Oi! Who do you think you are? David Bailey!!

It was a phrase said in jest by people in my younger years, when someone was trying to take a photo. For the benefit of the younger generation, he is a famous photographer.
I have always been interested in photography, but have only ever been a point and shoot type, like most of us, i guess.

IMG_1540Since my accident my dad has taken me bird watching, for several reasons really.

Firstly, it was to get me out and about.

Secondly, it was a peaceful and relaxing environment.

Thirdly, my dad has always had a great interest in it since he was a lad.

So i decided to take a camera and try and get some photos of the birds and wildlife on these trips.

Various people have commented on my pictures, and that got me thinking, don’t laugh i can think sometimes 🙂

So the other day i booked myself on a Level 1 Photography Course run by Jessops.
So, Saturday came, i arrive at 10am on the dot at the Training Day. For a change i’m on time as i’m usually running late.
I’m feeling anxious, not knowing what or whom i’ve let myself in for. I keep telling myself “You can do this!!”, “You Can, You Can!!”.

As i walk into the room i come face to face with a guy in his late twenties, with a friendly face, he introduces himself as Carl. “Take a seat we are waiting for one other”. As i sit down i say “Hello” to another gentleman sitting at the head of the table, he looked around retirement age. So i settled in pretty quickly and wondered why i was so worried. Then, the Trainer Carl stands and says “We must get started now!”, followed by the door opening and the third pupil walks in to the room, he was 6’6″, late twenties with tattoos canvassing any visible parts of his skin.

We start by introducing ourselves and the course commences.
The trainer told a story which just stuck in my head.

A famous photographer went for a meal in a restaurant, the chef came out to greet the photographer saying how much he loved his great work and pointed to a beautiful picture landscape on the wall, “Look!” he said, “I have one of your pieces on my wall, I bet you took that with a great camera!”. The photographer smiled and nodded gently. Later, after his meal, as the photographer was leaving he was again greeted by the chef. He said to the chef “The meal was delicious, you must have cooked it in a great oven!”
It made me smile, thinking of how i would feel if one of my customers said “Thanks for fixing my boiler, you must have great tools”.
Anyway, i won’t bore you all with the details of the course, but i enjoyed it!

So i booked myself on three more courses, my Photography Level 2 course, a Motorsport Photo Workshop and a Birds of Prey Experience.
So i now have another interest to think about now, and hopefully i will become a better photographer. Who knows i might start another blog to run beside this one, to share my photography experiences.
Thanks for reading my blog!

Bye for now, David Bailey 🙂

A Trip to the Doctors!

My trip to the doctors started 7.25pm Sunday night. I had to fast from this time until 9.25am Monday, which was when I was having some blood tests done to see why I’m suffering with these constant headaches.

So to prevent any temptation or forgetfulness, the later being the more obvious, I decided to go to bed early. Monday morning came and my daily routine kicked into action. Bathroom, teeth, shower and get dressed. Then downstairs to the kitchen,where I got greeted by my dog as if I had been missing in action for 6 months, I headed for the kettle and was greeted again, but by various posters of “Dean Only Water”IMG_1536.JPG “Dean No Breakfast Only Water” IMG_1535.JPG

and my white board “Water Only”!!IMG_1537.JPG

My routine was now interrupted, I could feel the anxiety bubbling away inside, right I need a plan, I’m trying to think what to do, “What can I do? What Can I Do? WHAT CAN I DO?”, when I’m prompted by my fury friend, my dog Prince. I know, I’ll take the dog out for a walk (as if it was all my idea not his), and by the time I get back it will be time to leave for the Doctors.

On arrival at the doctors I book in with reception, and am told to go into the Waiting Room. As I approach the glass wooden framed doors I could see its contents, I’m sure if there were seats on the ceiling people would be on them too. As I went through the doors I’m greeted by coughing, sneezing, spluttering, sniffing and wheezing. I quickly grabbed the last breath of fresh clean air, and i’m sure I covered my mouth with my hand.

The Waiting Room is like a large through lounge, as if it was two separate rooms at one time. So I went to the far end and grabbed the last seat. I was sitting opposite a middle aged lady, I thought to myself this isn’t a bad seat after all. Then the tannoy boomed “Tom Green Room 2”, I nearly ended up on the lady’s lap. The lady opposite then rifled through her bag and produced a nail file, every to and thro action felt like it was passing through one ear and out the other, then the two children behind me decide to play on this toy where you push the beads along twisted bits of wire, I didn’t realise how much noise a toy could make, then the tannoy would boom into action as if it was all a well timed orchestra of chaos! I can feel myself getting more and more anxious, I again talk to myself “I can’t stand this! I’ve got to get out of here!”, I try to focus on something else, wishing the tannoy would sing my name. I notice a guy diagonally to my left, he was dressed in his tan coloured steel toe capped boots, black combat trousers and a thick fleece. I used to dress very similar just over a year ago when I was working. I felt an envy come over me, and I started to think about my working days. The tannoy boomed again which made me and the guy I was staring at jump, I looked away quickly so as not to be caught staring. I noticed the lady opposite was staring at me, still filing her talons, I’m running out of places to look, so I look up at the ceiling, then I check the time, I’ve only been here 5 minutes, seems more like 25 minutes. Then a soft ladies voice comes over the tannoy “Dean Strachan Room 8”.

I can’t even remember leaving the Waiting Room, the next I’m in Room 8 with the nurse. Its peaceful and quiet, and I feel myself relaxing, sinking into the soft chair, even though I’m having a needle put in my arm and now filling 5 test tubes of blood.

So a simple day to day task of going to the doctors can seem like a huge task for someone with a Brain Injury. I’m improving though because I went on my own, a few months ago I would not been able to do this, I would have needed someone to take me.

Thanks for reading my blog!

Cappuccino with a sprinkle of People!

IMG_1533Cappuccino  with a sprinkle of people! What a terrific combination! Sitting outside in the sun at my favourite coffee shop in Sevenoaks, Nonna Cappuccini’s, watching the world go by whilst sipping at my Cappuccino.

I was going to be meeting a friend this morning for a coffee and a chat, but unfortunately they was under the weather, so I thought rather than waste an opportunity I’d still go and took my dog Prince too. The staff there always make a fuss of him, so he enjoys himself too, he loves to people watch also.

You have the elderly couple helping each other along, still holding hands after 50+ years of marriage. You have the stressed mother struggling to keep any sort of order as the children run ragged. You have the flash harry on his mobile at full volume informing everyone within a 100 yards of his wise boy antics. You have the bored husband skulking past the pub as his misses drags him to the next clothes boutique. You have the young man looking at his reflection in every shop window. You have the kept woman with the handbag more expensive than your average car. You have the first date couple struggling to make conversation. You have the teenagers glued to their phones, yet still they walk along without bumping into anything. You have the foreign exchange student trying to work out the menu of the coffee shop. You have the click clop of the horsey type in their riding boots and jodhpurs. You have the people charging along dodging the daydreaming shoppers. You have the lost delivery driver pushing along his loaded sack barrow. You have the clueless 5 abreast strollers expecting everyone else to get out their way. You have the snippets of conversation that you try to piece together and make sense of. You have the pair who are obviously having an affair. You have the single dads who only have those few precious hours on a Saturday with their children.

Then you have me! In his hoodie, tracksuit bottoms and trainers with his Staffordshire Bull Terrier cross breed dog. What would your first thought be??

EXACTLY!!

We are all guilty of it! We judge a book by its cover. We make our minds up before we know anything. It’s just human nature.

The reason I wear tracksuit bottoms and a hoodie is because they keep me warm as my body temperature sense is damaged so I’m always cold, and I’m hypersensitive to noise so the hoodie helps to block some of everyday noise. As for my dog, I got him a month after my accident,  I rescued him when he was 6 months old, to give him a better life and to help with my recovery.

Thanks for reading my blog, speak soon x

A Year ago today !!

A year ago today was the 10th March 2015, a date which will stay with me for the rest of my life!

It is among a few dates which I will never forget, for some who know me well they will know these dates, and for those who don’t will no doubt find out if they continue to follow my blog.

Anyway getting back to the topic in hand, I was at work fitting a replacement gas boiler in a customers house, a pretty average day, the sun was out and life was pretty good, my business was expanding, we were close to doubling our turnover for this financial year, only another month to go and the diary was full. My company had a great reputation, and a Accredited Installer for Worcester Bosch ( 1 of only 2% of heating installers in the country) and Vaillant.

The new boiler was up and running, only the tiding up to do.  DISASTER !!!

The customers loft ladder that I was at the top of broke, and as I fell, I was heading towards the stairwell, I kicked off the wall, which sent me backwards but head first, impacting my head twice.

So today I had a choice!

  1. Do I mope around feeling sorry for myself?

OR

2.  Do I get on with living life?

I CHOSE OPTION 2!

So this morning I treated my damaged body to a Swedish Massage! I enjoyed it too 🙂 !!

You may think what a strange thing to say, aren’t the body and me the same thing? Well in laymen’s terms they are! But after a brain injury they are not, your body does not always connect with the brain, so what you want your body to do doesn’t necessarily happen.

The massage was expertly performed by Katya of Light Hearts UK

After that exhausting massage it was lunch time, so I headed from Tunbridge Wells to Sevenoaks, to my favourite coffee shop Nonna Cuppaccini’s and had a Chicken Escalope Ciabatta. The food here is always excellent, so is the coffee 🙂

Your probably thinking what a life of riley he’s living, and your right, 10 out of 10!!

I AM LIVING A LIFE OF RILEY, I’m not going to let my life changing brain injury stop me from living!!

Well I’d better get some rest as I do witter on, and its the early hours of Friday morning.

Welcome to my new blog!

Welcome to my new blog! I’m hoping to post about my experiences regarding my brain injury, which happened 10th March 2015, a year ago tomorrow!

It is going to involve the highs, lows, laughter and tears of life after brain injury.

I will be blogging on a regular basis as therapy to me, selfish I know, and hopefully help to others.

Well, I’d better try and get some rest now as I’m going to Headway West Kent at Tunbridge Wells in a few hours.