Well, another Monday arrives. I had a sneaky weigh this morning. Something I keep telling people off for, stick to weighing on your chosen day of the week so that you don’t feel disappointed with a gain or no loss, until that once a week point. But it seems that I have become hooked. Friday is the normal weigh in day, and Friday gone I was 199.8 lbs. Wow, perhaps a bit naughty but I declared myself as under 200 lbs on my diet forum and in the August challenge that we are doing, which is true, I haven’t lied. But only just.

Now, what with the funeral on Friday, plus the fact the very reason I weigh on a Friday is so that I can indulge to a degree over the weekend, I was expecting things to be a little less than happy as I was about to step on the scales. But wonder of wonders, 200 lbs, on the nose. Awesome, eating all that buffet food has not done the damage I had feared. The only thing on the buffet that wasn’t against the eating plan was celery, and I didn’t touch that. Everything naughty, I had some. Well, 8 weeks in and so disciplined, why not? It’s only a one off occasion (I bloody hope). So, head down and focused again now, target Friday for somewhere near 196 lbs. That’s 14 stone, and only one lb away from another huge psychological milestone. Into the 13’s.

I spoke to Jamie (best mate) on the phone last night. Haven’t spoken for a couple of weeks so was good to catch up. Told him about the progresses and updated on achievements, he was happy for me as ever. Have even said that if he goes out walking with his dog on Saturday that he can come and get me on route. Itching to get out now. The fact that I have been walking around the trees on the verge at the top of the lane has got me wanting more. It’s been so long where I have had to stick to even ground, namely hospital corridors, supermarket aisles, and of late actually managing the pavements in town, that to finally be able to walk on the grass and stay upright has motivated me for more. I am even going out in a minute to take the battery out of the car and put it on charge in the garage. Another milestone, having the confidence to now want to test my ability to drive. It suddenly feels that everything is coming together.

Needless to say that doesn’t mean I’m better by any means. I am very mindful of the aspect of people not seeing disability. To a degree I look all “normal” and back together, but the reality is very different. I still get a very short spell of dizziness when I turn over in bed at night, and I still cannot look left and right while walking forwards. I have to actually stop to be able to look around me, very dangerous when trying to cross the roads. That gives me a huge lack in confidence and stops me going out unless I’m with someone. Almost like I feel I need a chaperon. I suppose that is one advantage of being stranded at the parents, I cannot actually get out on my own, well, unless I get a taxi I suppose.

It was last September, the 1st to be precise. I had set a goal for myself way before, that I wanted to be able to walk the mile and a half to the village so I could have a beer in the local pub (The ‘other’ one, not the one that is now shut that I was managing). It was a Saturday and I had finally grown in confidence to manage the task. So off I set, with my trusty walking stick, down the lanes with no pavements, across the main A38 (quiet at that time of the evening) down the lane with the building site and uneven road/pavement at the bottom, across another busy road (again, quiet at this time of evening) and down the road to finally arrive at the pub. Awesome. Five and a half months after the stroke and I was out and about, on my own, still needing to be very careful of what I did, but still, freedom. Yay.

I had a couple of pints there, it was busy to a degree, I was sat at the bar on a stool, but I just wasn’t comfortable. A few had said hello and asked after my health, but I felt like a spare part. Again I suppose that comes of being away for 20 years. So I took it upon myself to walk up the village and pop into the pub I now no longer managed. There was a company that took over from the couple I worked for, but it didn’t last much longer after this point. The pub got shut and now it’s up for sale, shutters on the windows, God knows what state inside, and me with no chance whatsoever of being able to raise the £250 thousand to buy it. That hurts a little as I know I would have totally turned that pub around. Grrrr. Anyway,  it was dead in there, myself, one other, and the woman that was managing. I had another couple of pints there, and being that it was now getting on for midnight, I made the decision to make my way home again.

Isn’t hindsight a wonderful thing? Although I was far from drunk, nowhere near enough alcohol had passed my lips to render me “stupid”, I had still enjoyed a bottle of ale, just that it was drank at home rather than in the pub, so I hadn’t lost the ability to drink. But we do get brave on alcohol, over confident I suppose it is really. I didn’t even consider getting a taxi. Again, hindsight……..anyway, I walked back through the village, coped with crossing roads safely, climbing kerbs, even walking in the dark. I passed the building site, was into the part of the lane with next to no street lighting. Now I was just awesome, nice evening, managed a walk, managed to get to 2 pubs, enjoyed some beers. Wow. Next thing I knew I was sat on a grass verge, pain in my ankle, unable to get up, and trying to call Mother on my mobile. To no avail. Lucky for me, especially at this time of night, a couple passing in a car stopped, seen my condition, picked me up, and under my guidance drove me back to my parents. Once there the chap went and rang the doorbell, got the parents up, as I hobbled from the car to the front door. He said his goodbye, we all thanked him profusely and my Father called an ambulance. An hour later I was sat in A and E sucking on gas and air, waiting for them to put a temporary cast around my broken ankle. It had snapped in 2 places and was needing to be pinned and plated. And before Father could get to the spot on Monday to take photographs of the pothole I had gone down, the council had filled it in. Wonder how they knew?

So that was that, my freedom short lived. Back in hospital, 4 days this time. More pretty nurses but this didn’t make up for the feeling of disappointment. I was lucky to a degree, they had caught me early enough to be able to operate on the Sunday, before the swelling in the ankle got to bad. One of the surgeons even suggested I would be able to go home on Monday. But, due to my stroke issues and the vertigo, the occupational therapists decidedI was in no way ready to be discharged. They wanted my parents to somehow put a bed for me downstairs as I “wouldn’t be able to cope with the stairs”. It took me Monday through Thursday morning to argue with them and eventually tell them I would discharge myself no matter what before tea time that day. Their response, they came and assessed me, took me to the stairs in the corridor, had me bounce up and down them, manage them while on my backside, and then signed me off as able to be discharged. I so wish I had of kicked and stomped my feet like that on the Monday now.

By the time the cast was removed and after another couple of weeks of non weight bearing it was early February. Into the sixth month of being sat on my butt, unable to walk, having to use a wheelchair again, just because I wanted a beer in the village. Six months of stopping the rehabilitation with the stroke issues. And the knock on effect is that I am still not at the same stage as I was last September. That’s less than one month short of a year. But, if I had of made it home, had not of broken an ankle, everybody would have patted me on the back, told me well done, haven’t you done well and come so far, and would have been happy for me. Instead I had a couple of accusations of getting drunk (if you have read my other blogs, can you see a pattern forming here? lol) and “what was I doing walking all the way down there”, or “why didn’t I get a taxi back?”. See, there’s that hindsight thing again.

I have no regrets, I had managed three quarters of the walk there and back, so I was happy. Just a bit gutted that I was now stuck unable to carry on getting better until the ankle healed. Oh well. It’s not a problem for me now as the whole confidence towards achieving that again has totally gone. But I’m sure it will return, when the brain says I’m ready.

Tell you, you couldn’t write a book like this. Or is that what I’m doing? haha.

Just had a coffee, and when I got up to make it I saw the very first apple fall from the tree at the top of the garden. Has absolutely no significance, just thought I would drop it in. I suppose I had best start searching out apple recipes that won’t damage the fat busting to much.

Adios amigos, until next time.



Me, 43 y/o of the male species, currently residing back in the town of my incarnation after spending 20 years running around the Midlands area troubleshooting run down and/or bankrupt pubs. Single and stuck at my parents while waiting for the local authority to be really kind and give me a flat to live in. Seems they are not as quick with their thoughtfulness as one would hope. With so much time running pubs I have many an experience, long and tall tales to tell, stories of wonderful people, as well as some not so wonderful people. I still have a passion for real ales, in the art of keeping them, serving them, making sure they are at optimum level for the customer, and yes maybe drinking them, although now it is to a somewhat lesser extent. But more about that if someone wishes to ask, or maybe some of it will come into my blogs? One can never tell. I had finally come home after so long when the company I worked for decided they no longer had a pub for me to run when the last one I was in got sold to a local property developer. 2 days notice I had of becoming jobless and homeless. The traits of being a Managing trouble-shooter I’m afraid. So home I came, stopped at my best mates for a few weeks, left there and went to my parents. Travelled many a mile for interviews with pub companies and agencies, including almost 900 miles in 2 days for 2 such opportunities. That’s the love I have for staying in the pub trade. Alas it would seem that I also have far to much experience, a few Area Managers and company owners having an obvious disdain for the fact I knew more than them about the trade. Not that I was one to rub it in their faces, but I think it must have come across as I talked of what my past history entailed. Sunday 26th February 2012, I walked into one of the village pubs for a drink that had only reopened a few days before. Got chatting to the chap that was leasing it and by Monday lunch time I was the Manager. Result. Managing a pub I had known since childhood, knew most of the customers, and had a family name well connected to the area. Wish I had of gone in sooner, would have saved me a fortune in petrol. Less than 3 weeks later, Thursday 15th March 2012, the pub was doing good, lots to sort out to get it trading properly but the signs were very positive. Approx 6.30 – 7am while having a coffee and watching the news on telly the stroke happened. Put me on the floor, took my mobility, killed my speech, blurred my vision completely. Had to crawl down the stairs to let the ambulance crew in. So here we are, present day, lost my job, again, so homeless, and now unable to work, have ended up back at my parents. For ANYBODY that has a job where your home comes with it, buy something, even a caravan, but something, you never know when you will need it. It's now a while since it happened and all I have been left with of any inconvenience is vertigo, both the severe and BPPV varieties. That created a massive lack of mobility which in turn had me balloon by over 3 and a half stone. So here I am, grateful to be living, but determined to beat the vertigo, and to lose the fat. Follow my blog and join me on a journey that is actually enjoyable, in that it gives me a focus while I’m left as one of this Governmen'ts horrible statistics that they can't force back to work (yet). (Ooops, dont think me political, I am not, in any way shape or form, just as I don’t believe in God, but I do read the news about the state of current affairs.) Thanks for reading.

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