Hello and welcome to my Blog, my name is Chris, a bus driver for First Mendip based in Wells, Somerset. Married to Fiona, we live in Midsomer Norton near Bath, with Harvey the dog and Boots the cat. My main hobby is Amateur Radio and I hold the call sign G4KVI. I am the repeater keeper for GB3UB and MB7UB. I have a fascination for the weather and all things to do with nature and science. I am a biker and currently ride a Honda CBfF600. As a Christian I worship, when shifts allow at St. Nicolas Church in Radstock. These are my observations on my life, both at work and at home.

30 May 2010

Thank you

Now I am back at work I think it appropriate that I thank all those who have help me over the last few months.
Thank you to the gentleman who stopped and helped and called the ambulance, you were calm. I hope I will do the same if faced with a similar situation. Thank you to the Paramedics who attended the accident scene. Your 'roadside manner' put me at ease, relived my pain,made me laugh and even gave me the chance to ring my Wife.You are a credit to the Great Western Ambulance service. To all the staff at the RUH,  the A & E staff. I do not remember much about you. Given you had to reduce the fracture that is properly a good thing. However I do remember staying the night with you as there were no beds available due the a virus. You kept me informed and ensured I was comfortable until I was moved to the ward. To the staff on the ward. You looked after me so well. You made me laugh, made me cry and made be better. To have to rely on someone for all your needs can be very embarrassing, but you treated with me with respect. I include all the staff in this, the cleaners, the Nurses (night and day), the ancillary staff, the The friends of the ruh.co.uk it was great to see a smiling face holding a cup of tea. To the surgeons. What can I say. Your skill has made it possible for me to resume almost normal life in under eight weeks. To the gentleman who looked after my bike for me in his garage. To all the people who have helped me, friends and strangers, even the little things make a difference. To all those people who have prayed for me. I am convinced that God spoke to me at the time of the accident and told me not to worry as he would look after me, given how surprised everyone is at how quickly I have recovered, it looks like he did. If I have left someone out I am truly sorry, but trust me you have all made your mark on my life.

28 May 2010

Officially a Bus driver

Been back at work for two days now and now finished with the coach work and back on 'stage carriage' Things going well.  I have done Bus work as part of my coach duties so I know most of the routes.The only thing is that since I have been off the fares have gone up, some of the routes have changed a little and some bus stops have moved. Didn't have too much problem driving apart from the accelerator on some buses need a far amount of pressure to push them, so good exercise. No problems or incidents yet but I am sure they will come.
The bike is now back on the road and been out for a short ride. The handlebars seemed a little out but that may just have been me so I will have another ride out at the weekend before I need it for work on Tuesday.
Had a Physiotherapy appointment today. They are very pleased with my progress and have given me some more exercises to do. This is to stretch my Achilles Tendon. This seems to be the cause of my 'down hill' problem. They were amazed at how well the wounds had healed and how little trouble I have had. However they did warn me that I could have swelling for another year, but we shall see.

24 May 2010

Weather station

Good couple of days. Still some discomfort rather than pain so making good progress. Had our two Godsons and family around on Sunday. Nice to be able to sit outside and eat. Now doing almost everything I was doing before the accident apart from going down stairs and slopes. Garden is looking good and we now have some veg on the go. Been able to get to the garage and bring a lot of stuff home. The owner has been extremely helpful and it will require a bottle etc when we take the key back. One thing that has upset me is that my weather station has stopped working. It has been working without any problems for a couple of years and the last few days has become intermittent and now stopped registering any outside information. I hope I will be able to get a spare transmitter which is about all that can be wrong. Tomorrow is hopefully my last sick day, although I am getting very nervous about returning to work. Not sure why but over two months is the longest I have ever not worked for. Anyway I will take things easy and hopefully won't have any problems.

18 May 2010

Back to work

Today has been a 'less pain' day as I hoped, only had to take two Paracetamol tablets. Went in to work today and after a brief discussion I am returning to work next week. I am going on to the 'Big Bus 2' rota. This is a combination of city bus and country bus routes. I am at present not going back on to National Express. Two reasons for this. First, I am not yet fit enough to spend up to 4.5hrs driving, loading/unloading luggage and being to get in and out of the vehicle easily. Second, the contract is up for re-tender and to comply with TUPE rules I was given the option to stay with coach work and possibly transfer to another company. Or, go back to 'stage carriage' and wait and see what happens. I had already chosen the latter and had been transferred at the beginning of May. So I now have the potential for a lot more Blog posts!!

17 May 2010

Two Months

Just got back from taking Harvey on the normal evening walk. Not far, only about half a mile but the longest I have walked in a long while! Also just noticed it is exactly two months to the minute that my life took a tumble! Just hope tomorrow is a 'less pain day'

Bit of Pain

Highlight of today was trying to catch a young starling which had got under the shed. Managed to get it up to the end of the garden but after being chased by two dogs and a cats not sure how it will fair. Far bit of pain over the last few days. Looked up a few blogs from other people who have done a similar thing and it seems that this is the norm. As you do more with it the more it hurts but you have to stick with it. Seem to have more movement in it and can even go down hill!! Going in to work tomorrow to talk about going back to work so hopefully some good news.

14 May 2010

Back to work?

Things are progressing well. Been out in the garden and walking is becoming less painful and my foot has more movement. Rang work today and will be going in to chat about a return to work. Outline plan seems to be a day in the driving school, which I asked for, and then back on a short week to start. So thinks are beginning to look up and Harvey even gets his evening walk round the (small) block.

13 May 2010

Out for coffee

One of our neighbours unfortunately is loosing her sight. She has a lovely guide dog and is always out and about. Anyway we were invited to a coffee morning in aid of the charity which supports her condition. It was very interesting to find out about it and hear some very funny stories about what guide dogs get up to. Please have a look at the site. I know there are thousands of charities but I think it is important to be aware of this one as the condition is at present incurable and can strike at any time.

http://www.brps.org.uk/home.php?home=yes

Could have been worse

Used to work next to this bridge and it was a regular thing that lorries got stuck but never had this happen.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1278034/I-forgot-I-double-decker-Bus-driver-tears-roof-going-low-bridge.html?ITO=1490

Onwards and upwards

Trip to Physiotherapy yesterday. Went very well, most of the time was spent seeing how I walk and just how much movement I have in my foot. Also was told how to use the one crutch I use  properly. Have been given a load of exercises to do which I have just finished. trying now do get back to doing more things. yesterday drove over to our garage in Bath and picked up a load of stuff including the carpet cleaner and the lawn mower. Cut the grass. It is only small so did not take long. Carpet will have to wait for a while until we can have the doors and windows open. Hope to order the brake bracket for the bike soon and get that back on the road.

10 May 2010

Good and Bad

Ok things looking up now down to one crutch.. However weekend has been a different matter. Went out Friday and things were great. No crutches, took things slowly and only a little soreness. Saturday really struggled. Foot ankle and lower leg swelled up like a balloon and went bright red. Nearly had a trip to A+E but after didn't and put it down to the washing powder! Sunday complete rest but still the redness. Plan was to contact doctor today. Anyway today has come and things are very good. Redness and soreness have gone and the swelling is reduced to a point where I can get any shoe on!! Have driven the car round town ensuring I can carry out an emergency stop. Been out in the garden and prepared the ground at last and even stated to look at the bike, which I hope to get back on the road next week. So I wait to see how I feel tomorrow morning!!
While looking for some informatiion found this site which I found very interesting.
http://www.saga.co.uk/health/healthyliving/bodymatters/diary-of-a-broken-ankle.asp

7 May 2010

Movement

One of things I was told to do when I had the plaster off was to exercise. I have a list of them to do. They sound really easy and involve moving the ankle. Easier said then done! Anyway today we seem to have made a little progress. I have some discernible up and down movement, the pain when moving has reduced and I can now walk, very slowly, without crutches.However I am still unable to rotate my ankle at all. The trick seems to be to do as many of these exercises in the morning when any swelling as reduced. This seems to set me up for the day.So result is that I have been able to get out for a walk with Fiona and Harvey. Downside is that I am now VERY tired. But given that six weeks ago I was lying in a hospital bed is only to be expected.

6 May 2010

One step at a time

Things going well. Knee playing up though so resorted to a elasticated bandage. I can walk around the house without crutches but any thing else I still need some support.The ankle does not have a great deal of movement but that is only to be expected. one thing that has become quite apparent is that I am going to have take things very slowly. Yesterday maybe pushed a bit to much and the result was a swollen ankle. However this was resolved with a couple of hours of rest. So that seems to be the way things will have to be for a while. One thing that has struck me over the weeks is that my attitude seems to have changed. In the past I have often been seen as having a rather negative attitude to things. i now look at what can be done rather than what cannot. Maybe this was the reason that this all happened. Anyway just let the cat out so back up to bed. Going to walk to the polling station latter (it's only;y at the end of the road) with Fiona and Harvey, so another 'first'.

4 May 2010

Unexpected result

Hospital visit today. Took a while as there was a back log in the plaster room. Finally got called. First visit was the plaster room. Using a small circular saw, which I was assured would only cut plaster, the plaster was removed. It was nice to see my leg and foot again. Bit of a mess with dry, loose skin but otherwise looked good. Then off to X-ray with a 'don't put any weight on it until you have seen the doctor'. After x-ray, back to the waiting room. Didn't have to wait long. The doctor was very pleased with the x-ray and impressed how things had healed. he then said something very unexpected. I can start putting weight on it, building up slowly. I can have a go at driving at the end of the week. That was amazing in it's self. I then asked about a plaster or brace. I was told they were not necessary!! Only problem was that I had not brought a sock or shoe!! A nurse however provided a elasticated bandage for the trip home. So result so far is. I have walked up the garden without crutches. made a cup of tea and carried it from kitchen into the lounge. Shoes are still a problem so having to wear sandals with socks on (sorry)! Tomorrow will continue to do little walks. Also make trip to Paulton hospital. This is for Physiotherapy and being only a mile away is ideal. So all in all a fantastic day. Will keep updating as things progress.

1 May 2010

This and That

Getting very bored now. There are loads of things I need to do and still can't. Some Fiona can do but others like moving pots and large bags of compost she does not have the strength. Also things like sorting some rust on the car are mounting up. I just hope I will be walking after Tuesday. The computer rebuild is going well, with a nice fresh install it is amazing how much rubbish there is on a hard drive. Having loads of time I was able to at last sort out my weather web site. You can now view real time weather data from my back garden at http://www.midsomernorton.bravehost.com/gauges.htm.

My weather data