Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Scotland... "slightly" late

As you can see I've been terrible with blogging! Almost 2 months later and I still haven't done all the UK posts! So.... Scotland:

On the 29th of December I took the train back from Darlington to London, and met up with my friend Carli. She's in that category of friends I've had since I was like 6. We flew straight to Inverness and spent the first night in a Holiday Express close to the airport. The next day we drove in the direction of Glencoe, where we stayed in an Airbnb place in Ballachulish. Rather interesting accommodation, but very cozy!


On the 31st of December we drove up back to Inverness, stopping at Urquart Castle. We spent the last night of 2019 on a houseboat. We didn't make any concrete plans for New Years Eve, or Hogmanay as they call it, and was almost stuck without food, as all the places were fully booked and even at 16:00 no one was willing to serve us! Eventually we found a friendly pub where we could stuff our faces! Sadly we didn't stay up long enough to see the new year in, and crashed just after 21:00 into a food and Prosecco induced coma.

On the 1st on Jan, we drove up to the North Coast, to John O Groats. We stayed in a super cool guest house in the area. There was some super amazing scenery, especially the Duncasby Stacks. Once again, the food prospects were slim.... with it being the 1st of Jan. Luckily we found a Chinese Take Away place in a close-by town! They weren't very friendly and didn't even want to let us use wifi... we had to walk to find cash, and they crapped on Carli when she put her foot on a chair... but nevertheless, we were fed!

On the 2nd we drove back to Inverness, had some whiskey, and headed for the airport! Four great nights in the Scottish Highlands! I REALLY want to go back in summer. It is the most beautiful country. Apart from SA of course! Although it's pretty different, you can't really compare the two. Highly recommended if you're a nature lover!

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

A third of my life - 12 years

Last week Wednesday marked 12 years since my first transplant. Exactly a third of my life so far. A third of my life with no constant mucus trying to smother you. No persistent lung infections. No problems with being underweight. No super disgusting cough or coughing fits where you can't catch your breath. And most of all, 12 years of not being dead. So much love for this donor family.

Those lungs also enabled me to have a successful second transplant. During my rejection they were stable, and allowed me to stay physically strong and reasonably healthy otherwise. So they really behaved very well.

But back to the present.... joined my local neighborhood running club yesterday, and the first run is tomorrow. Sooooo nervous. But I have to do this in preparation for the National games in June, as well as to push myself... otherwise I'm stuck in the same gym rut and struggle to push myself. I think I have breathing-related PTSD. As soon as I get too out of breath I feel like I need to stop because this is bad. Even though it's normal to get out of breath when you run! So I need to run for a bit longer before I give in to walking.

I shared the above poem on Instagram a while back, it's written by a CF guy who has also had a lung transplant. It's quite direct but touches me very deeply. I can totally relate.

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Winter Christmas

I didn't get a white Christmas, but my first ever winter Christmas was nevertheless fun! VERY different from a summer Christmas. Firstly, the Brits do xmas on a MUCH larger scale than we do. Christmas music on the radio non-stop. Christmas decorations everywhere, beautiful lights up, (makes sense, seeing as it gets dark so early LOL), and it's just a much bigger deal.

My cousin Carin and her two doggies joined us, so it was a house full of fur-kids! On Christmas morning we went for a Parkrun, which was great. It's a bit different running in 4 degrees C on ice! I had to be careful not to slip! After Parkrun, we had a brunch, followed by opening the presents!

We listened to the Queen's speech, followed by a late lunch! It was a lovely day. Very cosy!

On Boxing Day there was a hunt in the village (a fake hunt... no real foxes were hurt). A very interesting experience. Our doggies didn't like the hounds!