ADRIENNE'S HIV BLOG – Hivine's Weblog

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

Archive for 73765

Ashes to Ashes

Heck – giant clouds of volcanic ash hovering over our heads. What next I wonder?

Good news today however we presented our project for ‘thrivine’ the ‘Positive Picture’ to the Dragon’s Apprentice and we were accepted.  So any one living with or affected by HIV/AIDS in the East Lancs area, please come along and take part or contact me for further details.

The Positive Picturewill consist of forty two small canvasses in the form of a mosaic which will depict the challenges of living with HIV/AIDS

AIMSBeing part of the project will encourage people living with and affected by HIV/AIDS to address their feelings of isolation, stigma and depression in a safe and confidential setting with people who are all affected by HIV. The participants working with person centred art therapy and visualisation exercises will be provided with the means to express their pent up emotions. 

Skills for lifeDuring the six week project the members will acquire new skills by learning basic painting and drawing techniques.

OutcomesA sense of pride in the finished product, increased feelings of self worth and of being involved in a joint product, which will go on to raise awareness and reduce stigma. The project overall will help people living with and affected by HIV/AIDS to cope with the challenges both social and physical of living with a long term chronic illness and the side effects of the medication,

The finished productPromoting change through art. The Positive Picture will be used to raise awareness, especially around World AIDS Day, by being displayed locally in public venues such as Blackburn Museum and Blackburn Cathedral. It can also be used as a resource to present to the media. Body Positive North West has already expressed an interest in displaying the Positive Picture in their centre in Manchester. The finished product can be used for fund raising purposes through the sale of prints and postcards. Because the canvasses will be in the form of a mosaic, the Positive Picture can be easily assembled, hung and transported.

FilmThe documentary/video diary which will be made during the six week project, will be used to promote HIV awareness in schools, colleges, you tube and the media.

Lily the Pink

It could be the metatonic (sounds like a heavy metal band) but for some reason I woke up feeling happy. I was suitably shocked. What was this strange unaccustomed emotion coursing through my veins? Happiness – and not in the Ken Dodd sense as blessed with more of his share of a penis. Well, at least not the last time I looked.

Maybe its my new meds, but more likely it’s down to the twice daily imbibing of my recently discovered medicinal compound, metatone, which apart from tasting like a delicious liquor, also seems to be doing me the power of good. Perhaps it’s the same one that Lily the pink lady from Liverpool invented? If you are as old as me you might remember the much sung song by The Scaffold, but then again, if you are as old as me and especially if you have HIV, you will probably be suffering from both long and short term memory loss. Metatone contains vitamin B of course, known to help with depression and is a wonder vitamin as far as I am concerned, so if you are feeling down give it a try and –

“Let’s drink, a drink, a drink to Lily the pink, the pink, the pink, the saviour of the human race, cos she invented, medicinal compound, most efficacious, in every case.”

Like my famous predecessor Lily, I may be feeling in the pink, which in economic terms means in a good financial position, but where my bank and my credit cards are concerned I am definitely in the red. To be ‘In the pink’ means to be in perfect condition, especially in regards to health, which hardly applies to me. In the nineteenth century being in ‘the very pink of the mode’ also applied to fashion. The colour pink was chosen to epitomise the pinnacle of quality because Elizabeth the 1st was an admirer of the Dianthus flower (pinks to me and you). If someone is tickled pink, or you tickle someone pink, you cause the recipient to glow with pleasure. This particular recipient sadly hasn’t been made to glow with pleasure for many a while, in fact I can’t remember the last time. Pre HIV I suppose, if I ever had a life before it – I can’t remember what that was like either.

In feng shui terms, pink should be in the south life area (where’s that?) I’ve heard of South Park but to be honest it’s a bit too rude for me, although I love ‘Shameless’ and you can’t get much ruder than that.

In the 4th Chakra, which is the heart chakra, pink is the colour of emotional love of self and others, as in great universal love – and not the catalogue I hasten to add, although I do believe their summer range this season strongly features pink and flesh tones. When this chakra is blocked there is no need to take out your plunger, call a plumber or even ‘Drains r us’ – simply wear lots of pink. Flamingos are festooned in pink all the time and so was Barbara Cartland, but I wouldn’t fancy lounging my life away on a sofa swathed from head to toe in varying shades of pink like she used to do, or worse still standing on one leg all day with a bent u bend for a neck.

It’s certainly been a hard few months for me (what’s new?) and in the words of yet another song, “It’s been a long hard lonely winter.” Awful, terrible things have happened, beyond imagination, but …“Here comes the sun…. here comes the sun… its alright.

 Well, some things are not alright. I lost my driver and I’m not talking Miss Daisy here. I’m talking about my brand new computer. Where did my bloody driver drive off to I wanted to know? Whilst I was searching for it I somehow caused a head on collision, a multiple pile up in cyberspace and the whole caboodle crashed on me. I don’t know about you, but if my computer, or my car, is not running well, then neither am I and I cant rest until I cure it. But there is no such thing as an NHS help line, alternative remedies or even a pc friendly garage where computers are concerned, you have to consult cyberspace. In the meantime, losing my driver is driving me crazy.

And as for my car, that’s also falling to pieces. The electric locking system no longer works and you have to stand for hours twiddling the key to left and right looking furtive like a car jacker in the hope that it will yield. Eventually it always does, but not today and I was already late for an appointment. I was parked outside the local courts of justice. A group of skinny hoodies were huddled on the steps smoking and waiting for their case to be heard. They watched me with interest from under their hoods, hoping to pick up some new car jacking techniques from this asbo granny. They got more than they bargained for as it turned out as asbo granny was forced to hitch up her skirts and climb in through the hatchback – very ungracefully I have to say, as the hips are not what they were, with much cursing and swearing. Being outside the magistrates court I presume there were CTV cameras in action, so you’ll probably be able to catch me on you tube, this time as the granny jacker.

However, aside from all that, I think I’ve discovered the solution to the following – depression, old age, extreme poverty, enforced shopping at Aldi and Lidl and the lack of retail therapy, which every woman needs. It’s easy, aside from imbibing metatone every day, you simply rediscover what you’ve already got – a bit like altzeimhers, when every day you go somewhere and it feels like your going to a different place because you’ve forgotten you’ve been there before. I started with my wardrobe and rediscovered items I’d forgotten I had. That was all jolly good fun, but I have to say, no where near as satisfying as having a good old spend at the Trafford centre. I then moved on to my appearance, as in my face. The creams and potions do not seem to be working, so I thought I’d try some natural remedies. I recalled the words of the renowned Mexican Philosopher and beauty expert, Hector Ramon Alfonzo Gonzales. Well, Hector to me. Dear Hector was my taxi driver when I was in Mexico for the World AIDS conference 2008, although he didn’t know what I was there for of course. He thought I was just another tourista open for ripping off. But nevertheless a bond of friendship grew between us as we sat sweating together for hours in his non air conditioned taxi in the midst of the traffic jams of Mexico City

“Adriana,” he’d shaken his head sadly, had a quick spit out of the window and sighed in-between honking his horn, “Why you khave so many wrinkles? We have same age, but look me, I khave no wrinkles.”

What he was saying was undoubtedly true, nevertheless, at the time I wished he would concentrate more on the road and less on my arrugas, not to mention refrain from gobbing at passers by.

“Khow you do that Hector?” I asked him in my perfect Spanish, not in relation to the gobbing, “Khow you have mejillones (cheeks I think or it could mean muscles, either way it was a compliment, unless it was the fishy kind of course) as smooth as a ninos culo – baby’s bum.

“Ees simple,” he took his hands off the wheel and momentarily ceased honking and gobbing to demonstrate his technique, “Every night when I feenish driving my taxi, I put khoney on my face, like thees (he patted his mejillones) and you Adriana must do the same, promeees me you weel do it.”

I promised. I even promised to send before and after photos. I lied of course. It felt quite pleasant when I applied the honey to my arrugas and obviously it tasted nice too, so I plonked a few more dollops on my nariz (nose) and tried to plaster the cracks at the side of my boca (mouth). I then went to bed leaving it to have a good soak in and went to sleep. I woke up in the middle of the night feeling like I was in some kind of torture chamber, my cara (face) stretched tight like I was wearing a mask, my pelo (hair) glued to my mejillones and my moustachio stuck down – only joking – well?

I decided to investigate Hector’s honey theory at a much deeper level and sure enough, there was quite a lot about it on the world wide web. Dear Hector however was not the first to come up with the honey theory, he was pipped at the post by Rasulullah sallallahu alaighi wassallam (I am not making this up) who mentioned the numerous benefits of honey more than 1400 years ago. The Chinese, of course, have known about the health benefits of honey for centuries and believe that it increases longevity.

“Tea made with honey and cinnamon arrests old age and keeps skin fresh and soft. Life span also increases and even if a person is a 100 years old, starts performing the chores of a twenty year old.”

In my experience, twenty year olds perform very few chores and where males are concerned, especially sons, this can extend well into their thirties and beyond.

Honey also allegedly reduces cholesterol, so for those of us who suffer from increased cholesterol thanks to the meds, we could come off those horrible statins and drink lots of brews (Lancashire for tea) and eat honey and butties (Lancashire for sandwich) instead.

This is the recipe and I am seriously going to try it an report back.

2 Tablespoons of manuka honey mixed with 3 teaspoons of cinnamon powder mixed in 16 ounces of tea water can reduce the level of cholesterol in the body by 10% within two hours. It can also help with arthritis, strengthens the immune system and protects the body from bacteria and viral attacks. Does that mean attacks by the HIV virus as well? Wouldn’t that be great if instead of the highly toxic cocktail of pills we have to stick down our necks every day all we had to do was drink a nice cup of tea.

“I like a nice cup of tea with my dinner, I like a nice cup of tea with my tea, and when its time for bed, instead of taking meds, I’ll have a nice cup of tea.”

The HIV Virus ‘in the pink’

If I want to stay feeling ‘in the pink’ maybe I should dye my hair pink too? It’s better than a blue rinse when all is said and done. I can remember the time when all ladies of a certain age (i.e. mine) had a blue rinse on their permed heads and looked like blue cauliflowers.

Maybe I’m feeling more ‘in the pink’ because I made the decision to change my meds. Which all goes to prove us ‘pozzers’ should take control of our medication and if it doesn’t suite us, insist on a change of regime. Take control of our meds as well as our heads, and our hairstyles.

There has been recent talk of an HIV cure – scientists have discovered some form of, as they describe it, smoking out the virus. Well, I have been trying that for years, but obviously I’ll have to change my brand of tobacco, along with my meds.


Some Mothers!

Happy Mother’s day, the day when traditionally children pay their respect to their mothers. In times gone by young British girls and boys in service were only allowed one day to visit their family each year, this was usually on mothering Sunday. What a great idea. Bring back the old days I say!

Mother’s day is celebrated in many countries around the world in different ways and there are many theories about how it began.

Back in 1938 the German government issued an award called The Mothers Cross, ‘Mutterkreuz’, although this was mainly to encourage women to breed more children for the master race. Criteria against being honoured were unfeminine behaviour, smoking, drinking or doing poor housework. No Mutterkreuz for me then – unless it was mutterkreuzing on someone’s yacht.  

If you want to do something different for your mother this year, for £20 you can adopt a word. Some of the words you could choose in relation to mothers were, selfless, care, shoulder, nurture, protect. Thinking about offspring, in particular sons, they should have added wallet, cash, why not, gimmee gimmee and take.

The charity ‘I Can’ is for children who struggle to find words they need to communicate. Some of the Celebrities chosen words were, Graham Norton- frolic, Stephen Fry –wordy, Paul McCartney- gift, Liza Tarbuck –squit. (oh please!)

I had a quick look to see if positive was still available and yes it was.  “Great news, this word is available for adoption. Adopt it now and give it a happy home. Look after it and give it plenty of exercise. It will be exclusively yours for a whole year.”

 I also looked up HIV – that was still available too. It’s just a shame that after a year I couldn’t give it back.

International Women’s Day



Monday the 8th of March is International Women’s Day – It should be declared a national holiday and all women should have a day off. But women never have a day off, we all know that. Women go through such a lot, especially mothers.  I read somewhere that a mother is only as happy as her happiest child and that is so true.  I had some very heart breaking news this week and I know there is one mother, not to mention one auntie, whose life will never be the same again.

You never know what people are going through. It amazes me that we can carry on sometimes in view of what life throws at us.

Although now is hardly the right time, I think I will definitely have to give up smoking. And not just for health reasons. It seems these days every time I nip out for a crafty fag I am approached by a total nutter.  Yesterday for example I was invited for lunch by a dear friend in an attempt to cheer me up. I nipped out mid course for a crafty rollup, like you do, and within the space of two seconds one had zoomed in on me. “Excuse me love, could I buy a fag off you?”  This is rubbish as there’s no way these tobacco predators are going to cough up-apart from in the literal sense.                                                                                                                                                                                                                        “Sorry, I only have roll ups,” I apologize. This is a good tactic because then they think you are as hard done to as them, which you are of course, otherwise you wouldn’t be smoking filthy roll ups.                                                                                                                                      

 “Thanks love; I’m a paranoid schizophrenic have you got a light?” He lowers his bald head for me to inspect the scars of where they operated on his brain. “Then there’s me elbow.” Don’t these people know I’m squeamish and very likely to faint? “And me leg,” he rolls up his trousers, “Walked into a into a power line on the railway.”

“Oh dear, were you having a bad day?” (maybe not the right thing to say. I do wonder sometimes what I learnt on that counselling course at uni)

“Mi dad wouldn’t give me three pounds for a packet of cigarettes.”   He looked about ninety so god knows how old his poor dad was.  “Then I heard the voices.”

“Well very nice to meet you, sorry, have to get back to my friend now.”

 “I don’t suppose you could spare three pounds could you love?”

“I am absolutely skint. I might not look it but I am.”

 “Never mind love, you’ve got a beautiful smile, can I kiss your hand? “

“No,” I snap rather too quickly.

“I haven’t got rabies,” he growls.

“Well, I’ve got something far worse,” I laugh and he thinks I’m joking.

A similar thing happened when I was at Euston waiting to catch a train back up to Manchester. Went out for a Starbucks and a fag and was swarmed on by fag poachers, beggars and Big Issue sellers. One Big Issue seller was particularly persistent and kept harassing me. I listened to his hard luck stories and his problems with homelessness, addiction, various medical problems etc. Not that I wasn’t sympathetic, I just wanted to be left in peace.  

“Well, we all have our crosses to bear, look at me for instance I’m HIV positive.”

“I’m so sorry,” he flung his arms round me and started to cry. I tried to push him away because he was snivelling on my coat. “I am so, so sorry.”

“It’s alright, really, just leave me alone.”  I wished I’d never said anything. He went away much to my relief, but then he came back.

“I’m so, so sorry,” he started again, resting  his dishevelled head on my shoulder.

I do hope he didn’t have nits.

There’s a moral there somewhere!

Band of Gold

Tell me you haven’t fallen for it?

Of course not.

Tis big scam.

I know that.

You have, haven’t you?

Well, twas only old wedding ring, anyway had it shrunk years ago to fit little finger till found out meant you were gay.

You very stoopid sister, which one you do?

Can’t honestly remember – was it ‘Cash my Gold’ – ‘Postal Gold’ – ‘Gold for Idiots’ – ‘Goldblinger’ – isn’t really one called that but maybe good idea.

Actually, think it was one with Dale Winton. Trust him cos he has regular job on Init to Winnit, innit? And pick of pops. He doesn’t need to make extra money doing adverts. Wasn’t his mother famous film star with brassy blonde hair like Diana Dors? – and me! I have also now brassy blonde locks after taking up colour discount offer at hairdressers. Fine example of, you get what you pay for – and nother reason why needed instant cash.

“I sold my old wedding ring and got more money than I ever hoped for.”

“I sold my gold and got two tickets for World cup” – what he sell, gold bar?

I sold my old wedding ring and got 22 pounds fifty – and brassy locks.

Should have spent money in Aldi or Lidl or Chinese Takeaway. Was just about enough for a Mr Wok as opposed to a Mr Wonderful. Never did find a Mr Wonderful, that’s why sold old wedding ring. Didn’t want to pass it on to son if he ever gets wed for fear of passing on bad luck. cue for a song

“When your old wedding ring was new” – have to sing it like Billy Connelly when impersonating drunk in Glasgow pub.

Not much chance of finding Mr Wonderful, or pot of gold at end of rainbow, or heart of gold now at my age or in my condition – anyway, don’t want to pass condition on either.

cue for nother song

I’ve been a miner for a heart of gold – keeps me searching for a heart of gold – and I’m getting old.

Talking of condition am about to change meds again. Doc said was at high risk of heart attack and that’s not just because of butter and smoking fixation. Meds cause high cholesterol. Have been saying that all along but doc in denial. Finally admitted could be Kivexa so am changing combination to Truvada. Who comes up with names for these drugs? Kivexa sounds like posh girl’s name.

“Kivexa, go to your room immediately.”

“Truvada, I’ve told you a million times daddy can’t afford to buy you another pony.”

Kivexa bright orange colour. Who in charge of colour mix additives for meds? Need other more modern minimalist designer on job – all combinations neutral to match carpets.

Truvada blue – better than orange I suppose. Maybe will stop looking like been I’ve been tangoed.

“Will it make eyes blue again instead of yellow?” ask doc.

Not laughs doc – prescribes more statins to lower cholesterol, more pills to combat sleep disorder possible side effect of meds, more pills for stomach problems definitely caused by meds. tis like nursery rhyme –

there was an old lady who swallowed a fly I don’t know why she swallowed a fly perhaps she die.

there was an old lady who swallowed a spider

that wriggled and wiggled and tiggled inside her

she swallowed the spider to catch the fly

I don’t know why she swallowed the fly

Opportune moment to plug my autobiography –

“The Spider and the Fly” by Adrienne Seed

for sale on lulu

Am looking at new pill now, is size of horse pill. Who comes up with size chart for pills? Definitely need minimalist designer on job to make them more minimal for people who can’t swallow horse pills.

There was an old lady who swallowed a horse – she’s dead of course.

Tea and Sympathy

Just when you think things can’t get any worse – they do.
I was on my way out the door (running late) en route to our “Taking the ‘T’ out of Stigma” tea party and official opening for our Thrivine HIV support group, laden with cucumber sandwiches and artistically decorated fairy cakes.
Son rushes in – has reversed into bumper of four wheel drive, woman going nuts apparently, said bumper was hanging off (slight exaggeration on her part) needed insurance certificate. Gave him what I thought was latest and headed off with Willo.
Get there, about to go in, mobile rings, demented woman saying wrong certificate – outdated.
Can’t deal with it now, have function, can I ring you later – no can’t, need it now this minute – but no can do, am about to meet and greet guests. Need it now this minute. Will get it for you five o’clock – No good, need it right now – Sorry, as explained, have to meet and greet guests, very important guests, holy men, canon from cathedral, politicians (don’t now why said that) Mayor of Blackburn (that was lie on my part).
Demented Woman – scream, scream, scream, down phone at me – am now in tears. Tears dripping on cucumber sandwiches, luckily are wrapped in cling film. In end had to hang up on her as ‘important’ people arriving in droves.
Had filthy rollup first to calm nerves, have run out of camel.
Then had to put on brave face and be sociable. Am fed up of putting brave face on, am fed up of being sociable. In fact, am fed up to back teeth of HIV and everything to do with it. Want to be cosseted housewife with kind husband (preferably rich) to make tea for, or better still to make tea for me.
Tea party very successful though.
Think it did job and helped to reduce HIV related stigma, but way I feel right now don’t bloody care. Stigma can take care of bloody self.
Wish car would, but lots of money can’t afford to get it through MOT. Then had to pay road tax. Have to do “Taking the ‘T’ out of Tax” party to pay for it or “Taking the ‘T’ out of Shit” party – as in life.
In need of some tea and sympathy. Maybe just take calming cup of tea by self and forget about all the rest – at least for today.
 Tea cup half full or half empty? That is the question – would definitely say half empty today. 

Somebody better take that knife off me!!


He’s a little teapot short and stout here’s his handle – but wheres his spout!

Poker Face

After my last blog I received many touching messages of support and also helpful advice on how to combat depression. For example Viv suggests soaking in a long leisurely bath with a bar of chocolate as opposed to a bar of soap and even taking a bar as in bottle of wine in with you, whereas Willo talks about bird baths (or maybe it was feeders?).
Anyway, I decided to take their advice, without the nuts and strings of bacon fat and pamper myself. Fortunately, I have a surfeit of bathing products resulting from my sixtieth birthday and Christmas, enough to last me for years, in fact the numerous jars of wrinkle cream I received (I can take a hint) will probably outlive me.
The question was which bath stuff to indulge myself in? I finally plumped for the ‘Soap and Glory’ range the brand that makes my ‘mother plucker’ lip plumper. Their other products also have name play titles such as ‘Butter yourself up’ body lotion, or ‘do your own flirty work’ moisturising mist and of course the ‘Fill monty’ dab on instant wrinkle filler. After an initial soak, as directed, I first used the ‘flake away’ body polish. These polishing products contain hundreds of tiny particles of grape seed or crushed avocado nuts or whatever other seeds or nuts they choose to crush, or maybe just plain grit (so that’s why they ran out?). This stubborn residue refused to be washed off and stayed stuck to my body like sand from the beach, leaving me feeling like I’d been pebble dashed.
I think ‘Soap and Glory’ need to come up with a de gritting product – ‘De gritter British public,’ for example or ‘Grit Britain’, which is what the snow ploughs should have done instead of leaving us all snowbound for weeks.
That day I was depressed was apparently the most depressing day of the year.
How predictable of me.
But at least it was good to know I wasn’t suffering on my own. Grumpy Luis who is now back in Ibiza after his Christmas sojourn on my sofa is also feeling depressed.

Hello? or maybe I should say Hola?

How can you be depressed in Ibiza? But according to him everyone is deprimida (Spanish for pissed off) and blaming it on the creesis, “All people in Ibeeeza talking bout creeeesis, everyone in creesis, bars in creeesis, Luis in creesis, whole world in creeesis.”

Well, I didn’t want to listen to anymore of that, so I decided to play the new CD by a popular Spanish band Luis had bought me for Christmas, only to find one of the songs was about bloody creesis. Luis right, even Spanish bands in creesis, even had creesis por el chulo (pronounced cool o) Chulo means bottom. Imagine singing about a creesis in your bottom, although anyone taking HIV meds will be well used to that. I have creesis in my sheets because I am too lazy to iron them. I have creesis in my face when I get up in the morning, but unfortunately I can’t take the iron to them, but if there was any way….?

My son has taken to playing online poker. All I can hear all night is ping ping ping as he places his bets. The sound is invading my dreams. He sits there till morning sometimes with his new pingo as opposed to bingo obsession, wearing his poker face even though no one can see him. The definition of a ‘poker face’ is the bland expression adopted by a poker shark determined not to betray the value of his hand. To be honest, my son’s poker face isn’t much different to his normal face, especially if I’m asking typical mother like questions. I think he’d better take it easy staring at that screen, otherwise he’ll end up seeing poker dots in front of his eyes.

Talking of p p p p poker faces Lady Ga Ga herself recently paid a surprise visit to Body Positive in Manchester. Unfortunately I wasn’t there that particular day because Lady Ga Ga holds a strange and perverse fascination for me. I loved that huge surreal bath she was wheeled in for The Royal Variety Performance in front of the Queen. Shame it wasn’t a toilet then she could have had a Royal flush.

I am not a one for card games especially poker, as my face always gives me away. Poker? no she wasn’t my type. The only poker I’m likely to have in my hand is one to attack the fire with. I do love a good poke now and then. In fact, my sister once wrote a poem about me.

Two sisters went to live ont moors, they planned to take their share oft chores, till one found out her ‘arts desire, was just to sit and poke tut fire.

But sadly I no longer have a fire to poke anymore – and you can take that any way you want. If only I was an Indian squaw like pokerhontas I could sit outside my wig wam (thank you maam) and poke to my hearts content. But as for sending smoke signals – I am seriously trying to cut down. Pokerhontas was an Indian princess and supposedly a virgin, but her name in the powhaton language means Little Wanton, which I think is just outside Preston close to Wanton le Dale. Hiawatha on the other hand sounds like a remote village in Yorkshire. Indian names tend to be descriptive of what you do, Big Chief Running Water, for instance, or Running Bear, which I did after my bath. My HIV support group Thrivine is giving a ‘Taking the ‘T’ out of Stigma’ party. Maybe we should have a ‘Taking the ‘Tee Pee’ out of stigma party instead, because that’s what everyone will be doing after drinking so much tea.

Although I was a dancer in my time, as in ballet, tap and flamenco, I have never actually danced the poker. I’m quite good at pokercrastination though – especially in regard to paying off my credit card bills. Not to mention being a counsellor and pokering around in other peoples business. You can understand why I’m not currently practising!

Anyway, as you can see I have cheered up a bit and thank you all for your kind concern. They say the country is emerging from financial crisis so maybe that has got something to do with it, although I wish I could say the same about my own financial crisis. I hope this blog doesn’t find any of you in crisis – aside from hopefully with laughter.