14 Days Post Op – Travel Sketching

Friday 25th March – Today was a day that I was not looking forward to as I had an appointment with my Physio in the morning and another with my family Dr. in the afternoon to remove the 30 staples from the incision. I am happy to report that both went better than hoped :). The wound had completely healed and Dr. Love was extremely gentle in removing the wire loops. I am now far more optimistic and gaining a much increased range of motion in the leg over the coming two weeks.

Dian and I had recently talked about planning a getaway up island. Last weekend a glossy flier arrived in the local weekend paper for events at Painters Lodge and April Point Lodge
( http://www.aprilpoint.com/ ) one of these June 5th -7th attracted my interest ”  Travel Sketching with Ink and Watercolours “(http://www.aprilpoint.com/specials/live-and-learn/).
We have a reservation and Dian will will have a spa day or two while I take the course.

In my teenage years I enjoyed making pen and ink sketches of places visited either on my bicycle or whilst hiking on the downs, dales  and fells of England. Now that I am to spend a fair amount of time with my leg elevated for while I decided to dig out my old pens. Alas much of the tools and skills have been lost over the years. I have purchased fresh ink and a few brushes and of course a Windsor Newton Watercolour travel set. A few small preliminary sketches have encouraging me. We have in our immediate neighbourhood several good spots where subjects can be found – French Creek – French Creek Harbour – Columbia Beach and its Foreshore and several small parks. Slightly further afield we have Qualicum Beach, Coombs and Parksville. and of course from our own garden a stunning view of the Arrowsmith Park Mastiff.

On being Re-Kneed

Friday 18th March – We arrived home four days ago, that being 5 days post operative as they say in hospital lingo. I would say that overall not too much pain but with peaks of severity that make it difficult to manage. This is brought on by the fluid pressure around the new joint which inhibits flex. The leg is rather like one of those New Years Eve blowing toys which when blown sufficiently hard unwinds the feathered tube and when fully extended shriek’s a loud whistle. Sleep is much disturbed by pain and potty runs but as all else is improving daily. Two visits to the physio (PT) have significantly improved flexation, mobility, and confidence. I will have the staples removed a week today and I am told to expect even larger strides after that  🙂

One of the alarming things learned during my stay was the very poor standards of PT on my two floors. In the first case they told my the wrong way to get maneuver into or out of bed. 2ndly the lass sent to transfer me into a wheel chair didn’t know how to remove adjust or replace the leg/ foot plates.

OK a minor thing ! But when I saw with my own eyes how poorly the Engineering profession is serving the needs of the Medical I was disgusted. I mentioned this to my brother Michael who told me that he recently had a similar experience when he took his wife’s Uncle out for a day in a wheelchair around Gosport.
In both cases the design of the basic wheelchair which had about twice the number of needed components was cumbersome, unnecessarily heavy, and thus expensive to produce. Perhaps even more important did not serve the occupant or the escort at all well. Compare this with the elegant functionality that comes with a modern 21speed bike for $200 and we engineers should banished in disgrace until a significant improved design can be offered with humble apologies for our dereliction. I shall be raising this with my nephew Kevin who is the designer and owner of “Clickgear” $200 sophisticated Golf Cart

Clickgear golf cart

I think he has the design ability and facility to lead the world in medical transportation and mobility aids. ComeOn Kev ! this is right up your street 🙂 Give us some more of your “Pure and Simple” elegant work.

Theresa’s Meditation Stool – Christmas Gift 2010

Yelow Cedar Log

I recieved a nudge for my eldest daughter Theresa as to “Why my Meditation Stool is not on your Blog” ? 🙁
Earlier in 2010 she had asked me to make her a meditation stool and pointed me to a spot on the web where three plain planks were offered for $80 . Having seen what she wanted decided that I could do better  🙂

Below are the pictures of what turned out to be her Yellow Cedar Christmas Gift. Yellow Cedar has spiritual significance to certain Eastern Religions.
It was designed to be carried flat in a suitcase for delivery to UK hence a sliding dovetail joint between base and seat.

Dishing the seat with gouges


Fitting the sliding dovetail joint
Kitchen Screes project in background


Sculpted base
Ready for carving detail


Outdoor quilter

Lotus blossom


Preirced Perpetual knot with climbing Roses