Saturday, 18 July 2009

Tip 17 - Second voyage to the bright lights!

Tip 17 - Do not underestimate the impact of cosmetic surgery on your social life

Did I ever tell you the story of when I got a new nose? No, well make yourselves comfortable and I'll begin.

The story begins with my second trip to the bright lights of London in a space of two weeks. A bit like buses, I don't go for months and then twice within about 7 days. Unfortunately on the second occasion it was not nearly as much fun as the first (despite the hours of VAT research I did on the last trip - please see previous blog post!) but far more 'life changing'.

Regular blog readers will already have heard all about the process of 'picking' my new nose so I won't bore you with the finer details but pick up from the point at which my pre-surgery preparations were meant to begin. Apparently one week before surgery, 'clients' (they are not called Patients, not sure why) are instructed to cease intake of all alcohol, aspirin, tobacco and other such pleasure in life. I'm by no means an alcoholic but ONE WEEK! Dear God. Nearly managed it!!

The night before the op Hubby Hobbit and I travelled nearer to the big city to stay with Grandad Hobbit. We couldn't possibly travel all the way to in one day living so far away as we do in the proper countryside. We might of got stuck behind a convoy of tractors, or a herd of cows or anything! Stayed the night in the relative comfort of relatives home and ceased intake of anything remotely solid or liquid at midnight.

Travelled on to posh sounding private hospital in the middle of very posh housing area of Highgate! Almost missed said private hospital as it was disguised as a posh house. Once inside it takes on almost tardis qualities and turns into enormous corridor threaded hospital. How they did that I have no idea but found the whole concept quite disconcerting.

Settled into lovely private room whose dimensions were astonishingly larger than dodgy Elephant and Castle hotel room from previous week. Then promptly sat around waiting until 3.30pm (!!!) before lovely nurses escorted me to anesthetic room where I burst into tears. This is not an unusual occurrence since I am utterly petrified of general anesthetics. Random thoughts of not waking up fill my mind and I was only slightly reassured by very odd foreign anaesthetist telling me stories of her own eyelift and liposuction surgery. Do you think staff get a discount? Might have to investigate that!

One and half hours later, battered, bruised and bleeding (sorry!) I was returned to lovely private room and waiting Hubby Hobbit complete with new nose, gorgeous blue plaster cast adorning face and blue padded plaster in slug like proportions hovering intently on upper lip. Mmmm, attractive!!

The first thing that kindly nurses do when you wake up, after offering greatly appreciated sips of cold water (I should tell you that this was the hottest day of the year so far and I had been starved of liquids for nearly 16 hours so had the most horrific dehydration headache on planet earth) is to 'encourage' you to force down extremely cold and nastily margarined toast. I have never quite worked this one out. Why should they do this? Surely ice cream or something equally as tasty would do the job far better. Answers on a postcard please.

Dinner followed but slug like plaster and lack of any taste buds whatsoever really precluded any appetite so didn't bother. Such as shame as private hospital food looks much more appetising than previously suffered NHS offerings!

I really am rambling on here, sorry!

Hubby Hobbit disappeared off home back to Grandad Hobbits and left me, remote control in hand to enjoy the rest of the evening on my own. Fortunately I had been allowed the comfort of a fan as it was extremely hot, to put it mildly. And since I was in central London, on the ground floor with strangely busy pathway alongside my room, I really couldn't leave the window open. I did hear afterwards that said fan was a luxury not allowed to other 'clients' on my corridor. Not sure what I had done to deserve the privilege but I ain't arguing.

My biggest comfort during my stay was, however, my newly acquired Blackberry. Otherwise known as the BB, the Blueberry or 'that bloody annoying buzzy thing', it was my lifeline to the outside world and kept me very well entertained that night and the following morning. I had some lovely messages and Tweets during the following hours and days which kept my spirits up and my sanity in place. I should thank fellow twitterers @Belle_lulu @coffeeplus @Jaxonthepc @PSB_xxx @feline9 @Neets68 for keeping me going and also @wardotron for the unlimited alternatives for the word 'Nose' he managed to come up with over a fortnight period.

Having to stay in the house, grounded, not allowed to drive or indeed not wanting to face the world for the following 7 days was pretty troublesome. Once again my army of lovely friends leapt into the brink delivering Hobbits to various locations and popping in with flowers, chocolate and DVD's to brighten my days.

The day of the grand unveiling arrived only 7 days after surgery and having the plaster cast removed proved to be a head spinning experience. Not from the delight of seeing the new me but more from the physical feint feeling I got when it was removed. They did warn it would happen but being my usual 'I'm made of sterner stuff' self I thought it would be fine. Fine it was not, head between knees and cold water required!

Still it's all over now. Bruising has just about disappeared, nose still slightly swollen, feeling and nasal breathing abilities not entirely returned but progress has been made.

If you're really bad I might just post the evidence!

Monday, 6 July 2009

Tip 16 - London twice in a week!

Tip 16 - Try not to arrange two trips away from the family in the same week (or at least if you do - have lots of lovely friends to pick up the childcare slack)

This blog really picks up from the last one, my train journey to the 'Big Smoke' two weeks ago when I went to the Charityfair conference in Whitehall.

I must confess that although the conference itself was all about finance issues and really productive if a little dull, I did have a fab time in London. There's something fascinating about London, particularly Whitehall area, to us country folk. Apart from the bloody tourists, which we in the West Country are well used to. Having said that, I did enjoy a good giggle watching the random things foreign tourists will take pictues of. I walked past the same red phone box a number of times whilst I was there and on each occasion a completely different set of tourists in vaguely similar poses having requisite photo taken.

Whitehall is full of politician types, PR's, PA's and miscellaneous suited and booted glued to their mobile phones. Being an avid people watcher myself I had a whale of a time sitting in St James Park eating my sarnies at lunchtime. Although could quite happily have done without the groups of school children playing 'tag' or some such ALL AROUND ME!!! Felt like I was in the middle of some strange shrieking and wailing ritual. Peace shattered so back to conference to talk VAT for several hours!! Mmmm, fun.

Returned home following evening on train, just about managed to stay awake all the way home with some sharp arm pinching and digging in of nails. Avoided going all the way to Plymouth which would have proven troublesome at gone midnight. Descended from train into one of the most horrible thunder, lightning and rain storms West Country has seen in a long time. Glad to be home but one of the scariest drives ever.

But I'm going off track a little. The testament to this blog must go to the wonderful women who support this working domestic goddess in her occasional jaunts to business type events. Who tirelessly scoop up small and medium hobbits from school and deposit them in the correct location. And of course to hubby hobbit who rallies, organises, feeds and waters hobbits, bobbit and the feline furries and still rings me to ask if all is well in smoky old 'Town'!

Have completely run out of time for tales of second trip to London of which more will follow tomorrow!