10..9..8..7..6..5..4..3..2..1.. FIRE !!


My tootsies were nice and warm at 07:30am yesterday when Pedro drove me to Malaga hospital. On the way we eventually collected my interpreter, Debbie, who wasn’t ready.  A long windy mountainous road lay before us with well placed slow moving trucks to keep our speed down to below a snail pace, but eventually, on time, Debbie and I found the  neurological department in the maze of the Virgen de la  Victoria hospital.




And then we waited.. and waited.. and waited. Three hours in the corridor outside THE ROOM. 4 patients were booked for the same 10am appointment, each one taking an hour. I daren’t go to the loo in case I’m called. Better not go for a coffee in the cafe.  No. I better not go for a walk.. might get lost !! So I watched the dozens of other patients sitting in the corridor waiting outside their ROOMS.

A long lady sat yoga style, legs crossed under her, tapping away on her cell phone. A bald man with earphones watching YouTube on one device while emailing on another. Everyone, except old people, were engrossed in some form of internet therapy.  And then …



Let the torture begin !!

Some results of my tests
Some results of my tests

Sleeve rolled up, sock off. The two specialists, not well themselves, took great delight in inflicting an hour of pain on this mad Englishman.  ZAP !!…. ouch !!  Arm jumping. Leg kicking. Zapping and ouching as pads were moved around my arm and leg. THEN he got out a 2 inch needle with a wire snaking off towards the computer and pushed into my leg muscles in many places while I had to curl my toes  ….. OMG !! (I could think of a better way of curling my toes 🙂 ) But I was brave, cracked jokes while Debbie was in tears.

I didn’t confess and I passed the lie (well I was lying down) … the lie detector !! A few minutes of waiting for the printout to take to Ronda hospital and I was finished ….. in more ways than one.

When we got to the car. Debbie translated the specialists’ findings. My legs have negligible circulation and my hands are almost definitely Lewis Sumner (CDIP). The good news is ….. we started the drive back home !!


3..2..1.. FIRE !!

So home we drove. An hour getting settled at home, then Pedro lit my fire for the first time since it was installed in the summer. What  a lovely evening, curled up on my circular chair, rubbing the pin cushion which was once my leg, cats mesmerised by the fire … a lovely evening …… ooooh !!



Could you light my fire ??


PS. I put the Snow on my blog for a short time and have taken it off as the fans in my laptop go mad when I visit any blog with Snow inc. my own. Poor processor !!


Ralph xox 🙂


82 Comments on “10..9..8..7..6..5..4..3..2..1.. FIRE !!

  1. oh my, what a surreal experience! reading this leaves me speechless. i’ll embrace the hurdles in my path today and hope that you’ll find your way back to good health. no more torture!



    • Hi Lisa 😀 It’s been a long time since we last said hello. Today is a good day. Yes, no more torture until I have to answer some future wacky comments about this post 😉 Have a fun day my friend. Ralph xox 😀


    • Hi Afsheen 😀 18 months ago the bedridden friend who I was caring for 24/7, for months, died. Almost immediately my hands started shaking and I could do nothing with them of any sense. After a multitude of hospital tests nothing was found and I was told that it was genetic, take some tablets. A year on, a new young neurologist suspected Lewis Sumner and the test yesterday pretty much confirmed her diagnosis. Tests that should have been done a year ago. That’s basically where I am now, hopefully with the right diagnosis . at least it’s not Parkinsons’. Ralph xox 😀


    • Hello Nia 😀 You are so sweet. I love Angels and wouldn’t mind some wings myself 😀 Have a lovely day. Ralph xox 😀


  2. Internet therapy indeed. What did all those people do before the internet was invented? I wish I could kill the internet for just one day and see what everyone will say. Oh Ralph i see my Choco-muffins and risotto on the side bar. What I lovely invention. How come I don’t have a “Posts I’ve just visited widget”. Where does it come from. Thanks for the advert. Much appreciated. Have a wonderful day maybe I should give you a foot massage? Best wishes!


    • Hi Liz 😀 I suppose at one time people talked to each other face to face ….oops … I am talking to you over the internet 😉
      “Posts I like” with the grid highlighted is the widget you are looking for. I changed the title 😀 Your posts automatically show when I press “like” on them. Hope that helps.
      I would love a leg massage as the shin still hurts. I hope it’ll be okay tomorrow.
      Have a lovely day my friend. Ralph xox 😀


  3. Don’t you hate that? I don’t understand how everyone can have the same 10:00 appointment with the same doctor. That’s why I always call ahead to see if the doctor is running on schedule that way I don’t show up too early. Why sit in a waiting room for 2 hours doing nothing when I could stay at work or home for 2 additional hours and not waste my time?! The nerve. Hope all is well with you! 🙂


    • Hi Loving 😀 I have visited 2 Spanish hospitals up to now. There are patients everywhere. Every so often a nurse comes out of a room and shouts a name and a lot of times no one answers. So I can understand why they double (or in my case quadruple) book appointments. The doctors I have seen work in old rooms, sometimes too small to even move. New hospital builds have been stopped such as the new one in Ronda which was almost finished. So the staff are under a lot of stress. I just hope that by joking with them eased the pressure a little. Ralph xox 😀


      • I think they should have the receptionist call and confirm appointments just to remind them they have one or to tell them to call if they need to cancel. Some people completely forget about their appointments.


      • I agree with you. I am not making excuses but Spain’s finances are chronically bad, so I get one appointment letter and that’s it. Travelling took us nearly 3 hours over the mountains and is expensive for me. Approx US$200 by the time I paid the driver and interpreter. And I have made a lot of hospital trips. Miss one and it could be 6 months waiting.


    • Hi HD 😀 Sorry that I was a bit graphic in the post and that you didn’t swoon …… or maybe you have when I replied to this comment 😉 hehe. Hugs. Ralph xox 😀


      • Love them M’lady 😀
        Thank you everyone for hitting me 25,000 times. I love you all 😀


  4. Sounds like an auto immune type condition. The body incorrectly attacking it’s own cells.
    Sorry to hear it Ralph. You know, from all the research I’ve done into my own auto immune disease….they say 80% of the immune system lies in the gut – therefore it all starts with diet. I hope you find something that helps.


    • Hi Tracy 😀 You’re back home then !! I missed your funny posts 😀
      I do know what you are going through my friend and I so much want to see you well. We do have fun. Keep me smiling !!
      I agree that it was probably diet, or lack of food and sleep during the last few months of Judith’s life. I know I was on automatic, just caring and worrying about her and totally forgot myself, occasionally grabbing a tin of something and a strong cup of coffee. Since then I have been eating well. Whether it’s the right kind of food is another matter as I hate rabbit food …..I have such a sweet tooth !! I really do need to exercise more. I am going to have to make time to do it. Ute has pushed me to exercise and it’s necessary now for me to take the step. Living on my own it’s so easy to do my own thing and not take my medical condition seriously.
      Welcome home Tracy. Ralph xox 😀


      • Thanks Ralph 🙂 You know before I too was suffering terrible sugar cravings. What I found helped a LOT was to make sure I ate regularly and consistently, That way your blood sugar levels stay balanced so there’s no dips that sends your body off craving for the sweet stuff.


      • Wow. I never knew that about cravings. I had better go and eat something then 😀 xox


  5. What an intense read- and real-life experience. Writing-wise you had me on tenterhooks.. I didn’t know where you were going to take us next. Wishing you healing.


    • Hello Diahann 😀 To tell you the truth I like to read real-life experience posts from other bloggers as well. Thank you so much for your input and your healing wishes. Love them. Big hug. Ralph xox 😀


  6. Oh, Ralphie, your Florence Nightingale in Australia wishes she could be there to take tender care of you! Just for one time I’m not even trying to make any smart arse comments, because you need some hugs and soothing sounds made to you. Abrazos y besos oxox 🙂


    • Hey Yvonne, someone has hijacked your computer and gone all sweetie sweetie on me 😉 If it is you, then wow, thank you so much. All those hugs and soothing sounds are really appreciated 😀 Now come in from the sun. Ralph xox 😀


    • Hi Julita my friend 😀 No. Not a lovely experience, but I felt you holding my hand while they worked on me…… thank you 😀 The fire lit was a great lifting moment for me on that day, yesterday. I have seen your latest post in my Inbox. Snow !! Stay warm and cosy Julita. Ralph xox 😀


    • Thank you so much my friend. Pedro is a careful driver. Luckily the hospital was on the outskirts of Malaga so we didn’t have to go into the traffic of the city itself.
      Have a great day Beth. Ralph xox 😀


  7. The waiting and the actual test are torturing. I am glad to hear the test confirm the cause. What is the treatment Ralph?


    • Hi YC 😀 From what I have read …. and I am no expert ….. there are more tests to be done which are just as bad as yesterday. I don’t think that there is a cure, but I may be wrong. Never mind. I’m still blogging 😉 Big hug. Ralph xox 😀


  8. I hope you don’t mind – I was cracking up as I read your post. Please believe me when I say that I was laughing with you & not at you 😉
    A nice ending to your adventure though.
    BTW – next time you need an interpreter – come pick me up!
    xx Saludos y Abrazos xx


    • Of course I don’t mind RoSy !!! In fact I welcome a bit of humour, alleviates the shock a little.
      I do need an interpreter for next Wednesday. Leaving home at 07:30am to be in Ronda by 9am. So I’ll collect you in the USA at 8am (CET) and we should be in Ronda, Spain by 9am. Okay ? 😉 You’ll have to find your own way home though 😉 Big hug. Ralph xox 😀


  9. I am not very good at lighting fires but I have just made a lovely trifle. Would you like some? Fortified with sherry 🙂 And you have read my post on Convalescence so you can imagine I am sending a similar tray of good things your way.


    • Oooh ! Yummy trifle !! Yes please !!!
      That is really kind of you Gallivanta, my friend, to send me a tray of goodies. Your post was really good. Ralph xox 😀


  10. Are spanish hospitals as aweful as german ones? I saw them too often this year because of my Grandma. Or when I was younger I had weird problems with my knee, there I spent hours waiting for the doc too…

    Hope your health issues fly by so you don’t need to go there again 😉


    • Hello Fillandra 😀 Other than the occasional visit I have never had to be a patient in hospital before, except over the last year. So really I cannot compare the two country’s hospitals, but, by what you say, waiting is the name of the game in both countries. This time last year I spent 8 days in a ward in Ronda for tests and the Spanish were very good to me. The building was old and clapped out but the staff were great. Happy Friday my friend. Ralph xox 😀


  11. Hi dear Ralph. You’re not generally in pain because of this problem, right? And what about your hands, are they (still) shaking? You’ll probably get some medication and that’s it, right??


    • Hello my dear friend 😀
      Luckily I am not in pain (except for the tests !! 😉 ), it’s a nuisance and embarrassing especially when eating or drinking out. I ask for a drinking straw when given cups of coffee with tiny handles or the coffee goes everywhere. I cannot do up buttons and I love to wear shirts. It’s great to have a zip on my slacks 😉 Picking up coins is impossible. If I do anything physical, like carrying shopping bags or washing up it takes ages for my hands to calm down to type on my keyboard for instance.
      I am not on medication. I knew I was misdiagnosed for a year as I was told it was genetic and that I was depressed. Huh!! She should have looked at this blog 😉 She gave me Happy Pills which I googled and found that they had so many side effects including addiction so I stopped taking them. I’ve no idea how they will treat this new diagnosis or even if there is a cure. Maybe I just have to live with it. I am great at playing the maracas. 😉 hehe
      I hope you are having a lovely day Heila. It’s sunny but cold here. I may go for a walk later. Big hug and thanks for your concern. Ralph xox 😀


      • Thanks for the long answer Ralph. Sounds good altogether. Here winter has finally arrived. I can’t stand the rainy days but we need the water. Hugs and enjoy your walk. 🙂


  12. What an ordeal! I hate going to the doctor. In fact, I’ve got a bit of a phobia about going (and this post didn’t lessen my fear!). I suppose better you than me. I didn’t really mean that. 😉 I’m just happy to hear that the day ended all warm, cozy and happy by the fire. I do hope your health takes a turn for the better very soon!!


    • Hi Celeste 😀
      Phobia ?? I used to have one as well about doctors and dentists, but I have got over my doctor phobia as the doctors I am under in Ronda are so cute 😉
      BTW. You live close to the Amazon (not the online store). Could you pop down there and pick up a herb which will cure me ? Should only take you 3 months or so 😉 hehe.
      Your comment is so sweet. Thank you my friend. Ralph xox 😀


  13. So sorry they had the cheek to keep you waiting so long before your torture, and then the audacity to give you bad news!! I hope your condition can be treated and that you get some relief very soon. Sending you hugs as you sit in front of your lovely fire. xx


    • That is very kind of you to say such wonderful things, Sylvia. Thank you. Ralph xox 😀


  14. You have doctors,MFR, than you have all of us who include a bit of advice and encouragement for you. I don’t have any advice, just encouragement and commendations for your bravery and persistence. You deserve a medal! 🙂 xox RVBFM I think I forgot my xox in my last comment, so here’s an extra few to tide you over until the next post. xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxox 🙂 Does it help???


  15. It should have been an non day for you but you’ve already been in the hospital and the beginning there is ! Now I should be curious with what kind of therapy they would like to start with you and I wish you much of strength 🙂 ! Your fire is beautiful and it must be very cosy up there, giving you a big hug – SérachShirò


    • I am sooooooo late in replying to this your comment my friend. You give me such pleasure in your comments, so I look forward to them very much. Have a great evening Shiro. Ralph xox 😀
      PS> The therapy is ……. goblins !!


  16. Always in me thoughts matie. Your positive outlook and humour are most inspiring. And the photo of that wood-burning stove there is greatly appreciated. A lovely cat-mesmerizer indeed. Hugs,



    • Indeed so AJ 🙂 The log fire was one of my best installation ideas. The cats love it, so do I. Big hug. Ralph xox 😀


      • Aye aye, a superb decision well-made, most indubitably. Ah, what lovely recollections the image conjures. I can feel the heat of it, see the orange light of flame swim across the walls and play about contented whiskered faces, oh yes, too lovely indeed. Cheers,

        Autumn Jade


      • No need to paint it for you, there now, with but measly wee words matie- you’re living it, you lucky matie! ARG! 😉


      • Whale…no. There are no blizzards in sight, I must confess. But being of a gelid, craggy disposition, I ardently long for a tundra night with the hissing, hot lick of flame amid a vast snowy wilderness as my only solace 😉

        Bah, I shall have to make do with a cackling beach bonfire to kiss the faces of the silvery crashing waves, misted in the soft pale glow of low-lying cashmere cloud, to create the illusion of my blizzardly wilderness 😉


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