We’re all gettin’ old

Boarding the P&O Arcadia, Sydney 1977. I was 30.

Nice day, a little cool at 18deg but no wind so, “cool”. Sun’s come out after a cloudy morning.

Boy, I’m sleeping so well these days after my years of insomnia. It was all caused by medications. It took me years to realise this. I used to go entire nights lying there unable to “drop off the cliff” into real sleep. It reached the stage of anxiety about going to bed.

But Tramadol, the pain relief drug (for my foot pain) and duloxetine, and recently citalopram, all caused me insomnia. Now that I’ve stopped them all, I drop off in seconds after lights out.

Unfortunately I always wake at about 1.30 to 2.30am, after an hour or two of sleep for some reason. Bladder, probably. But now I can drop off again very easily.

Lots of dreams, not nightmares, but usually stressful situations, very complex and not easily remembered. However, I’d describe my sleep as “Good”.

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Unfortunately, my mattress seems to have developed a ridge down the middle lately, such that I feel as if I’m on a slight downward slope on my side. I must admit, I’ve had this mattress and base for around 20 years now. I probably should replace it.

Which reminds me: I have a weight problem and I desperately need to lose weight. I like the idea of Lite’n’Easy meal delivery. I don’t have time to cook, can’t be bothered.

I like the idea of having prepared meals provided to me, and it would probably be as cheap or cheaper than my profligate supermarket weekly (plus plus) buys. I’ll make a confession – I like airline meals. Anything where someone else has cooked tasty and tempting food.

Anyway, back to the point – I’ve been thinking about Lite’n’Easy for a few years but always thought, “How would I fit all that stuff in my fridge and freezer?” It’s always chokka now. Which leads me to another point – I think there are things in the bottom of my bottom-mount freezer compartment that have been there since the last Ice Age. If there’s stuff on top, I don’t see the stuff at the bottom. I’ve changed my mind about bottom-mount freezers. Bad idea.

So, this is a roundabout way of saying, I’ve had an idea. I’ve had this fridge since I moved here, April 2013, and I’ve been thinking of changing it for some time. I want a French door fridge, this one probably:

I want the ability to open the smaller RH doors, given the fridge is on the left in my kitchen, and not having to bend down so much to reach the freezer, and having chilled water and ice always available. However, the cost of that water/ice gizmo in the door is very high, more than $500 for the privilege. It would be a much more sensible decision to simply keep bottles of water in the fridge. Not supermarket “spring/mineral” water!! We do NOT need that.

Get back to the point Pete! If I changed my fridge, I would completely clear my existing fridge so as to move it out onto the patio, and buy the new one. Then I could have the Lite’n’Easy delivered and fit it all in.

What would I do with my existing fridge? I’d try to sell it – it’s in perfect condition, clean, no scratches, no faults, no kids to damage it, quiet and cooool. I’d advertise it on F/B Marketplace. Funny, a woman put a notice up on NextDoor a couple of days ago asking if anyone had a fridge to sell, as she wanted one to put in the shed. But before I could react, someone in the neighbourhood offered her one, free. Good for her, but mine’s too good to give away.

Anyway, that’s the pipe dream, change my fridge and start the diet food deliveries at the same time. Hmmmm.

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One thing about it is that I’m severely constrained by the width. I only have 840mm available and this one’s 835mm. Tight! Similarly, the height of this fridge is 1793mm and I only have 1800mm at the most due to a built-in shelf above. I might even have to take a saw to the shelf.

I’m not like one of my neighbours – when she bought a new stove (I think it was) a few years ago, she got the builder in and had remodelling done of her kitchen.

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Which reminds me, she’s also having her shoulder “remodelled” on Monday. She had a fall yesterday, broke a couple of ribs and damaged her shoulder. Ouch.

I worry about myself as well in that regard. I’m not as steady on my feet as I was, and I sway a bit. Have I told you this before? The state government works with the health department at keeping we Seniors in our homes and out of hospitals. Obviously I’m in their records because earlier in the year I got a phone call from a young woman (heh heh, they’re all young to me now, aren’t they?) asking if I’d like a hand rail in my shower and toilet, and could she come out and assess me. That was nice, so she did and about two months later a guy came out and fitted a bar/hand rail in my shower, and another smaller one in my main en-suite toilet. Free! No charge.

Then a couple of months later she phoned again and asked how it was going. I said I wished I’d chosen another location for the shower one. No worries, we’ll come out and have a look again. So she visited again and a few weeks later the guy turned up and fitted another one for me. Again, no charge. Nice.

I still wonder if it’s in the right position, but I don’t think I can ask for a third one.

The point is, if I fall in the shower, these are naturally placed for my flailing hand to grab onto. I hope.

And yet, I was thinking the other day, if I fell in the shower and broke a hip or leg such that I couldn’t move, I’d be in trouble. My only hope would be that my bathroom window is open to call out to next door, Barbara. I would have to do that, and hope she was home, although at 8am when I’m in the shower, she probably would be. We’re a similar age.

The answer is, it’s time I got a distress alarm, the type you wear on a lanyard around your neck. I’ve looked at them before but they’re quite expensive. But if I have to, I’d better do it.

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I’m still enjoying the Peugeot 407 Coupe, but I must admit there are several things that are annoying me. I feel that Peugeot must have taken a “she’ll be right” attitude when they made the RH drive version of this car.

  • For example, the driver’s door key lock works the opposite way – you turn the key clockwise to unlock, anticlockwise to lock. That’s the mirror image of a LH drive car, as if they just transferred it across and didn’t notice the inconsistency.
  • And there’s no key lock at all on the passenger side. I suppose if I had a key with a working remote lock/unlock, it wouldn’t matter, but my one and only key is broken in that regard.
  • Then the steering column key slot: there’s no ACC (accessory) position. It’s either OFF or ignition ON/START. When you stop and turn the engine off, you can’t have the radio on without turning the key to ignition-on. This is weird.
  • Then there’s the small and very poorly laid out LCD display for vehicle info and radio station display. I can never work out how to get the radio station I want. It’s there, but I have to take my eyes off the road and look at the display, and the buttons about 150mm below it. You can’t do it by feel. Not good.
  • In the Verada and the Honda, I have a good display of the fuel economy at all times and in the Verada I can easily switch between instantaneous and average. But in the Pug it seems to be instantaneous display only, meaning it changes very rapidly depending on the throttle. It’s very hard to know what your average is. Maybe there’s a way, but this is my point, I don’t know how to make it display the average. The interface design is very poor, in other words.
  • The characteristic of the Japanese cars I’ve owned (the Verada is Mitsubishi Japanese, even though made in Adelaide) is how smooth everything is, including inching along on minimum throttle. But the Pug is lumpy. It’s not smooth at low rpm. It vibrates and sometimes needs a kick to the accelerator (not really) to get it to move. Once the revs kick up, it’s good, but it just doesn’t have the velvety smoothness of Japanese cars.
  • The doors seem to have only two positions, open and SLAM. The door springs are very strong, in other words, much stronger than I’m used to in my Japanese cars.
  • The switches for the power windows are too far back. They don’t fall under your fingers when you reach for them. You have to reach further back and feel for the switch. Yes, it’s a coupe and the doors are longer than for a sedan, but they could have designed this better.
  • I’ve previously mentioned the wind buffeting. I still can’t find a combination of amount of opening or combination with passenger opening to stop the vibration and drumming at speed. It will need the aircon working when the weather warms up. Did I mention? The aircon doesn’t work. I knew that when I bought it and intend to get it fixed. Must do it.

And more, but my fingers are tired.

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