All posts by Russ

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I get a train from Brentford to London Waterloo.
Then I get onto a train from there, going to Sevenoaks ( and beyond ).
The trouble is that I’m now at Beyond, since the guard never came to get me off at Sevenoaks.

I ask a fellow passenger to shout for the guard. A lady one eventually saunters up … then is absolutely mortified to find out that no one had told her I was on the train, let alone that she was supposed to get me off ( the train .. )

Now I’m 2 stops further away, because at the next stop I can’t leave the train, because the station itself is below road level, down a flight of steps, and there’s no lift.

Now I’m in Tonbridge

Ok, now I’m off, and someone escorted me off and up a lift, and over a bridge, and down a lift, and onto a train.

Back to Sevenoaks.
Where hopefully I’ll get off.

Let’s see!

Ahhh every day is a bloody adventure, isn’t it.


And I now have a front tooth implant.
Bloody hell, when you don’t have the use of your legs to put yourself in all sorts of positions, you’ve no idea how used your mouth is. – think dogs and how much they use their mouths.
Anyway, after a longgg longgg time of not being able to do anything particularly grippy with my mouth , because I’ve had crowns etc at the front …. I’ve now got a bulletproof implant.

Today I tore sellotape for the first time in years with my front teeth.
Im telling you, my oral world is my undiscovered oyster.


Thinking outside my box.

So most days I do pull ups. The bar is one of those that you put in your door frame. It’s about 5 foot 6 up and like I said, across the door frame to my spare bedroom.
It’s a hazard to anyone tall’ish, who’s not looking mind. People rarely walk into it. Well all except Toby who walks into it EVERY time he comes round, sometimes 2 or 3 times on the same visit…. I mean it’s stopped even being funny tbh!

Anyway, when I do pull ups I’m obviously sat in my chair. It’s best with my Triride attached to me, because that stops my legs going weird places.
The trouble is though, when I go up and down, my nuts fall between my legs. Obviously I can’t feel it happening, but when every time I stop for a rest, I reach down and have to drag the fellas upwards… and sometimes they are seriously wedged. I mean if I could feel it, it would be terrible I’m sure.
I’ve tried various ways of stopping it happening, but to no avail.

Well just now I saw a face mask hanging on a hook nearby.

Lightbulb moment!

I worked the face mask…. Ie the Sling (!) under the lads… and then tied the mask loops to my belt at the front.

A bollock hammock !

No more pull up ball crush worries for me!

If you pop round mine and feel the need to put on a face mask… you might want to avoid the light blue one hanging on a hook in the spare bedroom though ..

6 days on and I’m still very hot at night and cold in the days…
I only went out today to vote…. that was all the adventure I had in me. The voting venue entrance was plenty wheelchair accessible but i don’t think they’d thought much about the exit – of course it’s all ‘ one way ‘ at the moment. I got out the weeny church back door…. but only just, once over the unfriendly to wheelchairs threshold..

After a ( well Jesus it’s all relative in these anti social times ) busy period recently, I was listing ‘ all ‘ the people I’d have to contact to tell them I had Covid… but then in the end I didn’t. Felt a bit intense though for a bit.
None of them had symptoms and they’d all had at least one vaccine jab.
Goes to show then, the system is working!

Chris and Caroline had both already had Covid – they caught it at an outside, socially distant BBQ – which shows how bloody virulent it is, and that outside mingling alone isn’t enough, well not without the vaccine. Well it went crazy here after the ( outdoor ) Cheltenham Festival and a football match ( obviously outside) up north. Obviously the infected fans did travel to the events, but in outside crowds it would seem to prevail….
Thanks for the ( plant based ) lunch they brought ( well tidy ).
Good to see Lily and Zig too!

I’m watching The Handmaid’s Tale. Wow, that’s a chilling one. If you haven’t seen, then do. There’s a lot of stuff on that’s hopelessly bad. It’s obvious that not much new has been released this last year.
My habitual cinema opens in less than 2 weeks – at last – but they are showing about 2 old Disney films and some football matches….. mmmm I think I might wait.

And tomorrow I FINALLY get my front tooth back. Jeez I haven’t been able to speak properly for about a year, and it’ll be AMAZING!


A massive thank you to the lovely Lizzy.
She really is a Duracell bunny, full of never ending energy, which all day long she expends on doing things for other people – the charity, her 2 children, me, the elderly lady in Sevenoaks that she also looks after ( no relation, no one that she knew until last year ) and anyone else that she happens across.

To get me into her car requires a lot of effort ( on her part ). She’s only 5 foot 1 and half my weight, and never admits that anything is difficult. To get my legs into the footwell is REALLY hard. They are very rigidly set in the ‘ sat down’ position once I’m in my chair. To straighten them ie someone else lifting my feet up isn’t easy, so to try to get both my feet into a high up car is very difficult. I can’t help at all, because I can’t bloody bend forward either, so little Lizzy has to lie across the front seats and drag my feet up one by one. After that she has to help me as I pull myself into her car using the handle above the door.
Then she has to take the wheels off my chair, put those into her car, and then the rest of my chair.
Oh, and then she has to lift my very heavy Triride into the car as well.
When we get to where we are going, she has to do it all in reverse.

The whole process makes me feel so guilty that I really really avoid it having to happen. I’d far rather Triride to the destination, leaving her to drive herself, if it’s less than 10 miles, or I’d far rather use public transport. Those ways, there is no need for her to have to hoik me or my stuff, both ends.

So as I rule I catch trains to and from Sevenoaks, but because I’d been ill, Lizzy insisted I go by car. I know she’d never admit to it being a bloody pain, but jeez it must be.
Anyway I want to say thank you to her with all of my heart, for her love and devotion, always, but particularly these last few feverish days where I didn’t do a lot other than sweat. ..

Lizzy, you really are too good for me.


Well after 3 days of being sort of ok In the daytimes, but then have 101 degree nights, with sweats and feverish dreams, at least it’s not COVID – my test came back negative.
The trouble with SCI ( spinal cord injury ) and hospitals, is that they really really don’t know how to look after you properly.’ Standard ‘ nursing doesn’t work, they have to be extra trained in SCI.

So I definitely wouldn’t go to hospital, even if I was really up against it, not to a standard one. I’d have more chance by myself, with the assistance of my regular helpers.
The paralysis hospitals wouldn’t take me as a patient, in case I infected everyone else.
So it’s not an ideal situation, is it?


After having ‘ got better’ I’ve then got worse again.
Another high temperature.

A peculiar thing that happens to me whenever I’ve had some sort of illness, is that my chest muscle disappears.
If that happens then I know I’ve been ill !

Bit random and actually bloody annoying because I do my best to keep my chest musculature intact, doing chest exercises with a high resistance Pilates ring most days.


I’m going to have a proper COVID test today at 12.30 to see if it’s that. Well like most people I’ve had far more contact with people in the last week or 2, albeit it mostly outside.

It’ll be very interesting how much and if COVID comes back, despite the vaccinations. I mean they don’t actually know, do they, because we haven’t tested the theory by opening up, until now.

Saturday night fever

Just after a conversation with a friend where I mentioned that I never ( or historically hardly ever ) get ill, as in colds/ coughs/ viral infections etc ( I’ve never had a headache- as in not once ) … I start to feel cold, like really cold. It’s 12 degrees and I have to Triride a mile or 2 from Sevenoaks town to Lizzy’s house, and I start to properly shiver.
When I get there, despite a fan heater pointed at me for an hour, I’m really cold.
After her ( significant ) help onto her sofa, I fall asleep ( for 4 hours) and then eventually once in bed I sleep for another 11 hours and am drenched in sweat.
I have a random dream where there are massive plastic animals going past the window of the house I’m in, and then when I go outside the street is full of objects on fire, with hundreds of people looking on in horror.
Then I say I’d like to go back, because now Lizzy is with me, but she helps me into a small car parked outside her house, in a muddy field, and tells me to go to sleep. When I ask if it would be ok if I just came into the house instead, she just looks at me awkwardly, and despite my plaintive requests she doesn’t let me in… and the car smells a lot of dogs.

When this morning I told Lizzy about my dream, she was quite upset that I should think so badly of her. Well it’s alright for you, I said, you didn’t have to sleep in a cold, wet car.

Me saying that wasn’t helpful. 😂

Anyway I’ve now always got the ‘ don’t make me sleep in the car ‘ line at hand if I ( heaven forbid ) want to make her feel bad!

Oh, and she gave me a lateral flow COVID test ( it’s not pleasant, is it, and made a really gag – but at least that implies I did it properly ) and it was negative.

So, for the first time in a long time ( other than the nastiness of spinal cord injury stuff ) I’ve actually been ill.
But as always with me, ill be better within 24 hours.

I’ve still got the constitution of a Welsh sheep then.

Saturday, and it’s sunny

Because I have skim cancer tendencies, I have to put on Factor 50 when the sun comes out. Weirdly though it seems to make me more tanned than using nothing at all ( where I go red before I eventually go brown.
Anyway, my help ( G ) was putting some on my back, and said ‘ ooh, you’ve got the Smurf lotion ‘

Hmmmm… that’ll be the kids blue cream that is Factor 50 then… well I can’t even pronounce Piz Buin let alone feel like spending extra on it.

So if it’s a sunny day in Wesr London, and you see a smurf in a wheelchair, going fast, then that’ll be me.

Please shout out something Smurfy!

A night out. A real night out

With a group of friends!
Ok, no handshakes, but also no masks, and no social distancing.
Outside of course, in the never endingly cold winter of 2020/21, but hey it was like the Old Days.

I looked at the menu, and it all looked lovely. I thought it was because I’d not seen a menu for a year… but actually no it wasn’t that at all. After about 5 minutes I realised that it was because it had ‘ normal’ food , rather than the plant based diet that I’ve eaten for 6 months.
Well you can’t just totally ‘ uncondition ‘ yourself can you? I mean you still have the bodily and mental reflexes that eating a certain diet induces.
So I almost ordered fish and chips… until I remembered that that was my past, not my future. Of course fish and chips tastes lovely, certainly better than tofu with salad… 🤦‍♂️ but hey it would be definitely far less environmentally impactful if far more people made the decision to shift to mainly plant eating.
I can’t change the world, but I can make my own contribution, and encouraging you to shift a bit/ a bit more/ a lot more, so that our descendants aren’t living in a dead and poisoned galactic rock, with only video footage of David Attenborough talking about long extinct animals, fish and birds.