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Today's the day...
Flash
lil_shepherd
Too many things went wrong.

inamac went off into town to pick up her new glasses, and I forgot to stop at the launderette on my way back from dropping her off, so had to reverse out and head out again. For some reasons the driers took ages.

Back home. Just time to have a sandwich then charged out to pick up Ina. Went shopping... and headed back via the doctors to pick up her perscription, as we are heading North and on to Eastercon, dropping off at my father's (and that is a problem in itself as he wants to TALK to me about the fact that he is lonely, which means he wants to come and live with me or me to go and live with him, both of which are impossible and would result in me murdering him.) However, problem one was two buses stick in the middle of Horn Lane.

Bother. Turned car round and headed up side roads.

Got back on track at the Fairlop Oak roundabout, which, unfortunately, was where suddenly something went VERY WRONG with the car. Turned out we had a blowout. (This on a car we bought in September.)

Now, I have never changed a tyre or seen anyone change a tyre, while it has been 30 years since Ina has seen anyone change a tyre either. Luckily, our package includes roadside breakdown so, parking illegally on a yellow line, we wait nearly an hour for a chap to turn up and change the tyre for us.

Bear in mind we have a long drive ahead of us on Monday.

Finally, we get home.

The bottle of wine was most welcome.
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Yup, if ever you need things to go smoothly, they're bound to go pear-shaped. I think I'd have wanted something a bit stronger than a bottle of wine after that!

Have a good time at Eastercon, though - here's hoping you get there unscathed.

Sod's flippin' Law when you have a list of things needing to be done. When I got the first car, my next-door neighbour stood over me and made me change the tyre. Which was fine until the first time I had a puncture, as I couldn't shift the damn wheelnuts, which are put on with some super-duper pneumatic tool, according to the RAC man who came to my rescue. He had to jump up and down several times on a scary-looking wrench to shift them.

Have fun at Eastercon.

Yes, the pneumatic tyre-nuts are a real bind. I am perfectly capable of changing a wheel, IF I can get the bloody thing off first. Which I usually can't, so have to call the AA and look like a feeble female, which I loathe.

I used to work for the AA and believe me we got plenty of people calling in with flat tyres. Very occasionally we would get a man pretending that he didn't have a jack because he was embarassed!

I've changed a few tyres over the years, but I have the advantage (here at least) of being so heavy that if the nuts are stuck I can jump on the wheelbrace until the come loose.

I did have to call them out one time when my jack kept slipping- it just wasn't worth risking it.

My view is that you pay for breakdown cover so that you don't have to change a wheel. Realistically, even people who say they know how to change a wheel, probably can't because (as other people here point out) most garages will screw the wheel nuts on too solidly for the pitiful wrench that comes with you car will be able to cope with. Leave it to the pros.

Is there anything your father could feasibly do to address the loneliness issue on his own account? Hobby groups, social clubs, games night at the pub -- anything nearby that he could get to which would provide him some regular human interaction? It seems rather unrealistic for him to just expect you to magically fix it for him.

He's a member of a number of social groups - mainly dining clubs run by local charity groups - but he and mother were so tied up in each other that they never socialised a lot. He wants someone to talk to in the house. He does ring me a lot, which is fine, but we never have any topics of conversation in common, once we have discussed the weather and what he had for dinner. It would be no different here. The credit crunch has really done for us because if we could have sold the house and moved, as we intended, we would probably have tried to find somewhere which would have had enough room to turn into a bedsit for him. However, this house is impossible for him for more than a few days (he'd kill himself on the stairs) and the third bedroom is tiny. We are also going to undertake major building work this summer.

He really needs to go into sheltered housing or similar. (He is nearly 90.) However, I can't run his life for him. He is not in any stage of dementia and must make his own decisions.

Can you get him befriended by Age Concern? They run schemes to arrange connections and activities that suit the individual - for example:

http://www.acls.org.uk/befriending.html

But be aware I don't have any direct experience of any such scheme, though it strikes me as being valuable (and I do intend to offer my services sometime after my child becomes self-organising but before I get too selfish...but that's a different discussion).

Yep, Dad tried something like that on me too.

Not practical, feasible, imaginable, survivable

I have to get the handbook out to find out how to change the tyre on my car (Jack up point always get me.)

Last time was in the pouring rain and the damned jack had seized up due to a water leak into the boot.

Thanks for the poetry book btw.

The trouble is that when he comes over here it revolves around him. We spend most of the time driving around looking for his various medications! We can manage that (just) for ten days, but any longer and we'd go spare. He doesn't eat what we do, and we are normally are out of the house (or alone in the garden or our bedrooms or the study - because we want to be) for hours at a time, going places he just isn't capable of coping with! Not to mention keeping the conversations to topics that won't shock him. I can't put that on Ina, even if I was willing to take it on myself (and I'm not.) Yeah, selfish, but he wouldn't be happy living the way I live.


We have learnt the art of staying out of each others way, three adults in a small house would be chaos otherwise.

Dad thinks that silence in a room is the sign of something wrong, that television programs were meant to be talked over and that meals should be at regular times and not contain anything 'foreign'.

I work at home 50% of the time and require something close to silence around me. Can you imagine how that would work?

What he needs is what our grandfather had, a flat nearby and his own friends. I just can't see how to arrange that here.

He has friends - they just aren't there all the time.

He keeps asking if I'll come and live with him - and the answer is "No!".

Ah, the dutiful daughter ploy.
My mother in law uses it everyday with much better sucess than dad does (Even with me trying to sabotage it- damn that catholic guilt trip!)

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