Thursday, 16 May 2019

Sad News

Jennie you are being naive thinking you have escaped us.  You're travelling at 4mph whilst we have a car!

Marilyn I'm a SNAG (Sensitive New Age Guy).   If Economy Class is good enough for me then it's good enough for Jan....... Unlike someone I have read about who travels Business Class and sends their spouse Economy!  Actually Jan has never recovered from travelling First Class in 2011.  I'm trying to get her into remission.

For the past 35 years I've maintained contact with close friends of Jan's grandparents.  Jan has known them even longer.  Peter passed away more than a decade ago leaving Hilda on her own.  They had no children, however Hilda has a number of friends.  Each time we've visited the UK we fit in a visit to Hilda and whilst we were on Waiouru we were able to make regular trips.  Upon returning to Perth we maintained contact using Skype.  For the past couple of months we hadn't been able to make contact with Hilda and one of the first things we've done since arriving this month is to hire a car in order to visit her.

Sadly we found Hilda in a local care home.  She had a couple of falls in March and had been directed into the home for a rest.  The three of us were very pleased to see each other, however Hilda's physical condition was a concern. She is very frail and gaunt.

Hilda was concerned about her house and it's contents, worrying about what might happen to them prior to her return.  Unfortunately we suspect she will never leave the home.  Our initial impression of the care home was that it appeared quite modern and clean.  The staff appeared friendly but as Hilda pointed out they were all either Asian, African or from the Middle East and she couldn't understand what they were saying. We arrived at the conclusion of lunch and when I looked at the meal trays I decided I'd prefer not to eat there.  We're making arrangements in order to maintain contact with Hilda.

Jan has visited numerous care homes in Adelaide when she was a member of a local choir and has a good understanding of the types of homes you might expect.  They're not for me.  So I'm going to have to drop off my perch quite quickly when the time comes!

After two years in Perth we've been spoilt by the lack of traffic.  UK motorways are busy and there are so many trucks (lorries).  What will happen when petroleum becomes scarce and expensive?  Beeching may have seriously disadvantaged the nation. 

We spent the night at a Travelodge on the M4 slightly south of Reading.  It's the same Travelodge we spent two nights at whilst the interior of Waiouru was varnished.  Consequentially this morning I suggested to Jan that as we were very close to Aldermaston perhaps we should see what changes had occurred in the last five years.

The CRT car park has been reduced in size and replaced with modern canal side housing.



The historic tearoom building owned by the Kennet and Avon Canal Trust is still there; albeit in smaller grounds.

And Aldermaston Whaft was looking much tidier.  All but one of the staff who were there during Waiouru's fit out have now gone.

There was a steam powered boat moored on the water point.

We've got to stop visiting canals!


Ade said...

Oh no you haven’t!
I think a visit to Tyler Wilson or should be the order of the day.
Impressed with James and Debbie’s new build.
You can always say your asking for a friend! That old favourite!

Jennie said...

Tom we would love to see you both. Just let me know when and I will tell you where we will be. Sad news about Hilda. I am sure most of us dread ending our days in a care home.

Mike Griffin said...

Welcome back to Blighty!, never a god idea 'going back'. Hope you have a good visit.