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On Monday 2 October 2017 I took myself to Merepark Medical Centre (MMC) and saw Dr Corcoran, as I had that morning experienced chest tightness and dizziness as I entered the park opposite the house on my way to the shops. This was a recurrence of similar experiences over the previous few weeks, whenever I set off at a reasonably vigorous pace, intent on getting the shopping done and back before the carer left my partner Barbara, this being the 0830 to 0945 daily carer’s visit. It had always occurred before I got many yards into the park. I would stand still and wait for a slight subsidence in the symptoms and carry on to the shops, managing in spite of some dizziness and confusion, with a ‘sensation’ in the chest rather than pain. On one occasion, though, I had felt so bad on my way back, outside Chatwins on the main road, that I had to stop again for about a minute, until I no longer felt that I was going to fall over.

On hearing my symptoms, Dr Corcoran asked a nurse to administer an ECG test and on looking at the results she referred me, with a diagnostic comment to me that it sounded like classic angina, to the Rapid Access coronary unit at Leighton Hospital. She also issued a prescription for a GTN spray, which I picked up later from the pharmacy at Lawton Road.

The consultation and ECG test at the Rapid Access unit on Tuesday 10 October (8 days from GP referral) resulted in Dr Justin Tay, SPR (Registrar) in Cardiology, prescribing aspirin 75mg, bisoprolol 1.25mg for mornings and atorvastatin 40mg at night. The ECG chart printout revealed a right bundle branch block and the comment that an inferior infarct could not be ruled out. He also arranged an appointment for a transthoracic echocardiogram and a CTCA (CT coronary angiogram). He advised me not to exert myself until we have the results of these investigations. All this sent in a letter to MMC, FAO Dr Corcoran, copy to me, 11 October. This letter names Dr E W Holroyd as the relevant consultant in cardiology at Leighton hospital.

I attended the echocardiogram on Monday 30 October, i.e. 28 days after my first GP consultation. In the meantime I had begun the medication prescribed above on 11 October. During the echocardiogram procedure the technician asked me, by way of conversation (?) whether I had been prescribed a GTN spray, at which point I realised I had not got it with me! Search at home revealed I had left it in a shirt pocket and put it through the washing machine that very morning before leaving for my appointment. Ordered and picked one up later that day from Gary the pharmacist at Lawton Road, before he had actually receive the electronic prescription from Dr Corcoran.

Yesterday, Thursday 2 November, I gave Rory at MMC reception the blue prescription from Dr Tay, for the GP to issue a repeat of my 3 meds before I run out.  The CTCA scan is on Monday 20 November, 3 weeks from Dr Tay’s request and six weeks from my initial GP visit. Up until writing this blog today, Friday 3 November, I have had no recurrence of the symptoms, having slowed down when I remember and when I feel any hint of their return, say on reaching the top of the stairs after going up too fast.


Many moons since I visited this site. thought I’d start back with a picture.

Today has been the best of the year so far as the sun is concerned and our friend in the picture took full advantage. Not that he/she’s been put off such meals by heavy downpours or wind. Anyway, after a visit from two old very human friends who brought a great lunch with them for us all, the day is drawing gently to a close as the sun goes down at the end of the road. Back soon, maybe. Me, and the sun, hopefully.

Wonder and awe. We have a first grandchild – William James, on 23 June 2014. 

Here’s a recent shot of work-in-progress at my allotment known as Alice  and an update link to some photos on Flickr,  (interspersed with a few other random local scenes) but you can get a good idea of what I’ve been up to in the months since my previous post. Needless to say, I am enjoying the times I manage to get down there in between domestic duties. I wonder what my first year’s yield of fruit and veg will be?


I was prompted to return to writing something on my own blog by reading a blog of one of my ex-students, where he asks a question about teaching methods and I couldn’t hold back a response, despite it being ten years since I was in a classroom and about five since I worked one-to-one.

Anyway, here’s what I wrote in answer to his question about the restrictions imposed on the learning process by teachers who follow the banking concept of teaching:

“Hello ****, it is good to read this. As you probably remember, despite being a “qualified” teacher, I rarely worked with what might be called conventional groups or classes; I was fortunate enough to choose a career with those pupils/students who didn’t fit in with the system and so were somewhat discriminated against. Hence I was largely left to my own devices, at secondary, further and higher levels. Such freedom to deal with, as you put it, the process of learning, was always attractive to me, rather than the “banking” concept of education (which is pretty useless on its own) and allows little room for even the slightest eccentric aberration from a prescribed syllabus.

I have known and admired some teachers of “mainstream” classes who were able to venture easily into such areas and activities, going where their pupils’ questions took the lesson; thus, they were not afraid to say “I don’t know” and education would occur!”


Anyway, 2012 has brought a new knee for Barbara, a permanent post for Jill and the third anniversary of my giving up smoking. Can’t think of any interesting additions, hyperlinks or pictures right now, maybe later.







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