24 November 2007

Spotted dick

That'll get a few hits from Google.

No I'm not talking about a nasty, embarassing illness. I'm talking about steamed pudding.

We had to go out and vote today and do some grocery shopping. While we were out, we thought we'd check out a new shop that's opened not far from us in the past few months.

It's called Britain on the Bayside and they specialise in British foods, the stuff we immigrants have fond memories of from when we were kids.

It was a very busy place while we were there too, and most of the customers had English accents. We came away with a tinned spotted dick, a packet of Jaffa Cakes (my favourite and the main reason we visited the shop), a tube of Jelly Tots, a box of wine gums, and a couple of other things that I don't remember from when I was a kid, but Donna wanted to try them.

So if you live in Brisbane, and you're missing your Robertson's Golden Shred Marmalade, or your Weetabix, maybe a Curly Wurly, or a huge tin of Bassett's Licquorice Allsorts, check them out. The address is on their website, just click on contacts.

I'm just waiting for them to get some Jacobs Club Chocolate Biscuits in, but I might end up getting them while we're in England.

18 November 2007

Runny nose

I've had this flu now for over a week, it started last Thursday.

I've only now started to get a runny nose and a cough. It's not the full on runny nose either, it's that annoying drip that's just enough to annoy. Just enough that you have to keep wiping it and you end up with a red, flaking nose afer a couple of days. There's just a hint of a sore throat there too.

Around about Thursday afternoon I thought I was getting better. I wasn't feeling feverish, wasn't quite as sore as I'd been (drying my back after a shower didn't feel like I was using a cheese grater on it) and I wasn't as tired. I even had an appetite. I still had a bit of a headache that I'd had since the weekend, but the Panamax was keeping that under control. Then I woke up about 2am that night and felt like someone had stuck a knife in the side of my head.

I'm no stranger to headaches, but they're usually mild and caused by too much alcohol the night before. This was the most excruciating pain I've ever experienced in my life. I took a couple of pain killers (more Panamax) and lay in bed clutching the side of my head trying to get in a position that lessened the pain, but nothing worked. It actually brought tears to my eyes. I would have woken Donna, but there's not much she could have done and it would have only worried her.

How I managed to get back to sleep I don't know, but I woke again about four hours later and had another couple of Panamax as the pain was still there, just not as bad. When I woke up again at 10am the headache was, thankfully, just about gone.

So I went to see my doctor again yesterday and she said the severe headache may have been caused by my elevated blood pressure. It's usually around about borderline, but while I've got this flu it's higher. She's given me another three days off work and I think I'll spend most of that working my way through a box of tissues.

I'm also on a waiting list now to borrow an ambulatory blood pressure monitor. What that does is check your blood pressure every 15 to 30 minutes over a 24 hour period to see if you really do have a problem. A lot of people suffer from white coat hypertension, which means their blood pressure only goes up when the doctor checks it. I know for a fact that mine is always a bit higher when my doctor checks it, than when I check it at home myself. Actually, it seems to be mainly that particular doctor.

Once I get over the flu, I think I'll have to start using the elyptical crosstrainer (or epyleptical as we like to call it) and start training again. I know from last time I used it that it's the best way to get my blood pressure under control.

17 November 2007

Counting down

I've just added a countdown timer to my blog. It's counting down to the time I finish work before our European holiday.

Donna gave me a funny look when I showed her. Yeah, I know, you shouldn't wish your life away and all that, but now the trip is all pretty much planned, booked and paid for I'm getting bored. Especially since I've been home sick by myself all week and when someone to talk to does come home, they're telling me to go to bed and stop lying around in the livingroom. Either that, or they're annoying me by tickling my feet. No respect for the dead, either of 'em.

Anyway, I got the counter from here. You'll have to alter the code slightly for your own use, but there's enough info on the page for you to manage that. If you've managed to add links and stuff to your blog, you shouldn't have any trouble at all.

I've also been counting down the days on my Facebook page. For some reason that has a different number of days. I think I may have lost count while I've been at home, or it might just be that I've been counting from the beginning of each day and including the first day of my holiday.

13 November 2007

Seafood part 2

I mentioned the other day that I'd inadvertently booked seafood meals for my entire trip to and from the UK.

There's a feedback form on the Singapore Airlines website, so I thought I'd fill that in and see if there was anything that could be done about it. I just got an e-mail back saying it's all sorted, and I'll be getting standard meals on the flights.

Of course, if the cabin crew come around at meal time and one of the choices is seafood, I might just go for the seafood.

I just hope the special seafood meals don't look too good, I'll regret changing back otherwise.

10 November 2007

What ex-pilots get


It's also what I've got at the moment. I don't mean the runny nose and the cough either. Here in Australia most people call a cold the flu. There's a big difference. I've got the aching muscles, the tiredness, the headache and the fever that comes with real influenza. And it hits you all of a sudden, doesn't build up slowly like a cold.

I think this is only the second time in my life that I've had the flu, but I've had my fair share of colds.

What's most annoying about it, is that I was supposed to be going diving again tomorrow morning to finish off my dive course. Now I've got to postpone it again. I suppose at least I can sleep in tomorrow, I would have been getting up at 4:30 am.

04 November 2007


We fly to England at the end of next month.

Yesterday I was on the Singapore Airlines website looking at our bookings. If you've booked your flight with them online, you can select your seats and meals in advance. We already know what seats we've got for the flights, I fixed that up a couple of days after booking when I realised I could do it.

Every now and then I have a look at the booking to see if anyone with better seats than us has cancelled so I can change ours. We've got pretty good seats anyway, but window seats right at the front of a section, with no-one sitting in front of us would be good. There's nothing worse than being twenty minutes into an eight hour flight, and the moron in front of you reclines their seat and leaves it there for the rest of the flight.

Anyway, while I was looking at the airline's website I decided to see what was included in the seafood meals, as opposed to the standard ones. This involved going into the change meals page and changing it to seafood. I now find I can't change it back to standard meals so I've got seafood for every meal, there and back.

I may be able to change it when I check in, which I can do online within forty eight hours of the flight, or it may mean contacting them personally.

Not that it matters. I like seafood, so I'm not too worried if that's all I eat on the flights. It'll also mean I get my meals before everyone else. I certainly can't complain about that.

03 November 2007

The end is nigh

There were a few smiling faces at work on Wednesday afternoon.

Most of us have worked for the company for a long time, I've just passed twenty four years there myself. Most of us are looking to do something different, to get out of the rut. We're bored with what we're doing, but there's not really anywhere else we can go in the company. The only reason most of us are still there is because they pay well. To leave would mean a big drop in pay, something none of us can afford.

On Wednesday afternoon we were advised that the company had signed a memorandum of understanding with another company. This MOU is for them to do a review of the logistics side of the company with a view to them taking it over, outsourcing in other words.

Why are we happy about this? It could mean redundancy packages for us. With the amount of service most of us have, they would be big enough that we could afford to take lower paid jobs elsewhere. In my case, it would mean our mortgage would go down to about the size of a small car loan. I could go and drive buses or stack supermarket shelves for a couple of years until I've finished my degree. Anything but sitting at a desk being bored out of my mind.

Of course we don't actually know what is going to happen at the moment. Maybe nothing will come of the review. We may be made an offer we can't refuse by the other company, and they may much better to work for than our present employer. As long as something happens though, we'll be happy.