James' blog - July Heat Wave

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James' blog - July Heat Wave

July started in a heat wave followed by a month’s rain in a day and then ending for me with the mother and father of a UTI. Thus my regrets for failing to write the July blog and by the time this is finished August will be quite far through as well.

Anyway during that time life on the farm has been busy as it has been harvest time. We managed to harvest our winter barley and oilseed rape before the rain storm hit us dropping, and then when the weather cleared a week or ten days later the peas and winter wheat were all coming nicely to ripeness so the harvest crew worked long hours to finish the whole acreage by August 7th; then of course baling, carting and on and on it goes. We have been blessed with good weather this year – thank goodness.

We had three days in London in the middle of July mostly to watch some of the cricket Test Match at Lords and to see a few friends. Fortunately we saw the early part of the game when Australia built a glorious innings before the home team flopped in a disappointing way. At that stage we all thought that England would find it impossible to assert themselves in the series but what a difference a few weeks makes and after two more wins we are the proud holders of the ashes again – very satisfactory for us old cricketing bores! It is much to be hoped that the final Test Match at the Oval should show both teams at their best. Anyway the Rugby World Cup is coming up soon so we will not be short of great sporting tournaments for some time. Sailing is a great interest but you will not want to hear about all that.

Those of you who have had the dubious pleasure of a UTI (Urinary Tract Infection) will be able to testify to the speed and extreme discomfort that this causes. They always attack just before the weekend, usually a long weekend, so that doctors and medication are difficult if not impossible to access but luckily my team of Angels (Carers to the un-initiated) have become excellent at spotting the early symptoms, which in this case seem to consist of sleepiness, tummy spasms, stiff shoulders swiftly followed by a roaring temperature, almost north of 38c, and completely cramped up arms and shoulders.

Anyway despite the patient’s declaration that he is perfectly alright, the girls administer paracetamol, anti-biotics if in stock, cold compresses to head and neck, cold enough to make the patient use bad language, and organise doctors, trips to the pharmacy, if open, and are in every way wonderful, patient and calm throughout the first twenty four hours or so when things are at their worst. We were allowed an Angel for the night and she, poor girl, had a torrid time; the patient by then having decided that there was something wrong with him and being male assumed the outcome would be terminal and had to be given a sharp talking to in the middle of the night, after which of course things started to improve. Much time was spent massaging arms and shoulders in spasm/cramp, it is amazing what these girls can do and it only remains for the patient to express his profound thanks for all that they did for him.

Finally one of my team has moved on, no doubt to greater things I hope. We will all miss her dreadfully but wish her the very best of luck for the future and thanks for the years she has given me in first class care.

Best wishes to all for the rest of the summer.

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