Friday, December 02, 2011

Contrasting Days

December is upon us and it's started off well, hundreds of times better than November finished...  A positive start to the month is always a good one, and this month started off positively.  I look forward to the next 30 days or so, and even now start to think of how I'm going to write or what I'm going to write towards the end of this 30 day period as a review of the year that has been 2011.

So to begin, a summary of Wednesday, which I have to put down, as it will help negate it in my memory.  I set off to catch the bus to Leigh at 8.55, knowing that it should be plenty of time to get to the bus stop and wait for the 9.08 bus.  As with the previous week though as I was turned the first corner I saw a bus pass the top of the road towards the stop, no issue, the previous week another "earlier" bus had arrived and I jumped on that and just changed my route.  So I got to the stop, and waited not sure which bus had passed nor if the bus I'd wanted had come past earlier.  So I waited till a few minutes past the designated time of arrival and set off walking down the road to a stop further down the road which has another bus I could catch arrives at.  Constantly checking to see if the one I did want was late.

I went past the first stop, which I had intended to do, got half way between this stop and the stop I wanted, when the original appeared at the top of the road, plenty of space between it and myself, and it had a busy roundabout to negate.  So I turned and started to run for the bus, though within two or three yards, I knew I was going to fall, I hadn't tripped or slipped, but I knew I was falling.  I tried to correct myself, by slowing down and at one point I thought I'd corrected it, but no down I went.  All this was in seconds though it sounds like a life time.  I knew it was a big fall, and in true sporting fashion, I stayed down a little longer than needed, as I knew cars were passing etc, and embarresment and pride were kicking in, I'd never done that before, plus I was a little concerned about the fact I'd landed on my knees, before bouncing and twisting onto my back.  As I got up a car stopped and asked if I was OK, I was shaken, but said I'd be fine just a little sore.  The bus stopped which was wonderful, I was no where near the stop, but the loveley driver stopped for me anyway.  

As I'd got up, I'd found my hat and keys had come off my head and out of my pockets respectively,so I collected them and was carrying them onto the bus.  As the bus set off, and I was fumbling to get the money to pay for my ticket, my keys dropped again, I paid the driver collected my change and then picked my keys up.  I found a empty seat sat down, placed my hat and keys on the seat next to me, and realised I'd cut my hand in the fall.  It seemed like a superficial cut, but it was bad enough.  I put my hat in my bag, and thought I'd put my keys in my pocket, and went on my way to the stop I needed to be to get off and wait for the second bus.  At this point the cut hand was still messy, but I had no where to clean it up.  So I got onto the next bus, after another small adventure and got to Leigh.

I went for a brief walk around the shops in Leigh before heading to my appointment, but I was increasingly aware that the cut on my hand was still bleeding, so I intended to wash it and clean it at the centre where my appointment was.  Within 300 yards of reaching there, I went to change the music track on my phone, and suddenly realised I didn't have my keys with me.  I checked my bag, thinking I put them in there on the bus, but no they were not there.  It was here I thought they'd come out of my pocket on one of the 2 journeys I'd made today, so I walked back to the bus station, to ask them if they could contact the respective buses for me to see if my keys had been handed in.  It was here that I found the station or the offices closed.  With the mass strikes taking place on Wednesday, I hadn't realised that this would include the bus stations.  

Upon discussions with the striking staff I found that one inspector was working, and spoke with him.  He told me he'd contact the depot and ask them to ask the last bus I was on, and to come back later.  So I went back for my appointment, where I cleaned the cut up, but was concerned about the look of it, Using the magnifying glass and lights in the room, it was assessed by 2 others, though I thought it myself that I may have something in my hand.  A trip to the local "walk-in" small A&E dept. at the local infirmary was needed.  So I walked down there and checked in.  After being assesssed it was nearly an hour and 15 minutes before I was seen, and at first the nurse wasn't sure about a foriegn body being lodged in my hand.  After further inspection he claimed I might have, but by the time he removed the stone from my hand he was quite shocked at the size of it and how deeply embeded it had been.  Perhaps I'd fallen heavier than I had first thought, but it didn't seem that way.

Thankfully a friend whom I've met whilst in Leigh had come down to pick me up, she knew I'd been shaken etc, and knew of the lost keys.  So thankfully she drove me back to the bus station, where I hunted down the inspector, but no luck, the keys weren't on the second bus, and thus hadn't been brought back to the station.  He gave me some numbers to ring, but told me to wait another hour or two.  I was despondant, I had no where to go really, and apart from texting my best friend and my friend in Leigh, I felt alone, in need of a huge hug.  I returned to my friends house had a coffee, and a chat, before calling the bus depot, where upon I was told that no keys had been found and that I should call back between 6.30 and 7,00pm.  Not good as I wouldn't be able to get a spare set of keys available then.  

They did explain that the keys would be handed over to the new drivers who had taken the bus over, from the previous one and when the bus arrives back at the dopot would be placed into lost property then.  All well and good, but if they aren't and at that time I'd be in a horrible situation.  So I rang the estate agents explained the them, but they said I'd have to get a spare set cut from there keys, so I'd have to go to them before they shut.  By now it was getting towards 2pm.  I left my friends house walked back to the bus station, shaken alone and pondering what else will go wrong today.  Just as I arrived back at the station my friend called and told me she'd run me back to where I wanted to go.  I was so grateful, so she did just that and after a search of that area to see if the keys had fallen out on the pavement etc, I jumped on a bus back to the estate agenets,  I did ask the driver of two buses running the same route I'd followed in the morning if any keys had been passed over to them, but none had.  I was told 5 different buses were running that route all at once.  However, I could identify which one it was due to the nicer seats on the earlier bus, still no luck with that idea.  

When things are going against me they really go against me, any regular reader will know I have that knack of not one, two or even three things going wrong at once, but more like seven or eight.  Today was about to follow that path.  The estate agents, had no spare keys per say to my flat, they needed to speak to the land lord, however they'd left a few messages with him and emailed him, but had no response.  It was coming up to 3.30, and obviously I was increasingly worried that I'd not find my keys and all the impending worry that would cause and no response by the land lord was causing concern that he might not get back intouch till the following day and where would I sleep that night.  This was increased when the estate agent called back.  As I was outside the shop, I walked in, to be greeted with the news, that the land lord had spoken to them, and that he'd get spare set of keys cut, however they are a "special" barrel or something and so it would cost me between £20 to £30 to replace mine.  Also he couldn't get it done till the morning.  I had no idea what I'd be doing!!  One of the members of the team at the estate agents thought they had keys to get them into my place, which would enable me to get in, but not go out at all till the following day.  He said he'd meet me at my place at 4.30.  I had 40 minutes to get home.  

I was home in plenty of time, the final of the 5 buses came and it wasn't going to have my keys on it, my phone by now was running low on battery as well, so I had nothing to keep me entertained.  I sat outside my house, despondant, cold, shaken and in tears waiting till 4.30 to arrive.  When the gentleman arrived, at felt some relief that this nightmare would come to an end, but no, the keys he brought wouldn't gain access into the building to get to my flat, upon gaining entry via asking one of the other residents to let us in, his keys again didn't fit my room, and it was now I really broke down. He left to go find another set of keys, I thought I'd try the bus depot, after even though it wasn't 6.30, it was worth a try.  A bright spark, a star, the beacon or anything else you wish to call it shot up, they had a set of keys, I knew the amount of keys, what type of keys they were both them fitted the description, but what else to identify them?  I couldn't recall, all I could think of was a small plastic non descript keyring.  It wasn't till they mentioned a Oilers key ring bought by my friend in Denmark last year, that it became clear they had my keys.  I called the estate agents, told them the news, and not to send the gentleman out with "the other keys" he'd gone to collect and off to Bolton on the bus. It was rush hour traffic though and the trip took forever.  I got the keys, caught the bus home and got in just before 7.30pm.  

The football that night was inconsequencial, I was in, I could eat, I could drink and get warm.  I could lick my wounds, many of them were physical and also mental.  Wednesday was a god awful day with one light, a big light all the same, but it couldn't brighten the day and it's going down as a very dark, dark day.

On waking yesterday to a new month, I discovered that apart from the graze on my knee, a huge bruise, and also sore ribs and bum.  I really must have hit the floor with some force and yet I don't know how I fell.  I also discovered that I think I may have broken my camera in the fall, but hey the way Wednesday went, it's hardly surprising to me.  Anyway, yesterday arrived and I spent all day going around the differing shopping area's of Salford promoting World Aids day, and selling red ribbons.  Starting in Eccles, moving to Walkden, Swinton, Pendleton (Salford) and then to the Lowry.  What a contrasting day to the previous day.  It was spent with wonderful people, chatting about anything and everything.  Seeing the sights and sounds of Salford, and raising some money towards local charities that deal with people with HIV/Aids.  I may have got home a little cold, a little hungry, but unlike the previous day my spirits had been lifted, it had been a positive day, and one where I'd been very socialable with others.  Most unlike me wouldn't you say?  Well I am socialable, but what I mean is one where I've been surrouded by others rather than being alone.  

Returning to my entry into this post, I'm here by hoping that December follows it's humble, but beautiful start rather than following November's horrible finish.  You know though, I could still do with that big hug, but friendly voices on telephone calls yesterday morning, friends in Leigh and Winchester helped me get over Wednesday and one won't forget that.  Thanks one and all.

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