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Published July 22, 2019 by helentastic67

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Oh! Going to write about something a bit different today, despite the backlog, I’ve got to catch up on.

Was having a conversation with my Lady Girl-Friday earlier. She’s one of my carers that is often mistaken as my daughter.

We were discussing travel and the mentality of when you travel. I should point out she has travelled to New Zealand on a typical ‘young-person’ travel holiday and then with her Oma (Dutch for Grandmother) to Holland for a slightly longer period of time.

My only real overseas holiday dates back to (wait for it) 1994, with my first serious boyfriend (I will circle back to this later) Needless to say, I don’t mention him in current time so, plot-spoiler, it didn’t end well. Most of the three months, I went to the UK for a visit with a whole week in Europe (two days in Paris, two days in Rome and two days in Florence).

So, it’s safe to say our experiences were very different. However, I made the point that when you travel, it’s great to be somewhere different, see different things, places, cultures, languages and the food. Oh my God the food.

But, if you are in one place for a few weeks, you will likely go out and find a café. You will also keep going back to that café because you can quickly get to be known as a regular. If you are trying to not spend too much money, it’s not a huge expense, it gets you out of the ‘house’. I spent my first month staying in a place about an hour from London while the boyfriend waited for his ‘interest payment’ to come through so he had his spending money. So, even on a holiday, we crave a place that makes us feel like home.

 

Going Out, Then Down

Published April 5, 2019 by helentastic67

Going Out Then Down

Going Out, Then Down

There is so much people wouldn’t realise about my disability, because it’s hidden and because it seems I’m always upright and mobile when they see me.

Hidden Disability

On a rare occasion I might even get out in the evening for some extra-curricular entertainment. No wait! Not like that! (I wish)

Rare Occasion

I went to a theatre production called Kong. It really was a “One-off” adventure, so rare that they are. That night now some years ago, I had also been out and about during the day and had tried to plan for ‘saving’ some energy for the unexpected later that night. ‘Saving energy’ for later – what a foreign concept. The venue had a huge entrance of stairs.

Thearte Entrance

We couldn’t get a park close by, so myself and another, plus our lovely friend who had hosted/escorted us for the adventure, walked us to and from the venue.

Walking to theatre

We had entered the venue through a very upmarket/snobby Café next to the venue and in a lift at the back. (would love to dine there one day).

Snobby Cafe

Afterwards we ended up at a kebab place on Brunswick Street, our host stating many a night had ended there having kebabs. I ate something that came with a fork, just saying. I always go with at least the messiest option.

Kebab Shop

Once more, up the four steps into the unit I lived in at the time and success. Great night out. Good entertainment, good company, good walk in the city even.

Good Company

Door to door service, almost.

Tick, Tick, Tick, Tick

Lastly, plan cuppa T and off to bed. No? Too easy. Ba-boom

Standing in the kitchen, put the kettle on and I feel myself losing balance. If all I have to do is put my left foot back, just a little step to support me.

Lose Balance

No!

Don’t know if it’s the message is to slow the brain. It’s just a completely foreign concept. Make a half-arsed effort to grab onto something, but not enough to not want to cause more damage. I’m going down.

Fall in kitchen 1

Timber!

That’s what people don’t see, when ever I have a fall and it’s not that often thankfully, once a year. I lie there and think to myself “This is NOT the time I wish I wore my Mepacs pendant.” Because I refuse and I do what I have to, to roll over and wriggle up.

Roll over

That’s not pretty, but I haven’t been found the next morning on the floor by any of my carers yet.

So Winning.

Winning

Efficient

Published November 23, 2018 by helentastic67

Efficient

Efficient

In many ways’ life had prepared me to ready and deal with Life One-Handed. There were subtle signs when I was about sixteen and on nightly coffee/tea duty for the family. I couldn’t carry two mugs at once without spilling the left one. I didn’t have to carry it for 6-7 metres from the kitchen to the lounge, but spill it, I did.

Spilled coffee

Mum would watch me coming and say “Drop you left shoulder” had nothing to do with it really, but life went on. But there were those signs that screamed DO NOT WORK IN HOSPITALITY and occasionally, at work (I was a checkout chick at the Super Cheap Supermarket, so cheap they no longer exist) they put me on the left-handed checkout. No idea why, but there you go.

Left Handed

But until my diagnosis, when I was thirty-four, everything I did kinda moulded me to be very efficient with my time and energy.

These days, I leave the house just in time for lunch (by normal people standards) and I’ve made calls, done internet banking and gotten it “ALL” together.

Normal People lunch

Wednesday’s are a perfect example. I scooter to my last appointment, which is local to home (weather permitting), walk a small block to rendezvous with Young John. (I negotiate with him over breakfast exactly what time he can squeeze me in)

Young John taxi

On the way, I dropped a doona into the dry cleaners to be pressed ($6.00) Young John scoops me up and drops me down to Clifton Hill.

Today, I had to start at the Post Office to pay a few bills, I crossed to my favourite lunch location. Note; I do not mention it by name. Yeah, that’s on purpose. I have a few Melbourne followers these days and it’s sometimes hard enough to get a table and I do love the way they greet me by name when I arrive and when I depart. I mean, that’s what you get by being a regular. Right! Anyway, I take photos of lunch finalise my Wednesday lunch post and email to Noelle.

Favourite Cafe

Generally, I inhale lunch and my medicine (Latte) and maybe write a post.

Off I hobble to my chiropractor and if I’m early I will make a few calls, cull some emails, reach out to some friends as part of my “Good Mental Health Day” regime.

Good Mental Health Day

I see my chiro, then bolt for the tram, often texting whatever on the way. I arrive at acupuncturist get stabbed, eight times, have a little kip (that a bit British for a nap) then scooter home. Often stopping at a few local suppliers on the way.

Little Nap

Check the letter box, without getting off my scooter and picking up an empty box from the supermarket for recycling. (I’m a bit green, you see) The box also comes in handy to get things upstairs from the scooter shed to my apartment. I’ve even worked out a way to (once in the lift) put the box on top of the hand rail, put my leg against it so it won’t fall, using my ONE GOOD HAND, swipe my card and push the button.

Scooter

Once out of the lift and at my apartment door, I use the same technique to hold the box against the wall while I open the door. Putting whatever I’m carrying on the floor can be very stressful on my lower back and that’s the last thing I need.

So, efficiency is the key.

Efficiency is the Key

Rehab – Part 5

Published November 2, 2018 by helentastic67

Rehab Part 5

Rehab Part – 5

There are some days, even earlier this morning, I had so much to put down on paper, I wish for the ability to plug into my brain and just download it all.

Download Brain

Had a carer, spent what is for me, the morning having breakfast, making some calls. Ok, leaving messages, prompting me to ask “Does anyone answer their phones anymore?” and after getting out hellonwheels.

Answer phone

Committing to go out on a day that could be better spent at home with the air conditioning on. So out on the scooter, cruising for a bruising.

Cruising for a bruising

Made a quick stop at the local supermarket, spoke to the homeless guy out front for a spell. (He was having an emotional day) His competition at the other supermarket apparently has a home but begs for coins to support his habits.

Homeless

Anyway, I think he was just happy I seemed to know of the kind of organisations he would be able to call on my people to deliver my lovely muffins.

Then to Lucy, my local milkbar that puts my Sunday paper aside. (I know old school) and I met her through her sister Megi who was in the back unit from where I used to live. Megi and I have the free food trade agreement.

Milkbar

Scootering down my old street I met one of my regular peeps, Marri and stopped for a chat. Eventually, off again and it’s taken me ninety minutes to arrive at a café to have a coffee and write. I also delivered Mira the café owner some muffins and she wouldn’t let me pay for my coffee.

Cafe

Just this process of emptying my brain has reminded me of what I was intending to write about.

Empty Brain

Might scooter past Bella and Wilbur on the way home. Do some admin, more calls and try NOT to kip. Great day

No kip

Today’s Lunch – 31st October 2018

Published October 31, 2018 by helentastic67

Todays lunch birthday

Today’s Lunch

Good Mental Health Day

Before I get started, how good is pineapple? I have recently rediscovered pineapple! Not big on fruit and hate buying it and it dying before I remember to eat it. So, very happy to introduce non-Australians to our very cool Big things. The big pineapple!

The Big Pineapple
Had my once a year haircut last Friday………here’s some pictures of my new hairdressing salon!

Annual Haircut

And because I stretch out my birthday celebrations for a week, here’s some photos of my actual birthday lunch. On the way over, Google Helen (giggle Helen) provided directions. You don’t come to my part of town and rely on google!

Including my Blood Orange mocktail with rosemary, and things I’ve forgotten. A amazing shoulder roast lamb, with salad, corn on the cob and zucchini chips and (OMG) Saganaki (haloumi cheese grilled with figs) mmmmmmmmmmmm…….

And Monday, my favourite cake from my favourite cafe. I can never recall what it’s called so when ordering I describe it as “chocolate salted caramel thing?” And Gabriel will tell the new-be what it’s called. I convinced Caroline to share it with me. Each bite all she could say was “Oh My God! That’s Amazing!” Which is why I took a second piece home. To last me the rest of the week.
Hey! No judgement. It’s birthday week! There are no calories in birthday week!

Chocolate cake

And a few weeks ago I got to an exhibition in West Melbourne with a friend to catch a chic I was at high school with back in the day. She is an artist who is based in New York! This is some of her smaller work. She did these in her last visit a few months ago so they could go in this group exhibit.
I always find myself at these arty things thinking why does this woman look familiar? (She is thinking the same thing of me) and I go through the rolodex of my history as to where we may have crossed paths? Oh, at one of my artists friends’ openings. Still got it!

Art 1Art 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Art 3

 

Art 4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And as I’ve finally even able to have someone get me to appointments on a Wednesday. Wednesday has resumed normal programming. Today’s offering. Pumpkin Arancini with side salad with my  medicine.

Pumpkin AranciniLatte

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cheers,
H

 

Mika

Mika

Today’s Lunch – 19th September 2018

Published September 19, 2018 by helentastic67

Todays Lunch

Today’s Lunch

Good Mental Health Day

Another busy week, a whole lotta crazy! What’s new, right? Monday, I did 5,000 steps. Yeah, I’m a step-counter, at 45 and steps are still important. Oh and today is International talk like a pirate day! Ah, yah! Yes, me hearties.

Pirate talk

Very happily was down at my regular cafe yesterday and got to have one of my favourites, the almond croissant and medicine!

Almond Crossaint

Got to see my GP, who gave me a print out of my latest blood tests. He confirmed my liver is ok (I wasn’t thinking I had pickled it I was previously told I had a fatty liver!) that can’t be good right? But now it’s all good! I’m happy to even donate my liver!

Liver

One of my friends mentioned to me this week when you are sliding into the Pause, your weight fluctuates. I smartly asked, “when does it go down?”

Menopause

I confess I got lazy today and had a kip before leaving home to do “person”. I stayed local closer to home. And my two appointments. Getting stabbed and tortured by my beautician.

Doing person

Today’s offering, a Mediterranean focaccia. (Mina cut it up for me, she’s so sweet!) Medicine and this little pecan tart.

Med FoccaciaLatte

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And lastly, I think I should mention Mika my companion cat might be getting a name change to include Houdini, maybe a middle name? We will build on it.

Mika 2

Last Friday, I let my carer out via the car park and returned upstairs, when I went back inside and locked the door Mika made her escape and I didn’t realise for several more hours! Eventually having looked everywhere inside including inside the pantry and the European laundry I checked out in the hallway. Saw my neighbour and as I’ve only met her once or twice she offered to come in and help me find her. She is a nurse who works night-shift. Hence why I never see her.  Now you know I asked if she had eaten? I make my Nona proud every time!

Nona

As I had sent out my texts to my other neighbours to collect muffins there was a knock at my door and Will stood there and suggested they had something in their apartment that might belong to me? I’m sorry, I blurted out “Do you have my fucking cat?” His partner wanted to keep Mika and Mika wasn’t much interested in me or returning home. She had to be caught and carried and not by me.  Now don’t hate me, however, my new fur-child is not food-orientated. So, when I had been banging around in my kitchen she had not surfaced and she had not noticed me putting out her food.

Mika 1
Mika has not had a collar but she’s getting one this week and it’s going to look like a charm bracelet, with those things. So, she if found roaming the halls, please return to, “xyz!”

Cat bling

I’m also imagining her out in the hallway thinking all the doors look exactly the same! Feeling like a bad fur-parent!

Bad Fur parent

Cheers,
H

Hump Day

Today’s Lunch – 22 August 2018

Published August 22, 2018 by helentastic67

Todays Lunch

Today’s Lunch

Good Mental Health Day

Another busy week, and struggling to get used to the new Wednesday schedule.  It’s my official Punchy/Stabby day!  Ow, it’s my lazy/I might get to my favourite cafe where they all know my name (no, it’s not called Cheers) and otherwise, sneak in lunch at my more local cafe near where I get stabbed!

Favorite Cafe

Mika has settled in, sleeping on the bed with me. I am gradually translating her different meows and noises. All I can tell is she seems to be calling me to go to bed in the same way Jamima my last fur-baby used to come out to the lounge room late with sleepy-squinty eyes with a meow that asked where I was and when was I coming to bed? She had generally been there sleeping for hours and my bedtime is so far past the normal bedtime……..

When are you coming to bed

Also, in the last week my lovely administrator has been responsible for Hellonwheels having a Fanpage  https://www.facebook.com/pg/hellonwheelslifeonehanded  My goal there is not to bombard you with my fun and very cute cat/dog/bird everything posts but to have the opportunity to chat and be in contact with anyone that chooses to reach out. I hope to share some useful tips on how to survive one-handed, without losing one’s independence.

So, today’s offering, Ortolani quiche with the side salad and my medicine!

QuicheLatte

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now, off to get stabbed! No rest for the wicked!

no-rest-for-the-wicked

Cheers,
H

Wednesday

Cute

Published June 18, 2018 by helentastic67

Cute

Cute

I’ve been called many things in my life. Many, many things and on a rare occasion I get called ‘cute’ or more that I have done something ‘cute’.

Being cute

Last week upon arriving at my favourite café, I don’t speak ‘hospitability’ so it’s got the system where you arrive, walk past all the beautifully made and displayed “sweet things”, then the savoury. You are often prompted by a friendly face behind the counter who takes your order, you pay, shuffle along, receive a number on a small metal stand. Then you take a seat and your purchase arrives with a cheery smile. To be clear, I don’t need a number. The staff know my by name and where I sit.

Walk into a cafe

Occasionally, someone doesn’t seem to know the ‘system’ and I don’t want to push in, if they are ahead of me in the queue, so I offer a prompt, if they are undecided about what to get.

Make a decision

Two slim gentlemen were away from the counter, so I kindly asked if they needed help to decide. They very shyly motioned they were waiting for their order to take with them.

My name was said and I looked behind the counter (on my blind side) Robert the owner was there. I thought to mention to the waiting me, this was Robert the owner when he handed out a packet of “Goodness” to them and I read the situation correctly to move on.

Move on

I politely smiled, inclined my head and moved to order, pay and find my seat.

Let me premise this next bit by saying, to the common foodie, like me, famous chefs host Masterchef and go by the names, George (Calembasis), Gary (who my chiro states, is seen out in her neighbourhood walking his dog) and Matt (Preston). The cravat king of Australia.

Masterchef

Once in my seat in the room before the kitchen, he stopped at my table to ask me what I had said out the front, I explained and he told me it was really cute because…

Oh? Why?

Keeping in mind, a woman once asked if the carrot cake was good. Said customer was like me, we do not eat a packet mix carrot cake. It must be moist and have cream cheese frosting with just the right amount of sugar. Just like a CWA (Country Women’s Association) would make.

Carrot cake

Like I make or my mother. The staff member she asked at the time was new and hadn’t tried the carrot cake, so I offered my tick of approval. I didn’t just tell her it was good, because I thought it would sound trite, so I did it creatively. She seemed to appreciate my efforts, I’m certain she bought it.

So, I digress. My offer to advise was cute, because he was a famous chef.

Famous chef

What! Was he? He wasn’t George, Gary or Matt Preston and I don’t do ex-foodie adventures, so I didn’t know, I had to ask.

Robert mentioned several restaurants around Melbourne, he owns all of which meant little to me. I asked him to write down his name for me, he obliged.

I have some “Foodie” friends and my older sister and partner, do the “Foodie” scene in Melbourne.

Foodie Friend

Mentioning him to my Boo, my friend who once worked for Gordon Ramsay, gave me a bit of a “meh” OK? Which I took to be akin to a “whatever”, so I mentioned to another of my gay “Foodie” friends, who very promptly responded with a big smile.

Gordon Ramsay

Have I mentioned yet, I’m really “chill” around famous people?

Famous people

Today’s Lunch – 17th January 2018

Published January 17, 2018 by helentastic67

Todays lunch 1701

Today’s Lunch

Happy Hump Day!

Hump day

Haven’t left the house in 2 days and back at my favourite cafe! Was looking forward to a nice healthy salad, but alas by the time I got here they were sold out. But as you will notice consistency is the key. Pancetta quiche with side salad. With my standard medicine! And rather than try carrying it myself, I asked for a glass of water and this is what arrived. Feeling special!

WaterQuiche

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Latte

Have a nice little migraine bubbling along behind my left eye since late yesterday so really looking forward to seeing my chiro today. She has been away the last two weeks so I saw a fill-in. Head, shoulders, knees and toes. Or realistically, head, neck(atlas) ribs, back, just everywhere. Ad nauseum!

Head Shoulders 1

Rather warm in Melbourne today! But hellonwheels will make it a breeze………..
Also, big shout out to my pen-pal friend from Texas! Phoebe! I received an amazing parcel from her yesterday. I sent her a late birthday gift last year and am about to post her my last Christmas parcel. Seriously, why should Christmas and birthday presents be on time and just once a year? Anyway, rambling. My left eye hurts.

Texas

Have a great rest of the week!
Cheers,
H

Good week

Intentions

Published September 8, 2017 by helentastic67

Intentions

Intentions

You know those days where you have the best of intentions to make the world a better place for the next poor bastard whose life sucks more than it should? And well, it was never meant to be?

Had a lovely day on Monday. No appointments to work my stressed body or brain, so instead booked a friend to come do lunch.

There must have been way too many milkbars (or Corner shops) in my neighbourhood in the past as the ones that managed not to be renovated to within an inch of its life have become cool hipster Café’s. Beards, dyed grey hair, great food and coffee. Happy Days.

Cafe

Add a trip to the cinema and you have a perfect Monday.

So, here’s the thing where I tried to pay it forward and make the world a less shitty place.

Before going into the cinema, I went to use the facilities. I generally use the disabled toilet, because A. I have a disability that is physical. B. I struggle in a normal public toilet cubicle. What with the wriggling around in a small space, closing and locking the door, putting my walking stick down, taking my bag off my body (it hangs from my left shoulder to rest on my right hip/buttocks). So, I digress, disabled toilet, NO TOILET PAPER! Grrrr!

No toilet paper1

Luckily, I always check before I pee, no drama. Go to the ladies, deal with getting stared at. Before and after I wriggle into a toilet cubicle. Deal with all of the above-mentioned challenges.

No toilet paper

Bit of growling, wriggling out hence probably the strange looks once I’d extricated myself from the cosy cubicle and before going into the movie session, I wandered back to the staff checking tickets to mention the lack of toilet paper in the disabled toilet…

disabled toilet

 

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