I’m not sure just who reads what I write, although I do get some feedback from folks I know.  Certainly I think that the latest contact I’ve received must rank as the farthest-flung, because it is from someone in the USA.  More on that in a moment, but meanwhile I want to comment that I’m feeling that it is about time to rest my keyboard for a while.

It has been good for me to share some of my experiences and feelings with other people over the past nine months.  However, it is perhaps appropriate to comment that I have probably said most of what I would like to say at this stage, and the hospice website is now starting up other blogs to interest people. I would also like to prevent people from becoming bored with me!

As for the USA connection, that stems from the blog “50 Years Ago” which enthusiastic readers might remember.  It was really all about Tiddlywinks, and the Oxford University tour of the US back in the summer of 1962.  It transpires that a key figure in the world of North American tiddlywinks spends considerable time researching the history of the game, and one of his searches threw up my piece on the Severn Hospice website.  He already had a fair bit of information on the Oxford University tour, but contacted the hospice to see if I would be prepared to provide more details of my tiddlywinking memories.

Well, that really is an opportunity I can hardly turn down, with the result that Rick Turner and I are now engaged in communicating about this.  The ease of doing this via emails provides another insight into how things have changed in 50 years.  In the early sixties, computers were physically large, amazingly slow and used things like punched paper tape and punched cards for input.  Now it is a matter of seconds for one of my press cuttings to be scanned and to arrive on my contact’s desk in the States. Hopefully some of the material I send, although rather poorly reproduced because of its age and origins, will be useful for him to add to the extremely impressive range of information which he has already assembled and disseminated.

As for providing him with more details of dates and places visited, together with contact names, I have to confess that I shall not have much to offer.  At the time of the tour, I was unaware of its significance especially on the brink of the launch of the powerful US tiddlywinking movement.  I was just 21 years old, and simply out to enjoy those few weeks spent touring the States.  Accordingly, I have virtually no written records, and my mental records are pretty deficient these days!  But maybe our email discussions will dredge a few thoughts to the surface.

Meantime, my hospice contributions will have to diminish, I fear.  I have indicated previously that my really beneficial drug has now ceased, and although I am now being supplied with an alternative, it is a bit early to assess its lasting benefits.  Certainly I am finding that I cannot manage to concentrate on things as I used to, which is something that I find to be extremely frustrating.  I am also joining a waiting list for another prostate operation, and naturally the timing on that is pretty uncertain. However, what lies around the corner nobody can say.  So it may be that there will be better times ahead once again, and inspiration will come back to me!



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