Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Success !!

Having spoken to the Consultant’s secretary on Friday, we were awaiting an email letting us know the new date for Rog’s out patient appointment.  Did we get one?  Well, what do you think?  So Rog phoned again today and it was fairly obvious that nothing had been done.  She said that there was “some confusion” and she would get someone from the vascular team to call back.  We didn’t hold our collective breaths, but, sure enough, we had a call less than an hour later, and one of the Registrars agreed that Aug 18th was much too far away and he would sort it out.  Not long afterwards we had another call, giving him an appointment for next Wednesday, Aug 4th!  That’s more like it!  Rog asked whether they could provide transport (he can’t walk very far at all, certainly not enough to get to the bus stop, get from the bus onto a train, and then walk from Paddington station to the hospital) and they said they could – result!!!  I dread to think what a taxi there from Yeading and back again would have cost, so all’s well that ends well.

Just goes to show that the NHS can get it’s act together when it wants to.

Monday, 26 July 2010

Just checking…

Rog has bought me a new laptop for my birthday, so this is to check that it is set up properly to import my blog postings from Windows Live Writer.

Rog’s toe is improving very slowly, we are still waiting for confirmation of his out-patient appointment.  It has been made, but is not until Aug 18th – almost five weeks after his discharge from hospital.  The consultant wanted to see him 2-3 weeks after, so we are trying to get an earlier appointment. Not sure if I can stick another four and a half weeks in the marina waiting for it!

Monday, 19 July 2010

Home at last!!

Just a quick post to let everyone know that Rog is out of hospital, and back home convalescing on the boat at Willowtree Marina .  We are awaiting notification of his follow up appointment which should be in about two weeks time.

Friday, 16 July 2010

And now for some good news….

I heard today that Rog should be coming out of hospital sometime over the weekend.  No surgery is required, but he will be on antibiotics for 6 months to ensure that the infection clears up.  We will have to stay put at Willowtree for a while as he will have to go back for a checkup in 2 or 3 weeks time, but, as long as all is well we should be able to start moving again sometime in August.

Once again, thanks to everyone for your good wishes and offers of help, loads from people we’ve never even met.  It’s certainly a privilege to belong to such a kind and caring community.

The blog will probably take a rest for the next few weeks, as there won’ t be anything to blog about, but if anything changes I’ll be sure to let all our readers know.

Ta ta for now.

Tuesday, 13 July 2010


The BW boat was closed on Saturday, but I had already decided to phone Willowtree Marina at Yeading to see if they could fit me in.  And they have!!  for a very reasonable £7.50 ish a day.

On Sunday, son Russ came to spend the night and help me move the boat to Willowtree on Monday.  So on Monday morning we said a tearful goodbye to Karen and Ian on Serenity – I will miss them loads, but they need to continue their journey.


A sad parting of the ways

Shortly afterwards, Russ made a superb job of reversing out of our mooring and we were on our way too


St Mary’s hospital in the background – unfortunately Rog’s ward is on the other side, so he didn’t see us leave.


Goodbye Little Venice


Cormorant either drying his wings, or cooling off, couldn’t tell which

We made good time to Willowtree, and were here about 1pm.  I am now settled with water and electrickery, and an Elsan disposal on hand, also a Tesco nearby.  A bit of a trek back to the hospital to see Rog, but only a 10 minute walk to the bus stop, one bus, one train, and a 10 minute walk the other end, so not too bad.

Rog was supposed to have an angiogram and maybe an angioplasty yesterday, but it didn’t happen due to an emergency, so it was rescheduled for today, and as far as I know it hasn’t happened today either!  I haven’t been in to see him today, but will go tomorrow.  So we still don’t know whether he will lose his big toe or not.  One doctor is saying “almost certainly”, another is taking of sending him home with antibiotics in a few days!!  Typical NHS!!

I have had lots of offers of help if I need it, and the staff here at Willowtree are lovely, so thanks everyone for your offers of support.  Be sure I will call on you if needed.

Saturday, 10 July 2010

Fame at last

Some of you may know already that we are famous at last!  Windsong and Serenity are pictured in the August edition of Canal Boat magazine, in the K & A Cruising guide, moored in the floating harbour in Bristol.


Reproduced with kind permission of Canal Boat Magazine

Friday, 9 July 2010

Update on Rog

After numerous tests and five days on strong antibiotics, they decided to move Rog from the general medical ward to the Vascular ward today, and I must say he’s not a happy bunny!  It was nice and cool and quiet on the first floor, now he’s in a six-bed bay with 4 women and one bloke!  It’s hot, cramped and noisy.  He had an MRI scan yesterday, and today he was taken for what he thought was to be another ultrasound scan, but it turned out that he was to have another angiogram/angioplasty.  He refused point-blank to have it as he hadn’t been told, and wasn’t prepared (delicate area shaved etc)  He was furious!  He hadn’t seen hide nor hair of a doctor since Wednesday morning, nor had the dressing on his toe been changed since Wednesday.

Anyway, he’s booked in for Monday.  One of the doctors came round while I was there this afternoon, trailed by the usual crowd of students.  We made it clear that we felt we weren’t being told enough, but it was difficult to ask too many questions.   However, the doc (senior registrar, we think) said that he was fairly sure that Rog would lose some or all of his big toe!  So not good news.  I asked when they would make that decision, and they said by the middle of next week.  So it looks like a long stay in hospital for him. 

I am going to see the lady in the BW boat tomorrow to see if they can help find me a mooring for the duration, one with water and possibly electric hook up, as I’m not much good at the manoeuvring bit of driving.  At least then I won’t have to worry about moving the boat to fill with water etc.

Derwent6 is now here in the basin, so we got together yesterday evening and had a good old catch-up.

Will take a few photos for the blog over the weekend.

Being a tourist

On Wednesday Karen, Ian and I caught the bus to Piccadilly and bought tickets for Jersey Boys for Karen and I as I’ve been wanting to see it ever since it came to the West End.  We then did the tourist bit and walked to Trafalgar Square



Nelson’s Colum

down the Mall to Buckingham Palace


Queen Victoria Memorial, Buckingham Palace


Changing the guard

and across Green Park back to Piccadilly



Eros, Piccadilly Circus

In the evening we went back to see Jersey Boys, which was fantastic, and on our way back to the bus stop to return to Paddington Basin, were treated to lots of jubilant Spanish football fans enjoying their victory over Germany. They were bullfighting the taxis, and Eros was sporting a Spanish flag at 10.30pm!

Photos courtesy of Serenity’s blog as I didn’t have my camera with me, thinking we were just going for theatre tickets and then coming straight back.

Tuesday, 6 July 2010


On Monday we decided to try again to moor in Paddington Basin.  This time we were lucky and secured two of the six available spaces.

 SDC11092Elvis has not left the building – he’s on the balcony!

 SDC11094Mural made from litter

 SDC11095Paddington Basin – on the right is St Mary’s Hospital

The bad news is that Rog is in hospital!  His infected big toe suddenly became much worse, so when we arrived we went straight to A & E, and after five hours of X rays, blood tests, and scans to check that the circulation to his foot is still ok, the Vascular consultant decided to keep him in.  He is at the moment being pumped full of strong intravenous antibiotics, and painkillers, and tomorrow he is to have a general anaesthetic and they will remove the nail and clean out all the infection.  Lets hope it does the trick, and it will heal quickly.  So I’m stuck in the basin, with a 15min walk to Little Venice to empty the loo cassette,  and no official water tap, although there is one on the corner or one of the office blocks which Ian and I persuaded the security guards to let me use to fill the tank, ‘just this once’, yesterday evening – 4 hoses joined together did the trick .  There may have to be another ‘just this once’ when it runs low again.  There is a park nearby  - the original Paddington Green, to walk Cassie, and shops all around so it could be worse, and it’s only a quick walk across the bridge in the picture to the hospital.

I will keep you all informed as to Rog’s progress.

Teddington to Kensal Green

We got up at 5.15 on Thursday morning and made ready for our trip down the tidal Thames, and had passed through Teddington Lock by 6.15.  It was a lovely morning when we set off but it clouded over by about 6.30.  It is a lovely time of day to be boating, and we made the trip to Brentford in about an hour, along with the outgoing tide.


5.30am – our last mooring on the Thames above Teddington Lock


Richmond Bridge

 SDC11089Part of Richmond waterfront


Our last view up the Thames as we turned into Brentford Lock cutting

We continued on as far as Hanwell locks and stopped for the night just short of the top lock.  On Friday we continued on our way to Paddington Basin, but it was full so we retraced our steps and moored for the weekend at Kensal Green opposite the Cemetery.

On Saturday we went to have a look around.  There was a ‘Friends of Kensal Green Cemetery’ Open day on, and there were lots and lots of goths and punks all dressed up in Victorian gear and parading around – apparently they always attend!


Part of the cemetery, all falling down




We thought we’d stumbled onto a film set at first.  There was even an exhibition of hearses!

SDC11103-2  We found Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s family tombstone, disappointingly simple  amongst all the elaborate mausoleums


It was one of the most bizarre things we have ever experienced, and we will never forget it

Hampton Court Palace

On Wednesday we moored outside Hampton Court Palace, and made a brief visit, as we had discovered that we needed to go through Teddington Lock onto the tidal part of the Thames at 6am the next morning so needed to continue on later in the day.






We made it to the centre of the maze


Afterwards we set of again to move to Teddington Lock to be ready for our early start on Thursday, our last few miles on the Thames to Brentford Lock, and so onto the Grand Union.