The Last Furlong

Comments on the race of life.


Percussive maintenance

Mr Furlong is busy in the ice outside our back door. He is installing a dog flap. He is conversing with himself in language not fit for publication.

But I know Mr Furlong always does a perfect job.

He is a perfectionist.

Mrs Furlong (me), has always been an effectionist. If it gives the right effect, that’s fine by me.

It’s amazing that Mr Furlong and Mrs Furlong are still together after all these years.

If something doesn’t work Mrs Furlong bashes it.

That’s fine by me.

I call it percussive maintenance.

It sometimes works.

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Blood flow restriction bands experiment

Its my sixth week using blood flow restriction bands on my walks.

I use them on my legs, right at the very top. I have them on approximately 20 minutes to half an hour every day.

The ones I use have an elasticated section (as they should) so that even when you have tightened them, they have ‘give’.

I have seen a definite change in my muscular strength.


I actually picked up my baby grandchild which is something I haven’t done for years. I stopped because my left hand is mostly paralysed and my right hand is arthritic. I hold nothing heavy reliably.

I can open bottles.

I can close a drawer next to my lounge chair that has previously always seemed to jam for me.

I wizz up the steep incline to the canal. I wizz down it too.

I feel more confident walking, less cautious, more stable.

And lastly, my left leg and arm, the semi paralysed side, are stronger. And I am using that left arm to do things with, like open doors etc.

For me, my experiment has been very successful. For old people, it’s helpful to do.

And keep doing, even if walking with them is not an option, sitting and using them on arms with very simple excercise, is. As the restricted blood flows back, the chemicals the body made in the blood, goes to all the muscles everywhere, and strengthens them too.

It’s a boon for the elderly or the disabled. Link

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The pox is upon us

The Furlong family is enduring an outbreak of Chicken Pox. One lot of poxxed people get well, and the next lot go down with it.

We had five children. We know about how a large family can go for weeks and weeks with a rolling infection.

“The term chicken pox was (already) in use 1658. Various explanations have been suggested for the use of “chicken” in the name, one being the relative mildness of the disease.” (Wikipedia)

At that time, people were dying in droves from the real pox – Small Pox.

As a child, I remember being fascinated by the pock-marked face of a man we knew. It was really scary. My Nanna told me in hushed tones that he’d had Small Pox and I wasn’t to stare. But that was seventy years ago.

Since then, Small Pox has been eradicated.

I don’t know if that will ever happen to its lesser pox, the Chicken Pox

But I’m glad that’s all the Furlong’s have got!


New lamps for old, or is it old lamps for new?

Our modern shower just failed.

It was the latest when they renovated this place maybe twenty years ago.

But wait!

On the very strange bath we have in the shower room (that also contains an old fashioned bath with legs) there is another shower. It’s the old fashioned kind with a cradle above the taps: the kind that drives you crazy because the white ceramic handle swivels, and you can never get the water the right temperature. Well, because that’s what happened at our house-before-this, we have never ever used it.

But we can’t be doing without a shower, seeing we don’t bath.

So Mr Furlong got inventive, He connected the failed shower hose and head to the bath taps.

He just took a shower. He tells me it was fantastic!

Better than the old newer one.

Fancy that!

He’s a GIENIE!

EDIT : I just had a shower to try for myself. Mr Furlong is right. Excellent shower. Couldn’t wish for better.


Distracted by History

My mother was an Historian. She always saw the big picture and had an excitement of living in History-in-the making.

Here, in the Furlong house, we are observing History-in-the making by watching the political antics on TV.

It all looks pretty cruddy to me.

I’m excited to be living through History-in-the-making


all I see of the bigger picture



The creatures in it look all the same to me. They’ve all got green slime slithering off them; pools of it as they rise from our screen for our consideration.

So which creature does one vote for?

And my mother is dead, dammit.

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Sleeping in my bed

Mr Furlong and I sleep in separate rooms.

Well, we only do that because our rooms are smallish. Mr Furlong likes space in his double bed, and I have a single bed in what I presume was a ‘guest’ room, but is now MINE!

We cannot sleep together anymore because of our arthritis that interferes with our sleeping postures. What was once comfortable has gone to pot in our old age.

I have spent two nights away from home being a good grandmother. Tonight I’m going to be sleeping in my own bed.

I love my bed. I’ve always loved my bed. But this one, that I have now, is the most comfortable bed in the whole world.

And that’s for definite.


Chickenpox and oldies

We have grandchildren with chickenpox.

My first instinct is to stay well away. Several years ago, in 2015, I got Shingles. Give me PILLS.

It was dreadful!

But evidently, according to t’Internet, old people cannot get shingles from kids with chickenpox.

I hope the experts online are correct.

Otherwise, I’m going to be bloody mad!

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Life of crime

Here, in this quiet house, the two old people, daily, play a Massive Online Computer Game. We interact together ‘out there’ on the game and also, personally from our comfortable lounge chairs.

It’s very fun.

But as we toil away at our game, it’s not enough. We watch TV too. But watching proper full length movies is too mind consuming as our minds are already active doing stuff ‘out there’.

So we’ve resorted to Crime.

There are tons of series on Crime on TV.

Real crime.

American, French, Australian, South African, Canadian and those we haven’t discovered yet.

If that sounds grim, watching nature documentaries of animals eating other animals, disembowling giraffes, or slaughtering shouls of fish or dear little penguins, is pretty depressing.

Volcanoes, dying coral reefs, tornadoes, cyclones, global warming (as it is still called), is equally so.

We’ve tried those.

Nature is not gentle. Nature is not kind.

Neither are some humans, but at least, in crime documentaries, they get tracked down by the good humans, and punished.

There’s something satisfying in that!

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Better early, than late

When I was young, I was always late. One day, after being late for a lecture, again, the lecturer called me aside at the end of the lecture. He said “I just want to tell you that being late is a serious habit. You not only change your own Karma, you change the Karma of OTHERS!”

I was shocked. The idea that I was impacting so seriously on others had never crossed my mind.

From then on, my lateness was cured.

Lots of people I know are habitually late. I dislike lateness. I see punctuality as a mark of honour.

Being late causes negative repercussions. People lose jobs, friends, trust, opportunities, busses,  partners, cooperation, places. Life gets dirty as they scrabble about feeling apologetic and grovelling to you with excuses.

Punctuality really is a virtue.

And it pays off.

Being punctual means you never have to feel stressed. You arrive at places, emotionally collected. In order. Serene.

Being habitually late is sloppy.

But, worse, it makes no one feel good. Least of all, oneself.

Kids do late. My grandson missed his bus TO the town so his Mum had to give him a lift. And then, he missed his bus BACK. So she gave him a lift back.

Grandsons are a different generation….they listen to this kind of stuff. So maybe he thinks ‘late’ is cool!


The dog and the pacemaker

My last post was about how our dog was so desperate to get to our poor guest, that he barked incessantly and desperately tried to LUUV the poor chap.

It was only when I asked what it could be that had altered our friend’s vibes since we last saw him, that our guest revealed he had just had a pacemaker fitted.

He had, literally only just had a pacemaker fitted. He was wearing the hospital dressing over the wound and was careful not to lift his arm.

I think the dog knew our guest was “wounded”. He knew it by smell.

If Mr Furlong or I have “wounded” ourselves, we have a job to stop Bass from licking us better!

I researched whether pacemakers emit sound. They don’t seem to. The latest pacemakers can transmit information, even over a phone, but dogs don’t seem distressed by our routers or mobile phones and those transmit data all the time.

So I think our dog knew our friend was wounded. He was doing his best to let us know.

However, there are many many stories of cats and pacemakers. They know. A cat has a purring healing mechanism so they lie on their pacemakered humans. Cats are masters of hearing. Maybe they hear the heartbeat?

There don’t seem to be accounts of dogs doing the same.

Dogs however, are masters of smell. I think our dog Bass smelled a wounded man….

Don’t you?