ADRIENNE'S HIV BLOG – Hivine's Weblog

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

Archive for June, 2011

Never a Cross Word

I’m giving the dam things up, I mean it. After all, in the grand scheme of things does it really matter what is the answer to two down or six across? Crosswords for me are merely an escape from reality or to be precise the crosswords flying backwards and forwards, up and down and all around (doing the hokey cokey!) in this house – most of them directed at me. Once those angry words have been said they stay lurking in the atmosphere like pesky flies or bats in the belfry and it doesn’t matter what I say or how many words I use, I can’t seem to make things right.

Fed up of employing my rusty counselling skills trying to work things out, I got in the car and tried to make my escape, but they followed me like a swarm of bees. I drove directly to B&Q to indulge in some therapy of my own making, as in regional car park therapy RCT as I have named it, the new alternative to person-centred therapy PCT or cognitive behavioural therapy CBT. It’s been a while since I’ve indulged in the latter but as they say actions speak louder than words and action had to be taken before something extreme occurred.

I opted for B&Q because it’s the nearest and sometimes there is a magnificent sunset over the Blackpool coast, but I was a bit too early for that. I did the usual – grabbed a huge trolley and wheeled it up and down the aisles tunelessly whistling to the piped musak – mmmm – what could I buy? In the end I bought some colour testers to try out on my walls because certain colours can influence moods. Words are such powerful things, I was thinking to myself as I wheeled my wheelbarrow through the aisles broad and narrow, like Molly Malone, only I wasn’t thinking about cockles or mussels. I was thinking about how you can make feel someone feel like shit with very few words or alternatively make someone feel really good about themselves.

Words can also be terrifying things, for example being told you are HIV positive are probably the worst words anyone will ever hear. After that words become meaningless such as (telling a newly diagnosed person as I am doing at the moment) that things will get better. They don’t believe me of course their life is shattered and they are numb with shock and fear and although it was nine years ago, I can still remember that indescribable feeling. Then there follows the great silence. Most people have to keep quiet about their positive status – keep stum, or schtum, or is it mum? In this case it should be numb. Uncomfortably numb – Pink Floyd should change the title of their famous song for people living with HIV.

On the way back from B&Q I stopped at the co-op and like the addict I have become, broke my pledge, snuck to the news stand and bought a Daily Mirror – my feeble excuse for falling off the wagon being to find out the answers from yesterday. That way I figured at least I had the answers to something.

Oh wouldn’t it be nice to live in a world with never a cross word! Someone please tell the Daily Mirror and my warring housemates.

Flower Power

World War Three is currently taking place in this household between England and Spain. Lady Doodle, like all posh girls/puppies were urged to do during the Second World War, is being a Land Girl and digging (not to mention chewing) for Britain and I have been trying to act as go between. It’s a bit like, ‘Allo allo,’ only in Spanish. “Leesen carefully you stupid hombres,” I try to come between the warring twosome, “I vill say zees honly vonce.”

Maybe its because things keep going wrong round here like the boiler breaking down etc. so money and tempers are stretched to breaking point. Today, water started pouring from the ceiling for no apparent reason, then just as suddenly as it started it stopped. Are we being attacked by phantom sources and if so who is our mysterious enemy? Whoever they are maybe they were also responsible for sabotaging my car, because on the way to get some rations we stop to refuel only to find the exhaust was hanging off and trailing along the floor. Corporal Luis tied it up with a rather camp bow using a handy tape measure that was lurking in the boot and we managed to make it to Asda to do our roll back foray, although we did have to join the long weary queue waiting to pay – then used my ration book (i.e. trusty credit card).

Back home in the war zone there was a further unrest in the two opposing trenches i.e. sofas, where a noisy battle of the boxes was underway between the Spanish TV news and the X Box. “Allo Allo,” I grab the remote control and point it like an ak ak gun at the two warring parties. “Luis you get zee sniffer dog Lady Doodeel and we go look for enemy submarines in zee canal.”

Is zat a ded en on your ed? No it was my ‘at.’

It was all quiet on the western front, otherwise known as the Leeds Liverpool canal, apart from a few desultory dutch (as Luis calls them) wandering amongst the last of the bedraggled bluebells. The Dutch have always been our allies, so no worries there, but were you aware that our British Bluebell is currently under attack from a foreign invasion of the Spanish bluebell? According to conservationists Spanish bluebells, which are scentless and paler than the British variety, have started creeping out of flowerbeds and into woods and forests where they have cross bred with the native variety. The resulting hardy, quick growing hybrid threatens to eradicate the British variety by 2016 if no action is taken, therefore we are all advised to dig up and destroy any Spanish bluebells near our patch. If no action is taken they will be squeezed out by the hardier Spanish invader and disappear from our woodlands – and we can’t be having that.

“I do wish you two would stop fighting,” I remarked to Luis, “and whilst you’re at it, you can stop killing off our bloody bluebells.”

“Blue gels?” Luis looks confused.

“Bells, you know ding dongs,” I make like I’m ringing a hand bell, “Campanas azules,” I point to a remaining example of the threatened species. “You are wiping our hinglish ding dongs hout.”

“I know,” Luis smirks, looking quite proud of the fact.

“Spanish ding dong mucho stronger than hinglish ding dong,” I explain.

Luis looks smug and flexes his muscles.

“But they not so whappa and don’t smell of anything, (unlike the Spanish I mutter under my breath, who constantly smell of garlic) – and Spanish stem mucho more thick.”

“Mucho thick?” Luis’s eyebrows knot threateningly, thinking (because the Spanish tend to lisp) I said sick.

Then he smiles in a vengeful manner, “Is venganza (revenge) for Spanish Armada,” he growls and sounds like he really means it.

“Google Doody,” he breaks off the conversation to congratulate Doody who is contributing to the War effort by dropping her own particular atom/stink bomb, “Toma ya,” he says as the bomb hits its target.

It’s a good job that Australian feminist Germaine Greer wasn’t lurking in the undergrowth as she holds the outrageous belief (shut your ears Doody) that all dogs should be killed to protect Britain’s bluebells. Speaking recently at the Hay on Wye literary festival she blamed dog owners walking their pets through bluebells for killing off a fungus necessary for them to grow. “Something you need to know about dog poo,” she warns us, “is that it is full of phosphorous and it changes the environment and it will kill the mycorrhiza.”

Am I bothered as Catherine Tate would say.

Professor Greer, who owns a one-acre bluebell wood in Essex, said that the real threat to our bluebells is not a foreign invader, its people running through the woodlands, taking photos of each other standing on trampled bluebells. “And, at the risk of making you all very cross,” she added, “ may I suggest it is also time that the British gave up on their endless love affair with the dog. If you love your bluebells, kill your dog.”

Don’t listen to her Doody – the woman is obviously mad and not intelligent like you.

All true Brits and dogs should endeavour to do our duty to Queen country and the British Bluebell by following the creed of the Wildlife Trust who are urging gardeners to shun the Spanish bluebell Hyacinthoides Hispanica and to choose instead the traditional British variety, Hyacinthoides nonscripta.

I’m going to do my bit right now – I’m off to the garden centre to lay my hands on some Hyacinthoides nonscripta and I urge all hiviners to do the same. Flower power! Peace and love.