A Modern Miracle, I Guess

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Although I am usually a modest sort of chap, not one to boast or brag, I am the very model of the modern miracle of recovery.

For example, in 1988, the doctor said I was lucky to still be able to walk following a bad football tackle.
Well, “tackle” would not really describe it: during a Five-A-Side match, an opponent was about to shoot, so I jumped in to block. He completely missed the ball but connected with my left knee very powerfully. I dropped to the floor of the sports hall, writhing in agony, as everybody else professionally carried on playing.
Needless to say, I was off work for a couple of months as I could not walk properly.
Three months of gentle cycling helped strengthen the knee and I resumed playing footie about eight months later, in 1989, missing most of that seasons’ Sunday football league fixtures.
Yes, looking back, I was quite lucky to still be mobile, but you don’t appreciate it, at the time.

Several minor injuries occurred until, in 2011, my doctor again said I was lucky to be able to walk, never mind run or cycle, due to work-related back injuries that began about 2008; after several sessions treatment by an Osteopath, most of the back pain had gone and I began walking without the aid of the trekking pole that had become something of a trademark.

The back injury returned, for no apparent reason, exactly a year later in April 2012, lasting about a month, this time. It occurred as I was in training for a long distance cycle touring venture, from Santander to Roscoff, a distance of about 750 miles, which isn’t a massive distance to experienced cycle-campers, but this would be my first go.
If I had called it off, I would have let down a friend, and myself, so I persevered, after I recovered enough to walk again.
So, to aid my recovery, I bought myself an exercise bike and built-up my distances and duration incrementally before returning to the road bike.
My endurance and distances grew to about 70miles, and I managed to get my time down from 7hrs to 5hrs, over the last couple of weeks prior to departure. However, in the back of my mind, there was the niggling doubt that my back pain my return if I overdid it.

During the journey, fear of crippling myself and failing to complete the journey, and looking a prick, spurred me on to complete mental and physical goals, busting psychological ghosts and barriers along the way.

Despite suffering THREE punctures on the final day, I completed the journey, boarding the Roscoff to Plymouth ferry with only ten minutes to spare.
Another minor miracle!

Touch wood, despite some back pain returning every so often, I can still walk and cycle, although my running days are over.

Look after your back . . .

Lazing On A Sunday Afternoon

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That’s right! Today I’m doing nothing. Not a thing!

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I had a nice long lie-in, had breakfast, got back into bed, got dinner, wrote another 500-words of the story I’m writing while listening to Huey Morgan (of Fun Loving Criminals fame) on BBC 6Music.

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I need to take Titchika for her walk, though, before Star Wars: Attack Of The Clones comes on in an hour, so asta luego, amigos!

Photos of Plymouth

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Just a few monos while pootling around town on a Thursday afternoon with nothing better to do . . .

Plenty of retail premises to let in Plymouth; over-expansion in good times, closures aplenty in the bad times

Walking and loitering on Royal Parade

I did well to find this urban gem!

1950’s lighting still looks good, to me

When the oil runs out, next week, saddle sores begin

Everything must go: people, goods, the lot!

The blandness of modern life encapsulated: stop at red, go at green, baa!

The clothes, the pram, the dog: Plymouth in a nutshell

Plymouth Civic Centre: one of the worst-looking buildings ever?