Thursday, 22 September 2011

Stress galore

It has been a crazy 7 weeks and unfortunately I wasn’t able to sign on and update my blog as I would have liked to.  The internet in this suburb is one where probably a mouse is sitting in a box, up on a telephone pole and turning the handle so that it works.  Very, veeeeery slow.  The city haven’t decided to lay the digital cable all the way out there (which actually isn’t far from the city, but there you go).    
My time instead was spent taking my mother from one specialist doctor’s appointment to another, trying to tick off this enormous list of doctors, scans, MRIs of the head, also of the shoulder, heart angiogram process to but name a few.  We were also house sitting my mother’s ex boss’s house (mansion with I don’t know how many 100’s of acres of private land) which included two lovely dogs and a mad cat called Mini Max which you might have read about in one of my earlier blogs.  
Of course, for the ones who know me personally, should know, that nothing can be straight forward or happen in a normal manner.  So there I was thinking that my mum would have her final operation on her skull to close the hole and be done with it all (she had a brain aneurysm last May, emergency brain surgery which had some quite serious lasting effects, then in June the body rejected the piece of skull they had drilled to get to the brain and so we had to have another op to remove the piece of skull and then months of antibiotics to get rid of the infection) do you see what I mean…..
Instead we spent 5 weeks ticking off the list: cardiologist, pulmonologist et cetera et cetera.  The worse part of doing this is then finding out she has a lot more problems, a heart attack waiting to happen due to a constriction of one of the main arteries in the heart (now we know where my brother has his problem from as we didn’t know of any existing family heart conditions) – so that was a stent procedure and now of course more medication – last count, about 16 a day… and of course with smoking 30 years, her lung capacity is not good which of course gives her breathing difficulties.  
Now in between these appointments which ended up being every few days, our four legged friends were also not feeling well.  Lha Lha, the female dog was rushed for emergency surgery as she collapsed with puss coming out her mouth, nose and eyes, as her owner (and I use that term loosely) doesn’t bother taking care of her animals and she had rotten teeth (animal inbreeding doesn’t help either) and as it was ignored, turned into this massive infection.  So she had practically all of her teeth pulled bar 8 of them – the rest might also go at some other point.  So every other day we had to drive 30 mins to the vet, for her injections, check etc. and of course she hates travelling in a car, so you can imagine that whole scenario.  
Tensing was also off to the vet, to their local animal hairdresser for his haircut as he (also Lha Lha but the owner refuses out of her vanity to have the hair cut short) had extreme eczema.  

On top of that, a few weeks later, the cat was sick, so was Lha Lha again, so back to the vet we went.  The vet wanted a stool sample of all three animals (even though 2 were sick) and of course Lha Lha had to give a urine sample.  Don’t forget – it has to be fresh, same day as delivery!!
So picture this, choosing a time that the dogs go for their constitutions first thing in the morning, I went armed with surgical gloves, jars, lots of paper towel  and one small lid as I would have to slide it under the female dog whilst squatting as she has a very strange way of peeing and not to forget, has body to floor fur (Lhasa Apso race).  
Also, if you are a dog owner, you might be aware that some of our pets do also not liked to be watched or viewed whilst doing their business and needless to say,  Lha Lha is no exception.  
So there I was walking closely behind her but at the same time pretending I’m not looking at her, just as she squatted, I slid the lid of an old honey jar under her best bit (well, where I thought it would be, don’t forget the long hair, I had to guess here) and managed to catch most of the golden rain, the other of course went over my hand – thank god for the surgical gloves.  So that was no. 1, now  for no. 2.  So off we continued on our walk and one by one my little furry friends deposited their little nuggets along the path and I scooped samples of it up.  It’s like an Easter Egg hunt!

So, both dogs done and a cat left to go – thankfully here, only a stool sample.  So off I went to his in-house loo and there, thankfully he had kindly left me a present.   
Right, outcome of the stool tests, they had a parasite and if one has them and they eat and drink out of each other’s bowls, they all had to be given these horrible tablets for a week – the cat got them for 3 days with double doses.  Have you ever given a cat 6 tablets in one go. What a kafuffle. 
The vet did the first lot and I must say it was a very upsetting process for the cat and also for me.  With 3 people we were holding this cat and with every power in his little mouth, he refused to open it.   I ended up with cat’s hair, tablet  swallowing gel, cat spit, vet spit all over me and a very, very upset cat.  I was not amused how unsympathetic this vet was and how harsh she grabbed him – through all this trauma, Mini Max was as good as gold in that he didn’t bite nor scratch any of us.   At one point he escaped and then went and shoved his head in the vet’s glass of water – she wasn’t amused, made me laugh though.  Good, I hope she got the parasites too!
So off we went home, with 2 very upset animals and then the drama of us having to give the cat for the next two days these blessed tablets.  Dogs, no problem, they always get their tablets in pate so they were uber excited as this treat ended up being every day and so often.  
The cat was a disaster.  I thought I was being clever by giving him tuna which is loves and never eats slowly but scoffs, well, what a mistake, I ended having to follow this cat around for a few hours to make sure he ate every bit of this tuna – he knew what I was up to – this is no fool people.  Is this the face of a cat that you can fool, no way matey!

That evening I had cooked loads of schnitzels for our dinner and Mini Max was like possessed to eat this.  So I had a clever plan, I saved a piece of schnitzel (good thing I did as my brother ended up having a midnight snack and no bloody schnitzel left for us the next day) and in the morning I then made an incision in the meat and squeezed in the tablet and then compressed it all in one little ball and gave it to him, half a tablet at a time x 12 – Mini Max thought it was his lucky day! – Done and dusted, kippers and custard!  All sorted.  Look at that belly!

But I created monsters, after those schnitzel treats, paté and lots of Wiener sausages (Lha Lha’s favourite – well sausage in general), every day, at certain times, I had three animals staring at me, tapping their little paws on their watches and looking at me as if to say “well, our treats, where are they?  You are slacking!”
The funny thing about Lha Lha and her sausages are as such, this dog pretends to be hard of hearing, totally ignores you when you call her for walkies and her favourite place of late is to hide and sleep is in my bedroom by my bed, out of sight out of mind is her motto.  

But through thick walls of around 5 rooms of our apartment to the main kitchen of the main house, when I happen to be handling the sausage bag, this madam hears me and all of a sudden she comes charging into the kitchen, eyes bulging out, hopping up and down on four paws and trying to knock me down.  Is this our hard of hearing dog?  She makes me laugh every time.  She has such a character, so eccentric but such a sweetheart, I love her to bits.  Look at my little girls face after her consumption of two entire sausages (she would have eaten more had I given it to her).  Just 3 front teeth also...

Tensing, the male dog, has never been greedy, even when it comes to his paté treat.  When you say to him it’s all finished, he will burp, wag his tale and walk off.  

This picture is evidence that Tensing isn't a greedy boy, look at Lha Lha and Mini Max watching my mum eat her dinner: 

There is nothing better in life then your pets I tell you!    
So, every day I woke up, having to check our diary, and one by one we ticked off the appointments for the two legged and four legged lovelies.  I was so exhausted, that I didn’t do any shopping, didn’t bother (apart from our birthdays) to go out to our favourite restaurants for meals – but what I did find time for naturally, was to bake one recipe after another from my dear friend Mrs CC’s blog: – hey, I have my priorities right you know!  Also, I hit up my cousin (she is a great baker too) for my favourite cakes and it was a baker’s fest on most days.  I have to have my very strong coffee with cake for afternoonsies you know – very German thing you know...  
I have a very sweet tooth, as evident with my super fit, stealth six pack, lean mean cake machine body,  so sue me.  

As Virginia Woolf put it so well: "one cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well."
I got back 2 weeks ago and decided that since mum’s op has yet again been pushed back for about 9 months, that enough was enough and it’s time I - UNFORTUNATELY – have to get back in the work flow and start looking for a new job ‘sigh’.  

Where oh where lottery buddha are you?  Have you forsaken me?  Or are you still determined to have people win it, who then decide, “you know what, I still love working at Tesco’s supermarket and living in my crap council flat and will not spend a penny but buy a new Vauxhall model car and maybe have two instead of one holiday this year at Butlins” – WTF – are you kidding me!!!  
My friends and I have over time, perfected our list of ‘what I would do if I win the lotto’ and we would really be good at living our lives to the fullest and also take care of their nearest and dearest with anonymous cheques so they can all retire and have fun too.  
So, lottery buddha, from my mouth to your ears – I am well worth it!  MAKE IT HAPPEN, I’ve got places to go, people to meet, shop till I drop with no limit, holidays in Bora Bora with my peeps, with gorgeous male slaves catering to our every needs (female salves for my male friends – I’m all for equality).   
Meanwhile, I am temping as I want the flexibility in case mum needs me, or my brain and body needs a holiday as I haven’t had one since last year when my beach buddy Miss K and I went to Calvi, Corsica.   What a holiday – Miss K, same again next year?
Until next time! 


  1. I laughed out loud at that picture of your mum eating her dinner - could Minimax have gotten any closer? He's subtle, isn't he!

  2. You should have seen him whenever the fork went towards mum's face, he would curl his paw around her wrist to try and guide it towards his mouth, little stinker.

  3. Lha Lha is just about the cutest dog I've ever seen!! That face could melt any heart.

  4. Lha Lha is an absolute sweetheart, you should see her dribble a ball, she uses her front paws and actually dribbles, she is amazing. But so stubborn, quite a character.