One of my photos

Foreign parts

June 16th, 2019 · Posted by Skuds in Life · No Comments · Life

This month I saw my oncologist and got a plan for the remainder of my treatment. What that means is that we now know when my last lot of chemotherapy starts so we can work out when it should end, add a week to get over the effects, and a couple of weeks to allow for unexpected delays, and get a holiday booked for when I should be feeling better. I already have an outpatients appointment scheduled with the surgeon anyway, so will get him to whip out the dreadful jejunal feeding tube, leaving enough time for the hole to heal up before we go. Who wants to sit around the pool with a rubber tube sticking out of their stomach?

We have decided to go to Crete. Unadventurous I suppose, because we have been there several times, but at least we know that we like it there. There is an ulterior motive too. Jayne needs a replacement wedding ring because her original one got cut off when she had a hand operation a few years ago. Her engagement and eternity rings are both from Greece, and they use a different gold – 14 carat I think.

We are looking forward to it, as it is the first proper holiday for us since 2016. That was our second honeymoon, when we really splashed out on a luxury trip to the Dominican Republic. I found it a bit difficult taking holidays while I was a councillor. It was hard to schedule it without missing meetings and briefings, unless it was during school holidays and half terms. It was not so much the extra cost that put us off that as the fact that we prefer holidays when there are fewer children around.

The intention is to just laze around the pool or beach for the duration and not spend days on excursions. We have already been from one end of the island to the other in hired cars or on a hired quad bike and seen all the main archaeological sites, and quite a few minor ones, and all the main towns, so we can take it easy. It will give me a chance to make a dent on all those unread books on my Kindle as well.

Having said that, I still fancy hiring motorbikes or scooters for a day or two and going up to the Lasithi plain. It really is a brilliant place. I think I could live up there, and I am sorely tempted to request that my ashes are scattered on the hills above the plain, just above road onto the plain.

There is one tiny frustration about it all though. Our son moved back home ‘just for a few months’ a couple of years ago, and it looks like he has finally got his shit together enough to get a place of his own and move out. The likelihood is that as soon as we get our spare room back at last, we will have to ask him to move back into it for a couple of weeks so he can look after the cat and dogs.

The timing is also a bit cheeky because it will mean booking time off work very soon after I return from long-term sick leave, but I don’t have a lot of choice. It can’t be any earlier because I need to finish the treatment. I can’t be travelling with syringes and supplies for my feeding tube, and piles of prescription drugs, not to mention still having an open wound in my stomach, or various hospital appointments to get to. Any later and the season is over. Apart from that, I really do need to use up some leave or I will end up having to take the whole of March as holiday, or something like that.

Something else occurred to me. This could be our last chance to travel abroad in Europe without a load of hassle. In September we will still be in the EU, so no visas, no roaming charges on the mobile, confidence about medical cover, and generally less red tape. Might as well make the most of our freedom of movement while we still have it.

I am going to try not to keep banging on about this holiday at every opportunity but, like I said, we are very excited, so it might be hard to avoid mentioning it once or twice. Per hour.


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