ADRIENNE'S HIV BLOG – Hivine's Weblog

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

Archive for July, 2011

Lost and Found

Think I’ve seriously lost the plot, I keep forgetting vital appointments and losing things. What’s wrong with me – is it old age creeping in or is the dreaded lurgy HIV taking its dastardly hold on my brain? I keep doing the daftest things. At times I’m even getting my words mixed up. For example, in a restaurant the other night the words sticky toffee pudding got tangled up on my tongue and I asked the young Italian waiter for a stiffy. Is this normal behaviour for a sixty one year old woman who is HIV positive? I don’t think so. The young Italian waiter didn’t show the slightest sign of being amused, or even any interest, so no chance of a stiffy there. Maybe I should eat less stiffy toffee pudding and start eating the kinds of food which improve brain function. My HIV specialist did say (rather worryingly) that my dizzy head might be being caused by oxygen not reaching my brain. As ever, good ol’ Google provided the necessary answers.                                                             “Have you ever bumped into someone you know well but can’t recall their name? Frequently forget where you put your keys? We all experience those absentminded moments, but another culprit could be the lack of key nutrients tied to memory.”                                                                                                                                       There, you see I was on the right track, although as yet there was no link to HIV.                                            “These  foods can help you fill the gaps and may improve your memory, if you can remember to eat them! You might notice that the foods on this list are red or purple in colour. That’s because the phytochemical that colours them, anthocyanin, is the same phytochemical that’s good for your brain. Red, purple, and black grapes all contain quercetin, so does Red wine, but overindulging in the vlatter may negate the benefits, so keeping consumption to one glass per day may be wise.”                                                                                                  Hello Google! I don’t think so!                                                                                                                                                                                                    “Red onions and Red apples also contain high levels of quercetin, an antioxidant that has been shown in recent studies to protect against Alzheimer’s disease.”

Mmmm not sure about that – don’t want to get any querer than I already am.

“Blueberries have been proved in numerous studies to do wonderful things for the memory and for the brain in general. Old rats that were fed blueberries scored the same as young rats on memory tests.”

So that’s why Luis and I have been feeling compelled of late to ferret for bilberries, the Lancashire equivalent of the blueberry, which grow in profusion at this time of year in our local beauty spot Tockholes. But even after eating a huge portion of homemade bilberry pie I still managed to lose my mobile phone, then whilst searching for it I left the keys invitingly in the car ignition all night. Surprisingly, considering the area in which I live, no one nicked it. Mind you, I suppose its hardly worth nicking. It’s on its last legs if you can say that about a car and is making impatient erratic jumping movements like a horse about to bolt, especially whilst waiting for the traffic lights to change. My neighbour shook his head when he heard me starting it up and told me that it wasn’t firing on all cylinders. A bit like me then.

Well, I might be HIV positive, losing my mind and possibly my means of transport, but at least I haven’t lost my sense of humour – or my dog, I couldn’t cope with that. Lady Doodle and her daily offering of unconditional love is the one thing that keeps me sane. Come to think of it I’ve lost many things because of HIV. 

List of things I’ve lost –                                                                                                                                                            My bottom                                                                                                                                                                                       The ability to do a twirl whilst doing the salsa

List of things I’ve found –

Many new positive friends

A strength I never thought I had

The ability to accept others for what they are and not what they have.

All things considering, the things I’ve found are more important than the things I’ve lost, so if you are newly diagnosed take heart.

Back to Google – “Research shows that having meaningful relationships and a strong support system are vital not only to emotional health, but brain health. In one recent study from the Harvard School of Public Health, researchers found that people with the most active social lives had the slowest rate of memory decline. If a human isn’t handy, don’t overlook the value of a pet, especially the highly-social dog.”

Ah, Lady Doodle, where would I be without her, she makes me laugh every day and the best medicine of all is laughter of course.

“Laughter is good for your brain. Unlike emotional responses, which are limited to specific areas of the brain, laughter involves multiple regions across the whole brain. Looking for ways to bring more laughter in your life? Start with these basics:

Laugh at yourself.

Share your embarrassing moments.

(you sure that’s wise Google?)

When you hear laughter, move toward it.

When you hear laughter, seek it out and ask, “What’s so funny?”

(be careful where you do this, they may be laughing at you – in which case move away quick sharp!)

Spend time with fun, playful people. These are people who laugh easily–both at themselves and at life’s absurdities and who routinely find the humour in everyday events. Their playful point of view and laughter are highly contagious.

(and so is HIV so always practice safe humour by wearing a condom)

Frame photos of you and your family or friends having fun


(or alternatively make a video of them and put it up on you tube as I have done with Lady Doodle and Luis eating a sausage.)

Someone sent me this topical joke –

Did you know that senior citizens are the leading carriers of AIDS









Not sure whether I am finding that funny – it’s a bit too close to the bone. I’ll stick to watching funny you tube clips of dogs dancing or eating in restaurants – or uploading clips like this one of Lady Doodle/Luis eating a sausage. To see them visit my other hivine site at

Move over Cesar!

Woof Woof – Lady Doodle here your resident doggy blogger. Pack Mistress hasn’t bothered to write anything recently so thought I’d better keep you updated.

Things are a bit calmer here on the home front although work on the attic has to be postponed due what PM describes as a ‘severe financial setback’ so no more therapeutically uplifting trips in the car to B&Q. Instead they took me to recycling where I nearly managed to escape through the hatchback whilst PM and Luis stumbled around in the rain trying to work out where to put things. Honestly, it’s hardly rocket science is it, all the skips are clearly marked.

“Did you put all that stuff over there?” the grouchy recycling man demands of Luis. “Should be in electricals.”

“Where do dogs go?” PM asked him jokingly (at least I hope she was joking) which I didn’t think was very funny and neither did he by the bad tempered look on his face.

“Nice mutt,” he said patting my head although his hands were a bit whiffy have to say.

Went to pets4homes afterwards to stock up on dog food for me and treats of course, where I caused my usual havoc jumping up at everyone and trying to shoplift all the squeaky toys.

“What incredible white teeth,” one man pointed at me peering at my gnashers in envy, “Never seen such white teeth on a dog. He’s like Simon Cowell.”

Huh! Can’t he see I’m a Lady.

“I know, they are aren’t they,” PM says proudly but with a touch of envy in her voice wishing her teeth were as white as mine. Tio Luis just wishes he had some teeth, white or otherwise.

What PM doesn’t know is that all those whitening toothpastes she buys are a complete waste of time and she would be far better employed using natural remedies, such as rubbing the bark of walnut tree on them like I do i.e. chewing sticks. Every dog knows from birth (we don’t have to be told) that hard wood ash containing caustic potash (potassium hydroxide) if rubbed on the teeth is known to whiten them.

The only ash she rubs on her teeth is fag ash. She keeps saying she is cutting down on the filthy habit, but I haven’t noticed. We even put her in the stocks but as you can see even that didn’t stop her from trying.

They’ve been trying to train me again after watching that Cesar Milan fellow the dog whisperer. He’s Spanish too like Tio but from Mexico, although he’s obviously been chewing on sticks all his life or at least had regular visits to the dentist (unlike Tio Luis) because his gnashers are even whiter than mine. Tio doesn’t know how to whisper and neither does she for that matter as you can see on the training video she’s put up on youtube called “Move over Cesar,” where she tries to speak in a high posh voice, which is hardly a whisper and then lifts her bosoms up at the end like Les Dawson. Why you may ask – and the answer is I have no idea.

She’s pots for rags as they say up north, although I have no idea what that means either. Talking of rags its high time I did some chewing, so one woof for now – Lady Doodle.

Back to the Future!

My Daily Mirror horoscope – With Saturn still poking fun at Uranus you could be sitting a little uncomfortably when it comes to a relationship matter so shift your position. Ha!