Thank You!!!

Joy of joys! Mother-in-law has said “thank you”!!!!,
In fact she said it to us about twenty times!!
Thanked us for a most wonderful evening,
And inviting her round at the weekend to dine!!
Such sentiments are shown by her as good as – ummm – never,
Well, you could have knocked me right down with a feather…!!

And that’s not all! Then to my husband she said,
“You’re a good son – I’d be utterly lost without you!,
Thank you for picking me up and then taking me home,
Without you both, I don’t know what I’d ever do…”,
Not sure where that came from – what a bolt from the blue!
My dear husband’s face looked completely shocked too…

My heart instantly melted; my jaw hit the floor,
At this uncharacteristic emotional display,
Returned her hug, told her that she was quite welcome,
For once actually meaning the things that I say,
My socks were well and truly knocked off – but in a good way,
What a wonderful end to a stressful dinner party day…

Words such as these are truly music to my ears,
Make all the sacrifice (almost!) worthwhile,
Thank you’s cost nothing, but are priceless as gold,
And for once I parted from her with a genuine smile,
Must store this little moment for ever inside my own brain,
As God knows if or when we’ll ever hear “thank you” again…

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Dementia Dinner Party

So each month mum-in-law, us and the family friends,
A dinner party at one of our homes all attend,
All take their turns hosting – except mother-in-law,
(She can barely cook just for herself any more…)

Husband and I tomorrow will play host and hostess,
My turn to pretend I’m a domestic goddess!
An American theme I’ve this time decided to try,
Caesar salad, pulled pork, cheesecake and apple pie!

Division of labour is clear between husband and me,
I do the cooking and cleaning, pour drinks, make coffee,
Dear husband is tasked with just one single mission,
That’s to keep mum-in-law the hell out of my kitchen!!!

Dinner parties by definition are stressful enough,
With dementia on the menu, it’s even more tough,
When I’m solo in the kitchen – ten things on the go,
If mum-in-law wants to “help”, then the answer is NO!!!

Get out of my kitchen – you’re right under my feet!!
Your “help” is a hindrance – just get back to your seat!!
It’s a military operation in here, don’t you know??
Sit down! Drink your red wine! Oh, won’t you please go!?!?!

It’s nice of mum-in-law to want to help me – I know,
But she can’t follow orders and, besides, is too slow,
And when hosting a dinner, I’m not quite at my best,
Risk losing my temper with her under all of the stress…

Ahhh, but husband and I are quite canny and smart,
We’ve got handling mum-in-law down to a fine art,
If we keep her out of the kitchen till after we dine,
Mum-in-law’s then kept busy at washing up time.. ;)

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Don’t Tell Me

If I get dementia, please don’t tell me so,
Whatever the truth is, I don’t want to know,
Please keep me in my state of ignorant bliss,
My failing memory just as “old age” dismiss…

Tell me my Aricept’s Vitamin C,
Shore up my conviction’s nothing wrong with me,
And when the doctor does the MMSE test,
Tell me he does the same for all the rest…

Tell me the carer’s a cleaner instead,
Keep calm when I repeat what I already said,
Try not to remind me of the things I forget,
And please reassure me when I get in a fret…

When I go into a home, please say it’s a hotel,
With food and activities laid on as well,
If I ask to go home, tell me maybe next week,
Brush off all the nonsense I inadvertently speak..

For if I knew, the burden would be too great,
Knowledge of all the indignities that may await,
Certain hard facts are better left just ignored,
Don’t let on I’m living under Damocles’ sword…

If I get dementia, spare me but spare you,
Don’t give up your life caring – I don’t want you to,
Please do what you need to – I will understand,
Just make sure I keep my own head in the sand…

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They say in life that opposites often attract,
My husband and I are both living proof of that!
For I’m a minimalist – I don’t like too much clutter,
New gadgets and gizmos set his heart all aflutter,
He’s a materialist – yes, a bit of a spendthrift,
And I’m a penny-pincher – it can cause a rift…

I save the pennies; he fritters them away,
On catalogues, concerts, clothes and on Ebay,
He dreams of Ferraris and a mansion one day,
I dream of enough just the bills now to pay!
Needless to say we both have separate accounts,
Earn the same, but are saving quite different amounts!

Now, I am not saying I that live like a nun,
But I’m still on my clunky old Samsung S1,
Passed down from my husband who’s now on the S5,
Before that I still had my old Nokia 1112i,
No, you won’t catch me queuing for the latest ipad,
Am happy with the ancient old laptop I have…

A car’s just a car – gets you from A to B,
If it’s fuel economic, then it will do for me!
I’m just not impressed by a Jag or a Porsche,
Partly cause I still don’t drive yet, of course,
But as long as it works, I’m not fussed on the sort,
In London it’s still quicker by public transport…

Only use credit cards to boost my credit rating,
And pay off the next day – there’s no point in waiting,
The road to hell these days lies in payday loans,
The high rate of interest shakes me to the bone,
I hate being in debt – even just £1 in the red,
Kept awake by the mortgage hanging over my head…

Fond memories of my first little studio home,
The size of a shoebox, but it was my own,
Have since upgraded now that we’re in a couple,
But size doesn’t matter; it’s just my little bubble,
For once I get home, it’s just me and my man,
I’d be just as happy with him in a caravan…

Some of my happiest times, now when I think back,
Were when I was living out of my rucksack,
Travelling the world in trucks, hostels and tents,
Never have I been so completely content,
Didn’t go in for souvenirs, trinkets and such,
All my photos and diaries are more than enough…

Don’t play the lotto, but if I did win some day,
I’d still live my life pretty much the same way.
A little more travel – fund a History degree,
But I’d still do my weekly shop in Lidl or Aldi,
Plus shell out for the best care for mother-in-law,
Give out to the people who need it much more…

Not saying stony broke’s either the best way to be,
But peace of mind lies in financial security,
Only buy what I then have the money to pay,
It’s better to save for the next rainy day,
See my spare cash month-on-month slightly mount,
A financial cushion in my savings account…

A roof over head? Decent food on your plate?
People who love you? Then life is just great!
Most of us reading have more than enough,
And for me true happiness does not lie in “stuff”,
I’m no Ebenezer – I just think that’s a fact,
But good luck convincing my husband of that!!!!!!

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Cup of Tea

You’re my masala, you’re my peppermint,
You’re my green, my black, my white,
You’re my milk and my two sugars,
With a digestive on the right…

You’re my oolong, you’re my Assam,
You’re my rooibus, my jasmine,
My iced glass on a summer’s day,
With a slice of lemon in…

You’re my pick-me-up in the morning,
And you relax me too at night,
And when I taste you on my lips,
Then the whole world feels alright…

You’re my Earl Grey, you’re my Ceylon,
You’re my Darjeeling and Chun Mee.
Whichever brew I care to name,
You’re just my cup of tea!

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Ode to Vaping

We all need a means just to get through the day,
A way to cope with whatever trials may come our way,
But it’s just 9am! It’s not time for wine yet,
So I’ll just take a drag on my e-cigarette…

Thank God for the existence of this little device,
All the joy of nicotine without paying the price,
Batteries, atomisers – yes I’ve got the whole set,
All parts needed to operate my e-cigarette…

Vanilla, mint, chocolate – even tiramisu!
So many e-liquid flavours for me to get through,
Just top up the canister with a little pipette,
About ten times a day with my e-cigarette…

Might look a bit of a div – like I’m “real” smoking aping,
But by now I’m totally addicted to vaping,
Always have e-cig with me – God forbid I forget,
Never leave the house without my e-cigarette…

Vape on the train platform, pub, house and the rest,
I’ll even admit to using it while at my desk,
Too long without and I’ll break into a sweat,
Live’s not worth living without my e-cigarette…

Off to see mum-in-law? I’ll have a quick puff,
It helps keep me going when the going gets tough,
With nicotine in my system, I won’t get so upset,
Mum-in-law’s no match for my e-cigarette…

It’s not bad for me – on tar I won’t be choking,
None of the carcinogens found in regular smoking,
I can vape conscience clear with no cause for regret,
No guilt whatsoever in using my e-cigarette…

Normal cigs for me no longer quite do the trick,
They make me come over all dizzy and sick,
I’ll never relapse now – on that you can bet,
I much prefer using my e-cigarette…

Hoorah for the Chinese for this little invention!
A temporary cure for all my of stress and tension,
Without it don’t know how I’d through the day get,
I’d lose my mind without my e-cigarette…

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Urban Jungle

I’m not a city girl – countryside’s more my scene,
That or a small to medium town inbetween,
London’s said to be the world’s greatest city,
Yet life in this metropolis isn’t so pretty…

The sights here are amazing – that you cannot deny,
St Pauls, Tower Bridge, Big Ben, the London Eye,
But when you work here, you never see all that,
Monument’s just a name on the underground map…

The theatres and concerts are amazing – no doubt,
We’ve had many an interesting day or night out,
But outside the tourist zones, all well-kept and neat,
The rest of this city’s just dirty concrete…

Covent Garden is lovely – that I feel I must voice,
But where to eat? There is just too much choice!
It’s just too overwhelming – you can’t do it all,
Who could feel at home in this big city sprawl…??

It’s just so unrelentless, the streets are so loud,
To get from A to B have to fight through the crowd,
Tube trains almost as crowded as in Tokyo,
Urban road traffic on a constant go-slow…

Architecture here imperial and imposing,
Skyscrapers all around me – just feels so enclosing,
7/7 bombings, frequent terrorist threats,
You look over your shoulder here – who will be next?

In this soulless city, you could well lose your soul,
People become so unfriendly, indifferent and cold,
In this anonymous capital, what’s in a name…?
We’re all merely rats in a race – just the same.

Like to know where I am when I walk down the street,
Nod my head to the people I frequently meet,
Have my face known at the local corner store,
See the skies and the trees when I open my door…

London’s where the work is – we’ll stay here for now,
Plus can’t move away from mum-in-law anyhow,
But one day we’ll move – soon as we have the chance,
To a peaceful village – maybe the South of France…?

So many people in London – yet I feel so alone,
Just cause you live somewhere, does not make it home,
London’s just too anonymous, dirty and large,
If home’s where the heart is, then mine is in Prague…

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God Save the Queen

God save our gracious Queen,
Let dementia her not demean,
God save the Queen!
Grant her the mental health,
To lead our Commonwealth,
Keep her her usual self,
God save the Queen…

God save our gracious Queen,
Can you imagine the scene?
If she forgot,
The name of some diplomat?
Insulted him (or her) at that?
Forgot where she put her hat?
God save the Queen…

God save our gracious Queen,
The thought alone makes me green,
It’s quite obscene…
This monarch who commands respect,
Giving way to self-neglect,
By dementia completely wrecked!
God save the Queen…

God save our gracious Queen,
In public she’d not be seen,
It would be mean…
How would the Palace handle that?
Situation would require tact,
To soften an ugly fact,
God save the Queen…

God save our gracious Queen,
Please keep her on the scene,
For years umpteen,
Please let her keep her head,
Don’t let dementia spread,
Or we’ll have Charles instead,
God save the Queen!!!!!!!

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Liverpool Street

Out from the bowels of London Underground,
A world of commuter madness there to be found,
As each day the rats in the race all compete,
To get where they’re going at Liverpool Street.

Londoners running all hither and thither,
That or slack-jawed on their mobile they dither,
Crossing the concourse is no mean feat,
Not when you’re changing at Liverpool Street.

All sorts of people – all colours and creeds,
My access to the train’s platform all impede,
So many people I just don’t care to meet,
It’s too overcrowded at Liverpool Street.

Headphones all blaring, mobile ringtones too,
At the platform barriers always a queue,
Tourists and commuters all under my feet,
Need a traffic light system at Liverpool Street.

There’s always a busker I don’t want to hear,
And chuggers who I wish would just disappear,
It’s wet in the winter, boiling hot in the heat,
The turn of the seasons at Liverpool Street.

There’s Costa, there’s Starbucks, there’s Eat, and there’s Pret,
Flogging their coffees, croissants and baguettes,
Don’t have the time or inclination to eat,
Not when I’m stressed out at Liverpool Street.

Screens show where all of the trains are heading,
My one is cancelled – the news I was dreading!
So wait for the next with no chance of a seat,
Just a daily occurrence at Liverpool Street.

No choice if I want to get home that night,
Through this hurly-burly I daily must fight,
I hate it but each day I have to repeat,
My daily commute via Liverpool Street….

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If I could ever have my way,
I wouldn’t leave the house all day,
Watch loads of music and TV,
Husband on the sofa next to me…

No gigs, concerts or girlie nights,
Sources of anxiety and fright,
I’d like to just stay home instead,
All warm and comfy in my bed…

I’d do the same thing every day,
A creature of habit you might say,
Pajama-clad in my safe retreat,
Each day have the same thing to eat…

Day in day out most every week,
Only ever with my husband speak,
Of socialising I’d be off the hook,
(Unless you count chats on Facebook).

In my little flat I’d love to hide,
All safe from everyone outside,
I’d make an ideal hermit yet,
Live my life via the internet…

Yes, if it were all down to me,
In my nice safe flat is where I’d be,
The scary outside world I’d shirk,
I wouldn’t even go to work!

The world’s a dark and scary place,
And one that I’d rather not face,
No, not if I could have my way,
And never the leave house all day…

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