2017-09-30 – Pressure washing.

The previous owner of our cottage allowed the cold water tank in the loft to overflow and run down the front wall of the house for so long that it stained the brickwork white with limescale.  I have previously tried to remove it using white vinegar and a wire brush (to no avail).   One of my neighbours offered to lend me their heavy duty pressure washer to see if that would shift it, so this morning (after I walk the dog) I give it a go!   I spend the next three hours pressure washing the front wall of the cottage, ending up soaking wet and covered in fine grit – terrific!  To be fair, it has reduced the staining significantly, but it certainly hasn’t removed it.

I pack the hoses away and return the pressure washer to my neighbour.  Since I’m already wet, I decide to give my wife’s car a quick wash – I know how much she likes her car to be clean, and she is busy cleaning our cottage and doing laundry so it seems only fair.  I’m already knackered, but I think I can summon up the energy.

I take the dog for her afternoon walk, and then collapse onto the sofa in the lounge, thoroughly exhausted.

A long soak in a hot bath, followed by a little cannabis and a beer, and I’m feeling almost human again.

2017-09-29 – A vestige of motivation.

I have decided on my subject for this week’s vlog – it’s going to be about people that are affected by Parkinson’s, other than the person that has Parkinson’s, and will revolve around my current lack of motivation.   Having said that, I have managed to motivate myself to produce a vlog today, so there is a vestige of motivation in me (somewhere).

I have my cups of tea, walk the dog, listen to PopMaster and then drink my Nutriblast whilst writing the script for my vlog.  I set up the camera and tripod in the lounge, load my script into the teleprompter app on my iPad, and then film myself.   My voice is evidently stronger this week, because I have few problems with the filming, so fewer re-takes which all makes the process of transferring the raw footage to my MacBook and editing it much more straightforward (and much quicker).

By the time my wife gets home from work, I’ve finished the edit and am uploading the finished video to my YouTube channel.  I’ve also put our dinner in the oven, so gaining me some Brownie points.

2017-09-28 – Achievements are pathetically thin on the ground!

I’m sorry to say that motivation hasn’t returned as yet.  The end of the day is looming, and achievements are pathetically thin on the ground.

I drove to the outskirts of Norwich this morning (narrowly missing the rush hour) to leave my car at Autowerke for servicing and a whole host of other minor tasks.  My wife picks me up from the garage and I drop her off at her workshop in Hevingham so that I can borrow her car for the day.   Hardly an hour has gone by before I receive a phone call from the garage – never a good sign!   The mechanic has found a major leak on the gearbox that requires urgent attention, the exhaust has a hole in it and there is quite a lot of brake pipe that needs to be replaced (otherwise it will fail its MOT test).   Basically I’m being warned to expect a big bill!  What can you do?   The work has to be done, or the car is useless…

I take the dog for her morning walk (one of my achievements) and then listen to PopMaster (not an achievement, but an essential part of my daily routine).

I empty the dishwasher and tidy the kitchen (a bit, but it’s really not that untidy, to be honest).

I have a think about a subject for this week’s vlog, but I’m still undecided.

I read The Metro online to catch up with the news.

I take the dog for her afternoon walk (another achievement) and then sit and wait for my wife to phone to let me know she’s ready for me to go and pick her up from work.  We return to Southrepps via Lidl in North Walsham to do some grocery shopping.

When we get home, I prepare our evening meal (more leftover chilli con carne) and pop open a bottle of beer to enjoy with another episode of Dexter on Netflix.

2017-09-27 – Service parts

I need to locate a box full of service parts for my car today, otherwise my service is going to cost considerably more than it should.  I know the box is in the house, so there is a limit to how difficult it should be to locate – at least, I thought so.

I spend quite some time in the loft, shifting boxes around to see if my service parts box is hiding behind them.  By the time I have finished, I’m pretty certain it’s not in the loft.

The spare bedroom is next – there is all manner of stuff under the bed, so I spend a while scrabbling around under the bed until I’m almost sure that what I seek isn’t there.

There’s a cupboard full of boxes in the main bedroom, so I do what I can to search through them without actually emptying the cupboard.  Doesn’t appear to be in there, either.

I check in the conservatory.  No.

In desperation I check the garden shed.  Nope!

I’m running out of places to look, but there’s a small landing through a door in the main bedroom – it’s piled high with boxes, and it’s my final hope.   The door to the landing is inaccessible at the moment, so I clear a path to the door.  I lift a box from the top of the stack to reveal… my box of parts – success!!   That means that I don’t have to ask my wife to find it when she gets home!

I bump into one of our neighbours when I take the dog for her second walk of the day, and broach the subject of some curtains for some French windows that they have been discussing with my wife.   The husband doesn’t want a curtain, but the wife does, and she has told my wife to ignore her husband and to make the curtains.  My wife feels stressed by being caught in the middle, and asked me to discuss the situation with the husband, when I had a chance.   After a lengthy discussion with him (and his wife), it seemed that the situation was unchanged – he doesn’t want curtains there, and she does.   “Where does that leave us?” I asked the husband, as we walked away from the battlefield.  “Nowhere!” he replied, “tell your wife we don’t want a curtain, although I may have to change my mind if my wife insists!”.   I think his wife will insist, but the current situation is hardly likely to alleviate the stress that my wife is feeling.

My motivation is still down the toilet, but I have managed to achieve something today, so I don’t feel too wretched.  Tremor in my left leg is becoming a real nuisance, and I have no further adjustment available to me on group “A” settings (my old settings).   I try changing my neurostimulator to group “B” settings to see if I can adjust out my tremor that way, but I can’t, so I revert to group “A”.  I think I’m going to have to return to the hospital for a re-tune in the next couple of weeks.

I have a quick tidy up before my wife gets home, and put dinner on (leftover chilli con carne).  I take some CBD oil to see if that will help my tremor, and then we settle down in front of the telly to watch another episode of Dexter on Netflix.

2017-09-26 – Another day…

Another day of battling with my (almost) non-existent motivation.

I need to change the day that I have my car booked into Autowerke because my wife is on a course in Cambridge that day, and isn’t able to pick me up from the garage.  I also need to get cracking on the process of changing the supplier of electricity for our cottage – our current contract expires in just under 3 weeks, so time is running out!

I have my cups of tea and my Nutriblast, and take the dog for her morning walk (for which the dog supplies the motivation).

I listen to PopMaster.

Lunchtime comes around, and still I haven’t achieved anything.

I ring Autowerke, and arrange to drop the car off on another day.  There!  Done it!!  Give the man a medal!  I just need to find the box with all of the service parts in it, but at least I now have some extra time to do so.

I call the energy company that I researched and selected yesterday, only to find that the fixed rate contract that I wanted is no longer being offered, so now I need to do some more research and select another energy company – nothing is ever simple or straightforward, is it?  I select an alternative energy provider after a couple of hours of research, fill out my details online and start the process of changing our supplier.

My wife asked me to hang some washing out to dry when the washing machine cycle had completed.   I completely forget to do so until the dog starts reminding me that she is due for another walk.   She waits (impatiently) while I unload the washing machine and hang the clothes out on the line in the back garden.

I walk the dog and then vacuum downstairs before my wife returns home from work.

2017-09-25 – A battle with motivation.

I’m having a battle with motivation at the moment, and it’s not a battle that I’m (currently) winning.

“Is there anything you want me to do?” I asked my wife this morning, as she was getting ready to leave for work.  “You could order the side panel for the bath” she replied.  A simple enough task, you would think, but I’ve been trying to achieve it all day, and its now almost 5pm and all I have done is measure the bath so that I know the size of panel to order…

On the plus side, I have booked my car into Autowerke for a service and brake pads this Thursday – I’ve been trying to achieve this since the beginning of last week.  I have also selected a new contract for our electricity supply at the cottage – our current contract expires in just under 3 weeks – now all I need to do is actually call the energy company and set the wheels in motion.  Tomorrow, perhaps.

I searched around for a late availability holiday for my wife and I – it’s our wedding anniversary next month, and we decided that it would be nice to celebrate that somewhere warm.  I haven’t selected a holiday yet, but I do have better idea of where we should go.  I’d better check that my passport hasn’t expired!

I took the dog for her two walks today, and that’s about the extent of my achievements for the day.

Don’t ask me why I’m struggling to perform some pretty basic tasks, because I don’t understand it either.  I just know that I’m struggling.  I have a whole list of basic tasks that I need to do, and no idea when I’m going to be able to get them all done.  I just hope that I can make some sort of progress before my wife loses patience with me.

2017-09-24 – Entertaining.

I have the job of entertaining my son and his friend today – they are embarking on a trip to Australia (via Hong Kong, the Philippines, Malaysia and Bali) next Friday, so they are here for a couple of days to say goodbye – I don’t expect to see them back here much before Christmas 2018.

They are keen to have a trip out in my car (an old Porsche 911 that evidently still retains a little “street cred”) so we decide to drive to the outskirts of Norwich to fill up with petrol.  We stop off at Lidl in North Walsham to grab a few bottles of beer, plus some flowers and chocolates for my wife as a thank you for all of her hard work.

We have a bite to eat (cheesy chips) and a beer for lunch in The Vernon Arms, and then decide to head over to our boat at Wayford Bridge and go for a little cruise down the river.

My wife cooks us all an evening meal, and then my son and his pal take their leave of us.

I calm the left leg tremor (which has been bugging me all day) with a little cannabis, pop open a bottle of beer and watch an episode of Dexter on Netflix.

2017-09-23 – More visitors!

We have more visitors!  My son and his friend are travelling up from Dorset to visit us today, so the house has to be clean and tidy, and the spare bedroom, which is currently full of tiling tools, video equipment and boxes of pictures that were haven’t yet got around to hanging on the walls – suffice to say, the bed is inaccessible and that’s a state of affairs that requires rectification!

I deal with the video equipment, and vacuum (and mop) the floors downstairs while my wife does everything else.

My son and his pal arrive, and were have a couple of hours of catching up before my wife and I leave them for a few hours – we are going to see Bush perform at The Waterfront in Norwich.

So, we leave my son and his pal in our cottage watching Top Gear on Netflix while we watch some excellent live music.   I manage to arrange for a chair at the venue – The Waterfront is standing only – which I’m very grateful for.   I realise, on the few occasions that I stand up to get a better view, that there’s simply no way I could have stood all the way through the gig.

2017-09-22 – Up early!

I’m up early this morning – I’m picking up our friend, Karl Sterling, from his B&B in Mundesley and taking him to Gunton station to catch the 8.45am train back to London.

I arrive at the B&B on the dot of 8.20am, as arranged, and we are at the station in plenty of time.

Its vlog day today, and I’ve decided to make a departure from my usual subjects of Parkinson’s Disease and medicinal cannabis.  One my YouTube followers has been asking me for quite some time to do a vlog about me, my car, where I live, etc., so I have decided to do just that.   I wander around the village with my video camera, shooting life in Southrepps to go with some video that I shot yesterday while I was out and about with Karl.

When I have a rough idea of what I’m going to show, I write myself a script to link the various shots together, and then film myself.  I have a few problems with my voice initially (weak and strangling my sentences) resulting in a few re-takes but, generally speaking, I have fewer problems than I usually have when I film my vlog.

Editing is far more complicated than when I’m just doing a straightforward piece to camera, and I still haven’t finished when my wife arrives home from work.  I finish it off and upload it to my YouTube channel while my wife goes to Lidl in North Walsham to get some groceries.

I’m feeling shattered after quite a late night last night, so I plan to have a reasonably early night tonight!

2017-09-21 – Karl Sterling

Today were are being visited by Karl Sterling, who is in the UK for a few days, teaching his Parkinson’s Regeneration workshop in London.  My wife is up early (6.30am) cleaning the house and putting the final touches to a chocolate pudding that she made last night (Karl is coming to dinner this evening).

The dog and I enjoy an early stroll around the field, and then I make a Thai curry for this evening’s main course, before driving to Gunton station to meet him from the train.

Karl and I hang out for the afternoon, filming an interview in our lounge, driving out to Cromer and taking a walk along the beach, taking the dog for a walk around the field by the village hall, and ending up with a couple of pints of Abbot Ale in The Vernon Arms.  We retire to our cottage across the road just as my wife gets back from work, and have an evening of curry, chocolate pudding, beer and wine!

2017-09-20 – New tyres!

I have to take my car to a garage in North Walsham for 10am to have a couple of new tyres fitted, so I’m up at a reasonable time so that I can drink my tea and take the dog for her morning walk before I have to leave the house at around 9.30am.  I’m aching all over from my car cleaning activities yesterday – the discomfort I’m experiencing seems disproportionate to the effort of cleaning the car!

The tyre fitter takes great care of my car – I’m sure they take more care when working on a car that is clean and shiny, so that makes my efforts of yesterday worthwhile.

I planned to clean the inside of my car this afternoon, but I hadn’t anticipated quite so much muscular pain, so I end up just vacuuming inside – upholstery and window cleaning can wait for another day.

While I have the vacuum cleaner out, I vacuum downstairs in our cottage, and then have a tidy up before my wife gets home from work.

I take some CBD oil this afternoon to see if it’ll help with my aches and pains – perhaps I didn’t take enough, because I’m not feeling the effects at all.  l have some whole cannabis after dinner to see if that helps, and that certainly relaxes my muscles.

2017-09-19 – Checking on the boat.

I perform my morning ritual/duties (2 cups of tea, Nutriblast, dog walk, PopMaster) and decide to go to Wayford Bridge to check on the boat – I noticed there was rather a lot of water in the engine compartment when were went out with my wife’s parents and brother last weekend, and I’ve been worrying about it.  The water is still there, but there doesn’t appear to be any more than there was last week, so that’s a relief!  I siphon the water out of the engine compartment into the bilges, and let the bilge pump empty the bilges into the river.  I run the engine for twenty minutes or so to charge the batteries, and then I’m done.

My car - clean & shiny
My car – clean & shiny

Back at Southrepps, I decide to give my car a wash and polish.  It’s having two new front tyres fitted tomorrow morning, and I think that the tyre fitter will take more care if the car is nice and clean and shiny.  I spend almost 3 hours washing and polishing, and the car is looking good.  I’m completely knackered – I might just have overdone it (as usual).

The dog is asking me to take her for her afternoon walk, and all I want to do is collapse onto the sofa and recover.  The dog wins, and I stagger around the field by the village hall with her.   Fatigue has accentuated my slightly dodgy balance and wooden walking.

I sit and recover for half an hour, and then tidy up the mess I’ve made with car cleaning stuff, and vacuum downstairs before my wife returns home from work.

2017-09-18 – Overdue for a service.

I need to organise a few things this week.  My car is due for its MOT test next Monday, and it’s overdue for a service, needs brake pads replacing all round and the front tyres need replacing.  An added complication is that Karl Sterling, an American fitness trainer who specialises in people with Parkinson’s, and whom my wife and I met in London earlier this year, is visiting us this Thursday, and my son and his friend are visiting us on Saturday and Sunday, so i can’t really afford to be without it!  I guess I’ll try to book it in for a service and brake pads next Monday, MOT test straight afterwards, and get the tyres sorted in the meantime.

I consume tea and Nutriblast and take the dog for a walk before searching on the internet for car tyres (whilst listening to PopMaster).  I bag myself a pair of Michelin’s at a bargain price at BlackCircles.com, and get my car booked in to have them fitted on Wednesday morning.   I price up the brake pads from Euro Car Parts and consider fitting them myself – there are plenty of videos on YouTube showing how easy it is to do, and prior to my Parkinson’s Disease I wouldn’t have dreamed of paying someone else to do them – but it’s not prior to Parkinson’s, and I decide to let the garage do them when they do the service.

The day has magically disappeared without me really having achieved very much, but that’s hardly unusual these days…

2017-09-17 – A disturbed night.

We had a bit of a disturbed night last night  my wife’s youngest son’s fiancee had a funny turn and ended up by being taken to the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital by ambulance.  Naturally, my wife’s youngest son accompanied her, leaving my wife and I (but mainly my wife) to look after our youngest granddaughter until they returned.  So, we spent the night camping in their lounge – sleeping on their sofa.  I slept surprisingly well, although my wife didn’t!

The invalid and her fiance arrived home at 5.30am, having been subjected to a multitude of tests but they were unable to determine what was wrong with her.  She was still a little shaky, but a whole lot better than she had been!

We headed back to Southrepps around lunchtime.

My wife spent the afternoon cooking lentil curry for our dinner, In between ironing all of the laundry that she washed yesterday.  I walked the dog and vacuumed downstairs and upstairs.

I’m feeling extremely tired today, so I’m quite pleased that my other symptoms are not playing me up too much – a touch of tremor in my left leg, voice a little on the weak side, nothing much to complain about.

2017-09-16 – Party time!

Today is our eldest granddaughter’s birthday party, and we are going to Hevingham village hall to help set up tables for the food, and toys for all of the children to play with.

Before we leave the house, my wife is busy cleaning the house and cooking party food, and I am fully occupied posting links to my latest vlog on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and several online forums that I subscribe to.

My tremor is playing up this morning, making it difficult for me to use the computer, but I persevere and get there in the end.

It’s been raining heavily for the early part of the day, but by lunchtime it has stopped and the sun puts in a welcome appearance.

I take a little CBD oil before we go out, hoping that it will help to relax me a little.  It does!

We have a noisy afternoon in the village hall with a dozen or so toddlers.  Noisy, but fairly entertaining.

My wife and I help clear away the debris when the party is over, and then we retire to my wife’s eldest son’s house where we plan to have a couple of beers and order a Chinese takeaway.

2017-09-15 – Cold and grey.

Another day of rain.  Its cold and grey, and raining heavily in Southrepps this morning.  I take the dog for a quick walk at around 9am when it stops (briefly).

I have my weekly vlog to do today – I have usually selected a topic by now, and even done some research for the script.  I have two topics in mind, and did do a little research (on both topics) yesterday, but I really need to make my mind up and get a move on!

I decide to talk about heavy metals and their role in Parkinson’s disease – this is an easy one for me, so the problem is going to be keeping the video to a watchable length.  I like to make my vlogs between 5 and 6 minutes long but I just know they this one is going to overrun.  I write the script off the top of my head, partly from the research that I did yesterday, but mainly from my experiences with dental metals.  My voice is playing me up a bit, so I change my neurostimulator over to group “B” settings for a little while.  I actually try to film myself whilst still using the group “B” settings, but my eyes are clenching themselves shut and I feel distinctly odd, so I change my device back to group “A” settings and start again.  I manage to film myself without too much trouble, although I have a fair few retakes.  I load the raw footage onto my MacBook and crack on with the editing.

My wife arrives home from work, and I’m still not finished.  I manage to complete the editing while she goes out for a run, and then I upload it to my YouTube channel while we eat our dinner and catch an episode of Dexter on Netflix.

2017-09-14 – Birthday girl.

It’s a miserable grey morning in Southrepps – overcast and pouring with rain.  Most uninspiring!

I’m generally feeling uninspired today, and can’t seem to conjure up the enthusiasm to do anything.  So, today is a bit of a write-off.

It stops raining almost long enough for me to take the dog for her morning stroll.  We do get wet, but not too seriously.

I decide upon doing some research for my weekly vlog, but by the end of the afternoon I still haven’t written any of the script – I’ve done plenty of reading (online), but I’m torn between two different subjects (and still haven’t made my mind up which one to choose).

The weather brightens up this afternoon, and the afternoon dog walk is quite pleasant.

It’s our eldest granddaughter’s 2nd birthday today (time flies!) so my wife returns home early from work, we have an early dinner (chilli con carne leftovers from yesterday) and go to Hevingham for the evening, to give the birthday girl her presents.

2017-09-13 – A stack of admin.

I have a stack of admin tasks that are awaiting my attention, and which I have been (subconsciously) avoiding.   I decide to make a list of them and try to tackle one or two of them today.  It’s a day for staying inside, in any case its blowing a gale outside this morning (the tail end of storm Aileen, not quite hurricane Irma, but damned windy all the same) and it’s pouring with rain all afternoon.

I reply to a couple of emails that have been waiting for me since last week, sort out some information for my daughter (that she’s been waiting for for far too long), pay the river licence for our boat (that should have been paid in April), and start researching electricity prices (we are currently on a fixed tariff contract which expires next month).

The dog gets her walks in between rain showers.

Feeling better than I have done for some time, I make dinner (chili con carne), which surprises and pleases my wife when she gets home from work.  It even tastes pretty good!

2017-09-12 – Going to the dentist.

I’m going to the dentist this morning.   I broke a tooth last November when we were on holiday, and today is the day that the broken stump is going to be removed (it’s too far gone to be crowned).  Because I have had Deep Brain Stimulation surgery, there are one or two precautions that are required, the main one being that I need to take a prophylactic antibiotic an hour before my appointment.  So, at 8am I swallow a gram of amoxicillin, washed down with my morning cup of tea.   A quick trip round the village hall field with the dog (who, thankfully, got through the night without being ill, like she was while were were out for the evening yesterday) and then I’m out of the door.

I’m in Aylsham for my appointment at 9am, and I’m soon  reclined in the dentist’s chair, receiving my shots of local anaesthetic (which, because I’m having a molar removed, are right at the back of my mouth and are extremely uncomfortable) followed by a quick x-ray.  My left leg had some tremor in it (as is usual these days) but the stress of the situation (I never even realised that I got stressed when having an injection) has me shaking pretty much all over, which isn’t very pleasant.   While we are waiting for the anaesthetic to take effect, my dentist prepares one of my other teeth for a new crown.  Then, the bombshell news that the x-ray shows that the roots of the tooth are very curved and really should be surgically removed, rather than simply being yanked out (as has been the plan) – so, I am to be referred to another dentist for a surgical extraction, meaning that the prophylactic antibiotic was unnecessary and the numb jaw that I’m now experiencing is a complete waste of time (and discomfort).  I am a little peeved, but these things happen…

Back in Southrepps, I check social media and respond to a few messages and comments that I have received, and wait for my face to feel normal again.  The anaesthetic wears off by lunchtime, and my mouth feels pretty sore where the dentist injected me, so I try a little cannabis to soothe the discomfort, which works very well!

2017-09-11 – A birthday takeaway.

I spend the morning finishing my contribution to Karl Sterling’s book.  Karl is a fitness trainer who specialises in training programs for people with Parkinson’s.  He is writing a book about his fitness regime for Parkinson’s, and asked me if I would be prepared to write a few pages on my experiences.  His deadline is today, so I need to finish writing and email it to him as soon as possible.  My wife read through what I had written last night, and came up with a few suggestions for improvement, so I incorporate the improvements and email the finished document to him.

I then shop around online for a cement board panel for the side of the bath, something I have promised my wife that I will do this week – another item crossed off my list of things that I need to achieve.

It’s my wife’s ex-husband’s birthday today, so my wife and I are joining him for a takeaway curry this evening at their eldest son’s house.  The curry is excellent, as is the company, and my wife’s ex-husband liked the very rude card and gift that we had chosen for him, so the evening was a resounding success.

Willow, our labrador, wanting her breakfast!

When we get back to Southrepps, we find that the dog had eaten something that had disagreed with her (Labradors will eat virtually anything) and had deposited the contents of her stomach on the kitchen floor.  Thankfully the kitchen floor is tiled, so the cleanup operation was relatively easy!

2017-09-10 – Entertaining.

Today we are entertaining on our boat.  My wife’s mum, dad and brother are joining us for a little cruise down the River Ant and a bite to eat.

Before we go to the boatyard, my wife walks the dog, gets some essentials together (tea, coffee, butter, etc.) to take to the boat with us, and bakes a sponge to make her ex-husband a birthday cake.  I spend the morning checking my social media accounts and replying to a number of messages that I have received.

We pay a visit to Lidl in North Walsham (to get some milk and beer) on the way to Wayford Bridge, arriving at our boat in time to give it a bit of clean and tidy before our guests appear.

Tremor is reasonably well contained (apart from my left leg, which is dancing a little jig to itself), voice isn’t too bad, balance and walking are okay.  I’m feeling very fatigued, though, and by the end of the afternoon my voice is slurring with tiredness (I only had one beer, so it definitely wasn’t alcohol induced).

The weather, which hasn’t been wonderful today, lets us down as we set off back up the river, and it rains all the way back to our mooring at Wayford Bridge.

We take leave of our guests (who appear to have thoroughly enjoyed the afternoon on the river – even if it did rain) and pop over to see my mother (who has advanced Parkinson’s) in Stalham.   She seems in quite good spirits, although she tells me that she has had a few falls this past week, and has damaged her hand which looks swollen.

By the time we get back to Southrepps it is dark (and still raining quite heavily).  My wife finishes off making her ex-husband’s birthday cake while I loaf around on the sofa drinking beer.

2017-09-09 – Karl Sterling’s book.

I’m having a lazy day today.  My wife is busy with doing the laundry, while I sit on the sofa trying to do a bit more of my contribution to Karl Sterling’s book.

I take the dog for her morning walk while my wife goes for a run, and then we wander down to our allotment to do some weeding and to harvest some courgettes, tomatoes, spinach and weirdly shaped carrots.

It’s my wife’s ex-husband’s birthday on Monday, so we need to find a present for him.  We decide to go into North Walsham to look for a gift.  We swiftly find something suitable, along with the perfect birthday card (I’d put a picture of it on here, but it’s just too rude!).

Back home, I spend some more time working on my contribution to Karl’s book (deadline is this Monday!) before we settle down in front of the telly for the evening.

2017-09-08 – A busy day.

I have a busy day ahead of me.  I am meeting with a production company film crew at Norman Lamb’s constituency office in North Walsham this lunchtime, where I am going to be filmed interviewing Norman for the documentary “The God Plant“.

Before I do that, though, I do have some other things to do!  I consume tea and Nutriblast, walk the dog, change into clean jeans and shirt, have a shave and then listen to PopMaster.   I’m a bit concerned about my voice this morning, so I change my neurostimulator to group “A” settings (which give me a stronger voice, but make me feel a bit “on edge”).   I tolerate the settings for about half an hour, and then change back to group “B” settings.

I drive to North Walsham, and meet the film crew for a quick cup of coffee before we carry all the cameras, stands, lighting, etc. into Norman’s office to get it set up before he arrives.

Norman arrives a little late, and we get stuck in straight away.  My policy of providing him with the questions in advance pays dividends, and his answers to them are well structured and considered.  My voice held up quite well, and I only had two retakes due to it strangling my sentences.  We take just under our allotted 30 minutes, pack the gear into the film crew’s car, and adjourn to the local cafe for another cup of coffee.

By the time I get back to Southrepps the dog wants her afternoon walk, so I take her.  I then upload my weekly vlog to my YouTube channel, publish it and post links to it on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

My wife arrives home from work soon after, and whisks me off to North Walsham (again) to do some grocery shopping in Lidl.

2017-09-07 – A change of schedule

I am going to work on my weekly vlog today.  It’s a task that I generally reserve for Fridays, but this Friday I am going to be filming an interview with my local member of parliament, Norman Lamb, for the documentary “The God Plant“, so there’s a change of schedule.

I decide upon a subject (Repurposed Drugs For Parkinson’s Disease), and set about researching and writing a script.  My tremor seems fairly controlled, and my voice, although occasionally strangling my sentences, is a little stronger than it has been of late.   I still struggle with filming myself, though, and have many retakes.  Eventually I’m ready to load the footage onto my MacBook and get a move on with the editing.  Tremor is giving me a break this week, and that means that I have fewer problems when editing my video.

I take the dog for her afternoon walk, and then remember to send a list of questions to Norman Lamb’s office, so that he can be prepared – we only have 30 minutes of his time tomorrow, and it’s important that we get the most out of it.

I manage to finish editing my video before my wife gets home from work, which is always a good thing!

2017-09-06 – Getting distracted.

I’m going to continue writing my contribution to Karl Sterling’s book today, so I get the usual cups of tea, Nutriblast, dog walk and PopMaster out of the way, and sit myself down at the dining room table with my iPad.

I do manage to get some of my contribution written, but I keep getting distracted by other tasks, so I still haven’t finished.  Tomorrow I’m going to be busy with my weekly vlog, because I’m going to be busy interviewing Norman Lamb on Friday (my usual vlog day), so I guess I’ll have to finish off my contribution over the weekend (the deadline is Monday!).

I send a text message to the production company who are filming my interview with Norman – chasing up approval for the list of questions that I sent to them on Monday, and checking that they hadn’t forgotten that they were expected in Norfolk on Friday morning.  All is well – my questions are fine, and the crew intend to arrive before the appointed hour on Friday so that were can grab a cup of coffee before setting up cameras, lighting, etc.

I decide to take since high potency CBD oil this afternoon – I thought that I had been taking 1 gram doses up until now, and was quite disappointed that I hadn’t been getting much benefit from it.  Today I have my glasses on, and I realise that each graduation mark on the syringe indicates 0.5 gram, so I have only been taking half the dose that I thought I had (stupid boy!).  I take a proper 1 gram dose, and within half an hour I’m feeling the effects – very relaxed, and I have the munchies.

2017-09-05 – Another one!

I’m going to tackle another one of my pending clerical tasks today.  Our friend Karl Sterling (who is a fitness trainer, specialising in people with Parkinson’s) is in the process of writing a book, and he had asked me if I’d be prepared to write a few pages about my experiences with PD for inclusion.  Of course I agreed to do so, but now the deadline is drawing near, and I really need to get a move on and write something!

So after drinking my morning cups of tea and my Nutriblast, walking the dog and listening to PopMaster, I sit myself down at the dining room table with my iPad and scribble away for several hours, until the dog reminds me that it’s time for me to take her out for another walk.  I haven’t achieved as much as I had wanted to, so it looks like I’m going to be busy finishing this off tomorrow (if not the day after, as well!).

My wife arrives home from work early, so we call in to see some close neighbours regarding some work that they want my wife to do.   The work aspect is quickly dealt with, and we sit in our neighbours back garden chatting and drinking wine until the evening starts drawing in.

2017-09-04 – Clerical tasks

I have a small stack of clerical tasks that I really need to do this week.  The most pressing is concerning my interview with Norman Lamb this Friday.  I have been making a list of questions to ask him, and want to review what I have written before emailing the questions to the production company (who are going to be filming the interview) for them to approve and add to.  I have promised Norman Lamb’s personal assistant that I will supply a list of the questions that I’m going to ask him, in advance, so that he can be prepared.  Time is running out!

Tremor and muscular stiffness and weakness are conspiring to make my typing slow and inaccurate, but eventually I’m happy that I have sufficient material to fill the 30 minute slot that we have been allotted.  I cut and paste my list of questions into an email, and send it to the production company.

I need to post a cheque to the Southrepps Parish Council in payment for our allotment for the next 12 months, and I have a number of packages to send out (eBay sales), so I package everything up, wander round to the village post office and have a good old chin-wag with the postmaster before taking the dog for her afternoon stroll.  I’m obviously getting tired (probably due to our busy day yesterday) because my walking is definitely significantly worse than it was when I walked the dog this morning – more of a stumble than a walk.

2017-09-03 – Out on our boat.

We are going out on our boat today with some friends of mine who are dropping in to visit us, so we’re up reasonably early today, because we want to get down to the boat and give it a bit of a clean before my friends arrive.

We drop into Lidl in North Walsham (to pick up some food to offer to our guests) on the way to Wayford Bridge, where our boat is moored.  My wife busiest herself with cleaning the windows while I check that we have sufficient diesel in the tank (we have) and make sure that the engine will start (it does).   Our guests arrive and we take a leisurely trip down to Barton Turf and back, with a pleasant interlude for feeding our faces.   I have plenty of tremor in my left leg today, but that doesn’t interfere with piloting the boat. My voice lets me down occasionally, but it’s not a complete disaster.

We tie the boat up and return to Southrepps, where we retire to the Vernon Arms for two or the pints of Abbott Ale and plenty of reminiscing.

My wife and I see our guests off and return home for an episode of Dexter on Netflix before bedtime.

2017-09-02 – So much for an early start!

I intended to get up early today, and post links to my latest vlog on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram before my wife gets up.  I’m awake at 6am, but that seems a little too early for a Saturday.  I’m awake again at 7.20am, and that seems a reasonable time to get up.  I fall back to sleep until gone 8am.  So much for an early start!

I get up, feed the dog and put the kettle on.  My wife appears, so I make the tea and coffee – the weekend has begun.

Some friends of mine are coming to visit tomorrow lunchtime. We intend to entertain them on our boat, but the house needs to be spick and span just in case the weather turns out to be grotty and we have to entertain them at home.  So I am on dusting and vacuuming duties (and dog walking) while my wife does everything else.

This afternoon we both do a little work down on our allotment – well, actually, my wife does quite a lot of work and I do a little work.  I spend about half an hour digging up weeds, and then I’m knackered and in need of a sit-down at home.

Tremor seems a little better today, although it was giving me trouble first thing this morning.  Voice is weak, but better than it was yesterday. Muscular stiffness and weakness are present but not giving me too many problems.  Balance and walking aren’t great, but at least I’m not falling over.  Mood and motivation are fairly low, but I am managing to get things done, so nothing too serious.

Beer, a pinch of cannabis, Dexter on Netflix followed by a reasonably early night.

2017-09-01 – It’s vlog day!

It’s vlog day, and I have some challenges to face.  Firstly, I need to do some research and write a script, then I need to locate images and/or video snippets for the products that I’m going to be talking about.  This little task takes me all morning and half of the afternoon (including two breaks to perform my dog walking duties) but finally I’m ready to set up the camera and tripod and film myself.

Filming myself is the next major challenge.  My voice is very weak and is strangling my sentences, so I change my neurostimulator to the new (group “B”) settings.  My voice is much improved, but I find my eyes are constantly clamping themselves shut – only momentarily, but it doesn’t look great on video!  I change the settings back to group “A”, and make an extra effort to project my voice and enunciate clearly, but I still have many, many re-takes – very frustrating!

Then it’s on with the edit.  I load the footage onto my MacBook and get cracking, but tremor is really playing me up today (my next challenge) and I keep clicking the mouse where I don’t want to be clicking the mouse, and making stupid mistakes with my clumsiness.

My wife arrives home from work and I’m still nowhere near finished.   We have our dinner, and then I continue editing.  I finally finish the job and get it uploaded to my YouTube channel in time to publish it just a few minutes before midnight.  I’ll post links to it on social media tomorrow.  It’s been a long day…

2017-08-31 – The sunshine is back!

The sunshine is back in Southrepps today – it’s amazing how the weather can affect your mood.  I’m feeling much more positive this morning.

It is my daughter’s 22nd birthday today, so I send her birthday greetings by text and social media (I already sent her a birthday card).

My wife is having another day of delivering leaflets to promote her soft furnishings business, and I have a number of computer-based tasks that I need to do.  I need to assist our friend Karl Sterling with booking some accommodation local to Southrepps for when he comes to visit us next month, and I also need to start work on my contribution to Karl’s book about exercise and Parkinson’s Disease.  My contribution will be mainly about Parkinson’s Disease!  I also want to make start on the script for my weekly vlog – this week I’m going to talk about a few innovative products that make life easier for people with Parkinson’s, and which have caught my eye over the post few months.  I have applied for (and been granted) permission to use some images of the products in my video, but it would be good to get some video of them in action, so I email the companies concerned to ask them if they have some promotional video that I could use.

I take a 1 gram dose of high potency CBD oil that I have been sent – I tried taking a 3 gram dose a few weeks ago, and it made me incapable of action.  The 1 gram dose doesn’t seem to do much at all, so I’ll probably try increasing it to 1.5 grams tomorrow.

I try switching my neurostimulator to group “B”settings for a little while (to improve the strength of my voice, which is weak and disappearing).  My voice does improve, but dyskinesia and tremor also increase, so I revert to group “A”settings after half an hour or so.