It is hard to believe it is already November with all the Christmas hysteria in full swing.  It is especially hard for me because this year I seem to have lost a month. I went into hospital for a replacement ankle in October and from then on my concentration was totally given up to my recovery.  Now I am home, with my ankle in a cumbersome boot but hopefully on the mend, so that I should be fully mobile in a month’s time.  I have every confidence and owe huge thanks to my brilliant surgeon and the overworked, underpaid, but totally wonderful NHS.

So – the outside world disappeared for a month while I was left with coping with pain control and one leg and one hand to do everything. And I found the coping incredibly hard.  Although this disability lasted only a short while for me –  I have been left with huge admiration for all the disabled people who have to manage without one or more limbs for the rest of their lives.  It is the small things that you are unable to do that result in the most frustration – i.e. getting dressed, brushing teeth, boiling an egg, etc. etc.  It was important to me that I remained self sufficient (the social services seemed quite stretched enough) so I bought a kneeler/scooter to get me around.  Although this enabled me to manage without outside help, it did have it’s problems, especially in small spaces where it required a 20 point manoeuvre to get it to turn round!

Now I have done with that.  Until December 8th I limp around with my large boot but at least I am on two legs and have the use of two arms. It means I now have no excuse to ignore what is going on in the outside world – and I wish I didn’t have to!  The world seems to have got marginally worse since I last took note.  The situation on the Burma/Bangladesh border is a major tragedy which needs international intervention, so far not forthcoming – Trump continues his bizarre and dangerous presidency, still failing to acknowledge global warming – and as for the situation here, it beggars belief.  Johnson completely inadequate as foreign secretary and should go, along with his fellow conspirator Michael Gove.  Brexit negotiations move from disaster to disaster, May and her government seem incapable of attending to the other real needs of the country –  housing and NHS –  and on top of all this we have all the sexual scandals emerging – and all this happening against a backdrop of jolly Christmas ads and shopping fever.  I don’t mean to be ‘bah humbug’ about it – but each year it seems to me the true spirit of Christmas gets more and more lost and more and more depressing in its vulgarity.

No wonder I want to retreat back to my box sets, old films and books.  Something more cheerful for my December blog I hope!