London Trip

Sunday the 15th of October

On Sunday Victoria, Angela and I went to the National History Museum, it is a really nice place to visit and very educational, although I would say that anyone wishing to attend plan in advance as there are long queues to get in and it took us a while to get to the front, it was a bit dark for me with my sight and I struggled at times to push the chair in the right direction.

When I am pushing the chair I use the same techniques that I used in work when pushing the cages around the warehouse, if I can see the feet of the person in front of me, then I know that I have safe distance to stop and turn, but it was so dark in the museum that I couldn’t see the person in front let alone anyone’s feet.

Victoria had to take over for that part of the visit and push the chair. Angela was amazed at the exhibits, it felt a little awkward when she wanted to go see the exhibit that showed how the human body functions such as the muscles and the nerves as that is what MND affects.

Hanging from the roof were skeletons of different dinosaurs which were nice to see, its a good job we didn’t take the dog though or they would be missing a bone or two. Angela got to hold the skull of a Dolphin and a Pygmy Hippo which she was amazed by.

I saw a life size horse in a glass cage, I am sure I have seen that horse before though, I think I backed it in the Grand National Two years ago, always wondered where the losers ended up. In all it was a nice day, but I’ll admit I was happy to leave there, not because of boredom, but because it was not light enough for me to navigate my way around…

Monday, 16th of October 2017

The day got off to a scary start because we thought we had lost Angela, she tried to eat something that she is not meant to eat and it got stuck in her throat. She was gasping for air and it was frightening to see that. I was banging her on the back and Victoria was ready to call an ambulance, but thankfully the blockage cleared and the air was getting through again.

We had planned to go to Madame Tussaud’s, but you have to give two days’ notice. It’s beyond belief that you have to give notice to go and see a bunch of dummies and pay £30 each for the privilege of doing so, we could just stand outside the Houses of Parliament for free and see the same thing.

Instead Victoria, Angela and I went to London Zoo   which was far more entertaining than seeing a load of wax dummies, it was a bit of a hike though to get there because the Zoo is in Regent’s Park and we were on foot with the wheelchair.

The zoo was really entertaining, even though some of the animals were down for an afternoon nap. The Kangaroo was on its side fast asleep, all I could see were two legs sticking out of the bushes. We went into the monkey habitat where a tiny monkey came over to us and jumped on Angela’s foot, I wanted to pick it up, but I didn’t get the chance as the poor little thing ran off after Angela kicked it.

I started Angela off laughing as we passed the Zebra enclosure, we saw the Zebra’s walking around and I said to Angela “you know what that is don’t you, that’s a Zebra crossing”. The only downside to London Zoo for me was that there were no Elephants; even with my sight I think I could have seen one of those coming.

After a few hours wandering around, we set off back home. That was another trial, we got stuck in rush hour and I was struggling with people pushing past and stepping over the front of the chair. I am struggling with my emotions since Angela was diagnosed and I was starting to get a little angry at such rude people, manners cost nothing and you don’t push past someone who is pushing a wheelchair nor the person in the wheelchair.

Eventually though we made it back to Sidcup, we then got changed and headed off to dinner at James parents’ home where we had a lovely meal, a perfect end to a near perfect day…

Tuesday the 17th of October

Tuesday was the day of the parliamentary reception in aid of the MNDA, both Angela and Victoria attended that event and to find out what happened inside you will have to read their blogs. It was in the centre of London so we set of early to get there in time, we arrived a little early and had time for a bit if sightseeing.

Angela and Victoria left me and headed into the reception and I went off to do some more sightseeing on my own, well more like sight feeling as I used the wall as a guide. Ancient Mariners used the stars in the night sky to navigate, I use potholes and building signs to navigate my way around. I made my way down White Hall and stopped to take photos of Downing Street, I saw a Black van come out of the gates, but they could have just been delivering the Prime Ministers the dry cleaning for all I know.

I made my way back to the reception for half past one, where I was greeted by security staff, I backed into a bush in the lobby, I didn’t know it was made of glass, not until it hit the floor anyway. I told them I am registered partly sighted and they said don’t worry about it and let me through to the canteen to sit down, mainly before I break anything else, good job they did as I needed to charge my phone.

After the reception, Angela Victoria and I went off to do some more sightseeing, we went to the portrait gallery, I liked it, but Angela wasn’t too entertained stating that Henry the VIII needed a shave and King George the III didn’t look like he was round the twist in his portrait. We next visited Buckingham Palace where Angela spotted a window open and wondered if the Queen was watching…

Wednesday the 18th of October

We left Victoria’s flat at 8am and we had a little breakfast in Sidcup before going for the train home. It was a good job we left early too, the train to London Bridge was delayed, when we came to get off the door was stuck and a passenger pulled the door release and held the door open so we could get off. When we got to the underground the barriers was up so we had to walk to the next entrance.

In all our trip to London was what we both needed, Angela’s state of emotion on a morning was getting to me; I felt the emotional levels rising and the grip of depression starting to take hold. I love Angela and I will always be here for her no matter what, but it is not easy at times and it can be somewhat stressful.

At some point the caresses also need a little care, more funding is needed to not only fund research so as to find a cure for MND, but also to provide more help for the carers of MND suffers, as the MND changes so does the level of care that is needed and new ways of doing things have to be found.

In conclusion though, the trip to London may have given us both a break, but it also gave Angela something more, it gave Angela the opportunity to see the life that Victoria has built for herself in London. All any mother wants is to know that her children are happy and well, Angela got the chance to see that her daughter has a lovely home with her partner James and that she is surrounded by people who care about her…

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