Month: April 2020

The Majesty of a night out

When I go out, out I love how it makes me feel and wanted to put down in words how does it feel getting dressed up to go on a night out? How does it feel to get dressed up as your alter ego to go on a night out?

For me the majesty of getting dressed up is not only an act but it’s the theatrics of the event and how ultimately it makes you feel before you even step out the front door or step through the door of a nightclub!

I’ve had girlfriends say this to me before and I never understood this and it was only on a night out with Kim where are we got ready together but I realised the theatrics, the preparation and the process are what makes or breaks a night out.

Let Me explain.

I go out with Kim quite a lot in Manchester as she lives in a flat within minutes of canal Street in Manchester, because of this I do get dressed to go out direct from Kim’s place. This is usually done in a rush or or so slowly we get a bit drunk and we end up going out at 2 a.m in the morning instead.

So, on a recent weekend away we were attending an event in Leeds. An event which started at 9 p.m. but we started getting ready at about 3 p.m. a process of shaving, plucking, preening, hair done, apply makeup and then putting our outfits on for a night out.

We got to our hotel about 2:30pm and we went straight to our room. The girls on reception did comment on how much luggage we had for a 2 days stay. “Sod off, ya nosey sod!” was Kim’s response in her thick Mancunian accent.

Anyway we got to the room and first things first, two glasses of rosé wine for the ladies.

“Cheers luv”
“Cheers Kim”

Nice room, No, a great room. I know we paid for it a massive double bed our own little seating area looking out towards the city centre and a bathroom with a massive shower.

We have a drink toast ourselves and then toast to each other and then we start to get unpacked.

Mind that we are only in Leeds for 2 nights the Friday night is our event night and the Saturday night is first of all so that we can recover from the Friday and don’t have to get up early to go back to Manchester but so that we can have a lie-in in and then have a second night out in Leeds in a different atmosphere but despite this Kim seems to have brought half a wardrobe with her and I count 6, yes 6 outfits.

Well a girl’s got to have choice darling, she says to me.

I can’t say anything as I’ve brought four outfits and yes a girl just needs a choice. Plus its a girl’s purgative to change her outfit at the very last moments.

What does make Kim laugh is the 6 pairs of shoes, i’ve brought.

I can never decide on shoes and have to try multiple pairs on before I decide if they go with my outfit this might explain why I’ve got so many pairs of shoes at home. When i’m at home i’ll try on 6 maybe 10 pairs before I decide on which pair

I think on last count I had about 65 pairs of shoes. What can I say I like shoes.

Anyway Kim takes the bathroom first as she’s much younger and has less hair to shave, wrinkles to stretch out, grey hairs to pluck, etc.

It’s my turn in the bathroom and here is where the theatrics start.

In the shower,
Wash my body,
Wash my hair,
Clean that body.
Even that bit down there.

Squirt the shaving cream,
Brand new razor in hand,
Shave from top to bottom,
Need to use both hands.
“Don’t forget that bit” says Kim, “That bit there”.

Preened to perfection,
It’s time to get ready,
My make up tonight,
Light colours,
and not to heavy.

My favourite foundation,
From the girls at NYX,
Cheeks blended to perfection,
Because I love the look they give,
They get special attention.

Eyebrows pencilled,
Mascara applied,
My lip, must take my time,
Part of my face thats you see straight away,
Lipstick needed and time to apply.

But what colour to wear,
Natural, No,
Pink, er no as well,
Dark red it should be,
Or my be CS Red for a dare!

Clothes all laid out,
On top of the bed,
Lingerie, stockings, suspenders, like little threads,
Beautiful clothing,
Stuff I love to wear

“No, not those earrings, here try this pair,
Yes those are perfect, do this with your hair”
Kim, be a darling and zip my dress
“You look beautiful darling,
I bloody love that dress”.

“I’d do you, but first let’s go get wrecked”
A quick hug and off out we go,
Out into the night.
To have a good time,
But you knew that.
So, my friends. Goodnight ?

Coronavirus diary, Day 15

Woke this morning with constant pain in my neck again. I need to crack my neck! Coronadiary self isolation, whatever, day bloody 15. It was a shitty one.

Was up with the larks and out the door first thing over to Monks Heath. Nobody there as I’m there to get a VPN/ remote desktop working as it got broke yesterday. Well actually someone shut the PC’s down after they stopped using them!

Next is over to Macclesfield to run a few errands, but mainly to pickup my office post.

Bill,
Bill,
Statement,
Cheque!

Fought with the Lloyds banking app trying to pay a cheque in for half an hour. Soul destroying when it fails over and over.

Drive to Middlewich and this is where my day went down hill.

Had a phone call from my friends carer this afternoon. My friend who’s 86 had a fall in the night, not expected to make it. 😭

Cried a bit. Can’t handle this today. Called it a day. Went home.

Spoke to friends carer after tea!

Oh my god. News, not good 😭 he’s died this afternoon.

Cried a fucking river this evening as I’m struggling to cope with this so soon after the death of my dad.

My dad’s death

My family have been rocked this year as my dad, Neville Heywood Porter, died on the 13th of March at 8:34 in the morning, aged 74.

He died peacefully after a short illness.

My family and I are utterly devastated at his untimely demise and the speed that his illness took hold.

I’m writing this as I need to get these thoughts out of my head and onto a piece of paper, not just so I can move on but I also have have a memory I can come back and read at a later date as I’m struggling to cope with this at the moment.

So, what happened?

Let’s rewind about 6-months from the date of my father’s death and my dad was fine physically but mentally he is beginning to forget things and generally exhibit strange behaviour, something which doesn’t go unnoticed by the family especially myself and my mother who are in contact with my dad most of the time.

One of the first things I noticed was when my dad was making his daily roll ups and as I watched him he made one purely with filters and another with no tobacco!

However, just shortly after Christmas I purchased a house and my mum and dad came round to help me do some of the renovations which was usually something my dad add loved to do.

However on this day he seems very distant and I asking him to do a task that he had no problem doing before in the past. On this occasion he really struggled and in fact made a complete Horlicks of what I’d asked him to do. What I’d asking him to do was just chisel out a channel in the plaster for electrical cabling, a job he’d probably done dozens of times before and a job i’d already part done and all he had to do was follow the lines I’d already chiselled out.

On this particular day he really struggled and by the time he had finished he was completely shattered. He also chiselled a channel much wider than I’d marked out and not vertical. Imagine, starting as a straight line and then making a diagonal line.

As my parents went home I quickly spoke to my mum who said he’d been like this for a couple of weeks and despite my dad’s protestations she was taking him to the doctor’s the following Tuesday.

“I’m alright” my dad would say!

The following Tuesday comes and goes and my dad goes to the doctor’s and they send him home I’m with some painkillers and antibiotics for a chest infection but a week later he’s back there with more severe symptoms and a definite breathing issues.

This time, because he’s 74, the doctors sent him for a chest x-ray. The results of which show my dad had quite a sizable amount of shadowing inside his lungs and the doctors must have thought it was very serious because they sent a taxi to the house with documentation asking my dad to attend the hospital again the next day for a CT scan.

So, we take my dad up to the hospital and dad has the CT scan and after he’s had this they ask us to sit down with the specialist, a nurse and a Macmillan nurse. The very fact that there is a Macmillan nurse there said to me that the news is not going to be good and it did put me on tenterhooks.

In the room there is three members of the medical profession and my dad, my mum and myself. The specialist speaks “we’ve got the results of your tests Mr Porter and there’s no easy way to say this this will you have lung cancer”

My dad immediately shut down as the information that’s just been put in front of him, I think, was too much for him to take at that stage in his life. For then on he became very blank and distant for quite a few days afterwards. Different people I suppose take this news if very different ways.

Mum immediately burst into tears and wept uncontrollably for quite a long time despite being reassured by myself and the nurses. My dad at this point has completely shut down emotionally and there’s no expression on his face whatsoever. Like he’s staring into space.

He told me a week later that he really struggled to take in the information at that point and and it did distress him until he’d actually processed what he’d been told. He told me “I’ve got cancer, I’m going to die and I’m going to die soon”

I’ll be honest, it was very difficult for me to understand what we’d been told but from that moment onwards my only concern was the well-being of my dad and making him comfortable because the doctors did tell us that he had days left rather than months.

The cancer but my dad was diagnosed with is called Metastatic Lung Cancer and despite the name it is anything but static. If you have Metastatic Lung cancer, parts of the lung cancer break off from in the lungs, we’re talking minute particles here and then they travel around the body and in my dad this had also spread to his brain. This secondary brain cancer was the symptoms we were seeing in the dementia like symptoms of forgetting things not being able to do do easy tasks that you’ve been previously able to do. The Metastatic Lung Cancer and also spread to his kidneys is liver had also spread to his bones, kidneys and liver.

Which ever way you look at it he was fucked.

We had the option of treatment but there was a massive caveat with this that it may only extend his life buy a couple of weeks and he would be in pain during the treatment and because of the severity there was only a slim chance of success.

I don’t know how my dad comprehended this as the information presented to me was like being hit really hard. I admit it made me cry my bloody eyes out. My dad is going to die, in days or weeks. Not months. The specialist did say “days, not weeks” which is like a double whammy.

On that day a non resuscitation order was signed so if my dad did die he wouldn’t be resuscitated. His request.

On the same day that we had dad’s diagnosis he was admitted to Springhill hospice in Rochdale. Firstly, so that the heath care professionals could assess him and also to get him on the correct medication for the coming weeks.

He didn’t want to be in there though and protested but I think the few days he was in there did him some good and enabled the health workers to get him steady on medication. He wouldn’t let them near him with morphine though!

The staff at the hospice do do an amazing job and they are really nice people but my dad was never truly comfy there and all the time that we went to see him he would just said that you wanted to go home. On the following Sunday my mum and I took the decision to bring him home and care for him in his own house.

The hospice put a care plan in place where carers would come round several times daily and help my mum with things like getting my dad up, getting him dressed, getting him washed. Ultimately though these ladies did a lot more than that the last week his life as he was incapable of doing pretty much anything himself.

The first week he came home and I was there every other day and we did have some long conversations but other times he wasn’t there and several times he would just fall asleep half way through a conversation.

The last week of his life though he changed drastically, unfortunately eating was proving difficult and even breathing in the end was very hard for my dad.

The day before he died, he was particularly struggling to breath, and he laboured all day, despite the drugs. This wasn’t helped by my dad’s constant want to get out of bed to “help my mum” but alas couldn’t even stand up on its own and had gone from 12 stone to just over 9 stone in the week preceding his death. From his diagnosis to his death was just over 2 1/2 Weeks.

He died the following morning and I wasn’t there, I had to come home the previous evening and was on my way back there when I got the call from my mum and the carer that he’d passed away.

I pulled off the M60 at the Trafford centre and sat and cried and cried and cried. I honestly have only cried like that a few times in my life and they have nearly all been at the death of a loved one.

I’m incredibly, incredibly sad that I’ve lost my dad but I am also very happy that I got to spend a final two and a half weeks with him and we did discuss quite a few things about life, the universe and everything. I’m also very happy to have know Neville and have the pleasure of calling his, Dad.

After the initial shock of being told that he had terminal cancer and when he came home my dad did have moments of lucidity and in those moments of lucidity he told me that he was ready, even though he was not a religious man, he did say he was ready to meet my Grandma (his mum), my auntie Mary and his dad

“I’ve had a good life, I’ve had a useful life, I’ve travelled the world and seen all the places that I wanted to see and I’ve had a love of a beautiful woman. I’m ready”

He told me this and every time I think about it it makes me cry not with sadness but with joy and pride that even on his deathbed my dad was eloquent enough to say those beautiful words.

I hope when is my turn I can be as philosophical as my amazing Dad.

So, rest I peace, Neville Heywood Porter, my mate, my friend, my occasional conscience, my teacher and most of all my beloved father.

I shall see you when I’m ready and I hope wherever you are you’re enjoying yourself, you’re not in pain, there’s plenty of fags and booze and you’re happy.

Love You Dad and I’ll see you again soon.

I know it’s taken me almost a month to write and publish this but each time I’ve read this, thought about this, wrote this I’ve needed up in fits of tears.

Coronavirus self isolation – Day 14

Up with the larks today as have to go to work. Well that’s not strictly true, I could stay at home and go broke instead!

Lovely though, walking round the village at 7:30. I passed no one in the hour I was out this morning and saw no one driving either.

Breakfast and off to terminate about 200 cables in a clients new warehouse. It’s colder in here than it is outside but there is hardly anyone working here. That means the ability to self distance is great and I’ve spoken very fleetingly with the other trades in the building today.

Jobs been made easier by the electrician as he’s run all the cabling in, but alas, what makes my job easier with one hand, mystical powers take with the other. All the cables are in and they all lead back to a large server room but alas the electrician hasn’t labelled them so I have no idea which wire in the offices relates to the wire in the server room. Imagine one of those kids “which path” drawings with 200 cables. Oh well, thanks to Mr Electrician for the extra work.

Proper etiquette, Well, when I build networking racking that is. Is to have all the network point numbers in the office relate to sequentially numbered ports in the server room. So you can walk in to change a cable for port 21 in the office and know that port 21 in the server room in connected between ports 20 and 22 in the patch panel not between 38 and 40!

This is my form of OCD. It just makes life easier for whoever is looking after the cabinet once I’ve installed it and this rack will have about 400 ports on it by the end. So, even if that be yours truly or some other person,who probably won’t appreciate or understand my efforts.

This evening I sat on my newly repaired garden wall, out in the front garden and watched the sun go down tonight over Beeston Castle. Quite surreal as tonight there was a heavy red coloured (and yes, Americans you do spell it that way) mist and the silhouette of the mountains in the distance was awesome. Alas no photos as contrary to popular belief and constant ribbing from other, I do not have my phone with me 24/7 and I am not a selfie queen. Well, much.

Been pondering the Coronavirus figures today and with just over 400 deaths in the past 24 hours and nearly 4000 new confirmed cases and I really, really hope all my friends, past and present, and their families stay safe and nobody loses any loved ones. I can’t bare to think of loved ones passing because of Coronavirus. Stay safe folks! Please.

Stood outside for a little while, whilst my dog decided which bit of the garden she ultimately wanted to pee on. A process which some evenings takes a remarkably long time for such a little dog.

Sniff, sniff. Here?

No, sniff, sniff. Hmmm here?

No……

The sky tonight is amazing. Loads of stars visible up here. WOW! Can’t wait for it to get a bit warmer so I can sit out all night and just look at the stars.

Night all.

Coronavirus self isolation – day 13

Awake at 2:33, can’t sleep.

Nothing in particular but the moon is bright tonight and I’ve sat for over an hour watching it from my bed.

Finally about 4 am I went downstairs watched telly for a little while. Don’t know why, but just felt really wired last night and couldn’t sleep.

Sleep again but I didn’t get up till 10 am which is the first time since the new year that I’ve actually laid in my own bed later than 8 a.m.

Now, day 13. I’ve self isolated and tommorow I’ll have done this for two weeks. That’s means I’m virus free right? Sadly, no. I’ve been in isolation for 14 days surely I can re-integrate with society? Sadly, no.

I could still have, still be carrying, still be infected, still spread Coronavirus to others. Or even catch the virus off others.

So, in isolation I stay. 😭

Spoke to Warwick this afternoon we had a good chinwag. I’m missing all of my Burnley buddies I’m really wanted to go and see everyone this weekend, but alas “Coronavirus!!!”. So, missed my event out on Friday in Leeds. cancelled! Which means no staying over, which means no socialising which I know ultimately leads to no Coronavirus for me. I’m sad in one respect but happy with the organisers decision. Still miss my mates though.

Called Kimmy today who was out walking her dog in central Manchester and the stuff she was showing me on WhatsApp has blown my mind. I’ve never seen it so quiet, even on Christmas day. Kim.says this past week the silence in her city centre apartment has been deafening! Be well Kim darling, I’ll see you soon. 😘

Walked the dog, that’s not a euphemism and bought milk again. I’m sure the bloke in the local store thinks I’ve got a milk addiction. Yes mate, it’s not milk I’m addicted to. It’s Tea!

I think this week I need to buy a fridge though, as I’m wasting milk everyday. Surprising how quick milk goes off when it’s not refrigerated.

Did a few admin task for work today day and moved a few email boxes for one of my clients. I was very surprised to find that one of my long-standing debtors has actually paid me so to celebrate I bought me and Helen a Chinese for tea.

Walked over to the old man of Mow this evening and let Chante off for a run for half an hour. I sat out of the way and watched the sun go down. Wasn’t that spectacular this evening as the sun disappeared behind the mist which was quite evident tonight.

Wrote quite a bit this evening about my dad’s death which I’m still coming to terms with. It’s just the speed it killed him. I still find the last few days haunting. Need a cry, bye!

Friday night in

Its Friday and I was supposed to be going out tonight to Leeds, however the event is cancelled and i’m at home self isolating. So… What do you do?

You get up, shave your legs, iron your best dress, put on your face, dig out a new pair of stockings, get dressed and go out in your own house.

Had a good laugh with my housemates along with a few drinks and some music. Danced about for a while I took my dog for a walk about midnight. Felt kinda liberating to walk round.

Coronavirus self isolation – day 12

After waking up with a bit of a sore head from all the sanbuca we drank last night amongst other things.

Went down to Scholar Green to the convenience store but alas it’s closed now and the cash machine had no money in so ended up at Tesco in Kidsgrove. Second week I’ve struggled to get money out. Lets not talk about paying cheques or money into the bank.

Roads were empty today. I am hating to think what its going to be like in a few weeks when people who haven’t driven, get back in their cars.

Had a chilled out day today, tidied up the house a bit, did some washing and then sat and wrote a bit, not this, did a few bits of photo editing and added a few bits of info to a clients website.

After tea me and Helen went for a walk round to the Old Man of Mow and watched the sun go down.

Coronavirus figures are still going up, deaths and infections are increasing. I hope that this changes in the new week. Please.

Engaged in conversation as to who’d make a better wife. Julia Bradbury or Rachel Riley. Chris says Julia, I say Rachel. To be fair any contact would be welcome at the moment. I have hugs waiting for the all clear.

Spoke to my mum today and suffice to say she is lonely. She’s lost her life partner of 45 years and then she’s pushed into self isolation for weeks. I worry about her at the moment.

Coronavirus self isolation – Day 11

Got up and have to get back into a routine on day 11 of my cornonavirus Self isolation.

Got up, and immediately went out for a walk and have to start walking a bit more as well.

Since August I’ve lost 2 stone 11 pounds and I want to keep this off. I’ve worked hard with my diet and with my exercise over the past 6 months and I’ve lapsed in the past two week.

Today I walked down and round the village and then back over the rear of the castle and over to the Old Man of Mow. Bloody lovely scenery but chuffing cold out there.

Spent the morning holding a 40ft ladder while my mate, Chris, jumped about on the chimney again. Nutter!

Made Corned Beef hash for tea tonight. Was delicious but it usually is when I make it. lol.

Watched this new hospital built at the Excel centre in London and thinking wow, what an amazing effort. Big round of applause to all those involved in building this.

I am however, sad, that the new beds in these hospitals means that the government don’t think this is over by a long way. I think this self isolation will be going on for months.

Stay at Home, Protect the NHS, Save Lives.

I’m looking at other countries statistics and can see it escalating before it gets better.

And are these rushed clinical trials going to lead to the zombie apocalypse in 28 days later.

Who knows, do we even care?

I cared so little I took my dog for a walk, before the zombie apocalypse.

Oh, look chocolate. Nom nom, night!

 

Coronavirus self isolation – Day 10

Day 10, who’d have thought being at home for 10 days would be so uneventful, unappealing, unpleasant, etc..

It’s day 10. Yay! What we celebrating? Oh yeah! 

Spent all morning trying to deal with universal credit and speak to my business bank. Soul destroying at the best of times but got to be done. Outcome unknown at present. Business bank was as much use as a chocolate fire guard. “You are at queue position 56!”

Finished the wall. Well one side of it and it’s substancially stronger now with Me and Chris pushing 3 bags of sand and cement into the wall. No way we were pulling the wall apart as some of the stones in it must weigh 70-100kgs and before we’ve filled it with mortar the only thing holding it together was gravity.

Had a cracking walk today down to scholar green today and along the canal then back up the killer mile. How folk run up here I know not, took me about 35 minutes to walk up it.

Chris nearly got run over today by the DPD lady who drives the electric Nissan van round here. He had his ear phones in and was zoned out and she tried to slowly squeeze back. Chris gets a glimpse of the van and nearly jumped out of his skin. He laughed, the DPD lady laughed, we all laughed.

Spent the evening discussing addiction and how folk get off it. 

 

Coronavirus Self Isolation – Day 9

Day 9 of my Cornonavirus Self Isolation……

I’m going to class today as a WTF or WDMDG (Where did my day go)

Arose, walked dog, made brew, pointed the front wall, eat tea, got in bed, sleep.

Pow! its now day 10 of my Coronavirus self isolation.

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