ADRIENNE'S HIV BLOG – Hivine's Weblog

HIVINE is written by HIV positive women but still with a sense of humour

Two’s Company and Tree’s a Crowd

I had my pussy willow trimmed today and it was a painful as well as a traumatic experience – both for me and even more so I would imagine for the poor tree. I’ve been putting it off for way too long, but it was getting to the ‘Pussy Galore’ stage and threatening to wipe me out, like the fictional female character who bore this unfortunate name from the James Bond film ‘Goldfinger’, although apparently they did briefly consider changing her name to Kitty.

I was obliged to employ a tree surgeon to do the job because as you probably know, trees are a protected species these days and you can’t just let any old Tom, Dick or Harry loose on your pussy willows. I did consider going to B&Q to buy my own chain saw when he told me how much it was going to cost me, until I found out you have to be properly trained to use one, because if you’re not careful, they can flip back and slice you in two and I didn’t fancy cloning myself. There are also people who will come if your tree has died and turn it into a sculpture. ‘Chain Saw Jack’ for example, who professes he can transform your stump into a totem pole, although his name, along with the words ‘stump’ and ‘dead’ sounds a bit off putting to me and more reminiscent of something out of ‘Chainsaw Massacre.’

My nice young tree surgeon wasn’t a mass murderer however and neither did he use a ladder. Instead he attached himself to various ropes and like the aforementioned Pussy Galore, who was a lesbian trapeze artist in the circus before 007 got his hands on her, became an abseiling Nicky Clarke or Charles Worthington as he swung like a performer from Cirque du Soleil giving my pussy willow’s old fashioned beehive an extreme makeover.

Talking of beehives, I think he must have disturbed the colony of monster bees, who like HIV are now trying to move in with me against my will. Luckily, in this case I can prevent this from happening by closing a window and there must be an HIV joke here in relation to the ‘window period’ but I can’t quite think of it. Alternatively, I could try shooing the monster bees out with a wet tee towel, or at a pinch swatting them with my latest copy of ‘Therapy Today’. But having Buddhist leanings I am averse to do this, anyway, I haven’t read my copy of ‘Therapy Today’ yet and probably won’t tomorrow either, or the day after. But aside from failing to keep up with my continued PD as a counsellor, I owe a lot to bees, as honey was the mainstay of my diet when I was pregnant. In fact, I consumed so much of the stuff that it was a wonder my son wasn’t born with black and yellow stripes.

I kept a careful eye on Tree man as he turned somersaults and swivelled through the air, clutching his
handy half moon shaped sickle, asking me which of the tree’s trailing dreadlocks I wanted him to lop off next. But as has happened to me on occasions when I’ve put myself in the ‘Edward Scissorhands’ of an overenthusiastic hairdresser, he lopped too much off one side, then had to compensate by lopping lumps, or in this case branches, off the other, ending up with the poor tree being left with a surprise fringe, which in hairdressing terms is a fringe that starts at the top of your forehead making you look permanently surprised, which is better than looking permanently bored I suppose. There would be nothing worse, I would imagine, than living with a bored tree – apart from living with a bored teenager of course.

Apparently, there is a hairstyle called the ‘Croydon Facelift’, which is a tight ponytail worn at the top of the head giving the effect of a facelift. According to ‘Hairstyles of Today’, I am currently sporting an ‘Emo’, which is any hair that is spiked, coloured or shaggy, as opposed to a Rod Hull’s Emu – although in my case, there is a comparison to be made, as although my hair is not emerald green (at least not today) I have often been described as a gangly bird with a scraggy neck and a high squeaky voice. However, in view of my age and ever increasing wrinkles, maybe it’s time to have an extreme makeover myself and update to a ‘Croydon Facelift’.

Hairstyles are often associated with celebrities and I would say that my poor pussy willow now has a baldie Phil Mitchell as opposed to a Barbara Windsor bouffant. Talking of Cockneys and cockney rhyming slang, there are still a few places available on the ‘Nelson’ (as in Mandela) workshop at Body Positive North West in Manchester, or to give it it’s correct title, the Mandala Project – so sign up today if you already haven’t.

After my abseiling tree surgeon had gone home, I took great delight in getting out my hosepipe. I love getting my hosepipe out, so maybe Freud was right and I, along with the rest of the women of the world, am suffering from penis envy. Or maybe it’s just plain straightforward peeing envy and the facility men have to get their hosepipe out at any given moment and pee (or do whatever they do with it) anywhere they like. For me, it’s probably more the fond memory I have of my dad making rainbows with the spray from the hosepipe caught in the sunlight. Rainbows also make me think of my Irish granddad and the verse from the poem Wordsworth’s Ode of Immortality he used for the eulogy for my grandma Annie, which we also used for my beloved mum when she passed away.

The rainbow comes and goes
And lovely is the rose….
But yet I know…
That there hath passed away a glory from the
Earth…….

Isn’t that beautiful.

People go to more and more extreme measures to entertain themselves nowadays and one can only wonder why they wish to subject themselves to such torturous proceedings. People take up Abseiling for example allegedly for ‘fun’ and for the adrenaline rush of balancing on a precipice and lowering yourself over the edge. You can even have your stag or hen parties incorporating such activities, which could also include potholing and scrambling, although I’d rather go to Blackpool or Dublin myself. The only scrambling I’d be interested in on a hen night is my brains – or being a hen night, eggs of course. I’d sooner take up tree hugging as my poor pussy willow looks as though it could do with one, as so could I. But I think I’ll give it a miss, because aside from what my neighbours might think, as the Irish always say, twos company and tree’s a crowd.

You can also take up Tyrolean Traversing if you so desire, which is described as an exciting activity which you will want to do again and again. I don’t think hanging over a precipice dangling between two ropes is something I would wish to repeat, even if I’d been daft enough to do it in the first place. Although apparently, it’s a popular sport especially in the north and there are many traversing venues within easy reach of Lancashire, so I know what to do next time I’m feeling bored – I don’t think.

I didn’t know this, but the pussy willow, as with all willows, provides a compound called ‘salicin’, which is similar to the active ingredient in most over the counter painkillers. So that’s it then, I don’t have to buy any more aspirin, I’ll just boil up a few catkins. I see that poor man who grew roots and is half man, half tree, may be cured, so there is hope. If they can cure him, surely they can find a cure for HIV?

Although I think that will take more than a few catkins.

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