A quick check this weekend revealed that my options on the island all still remain. Whilst this may not bode well for the businesses concerned it also reflects the poor state of the trade. In a recent survey of job satisfaction publicans were firmly at the bottom, not just low the trade was the very last entry. I spent some time reflecting on my chosen career and really can’t see why it scores so low.
The hours are long and the financial rewards are low but this, of itself, doesn’t make for unhappiness. I think this cloud of depression is the result of ‘up selling’ and it’s a legacy from the boom of pub companies. Even now the pub companies sell a dream, after all that is their business. In the golden days they would hand keys to anyone who had a redundancy or early retirement cheque and liked a beer. This marketing trapped people in the trade, not having the skills to cope with the business or the love to drive through the tough times they became commercial prisoners.
For the rest of us this is a great trade. Of course volumes have decreased and costs have increased, times seem perpetually tough. The licensed trade is not a road to financial riches, it hasn’t been for some years. It is a road to being part of a community, a place in people’s memories and it can support itself. Most importantly as my mate Andrew likes to remind me “once you’ve been bitten” for some of us it’s just in the blood.
And so it was that on Sunday I was looking at parking options for the, now landlocked, site in Ventnor. Then a couple of hours spent sketching the new bar arrangement which, I must say, looked rather good. Is it the site? Will it be available and achievable when I finally regain some traction and my life comes off ‘pause’? Who knows but it never hurts to be prepared does it. . . .
In other news a weekend of wearing sweat pants has given my knee a much needed chance to heal. Taking no chances I have protected the left knee with a piece of tubular bandage and was most gratified to find it looking good when I got to the hotel last night. I have to take my hat of to Helen for the insightful questioning on Friday. Having stated the obvious about planning and knowing I had to return to work I responded with “it was a long weekend”. Obviously she knows me too well because without a pause she asked which day I had carried out the work, the answer of “Sunday” didn’t help me!
Despite donning a wrist brace yesterday lefty continued to misbehave. Cooking an evening meal resulted in a burn on my right arm when lefty decided to reject the plan of holding a saucepan. Using my medical expertise* I studied lefty and the movements that caused more pain. I had a eureka moment when I discovered a lump between the base of my thumb and my wrist. Checking the other wrist revealed no such projection but what did that mean? One of the problems with smashing both wrists is that there is no known ‘good’ one to compare with, had lefty grown a lump or had righty lost one?
Given that lefty was causing the pain and the more painful movements caused a grinding against the lump I concluded it was not desirable. The next question was what to do with the lump? It didn’t hurt to press it but equally it didn’t seem to want to move. Now the engineer in me knows that middle carpal row is held in compression by the other two so perhaps it was just a case of getting the correct angle of attack. Rotating the wrist whilst pressing the lump brought some movement and after a couple of goes I was rewarded with a loud crack.
No more lump, well at least it was smaller. A quick check through the range of rotation revealed that it now hurt more, with the grinding feeling deeper in the joints. This all seemed rather unfair, I had solved the issue after all so why had the pain not stopped? More worryingly how would I get the bone back out if indeed that was the problem?
I did some exercise to work out all of the mechanical noises and then retired for the night. Lefty most definitely disapproved, no matter how I laid I couldn’t stop the pain. In the end I hit a compromise, a very tight bandage and wrist under the pillow numbed it for a while. The problem with this arrangement was that after a short while the pins and needles became more annoying so I had to release the bandage. Whilst this arrangement is not conducive to sleep it does give plenty of opportunity to listen to the ocean.
The pain has eased off a little this morning, obviously this is because my intervention was the right thing to do. Or perhaps it just that my shoulder is aching so much, in protest at sleeping on it, that the wrist doesn’t seem so bad.
I wrote this post mainly for anyone who should catch me sneaking glances at them. It’s ok it’s nothing weird I’m just trying to understand what a wrist should look like!
*or should that be stupidise?