your coming around the corner, you've parked the car, your almost to the door, you'll soon be home, thank God, I was so scared, I can't live without you, I don't know how.*

I know I can't go on like this, I know 'things' will change... it will have to. It has to.

I know this is normal, but knowing these feelings are normal doesn't help... it's just all wrong.








Friday, July 07, 2017

Random Roads...


Sorry photograph is a little blurred! Wasn't sure if the bug was alive and didn't want to startle him! I think he was a horned dung beetle! Guess that horn is for pushing the worlds largest dung-roll ahead of him!


And from largest - to smallest! The worlds smallest cupcake! How cute! Out with friend last evening for a good walkabout town... Ended outside a bar and for me café con leche and it came with this cute little cupcake!


And lastly... Me!!! Oh if only I knew at the time as we stood there at Europa Point! What the hell was my hair doing!! I think life-of-its-own comes to mind.

It was clipped back by the way, I didn't walk around Gib. looking like this... did I?


Tears are words our hearts cannot speak...

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Gibraltar


Had another lovely visit to Gibraltor with friends yesterday, Tuesday... Franco and I had stopped going so much, we only saw the things we had got fed up with seeing, therefore, and very sadly, we had stopped seeing Gibraltor!

So often we stop seeing the very places we see every day don't we... maybe the people too sometimes, which is even sadder.

Above a view at Europa point... a point in question, we had never been to before, until I came last week with the same friends...

Last week the rock was so bright and white on approach it looked to be covered in snow, the way the sun caught the chalk face... Yesterday it was cloudy on approach, from way back, we left the sun and clear blue skies, and drove towards the cloud looming over Gibraltar...

It cleared as we walked around the streets and had coffee...


A very cool building right near the end of the high street, further than I had every walked before, Franco and I only having ever gone as far as a menswear shop, where I bought Franco a really lovely Italian sweater, with a red strip running across, very unusual, until Franco went to visit Wales and was met by his bessy mate who was wearing one just like it!!


The Trafalgar Cemetery, I'd never seen before either! Very well kept and worth a good long walk around...


Above our friends the turtles at Casa Flores in Alhaurín El Grande, they were all sunbathing, heads up, feet off the ground!! check out those baby ones on the left, zoom in! They are so cute!!

Saturday, July 01, 2017

Life's a 'beach' 1.7.17


So today here I am on the beach! Yeh! Ha... Those that know me, know I'm not a beach babe... I'm here for Franco, he loved the beaches here, he liked it here in La Cala, quieter than Fuengirola...

Today is three months to the date and day, 1st of July... Our birthday month...

I am worse today than I was Saturday 1st April, in many many ways... Realisation, loss, emptiness, confusion... To name but a few of the many emotions which tear me up each day and night.

So here I sit on a bed on the beach under a parasol, with tears streaming down my face and sniffing like a.... sniffy thing.  Why? Because I know Franco would have wanted us to be here...


Thursday, June 29, 2017

Crispy Cod Fuengirola


With good friends down in Fuengirola today, lunch at the Crispy Cod on Fuengirolas paseo maritimo... We were a little early so drove all the way along the coastal road as far as the windmill roundabout in Benalmadina... Nice drive people watching, although already with so many tourists... No, who am I kidding! I don't think there is much difference in the people!


The journey is an obstacle race! An eyes peeled at all times, people of all ages, on all manner of sets of wheels, randomly criss-crossing, leaving path to road or road to path, with no notion of others place, or reactions, fearless? Lol or something else?


The best today was a woman who cycled onto the road without pausing in front of us, she then didn't stop for pedestrians on crossings, or consider any other vehicle or person at all, she spent a few hundred yards with one hand stuck in her hair... Yes, too much information on one person, but we couldn't get past her and spent some time just so astonished at her complete lack of care!!!


So three photographs from Crispy Cod!
And the one above from our living room... That mountain at the back has been intriguing us for twelve years! Aim: get to it, and look back here! Lol Like we like to do from Casarabonela!

I was going to leave myself out of this as much as I can.. Ha! No chance! I'm doing some very odd things, I'm so emotional...

I really hope going back to work will help me, as I help others I will at least forget me...

I really don't know who I am now, anymore; I knew who I was with Franco... I knew who I was before Franco, but I don't remember her, I guess we evolve slowly throughout our lives... and now? Who am I now?

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Empty...

Went to the coast on Friday to see friends we haven't seen since.. before.  I'm going to Gib. with them this coming week.

Yesterday was a noisy day with the purple churches celebrations, today is the last day. First rockets went off at 8am, and I finally managed to switch of flood light at 1am... Blah!!! Poor Pip in bathroom all day, didn't go to toilet after the morning walk, which we had to pause and hug throughout with the rockets!! And she was sick in the night... Today Pip wouldn't go out this morning... Thunder was forcast and it just started, followed by a few drops of rain, it's already stopped! The lovely smell of warm rain in the air.

Pictures from horse charity do last weekend, with friend I used to work with, brilliant afternoon, people and entertainment.




Stars that have already burnt out in our skies, they still shine brightly, their memory is still there for all to see... They glow as bright as ever...

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Horses!



Photographic post I must keep it light!

So! Prawn cocktail! Light on the prawns! Two of them! Lovely weekend visit from friend, in Mijas Pueblo, three course meal €7 and light on each plate! But enough for lunch... the company was the important part...


Keeping it light on the drinks too! Very hot day, Fuengirola in the morning and Mijas on way home.


How many photographs of the gardens have I taken over nearly thirty years! It's difficult to find a new angle!


Same goes for the chapel near the bar!


Horses the night before outside Bar Cruz!

More horses tomorrow if I post, very horsey weekend!

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Somebody told me today how well I look... Wasn't sure how to answer​ and thought​ better to say nothing...

My grief isn't on my body, down my arms or legs, it isn't written on my face in general conversation... Sat with sun glasses​ on I am surprised the person had any clue as to my thoughts or state of mind, my eyes hidden behind the tinted lenses...read my eyes, they're the window to my dying heart.

I am sure most people who pass me by don't stop in their tracks and think to shout out loud "OMG look at that woman, what the hell!!!"

I write this as I lay in bed, another night where the truth is killing me, where the reality is raw, while I cry and say out loud to Franco to come home... Please. Last night something on TV made me rush to Google a song title, got the wrong one... But listened and cried to it all the same, back to the 1970's... Bobby Goldsboro's

Honey..

...and Honey, I miss you
And I'm bein' good
And I'd love to be with you
If only I could..

I understand Franco even more so now, hating the nights, the quietness, the reality of life, when thoughts and feelings become more intense with the silence... What awful thoughts were going through his mind every night, and why he had to keep the TV on to block them out, I hated my thoughts then too, and still do.

I made a huge meal tonight, thinking I was making it for us... Why bother. I even took photographs to show Franco... 

Pippa hurt herself while I was away, because I was away, if I hadn't of been it wouldn't have happened, and I wouldn't have been if Franco was here... Now my poor Pip has lost a nail and nearly a second one, had to have x-rays, and pain meds, because we weren't here.

Thank god they didn't tell me, I don't know what I would have done, I don't know what I'll do.

While I was away, I was sending a message.... Saying what aunt Rita and I were doing, the last word in the sentence came out wrong and got sent without me touching 'send', then a big thumbs up popped up from me (!!!??) Followed by a 0, Op and please! All sent separately!! I hope that was Franco telling me he is okay...

Wish it would do it again...

Tried to sort out cables behind TV today, I would normally have done it, but not the fixing something to the wall bit of it. Also changed a lightbulb in the bathroom, more of a Franco job, he worried about me falling off the ladder, as well he might, and the bloody vertigo I have again made it that much more fun! I knew I was changing it today, but hung on just late enough that the house was getting gloomy! Like me! Then I changed some other electric cables about, just for fun!

I have to buy a new garden hose too, this one is losing more water from the tap than anywhere else!! 

Went shopping today, first Aldi, got most of our stuff, then thought I would go to Mercadona and just get the rest there and then! So double whammy of supermarket shopping! And that was after walking Pip, and walking to town and back... and Pip and I walked again later this evening! Never a dull moment.

It's late, it's hot and the ceiling fan is talking to me! No I have not 'completely' lost the plot! And you can Google it if you want! In fact let me do it!! Apophenia lol... I must add that to my misaphonia and face-making Greek name on my Twitter!! By the by don't let the title 'hearing loss' stop you from reading the very interesting subject...

I'll post this now while my brain works out what words I'm hearing from the fan until I have to turn it off because as always, it keeps changing its mind!!




Saturday, June 10, 2017

Homeward Bound


Three years ago today Franco Barry and I arrived here in New York, we dropped off bags at aunt Ritas then went into the city for a few days, on June 10th we scattered moms ashes near to where she grew up, in the place where she and my dad visited, laughed loved and grew together... I want to go home, but I want to stay, either way I want what can't be... and I feel sick to my stomach as realisation hits me like a punch...

Three years ago, what changes, who could of predicted... no one knows what's ahead, tomorrow is unknown. I could see Franco around aunt Ritas house, (in my mind's eye!), which gave me comfort feeling him near... Now we're going home...

So!! We went out for dinner this early evening before I had to leave... An Italian restaurants, Anthony's on Union Turnpike... Wonderful food! The best company, family... Thank you...

And here I am at JFK, at the gate, it's just gone ten in the evening, we leave at eleven thirty and back into Málaga for nearly one pm! Sounds like a long flight with the six hours jump ahead! Then it'll be car, Pippa and home home home.

Adio America... See you again soon!

Thursday, June 08, 2017

I'm so sorry for my awful post last night, night is always the worse of times, no "good-night" no messages (if I'm away), no nothing, nada.  I slept bad a night of horror's, and trying hard to keep it together, tried to skim through fb, it has so many things to remind me...

So photographs eh..  yesterday we went to a German strawberry fest down at Plattdeutsche Park, was a great few hours, there was the strawberries and cake and fresh cream...


There was apple cake too, and coffee..


Probably about 600 people... An enormous raffle, I had planned on winning the Afgan throw, but another lady on our table won it! My intentions went array...


Well this is great, just said good night to my aunt, into bed, doing my rounds of solitaire and I'm panicking bad, bad bad... and I can't go down and upset her, and I'm writing here to people either asleep or waking up or no-one...

It's I've just realized I can't cope with our birthdays yet I'm not ready, I can't I can't I can't.

Monday, June 05, 2017

Old Westbury Gardens

Photographs as promised, from Saturday at Old Westbury Gardens...

My aunt, one of her daughter's and two granddaughters and me...

Beautiful day...






We had a lovely sunny day, even a little chipmunk was about, I thought he was a carved woodland creature on a post, until he started nibbling on something in his 'hands' 'paws'?

Yesterday family came down to see us, from all around which was so wonderful of every one of them... I feel like a right pain, when I visit everyone always tries to make it to where I am staying, and I am so thankful... always...

Sunday, June 04, 2017

Shared Path

Sorry, just more words today, at this time, morning time alone with my thoughts and you know where I am, down in a dark place, let me write now, I am full of thoughts, I will post photographs later...

You know, if I don't stop and I don't think then nothing has changed, it is as it was, and I can see-speak-message-call, have Franco in my arms again and then and then.. bam! the world comes into focus, the gears shift and grind to a halt and dam reality kicks me...

Those quotes I used to share every single day on Facebook, which now seem empty useless words... Yesterday's was all about focusing on what you want and bringing it to you! Ha! Really! It's not working, it can't, it's impossible now.

I am thinking about what I want to tell, yell, scream at everyone, live like there truly is no tomorrow, love laugh breathe... Enjoy remember, above all feel the memories, imprint them, down to your very soul... Because tomorrow isn't a given... Always be so amazingly thankful to those you love, and I mean tell them! Not on fb etc, tell them for real, because in a heartbeat they will be gone; we get cross, we argue, some might shout and scream, but always close the day with loving words and a gentle touch.

My tomorrow has radically changed, the road Franco and I walked hand in hand is closed. Barricaded, darkness beyond... My tomorrow is off down an adjacent pathway now, it'll curve around and meet up with my Franco later, I know... but, I can't​ reach his hand to hold mine, and I don't know if I can do it, this path.  I was always the girl who forged new paths, always went my own way, but for fourteen years it was a shared path, a shared road, and we, Franco and I, believed it would be us together walking it forever into our old age.. 

Friday, June 02, 2017

The Road Home


So tomatoes! That's all I give you! Sorry, not taken my phone out very much for photos!

But, tomatoes it is, and they're wrapped in their own little shrugs of their own, never seen the like of them before...

I need to go back I guess, to bring you up-to-date I mean! So,, to Málaga airport, dropped the car off, went to the Delta desk, lots of security, good to see... Lots of questions etc, took about an hour to work my way through, then through security and into departures... I had a ten Euro ticket to pick up some lunch courtesy of Delta as our flight was two hours late; I got a call in the morning at home!

I had a wander about after my Burger! I know I know! But it was Francos favourite place so I was drawn there, and the check came to exactly ten Euros! Cool!

The rest was as per norm... And once boarded I got comfy in my seat, sharing the three seats in the centre with no one else! Once in flight I stretched out! I listened to a couple of movies, they helped me sleep, a little.. Had dinner first, then ice cream, then an hour and half before landing we had sandwiches!

Landed and then the real fun began!?! Long lines for immigration, machines where you had place your passport, have your photograph taken, finger prints... Then through to an immigration officer, then bag collection, mine appeared as I got to the conveyor... Then line up to bring your bag through and past another officer, then out! Into a cab, who got lost, and a twenty minute ride took an hour or more, and twice the cost!! And here I am in Queens New York.

Anyway! I arrived!! That was Friday!
And Saturday we went to a cousins graduation party, lots of family, lots of people I hadn't met, and jet lag kicking in!! Blah!!

We, my aunt Rita and I, spent a night at one of her daughter's, who was baby sitting two of her grandchildren, one little'un of each daughters... Not sure if we helped or hindered! Especially the next day before we were picked up!

Today we went to a centre near here while my aunt played cards and helped with the drinks and snacks, I chatted and read my book, finished my book, The Keeper of Lost Things... Great book I'll definitely read again. Every movie I see or book I read these days, they all seem so relevant to me.

Before we went out we pulled some weeds out front, I came out in a nice rash! Put on some of the bite cream I bought out with me, it helped, it was gone anyway by the time we were home again.

I am keeping my mind busy, we're talking and watching TV, keeping busy is keeping my thoughts at bay... If only for a few moments... Because as soon as I am left alone in my head it all falls down around me... Aunt Rita came down too early the other morning and caught me in tears, Franco is but a heartbeat away, always with me, although I'm not talking out loud to him while I'm in company, they'll have me locked up! But technology means Franco is here on my phone as soon as I touch it, our messages, our photographs, our life.

Someone put the song from Dirty Dancing on Facebook, I reposted and added my thoughts, my hope... That Franco knew that "I had the time of my life... and I owe it all to you" Franco... I hope he knew.

I had a strange occurrence the other night, as I was about to close my eyes I thought I could see faces, one was Francos face, I saw heads and shoulders of people just floating really, up near the ceiling appearing to be talking to each other, I didn't hear them! Lol I know crazy looney bird!

I'll try and take photographs tomorrow, I'll try and remember.


Thursday, May 25, 2017

Beetle attack!

Okay... I have had a bereavement chat with a lady down at Cudeca... they don't have meetings for English speakers down there and I do not have sufficient Spanish to join therefore!

So I just talked, and talked... and well talked!  Explained just about most of everything I am feeling, and although she said I am basically having normal thoughts and feelings, that maybe I should make an appointment with my doctor for medication!?!  Not a route I want to take.

So, its normal!!?? It's normal to feel I've lost my whole world, it's normal to feel this complete and utter devastation... This feeling of nothing, blackness, emptiness... No meaning to life... Is normal!

Hey, I'm normal, no-one calls ME normal!!

And I have decided, apart from this and that as it happens or  I just do my normal rambling, I am going to try to just post just stuff... try not to get myself or others feeling bad... 

Before I do begin to not upset further... I am so sorry to say with a sad and heavier heart... that Francos mom has passed away... the only small light I see is when Pietrina 'arrived'... there her husband, and two of her boys!  And she would have given them a right ear bashing as to why they were there ahead of her!  I wish Franco was here, that he could have been with his family at this time...

And now... Stuff, just stuff.... 
A friend came to stay for a few days!

Jewel Beetle
This big beetle above, totally freaked me out last week, our visitor camera in hand at all times, got a fantastic shot of him!

But to tell the tale as it was, we were sitting in Ronda, having a cold drink and I could feel something tickle my back, I moved a bit in case it was just my hair, then still feeling something there I knocked this thing off me with a click onto the ground! Small scream at this point, then relief it was off me and on the ground!  But he kept on trying to fly and knocking into chairs or parasols... and just couldn't take off!  I told my friend it was going to come back to me, that it was wanting to get back on me!! A few barmen had check it out, just so they knew it wasn't a roach really I guess!

Anyway, he did make it back to me! I knew it! He buzzed up to my head, I didn't know if he was in my hair or what! I flung off my sunglasses and felt something still on my temple, not my sunglasses! and putting my hand back to my face there he was on my face!!!! I just knocked him off me... he fell with another clicky noise onto the ground again!  At which point a couple of guys killed him!!! One tried with his foot, another with a chair leg, I couldn't look! He hadn't hurt me!  But apparently I had screamed really badly that second time, lots of waiters appearing out onto the street, thinking someone had been attacked maybe!!

Poor thing... oh and by the by his Latin name is Calcophora Mariana!


At a bar in town, Pil Pil... and stuffed peppers! A glass of wine!


The Pompidou centre in Málaga, cool white balloons!


By the old bridge in Ronda.


The great Teba fortress!  A bit disappointing, but only for me, my friend said as she had never been there before it was amazing! Of course because we had been there before, Franco Tony and I, it had been open on all floors including the roof where we ventured up and out, I took photographs of course! and the lower floors had holes in them, it was dangerous, it was risky, it was exciting!  Now there is a guide, well, someone taking money and telling a bit about the fortress...


There is glass in the what was empty windows!  Glass is okay, I mean it stops people falling out! But come on! At least clean the glass please!  All the windows could be opened and cleaned inside safely, just a small lock on the inside on each one, so would be quick and easy to do each day... not open every day, so we were lucky to go the day we did!  There is also a balcony, which would have at least enabled good dust free photos... but it was also locked!

There was a celler that had been cleaned up and had information on the walls, as did the next floor, where we entered, and the floor above, and one above that! Lots of pictures on the walls of medieval men and maps etc... Trouble was it was just commercialised to me now... But as I say, my friend loved it!

Tomorrow I am off to the states, to stay with my aunt in Queens, NY... Can't wait, and Franco was with me last time we went, three years almost exactly, the day I return, is the date that we arrived last time, also with Barry, and we scattered my moms ashes...

I'm all packed, ready to go!  I decided this evening to defrost and leave empty the freezer, maybe not a great move so late in the day, could have done yesterday, or the day before!!! Would have been better and not so rushed as I slipped about on the marble tile with my rubber flip-flops! Still the doorway stopped me from falling a couple of times, and I can do the splits now!

Last night the feria started here in town, friends asked me to pop down to see the festivities, although they came long after I had got home!  And as I sat there at Bar Cruz I remembered last opening evening, Franco and I sitting at a bar opposite with friends, eating and having a coffee... and Franco wasn't well... and on the Saturday, we met with friends again and walked about a bit, but Franco was very tired... and now I am sad and going to shut this lap top up...

I'll be posting photos and bits from NY next time amigos... thank you all for hanging on in here with me, sometimes I don't feel like I am going to make it on my own, but then I remember I'm not alone...


Tuesday, May 09, 2017


Went to clinico this morning, second time this week, third time to do my yearly health cover forms, no-one knew what to do, again! Next year I'll wait till I see the woman I know can do them! And it's really only another nine or ten times maybe... still done now until next January.

Yesterday I went down to Fuengirola again, quiet when the shops are closed, mostly closed... but it was nice wandering around and I had a coffee in Luizs' bar, of course.

And tomorrow I'm going down to Calahonda to meet with our old neighbour again for a coffee, I'll pop into Aldi on the way home maybe! Such choice, such exciting prospect!

Today when I came home from town, a TV crew were outside our house, again, was only about a year ago when 'Living in the sun, winter sun' were in a couple of houses down from ours, and a couple of months at the most it was on TV a friend of mine messaged me to tell me, which was lucky or we'd have missed​ it! They were in the house for ages, the possible new owner said the second bedroom was too small, and 'they' suggested building up and making the rooftop into a terrace and with an extra bedroom!! Hey!! NO!! We only get the sun in the summer as it is! Block it out all year and I'll be real angry and blocking the idea!!

Movie, City of Angels, just sitting down to watch this, the angel says to another angel that he asked a little girl he accompanied through to the next... Life? Phase? anyway, he asked her her favourite thing? She said PJs... Mine will be touch... Touch of hands, of a hug, of the body you love in bed next to you... The touch of wind on your face, of cool rain on your skin... Of your pets fur as you pet and snuggle him or her...

I think maybe this isn't the best movie to be watching, I know, I hear you! But I've walked Pip twice, walked to clinico then town...

I've eaten, washed up, cleaned... Nothing is left, I'm not sleeping well now either, things niggling in my mind like... they do.

I've decided I'm either bad or worse now, so bad days are better than the worse ones.


Sunday, May 07, 2017

Lost Road .


To be blatantly honest, I don't know what to write, only that I must write.

I must say something for my friends who are sharing my journey...

And this is ultimately also my feeling on waking this morning... Just replace the word 'write' for 'do' maybe.

I eat, I walk to town & meet with friends, I go for walks, I clean the house, and me!... I watch Netflix the rest of the day. Why? What for?

I just feel, something, or rather nothing but sad.

And our poor Pippa is still suffering from the dam rocket fire, throughout this week, Monday May day, then it's also been Dia de la Cruz, although not so much a day, the whole week, I thought Wednesdays explosion of fireworks next to our perimeter fence was the final! But yesterday the rockets started again, then the bands and the marching and more intermittent rocket fire. I shut us in the back bedroom and turned up the music; I think they may have come past our house, didn't get the light if they did.

I was not aware of any celebration in town, must have missed the flyer!

Pippa has only gone for two walks in last six days, we've left the house and she has turned to the left then to the right, then back to our door, and only by me picking her up has she even gone on the terrace, I am having to shut her out, which has been awful for both of us, but if I don't she doesn't pee etc! A dog 'going' once in 24hrs is not healthy.

This morning on the terrace, while Pippa stood cowering by the back door, I watched the swallows, one group were flying in a distinct pattern, between the street, an ally and someones' back terrace which was very narrow, they had been doing the same acrobatic route a dozen times, when one bird missed the narrow terrace, to avoid the wall and then turned to look for his group and rejoin... I waited, but the whole group had dispersed!

One bird had effected the whole group, and he hadn't been upfront, he was way way back, and seemingly minding his own business!

I drove to Fuengirola on Thursday, walked and had a coffee, and cried while I walked.

Today, this morning, I'll drive to La Trocha and go to the car boot sale there.  Franco and I didn't go every week, always the same stuff.

Tomorrow I have to go to local SS in Coín to take some paperwork in, then the doctors here in Alhaurín to change yet more paperwork.

Just seems my word of the day is 'why' why bother, what for? Although I don't feel ready for work, maybe once I am back and supporting someone else I will get some reasons back for my 'why' what for?'





Sunday, April 30, 2017

Who am I?

I am heavy hearted, sometimes my breathe catches in my throat as I fight the tears.

Away for five days, wonderful being with family, my granddaughter makes my soul sing, but within a heartbeat I am lost again without Franco... 

I must always be so ... with mundane bits and pieces and rubbish; at every turn is some non-sense I want to (need to), share with Franco.

Yet he was always interested in what crapola I had to say, albeit something of nothing, usually.

I felt the whole time I have been away from home that Franco is at home actually; and I am bereft not being able to contact him on touchdown at an airport, a messenger message or text, followed by the (always) phone call back when I'm on the coach or train, usually both...Franco filling me in on his journey back from Málaga airport, Pippa looking for me when he came in... Just the normal, just the mundane, just the love...

And at bed time, waking up time, all the... times...

The loss is real, it's physical, it's breaking me, heart body and soul...

How do people survive this?
I feel like I am me but not me anymore, the greater part has gone, changed, left this! what is the 'this' I now am? I don't know me anymore.

I've got a pain in my throat now as I fight back unshed tears, sitting here in departure lounge, with hundreds of people, many of whom don't know how lucky they are.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Detour...

I am sorry I have been unable to Blog, to gather my words...
I know we have many many people who are with us on this path, we have been, we are... very lucky, thank you all... but I need to tell you, its hard, its impossible for me to believe and writing is almost confirming something I do not want to be the truth.

My husband, my love, my life, my Franco... gave up his fight for life in this world on Saturday April 1st, I was with him for the ten days in hospital, thankfully for the last 36 hours in our own room, and therefore alone together with privacy, so although not home together, we were just us, and when Franco woke me up, and unfortunately I recognised our time together was coming to an end I held his hand, I talked, I kissed him, I talked of things we know between us, and Franco went on, without me...

I have made notes on my phone in moments when I could, so forgive randomness, (as usual I guess). I have added quotes by others marked with ***'s so this Blog is all over the place, as am I... I have also included some of the words I wrote and gave to the humanist speaker who spoke for us at Francos service on Wednesday April 5th.  Not the whole thing though or in order maybe even.  I used some of the beautiful words from comments and messages from Facebook.

From the Service:

Franco made the world a brighter and funnier place, for everyone around him.

Franco always had people smiling and laughing at work and out with family and friends...

Mentions:
... A great man
... So very missed
...a true gent, friend and all round great person
...very nice guy
...truly special, such a good man, dear friend
...well loved and will be greatly missed

Wife Marian, son Nicky, sister Maria and Gary, brother Tore and Susan, two step sons, Barry and Tony, his mother Pietrina, Granddaughter Cassie, Niece and Nephews, Natalie, Andrew, David and Nathan.

Franco loved life, always a great talker and always happy, positive.  Always ready and willing to help anyone.

Franco moved to Spain in the late 1990's, he met Marian and they married in Las Vegas in April 2004.

Living first down on the coast in Calahonda then moving into their home here in Alhaurín in 2005.

Franco enjoyed exploring his new country, the mountains, the lakes, the beaches.

He also enjoyed working on the house, painting and updating, building outdoor furniture and making a small garden, he loved his plants and loved going to the local garden centre to look around and have a coffee and bacon sandwich.

He became ill 14 months ago, but still continued to get out and about, visiting favourite places with Marian.

A strong character, Franco wouldn't give up and enjoyed making plans for them both, for the near and far future.

End of Service.

My sons came out as quickly as they could, and many of our close family.  The service was at our nearby chapel.  We went afterwards to our bar, Bar Cruz, we must have sat at every table and on each of those chairs over the past twelve years, eaten every meal and talked to all our friends there...

At the service, many of our friends came that could, amongst them - our neighbour from when we first knew each other down on the coast, to a new friend who had helped us recently, our neighbours here on our street... and the sun still shone, little knowing of the great loss we all share...

I am talking to Franco constantly now my sons have both gone, (I was calling them Franco), I have to keep him close, I can't live with the thought of him gone completely, and in the past few months Franco had said he believed now in an afterlife... He said he would stay with me, always.

He also said he would come back for me...

*** Never has love known such depth, as that felt through separation ***

Normality amongst the storm... Our car had its pre-ITV check on Thursday April 6th, and the ITV the following morning... Also on Friday morning, without the car and a plan of action ahead, Tony and I did what Franco wanted me to do immediately, he knew if I did not donate his clothes and shoes then, then I never would... he knows me well... Tony using head over heart on my behalf helped me... A few pieces I purposely have kept and another couple of things got missed (for me to keep), and I kept all of Francos T-shirts to cut and make into kitting yarn... once kitted into a throw I will keep those T-shirts forever.

I think I did a real good wool over people's eyes with thinking I am strong... More fool me!  Because people are telling me how strong I am being? Do they not see? They don't see me... its easier being stronger maybe when your talking to others... maybe, sometimes... sometimes not... maybe keeping busy, being out (sometimes), but inside, inside me and inside the house, or the car or walking the Pipster or or or... I am in pieces, broken... how have others survived this loss of their love? of their lifes plan, of their future path, their future road?

*** Words not said, thoughts un-voiced ***

Even though Franco and I always told each other our thoughts, and feelings, and wishes and dreams... and of our love for each other, we talked to each other non-stop lol... I am still left, as I knew I would be... with wishing I had said or done more... I know 100% Franco would say I did enough... but is enough really enough?

*** What we have done for ourselves dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal ***

Everything Franco has done, the energy surrounding these things... His energy lives on in it all, this keeps me feeling Franco is always here, all the stuff he did around our home, the chalk painting, the terrace furniture, the plants, us building the new bathroom cupboards and sink unit last year, building the bed, then having to shorten it!  Franco stuck in the wardrobe at the bottom of the stairs!!! His energy is all around me and Pip here.  And everywhere I go, Franco loved this country, this town, this countryside, I see him everywhere here, in my minds-eye, (and unfortunately in some of the people around me on occasion, in the distance.... but its not him.)

*** Thought is deeper than all speech;
Feeling deeper than all thought;
Souls to souls can never teach
What into themselves was taught ***




Loved filled every space between us... We always knew where the other was, near or far, and we loved each other across that distance...
(Franco had me tracked on Google maps... )

I also couldn't think of a title for this Blog, What title? End of the Road? Road closed until further notice? No, I've got it.... Detour... because one day we'll reach the end of the road together still, I know it.

But for now I can't go where Franco is, I can't reach him; I can only hope he can find me, and be with me...




Tuesday, March 28, 2017

The Shared Road - A week in Málaga!



On what goes on here really, not much! It's just Eat Meds Sleep...Sounds like a boring bar.. 'EMS' come for the food and drugs, sleep it off on the premises!

It was Mother's Day in the UK last Sunday; I remember so few really, memories do that... I remember eating in an Italian place in Berkhamsted with my boys and one of their girls... and mom, and receiving a beautiful bracelet they had bought for me, it was either 2001 or 2002... Unfortunately I remember the one that took place between my mom passing and her cremation vividly. Franco and I spent the day with Tony and Kate, we went to Silverstone and Kate tore around that track, on foot! It was cold, the wind was bitter, and the stands were uncovered for the winter! and my heart was frozen...

Then this year.... my heart... Oh! Take my meds!! ✓ Lol... Yes mom, your parting gift, my broken heart, don't think these meds will keep it from shattering now into a billion pieces. And I will remember us being here in Málaga hospital...

...We can't ever cover up bad memories with good another time, we can only try to make sure we keep the good ones upper most in our minds, and keep making more? How? I know I will, which makes me sadder still, but I've always been a firm believer that we carry those we love and have lost with us at all times and they share what we see through our eyes... (am I stupid...? Don't answer me on that!).

And I am now constantly trying to tell myself... These are not the memories to cling to, the past fourteen months while Franco has been getting sicker and sicker... none of this time has been memory making time... Yes we've had some good days..  Sons wedding! Barry and Heidi... Little Cassie beautiful day.. although Francos absence in 99.9% of the photographs speaks volumes... Even our much wanted sleepover in Málaga, dogged by how Franco was feeling and being unable to even get to the nearby port, one of Francos favorites spots. But all the way through this whole time it's been a rush here or there, pain, doctors appointments, scans, more rushing and more illness, more pain... Every trip out, even to a local supermarket, all the way back to December before last... and before that, back in UK, Franco visited the doctor, first time in fourteen years... Other than a broken leg and stitch or two! Vitamin D definency and 'you need to see a physio'... er NO!!! Wrong!!! It was stomach and back pain... First signs...

Our wonderful Christmas lunch at the Kiosko, I don't want to remember that as much as our thousands of trips up to those lakes and the Kings Walk... When we were living our dream... and now, that's probably the last time we will have gone there... I would rather in retrospect not gone... But Franco wanted to, so that's how I will remember, and remember I will.

Franco did go down to the surgery yesterday, and came out again with the catheter in place still, it had needed adjustment, it was, and we were back in the room by lunchtime!

Our neighbour has gone and his kind and generous family with him! We have been left with the essentials, water, chocolate and cake! An invite to their shop in Arriate, a favorite village of ours but never stopped for meat before! Next time! I went a bit loco and Tweeted and Facebook'd and G+ their shop!! Seriously good genuine people... and can only repay them by sharing their information...

We are presently enjoying a peaceful time in an unshared room... A little too quiet, but won't push our luck! We're sure a whole bunch of people in observation are awaiting a bed for the night, so come one come all, new friends to make! More Spanish to practice!

A nice couple have arrived, he is being settled in now by his wife, sampling the first rate three course dinner and in-house facilities!  (This should not be taken in a sarcastic manner.)

I don't know what I would do without my family and friends, even complete strangers sometimes, going out of their way at this time in our lives... angels without wings I've said it before, and still today...

I also know I have some inbuilt safety thing, an innate self something or other... Even as sad as bad as depressed as bottom of the pit of life I feel right now when I went into the visitors toilet in front of half a dozen men seated outside I had the urge to come out and do a funny 'dance off stage' dance thing... I didn't!

But that spark that tiny flame that still burns in my very being still fueled my soul of life, of life of living... and I feel guilty... because of that, and even though all I can see is only darkness and dark days and a blank page a 'this road is closed' sign...

And it's not right, we have preset memories in-waiting in place of stuff we want to do, places on our list to visit, a whole package of up-to and after retirement to un-pack! I'm angry!


Monday, March 27, 2017

The Shared Road - Long dark night

Last night I have been reminded once more that we hurt those we love the most...

Sharing a room with only one other as we do here, we witnessed a son suffer his poorly father's wrath, a strong dialect but I could still fully understand the meaning and the swear words... Both of them getting more and more upset by the other, until neither were listening, just both trying to be heard... if you get my drift...

It's only 07:22 now as I write, shattered, and just realised it's more like 06:22 due to the time change, later here in Europe than back 'home' in the states... Europe catching up as usual, all a little bit too late!

It's a strange world, living here temporarily... You get used to the routine, the comings and goings... Some goings a bit too permanent and a shock reminder of how fragile our lives are... A man who had voiced his thoughts next door for a few nights, exited yesterday and left a noticeable quietness, in some way louder than before.

We had thunder and lightning last evening as darkness came, no rain that we could see and the nesting swallows carried on with their harvest of bugs to bring home, some of which are right by our window.

Franco had an early morning blood test, so we're hoping the catheter might be removed this morning, I'm up and ready, Franco went back to sleep but awoke a moment ago to say he thinks we're going home soon.


Friday, March 24, 2017

The Shared Road - every pain and every tear...

Second full day in hospital.
Early on, like forever ago it has always been 'we' when we say stuff, and that has never stopped, when talking to doctors or Cudeca or local clinico Franco always 'we take this or that' or 'we started getting this or that in such 'n such a month'... Not sure what they think with us saying 'we' here... They probably think it's a language thing... I'm sure our español is improving though, it has to, although some of these medical words were never high on our must learn list!

The op did go well, stent in place and catheter releasing the awful bile which has been poisoning Francos body.  I'm sure his skin is looking better, and the whites of his eyes more white than yellow...

Franco is enjoying the wonderful food, three course meals twice a day, plus breakfast and two snacks! I am living off scraps lol! My fault, the other day I did eat a good meal with Franco in the hospital canteen before we were admitted, and today I had takeaway from there to eat here in our room.... Paella! And very nice it was too for less than five euro!

I promise to have one good meal a day from the canteen.

It's Mother's day in the UK this Sunday, will be a strange one for me here in hospital!

I also moved the car today, it was round the corner out of sight, now I can see it in the car park!

Great view! Did I tell you? The Mediterranean stretched out beyond, and vistas of Alhaurín de la Torre, Churriana, Torremolinos and all the way around Málaga... All from our hospital window...

We wish we were home with our Guadalhorce valley view, just have to wait a few days more and we will be, with Pip and we can relax again and just be us.


Thursday, March 23, 2017

The Shared Road - Heart = Love, and so much more.

Franco back in hospital, we arrived yesterday, Wednesday for pre-op blood test, settle into a room and stent to be fitted today, hopefully we thought after last time, and it has been...

Franco has been so tired; he has had this awful bile fluid buildup in his whole body, more noticeable by the yellow color of his skin and swolleness of his feet, calves, left hand and stomach... He's exhausted, I'm exhausted, didn't know I could be so tired, physically for Franco and more mentally for me.

Franco is still eating little and often, which is great, well amazing actually.

I don't know where he is getting his mental strength from, he is being so strong, so positive still, talking about walking into town again, about eating better again, about being okay... I'm just lost and scared and dying inside.

I am so proud of Franco.

Franco came out of surgery and off to recovery, I saw him briefly, sleeping peacefully... I was told to wait for the Doctor to come and talk to me, he did...

... the stent has been fitted, with a drainage catheter which will remain in place for a few days, maybe until Tuesday or Wednesday and then we can go home... praying this will ease Francos pain and other related symptoms.

And now I am having food(!!!) and coffee, then I will go back to our room and wait for Francos return...

My coffee today here in a bar near the hospital; a heart for our love...