Category Archives: islay

I’m still here…

Obviously, the periods between my posting on the blog have been getting longer and longer, but I have never gone nearly 4 months before. So maybe it’s time to pick this up again.

I have been prompted by two things really. Firstly, the retirement of a colleague recently who chastised me for not posting an update for a long time. He has a family member who has a similar condition to this and we have chatted about similar experiences. I hope he drops by and see this and is enjoying his life outside the office.

Secondly, through my contacts on the NCRI, I was approached this week by a big pharmaceutical company who were looking for some insight into drug and immuno therapy from a patient’s point of view. I pointed them to this blog and shared my experiences in a phone interview last Friday. The contact there is presenting to the great and the good of his organisation next week and I was happy to help him get a message across. They may have some exciting news to share with the world later, which will obviously be good!

I had my 6 month check-up with my consultant in June and I am pleased to say that things are still looking good from a health point of view. Next one will be in December and once again, there is no need for a CT scan this year. I’m now into my 8th year with this, 5 years post-maintenance.

Another birthday has also been and gone and I’m looking forward to a session with a local blacksmith next weekend. Ann bought me a Saturday morning’s experience there – I will be making a poker for the fire, apparently. Watch this space…

We have spent an excellent week on Islay with some good friends and it was a really good experience showing them around a place we know and love well. They hadn’t been out to a Scottish island before, and I suspect that they will be back soon. What’s not to like? We were very fortunate with the weather and the lack of midgies – if the former is bad and the later are out, it can be a bit miserable out there.

Here are a few photos from the week

Port-Charlotte-Rainbow

Sunset-over-Lochindaal

Lagavulin

Portnahaven

The new car is going extremely well and is a delight to drive and I am pleased to say that the satnav works perfectly. Which makes a nice change. I must go out and wash it shortly…

My task now is to find a suitable venue for everyone to meet for the Leica Forum Challenge in Rome in October. I have dinner for 40 sorted, but finding a suitable cafe in the centre of the city to meet at lunchtime is proving to be a challenge in itself.

Answers on a postcard please.

And, I promise that the next update will be before Christmas…

 

 

Working while on holiday (revisited)

With thanks to my friend AF for the link, here is an interesting article about the wisdom of keeping up with office work while on holiday.

Staff holiday – why it could be bad for business

I have posted about this before, while I was on leave, and it is interesting that professionals in the insurance and HR industries are thinking about the effect that this has on people.

Still deciding about two weeks next year, but I will take soundings from those colleagues who have been taking split weeks as well as those who have completely left the office behind for two (or more). What I have noticed is that some of the more senior staff within the organisation do tend to go completely off radar while on holiday as do those who read The Guardian. Maybe I need to reconsider the Blackberry in the bag next time, or at least have the email function switched off.

On the other hand there are others with whom I work who refuse to check emails while on leave, then complain that it takes two weeks on their return to catch up with themselves, while in the meantime, decisions get undecided and progress on projects slows. And their stress levels get turned up to 11.

What I did notice myself, having been keeping up with emails, is that I didn’t really feel that I got the best out of my holiday.

I don’t think that there is any easy answer and I don’t think that there is a right answer. But keeping the balance right is the important thing.