Holiday Time

My WordPress friend Fandango ( has this excellent idea of each Friday, reposting something from this date in a previous year, just to let readers have a glimpse of our past.

So I chose this week to include a post from two years ago, my first (and so far, my only) holiday/vacation since the stroke. These posts are especially significant for me, as they remind me how far I have come, which was the reason I started this blog. Note that the date is not exact – I tend not to post every day, so I aim for as near as possible. Enjoy (the photos especially), and I hope I’ve done the pingback feature properly.

Mister Bump

I went away on holiday with my wife last week, my first time away from home since the stroke.

We stayed in a “normal” room, i.e. not one for disabled people. Deliberately so on my part. The holiday, however, was an organised coach trip to Scarborough, and was clearly aimed at more senior people. A lot of my criticisms of the package are based purely on this age difference. For example, the hotel was without internet, and what they said *did* work, *didn’t*. Nobody seemed bothered, except for my wife and I.

Getting onto and off the coach was dependent on the actual terrain on which we were parked, but was generally do-able. There were plenty of things to hold on to, to give myself leverage. So too was manouvring about the coach. I did find that my bad leg was prone just to “relaxing” out of the seat into…

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Well, I’ve been with WordPress for, what?, a week now.

I probably visit a couple of times a day, I’ve gone through the process of subscribing, and unsubscribing, from several blogs. I’ve already experienced finding fifty emails in my mailbox when I fire the computer up. I’ve been amazed that people have started following my blog, although I expect they’ll unfollow when they realise how dull my life is.

So, a lot of the week has been spent working out how’s dashboard works (I’m going to try posting this on a schedule, rather than immediately). And not just WordPress. I installed Grammarly to help with my typos and am pretty impressed – I’m going to buy their premium subscription just as soon as I feel like spending £100/year on computer-related subscriptions. In fact, I’m using Grammarly to compose this – it kicks in for comments, but not in WordPress’s “Post Composer” – presumably it hooks into various HTML tags, which the composition page doesn’t use. I’m already seeing a consistent message that I use too many commas! But certainly a step up from Firefox’s default spellchecker – so ineffective that I had to go check whether it was running or not!

There are some things, though, that aren’t technical. Rather than can I change a post?, questions like should I change a post?. Not at all technical, instead one of principle. I have always had the power to edit my posts and comments, and I’ve used this occasionally to enhance what I’ve written, or just to correct typos. Never really to alter my point, but just my words.

Now, I’m aware some people are looking at my posts. I’m a lot more uneasy about changing them. If somebody reads X, and writes a comment on X, then it’s not really acceptable for me then to change X into Y. I’ve decided that for that reason, I can’t edit things I’ve already published. If anything, there’s a lesson in this for me to slow down the process, to check and check some more, to make sure I don’t publish exactly what I want to say. With some comments that I know I need to word carefully, I already have a 12-hour rule – I have a “cooling-off” time before I say anything, until I get my wording straight in my head. I’ve been burned a couple of times, especially with other stroke survivors, because we’re all at different stages of recovery. I try never to say anything which might be offensive, but I know I can be…irreverent, sometimes. I try to apply this rule, those times where I don’t, I often wish I had!

There is an exception here, though, and it’s those dratted typos I mentioned earlier. Whenever I notice one, I am frankly embarrassed, especially as for every mistake I spot, there must be 100 others go through unnoticed. I will correct them if I see them. I have to – I can’t knowingly leave silly mistakes out there for the world to see. I hope you understand, and if you wish to message me when you see one of my typos, I promise I’ll be grateful, not offended.

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