Eye to Eye 2017: walking in the rain

Team RD Ramblers at the finish line, King's College.

Made it to the finish line, at King’s College!

Things weren’t exactly going according to plan.  It should have been the final stint of training for our 14-mile walk, followed by a rest period just beforehand.  Instead, just over two weeks before the big day, a white van belonging to a well known delivery company crunched down the  entire side of my newly serviced and MOTed little Yaris.  By the following morning, the slight snuffle and sore throat which had been annoying me for the past couple of days had developed into full-blown (wo)man ‘flu and upon attempting to speak, I discovered that I couldn’t.  I spent the next few days downing honey and lemon, munching ibuprofen, and wondering how the hell I was going to walk 14 miles through the streets of London as it was such a struggle just making it from the bed to the kettle.

On the Monday of Eye to Eye week, my aunt (team member Susan) went down with a nasty bug and took to her bed – an extremely rare occurrence.  On the Wednesday, Lucy broke the news that her big toe nail, which had only just grown back after turning black and falling off after Eye to Eye 2016, had started to crumble away when she’d somewhat foolishly attempted to trim it, leaving her with an extremely sore toe.  On the Thursday, team member Nickie emailed me to say that she’d been ill all week but was hoping to be fit for action on Sunday.  On the Friday, I received the news that my 99 year old great aunt was in hospital after breaking her hip and fracturing her pelvis in a fall.  (Upon visiting her, we found her in good spirits and doing well, fortunately.)  On the Saturday, my mobile crashed and died, taking with it my fellow team members’ contact numbers.  After five RD surgeries, I’m well aware of the fact that bad luck doesn’t always come in threes, but this was taking the biscuit.  I’ve also just realised that this blog post is starting to sound like a Craig David song, and i wouldn’t wish that on anyone.

Anyway… after all that, you’d hope that the big day itself would at least have dawned bright and sunny, wouldn’t you?  But no.  The sky was painted with colours from Hammershoi’s palette, which didn’t bode well for our hopes of remaining dry.  Lucy and I peered at each other through bleary, sleep-deprived eyes as we donned our Moorfields Eye Charity t-shirts and packed our rucksacks.  I’d been wide awake since 3:20am and felt as if I’d already walked at least seven miles.  We were two team members down, as unfortunately my aunt Susan wasn’t well enough to make it, and therefore Bryn the Welsh Sheepdog had to forgo his London adventure in the big sniffy.  However, we followed that very British advice, tediously repeated on tea towels and cheap mugs in gift shops up and down the country, as we set off to Brookwood station.  There we met team member Alex, who was full of beans and raring to go.  Upon arrival at Waterloo, we had a short wait for team members Nickie and Cindy the Labradoodle, who had missed their first train, but when they joined us I realised that all would be well as Cindy clearly had enough energy for all four of us.  I also reckoned that I could probably hitch a lift on her back, if I really started to flag.

We made it to Moorfields, where we were issued with maps, tracking numbers, and instructions.   There were a few moments of panic as Lucy and I briefly lost our other team members due to the fact that we’d had to split up as dogs (other than guide dogs) aren’t permitted in the hospital, but then we found them… and we were off!  The orange arrows, placed on lamp posts and railings along the route, seemed easier to spot than the previous year, which was fortunate for those of us who are somewhat geographically challenged.  Ironically, considering the subject of our fundraising, the maps had been printed in an A5 booklet rather than the A4 of the previous year and just appeared as a big blurry mess to me, although I was able to read the larger text setting out the directions.

We plodded through the streets and then down along Regent’s Canal, at which point it started to drizzle.  We continued past London Zoo and by the time we reached Lord’s Cricket Ground, the drizzle had become more persistent and we were feeling rather soggy.  We made it to Abbey Road, where we gawped at the hoards of tourists holding up the traffic as they posed on the pedestrian crossing and then happily found our own free crossing just around the corner where it was much easier to take a picture.  We squelched on, resisting the temptation to hijack a narrow boat as we passed through Little Venice.

Upon making it to the half-way checkpoint (hurrah!) with its array of goodies, Lucy proceeded to choose a selection of jelly sweets before realising that the rest of us were munching on bananas and she possibly wasn’t setting the best example as the nutritionist of the group.  However, she did share out the jelly sweets, and they definitely infused us with a sudden burst of much-needed energy.  Next was the welcome greenery of Hyde Park, which Cindy made the most of as she partook of the facilities.

We plodded on past the Science and Natural History Museums and the Victoria and Albert Museum, keeping a look-out for a dry, dog-friendly place to eat our sarnies.  After a while, we spotted the perfect solution: an empty bus shelter.  We piled in for a rest and re-fuel, briefly considering whether it would be cheating if we actually caught the bus, before trekking on once more… past Harrods and into Hyde Park again.  Next, it was Constitution Hill and Buckingham Palace.  Cindy wanted to nip through the back gate and see if the corgis could join us for the last leg, but it didn’t look as if they were home.  By this point, it had miraculously stopped drizzling – hurrah!  It was probably just as well, as we were beginning to struggle.  We headed through Trafalgar Square and along what felt like endless grey streets, until finally the London Eye came into view – wehey!  We quickened our pace along the riverside and then slowed and groaned when we spotted the huge mountain of steps we were required to scale to reach the bridge.  Despite our screaming muscles, we made it to the top and then back down the other side, past the London Eye, under Waterloo Bridge, and on to King’s College where we were greeted with cheers at the finish line, followed by tea and cake.

We were all utterly exhausted, but thoroughly chuffed that we’d made it and had managed to raise so much money for Moorfields Eye Charity.  We had a lot of fun along the way, despite the rain, and it was good to chat to new people and hear about why they were taking part.  We’re all incredibly grateful to everyone who’s been kind enough to sponsor us, and would like to say a huge THANK YOU!  Amazingly, we’ve made it past our ultimate target of £100 per mile, having raised over £1,400 to date.  Stand by for our final total!  And for anyone who didn’t donate… it’s not too late!  You can still do so, at: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/rd-ramblers.  😀

Cindy, with her Eye to Eye medal!

Cindy, with her Eye to Eye medal!

Eye to Eye 2017: Bryn’s story

Bryn, the Welsh Sheepdog

Bryn, the Welsh Sheepdog

On 12 March 2017, my sister and I will once again be walking 14 miles from Moorfields Eye Hospital to the London Eye (via the scenic route) to raise money for sight-saving research.  This year, we’re taking part as a team, along with other people who have been affected by retinal detachment.  Cindy the labradoodle will also be joining us, and now we have a surprise last-minute addition to the team in the shape of my cousin’s dog, Bryn.  I thought it would be interesting to share the stories of my fellow team-members, and obviously I’m not about to discriminate against furry folk with more than two legs, so this week it’s Bryn’s turn. Although Bryn is a Welsh sheepdog, born and bred in North Wales, he was whisked off to Gloucestershire by my cousin as a small puppy and doesn’t actually bark in Welsh at all.  This is rather fortunate, as the Welsh branch of my family doesn’t own a dog and so it’s likely that I would have experienced problems in getting an accurate translation from Welsh Woof to English Woof and then into plain English.  But I digress.  Here’s Bryn to have his bark…

I was so thrilled when Susan finally said I could go with her on this massive walk around London that I legged it straight out into the garden for an excited wee and almost forgot to cock my leg!  Then I ran round and round in circles, woofing in delight at the top of my bark.  At laaaaaaaast!  She’d been going on and on and on about this huge walk for weeks – bought a rucksack and new shoes and everything!  All the time I kept barking to her, “Errr, hello!  Walks!  And what about me?”, but she seemed completely oblivious!  I mean, everyone knows that she’s a bit deaf, but that was just taking the biscuit!  (Mmmm, biscuits..!)  Anyway, FINALLY she remembered me and now I’m on the team!  Weheeeeeeeeeey!  It’s going to be such an adventure!  It’s not just any old walk on the Cotswold Common either… it’s London!  Bright lights, big sniffy!  😀

I’ve never been to London before, but it sounds as if it’ll be right up my smelly old alley.  Loads of lamp posts to wee against, parks to pooh in, and I can’t wait to cock my leg up the side of that big wheel!  Apparently that’s where the finishing line is, and we’ll get fed cake there.  I like cake.  In fact, I like anything edible.  Apart from that pack of butter I nicked off the kitchen side the other day – that didn’t go down so well.  I was soooooooo hungry though!  Quite frankly, I don’t think I get fed enough – I could easily eat waaaaaaaaaay more than I’m given.  Honestly, you’d think the war was still on by the miserable rations of Pedigree Chum I get.  But London’s going to have looooooads of food!  Just the thought of it is making me slobber all over my whiskers!  There’ll be lots of people in London, and people always drop food – they’re so careless!  They’re wasteful too; they never bother to pick it up and eat it once they’ve dropped it on the pavement.  It’s okay though – I can take care of that.  ‘Waste not, want not’ – that’s my motto!  I’ve heard all about this place in London called Trafalgar Square which is ram-packed full of pigeons to chase.  I can’t wait for that bit – it sounds so exciting!  The meaty looking pigeons had better fear for their feathers when I bound into town!

Of course, brother Wallis won’t be coming on the walk with us, because it’d be way too much for him.  He’s getting old now and he’s only got one eye, poor blighter.  He had to have the other one removed because of glaucoma.  So now he sometimes bumps into things, he’s crap at catching sticks, and he’s nowhere near as fast as me.  We’re doing the walk to help humans with eye problems, not dogs.  It seems a bit mean, cos dogs have eye problems too, but I’m not about to miss the opportunity of going on such an exciting adventure!  Weheeeeeeey, just think of all the people in London who’ll make a fuss of me… and all the FOOD!!!

If you’d like to sponsor Bryn and the rest of our team, you can do so at: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/rd-ramblers.  Alternatively, you can donate by texting: “ISEE66 £5” to 70070 (or whichever amount you prefer, of course).  All donations, no matter how small, are hugely appreciated.  Although Bryn has also requested donations of FOOD, this is unnecessary as he will be provided with adequate rations on the day.  Whether this will be sufficient for his requirements is another matter entirely, but I’m sure he can supplement them with lashings of podgy pigeon as we pass through Trafalgar Square.

Bryn and his 'brother', Wallis, enjoying some sea air

Bryn and his ‘brother’, Wallis, enjoying some sea air

Paintings for sale!

“What can I do to help my eyes?”, has been a recurring and increasingly desperate question put to various surgeons during my hospital appointments over the past couple of years.  To my dismay, I’ve always been told that there’s nothing that I can actually do, although there are certain things which are certainly best avoided (have a read of “Don’t get a head trauma”, if you’re wondering what).  However, one positive thing I am able to do is to fundraise for Moorfields Eye Charity, and this is the main reason I’ll be taking part in Eye to Eye again, in March 2017.  Although this isn’t helping my eyes directly, there’s a possibility that the results of research undertaken by Moorfields may benefit me in the future.  And if it doesn’t, at least I know that it will be helping other people suffering with sight-threatening conditions.  With this in mind, it seems like a good idea to have  a bash at selling some of my paintings and donating the proceeds to Moorfields Eye Charity.

Although I’ve sold a reasonable number of paintings in the past, I haven’t ventured down this route for many years.  Two of the little galleries which took my work have now unfortunately closed down, and the third has expanded into an enterprise which no longer has space for the likes of me, exhibiting work for sale at jaw-dropping prices by well established, proper artists who are actually able to make a living out of putting oil on canvas.  Selling work through galleries probably wouldn’t be the best method of raising money for charity anyway, as usually they insist that paintings are framed first (which can be pretty expensive), and they commonly take between 20% and 30% commission.  Having said that, nothing quite beats the confidence-boost of being contacted by a gallery with the news that a complete stranger has parted with their hard-earned cash in return for one of my paintings.

But I digress.  The point is that I now have quite a collection of paintings propped up against the walls of my spare room, which I’d be happy to part with in order to raise money for a cause which is very important to me.  I’m not going to start putting price tags on them as I was always hugely embarrassed at that aspect of selling my work and asked the galleries to price them for me.  A painting is only worth what someone is prepared to pay for it at the end of the day.  They’re all oil on canvas, and  if you hover over each image, you should be able to read the titles and dimensions.  If you’re interested in any of them, please drop me a message or an email, or just comment on this blog post.  Feel free to share, if you think others may be interested.  There are no prizes for correctly guessing which were painted before my retinal detachments and which were painted afterwards… 😉

Note: An explanation of ‘Eye Chart’ can be found in the blog post, Oil on canvas.

 

 

Blind baking

During a conversation with my sister one day, when we were mulling over how to persuade a few more people to part with their hard-earned cash and donate to our fundraising efforts for Moorfields Eye Charity (https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/rd-ramblers), I suggested the idea of making a cup of tea whilst blindfolded and taking a photo of the results to put on Facebook.  I wanted to somehow get people to think about the fact that even the simplest and most mundane of everyday tasks could potentially be extremely difficult for someone who is blind or visually impaired.  I thought it would be great to make it a challenge and get other people to join in and post photos of their efforts in return.  My suggestion was met with a gasp of horror from Lucy, and the disapproving exclamation of, “Errr – health and safety!  You could end up pouring boiling water over your hand!”.  I was slightly crestfallen but had to admit that she did have a point.  Anyway, she must have felt a bit bad about pouring cold water over my idea as a few weeks later she came up with a far better one herself: blind baking.  Obviously, I’m not talking about pastry cases here.  Along with assistance from her talented filmmaker and kitchen guide, Ginny, she proceeded to prepare a cake whilst keeping her eyes tightly closed (she promised she didn’t peek!) and making a fair amount of mess in the process.  The film of their efforts can be watched here, and you can read Lucy’s comments on her experiment below.

I can’t really compare this experience of baking a cake with my eyes closed to that of being blind, but it was an interesting experience!

I had put all the ingredients ready first, so could remember roughly where I had put them, but I had to feel for the different shapes and sizes of packaging.  The main difficulty here was that I was conscious of avoiding knocking anything over whilst feeling for the right packet.

I chose a yohurt pot recipe because all the ingredients are measured in the yoghurt pot or cup, so it’s really easy (with your eyes open!).  I normally hold the cup over the bowl, but found that with my eyes closed I needed two hands to do the actual measuring – one to hold the packet of whatever I was tipping into the cup and another to feel for when I’d reached the top of the cup.

Having managed to get the ingredients in the bowl and mix it to something I hoped resembled cake mix, I realised a mistake: I hadn’t got the cake tin out ready.  I had decided that a cake tin was more practical than cupcakes, but had forgotten to put it ready.  As we ran out of video space by the end, we finished there and I opened my eyes to get the cake tin, grease it and fill with the cake mixture.  However, had I carried on with my eyes shut, I would have had trouble finding the right sized tin in my very full cake tin cupboard.  I think to cope with practicalities of being blind or partially sighted, you must have to really minimise your whole home in order to be able to find things by touch.

So, I managed to prepare a cake with my eyes closed, relying a lot on guidance from Ginny, who was filming, and familiarity of my kitchen.  It was a very thought-provoking experience and the main thing which stayed with me was that the process of preparing the cake was do-able, but the thing I would really miss would be seeing the end product.  Our running commentary gives an idea of what it was like, and I don’t think I made that much mess really, did I?!?!

Huge thanks go to Lucy and Ginny for doing this, and for allowing me to share the video.  If you’d like to give it a go yourself (note: it’s not compulsory to keep your eyes shut whilst doing so), the recipe is as follows:

Using the same size cup or pot of yoghurt, add the following and mix together:
1 cup yoghurt
1 cup oil
1 cup egg (1 egg = 1/2 of a standard cup measure)
1 cup caster sugar
3 cups self-raising flour
Add flavouring of  your choice, for example:
1 cup dried fruit
1 tsp mixed spice
Mix together and pour into greased loaf tin.  Bake at 180 degrees for 30 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. (Note: the video shows the recipe being made with a standard 1/3 cup measure.  A larger cup mix will take longer to bake.)

Lucy's 'does exactly what it says on the tin' picture of her yoghurt pot loaf cake

Lucy’s ‘does exactly what it says on the tin’ picture of her yoghurt pot loaf cake

 

Eye to Eye 2017: Susan’s story

Susan, showing off her pink wellies

Susan, showing off her pink wellies

On 12 March 2017, my sister and I will once again be walking 14 miles from Moorfields Eye Hospital to the London Eye (via the scenic route) to raise money for sight-saving research.  This year, we’re taking part as a team, along with other people who have been affected by retinal detachment.  I thought it would be interesting to share the stories of my fellow team-members, so this week it’s my aunt’s turn.  After featuring in a few of my blog posts, she gets to have her own say…

I think it’s worth mentioning at this point that my aunt has been a huge support to me throughout my ongoing RD journey, not only with coming to the rescue in helping me through the most difficult ENTIRE MONTH’S worth of posturing back in July 2014 (https://rdramblings.wordpress.com/2015/06/28/pondering-posturing/), but also in the constancy of her caring and understanding.  She never fails to text me before an eye appointment to say she hopes all will be well, and rings me up afterwards to ask how it went.  She shows a real interest in the medical complexities of my case and both she and my uncle have helped me a great deal with their emotional support.  So… if you’d like to sponsor Susan and the rest of our team, you can do so at: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/rd-ramblers.  Alternatively, you can donate by texting: “ISEE66 £5” to 70070 (or whichever amount you prefer, of course).  All donations, no matter how small, are very much appreciated!  🙂

Eye to Eye 2017: Cindy’s Story

Cindy, the labradoodle

Cindy

On 12 March 2017, my sister and I will once again be walking 14 miles from Moorfields Eye Hospital to the London Eye (via the scenic route) to raise money for sight-saving research.  This year, we’re taking part as a team, along with other people who have been affected by retinal detachment, and one four-legged member of the team in the shape of Cindy the labradoodle.  I thought it would be interesting to share the stories of my fellow team-members, and obviously I’m not about to discriminate against folk with more than two legs, so this week it’s Cindy’s turn.  Fortunately for those readers not fluent in Woofs, we’ve managed to get her story translated into English.  So now it’s over to Cindy…

When Mum told me that we’ll be going for a reeeaally long walk in March, I jumped up in excitement, wagging my tail as hard as it would wag and woofing at the top of my bark, “Yes yes yes yes!”.  I just luuuurve walks, you see.  Especially looooong walks.  Long walks mean more to sniff!  And more people to meet!  And more people often mean treats, especially if I’m really good and stare at them longingly without blinking.  Apparently, people are even going to pay us money for going on the walk.  I thought Mum would be able to use the money to buy more treats, which seemed like a great idea!  Then I found out that the money is going to help people with eye problems.  Mum told me all about how she’d wanted a dog for years and years, and when her eye went squiffy she thought the only way she’d get one was if she needed a guide dog.  I know all about guide dogs.  I met one in the town a while ago.  He was the most handsome chocolate labrador I’ve ever seen – just the colour of the mud I love to roll in, with deep brown eyes to drool for.  I galloped up to him for a sniff and a wag, but he just stared straight ahead without even a sideways glance to admire my golden curls.  He barked sternly out of the side of his jowls, “Sorry, can’t stop and sniff – I’m working”, and continued on his way.  I probably should have played it cool but you know what it’s like when you fall ears over paws for a cute canine.  I figured it wasn’t much fun being a guide dog though.  I mean – who wants to be working all the time?!

Anyway, it’s okay cos Mum’s eyes are much better and she’s got me to cheer her up and give her lots of licks.  So we’re going to go for this loooong walk to help other people.  It’s going to be a walk all around the streets of London.  I’ve been to London before.  There’s not much mud there, or cow pats, or other deliciously-smelling things to roll in.  But on the other paw, it does mean that we get to go on the train, which is waggles of fun!  Trains are whooshingly exciting, and they have loads of different smells on them and lots of people who sometimes share bits of their food if I stare at them long enough.  People seem to like me quite a lot, which comes in handy for getting extra treats.  I often get mistaken for that famous labradoodle on the telly – you know, the one on the Flash advert.  (You can watch it here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BIR5dNN7o1w.)  Of course, the pooches down at the park think that I’d do a far better job at the slow-motion mud showers.  I can’t show off that trick too often at home though otherwise I get into deep doo-doo.  The sort of doo-doo that won’t fit into one of those tiny plastic bags, if you catch my drift.  The only thing I’m a bit worried about with this walk is that London has looooooads of lamp posts.  Lamp posts are great because a quick sniff tells me which of my friends are in the area that day, but of course I also have to let everyone know that I’m there too and sometimes when there are too many lamp posts it means that I run out of wee, which can get a bit embarrassing.

Mum says we need to practise for this long walk… imagine!  Practising for a walk?!  I’ve never heard such a howler!  Walking is easy – you just put the front two legs in front of the back two and off you go!  I think it’s harder for humans though, because they only have two legs and they don’t have paws.  We went for an eleven-mile practise walk the other day – Mum and her friend Alex, and me.  Mum wore new shoes, but when she got home she found that the shoes had bitten her feet and made sore patches.  So that wasn’t good.  And Alex just fell asleep when we got home, without even giving me a treat first, which I thought was simply apawling behaviour.  I had to ask Dad for a treat instead.  Dad won’t be coming on the walk, which I feel a bit droopy-eared about.  I might try and find a nice smelly stick to take back for him…

if you’d like to sponsor Cindy and the rest of our team, you can do so at: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/rd-ramblers.  Alternatively, you can donate by texting: “ISEE66 £5” to 70070 (or whichever amount you prefer, of course).  All donations, no matter how small, are hugely appreciated, and will also give Cindy considerable kudos with her brown-eyed chocolate labrador guide-dog acquaintance  (when he’s off duty, obviously).  Cindy would also appreciate donations of treats or quantities of mud to roll in, but sadly we don’t have the resources to enable online donations of either of those items…  😉

Cindy in the bath

Cindy, perfecting the Flash dog look

Eye to Eye 2017: Nickie’s story

Nickie, with Cindy the labradoodle

Nickie, with Cindy the labradoodle

On 12 March 2017, my sister and I will once again be walking 14 miles from Moorfields Eye Hospital to the London Eye (via the scenic route) to raise money for sight-saving research.  This year, we’re taking part as a team, along with other people who have been affected by retinal detachment.  I thought it would be interesting to share the stories of my fellow team-members, so this week it’s Nickie’s turn.  Nickie is Alex’s best friend (you can read Alex’s story at: https://rdramblings.wordpress.com/2017/01/15/eye-to-eye-2017-alexs-story/) and she’ll be walking with us along with her labradoodle, Cindy.  Nickie and Alex have known each other for 32 years and shared various trends together, including the dubious one of retinal detachment.  The cause of Nickie’s retinal detachment was her myopia (short sightedness).  People who are very short sighted are at a higher risk than others of having a retinal detachment.  Usually this is only people who have high myopia, greater than -6 (i.e. they are very short sighted).  So now it’s over to Nickie…

My experience of having a detached retina began in 2008.  For a couple of months i was experiencing dark floaters in my right eye, that would settle in the right hand bottom corner of my eye.  This would last for quite a while and was worse when i was tired.  I explained this to my option, they did a thorough examination of my eye, but could not find anything.  They gave me the advice of “if you see bright flashing lights come back”.

Fortunately or unfortunately, i never witnessed the bright flashing lights, just the floaters settling for longer and covering more of my eye.

Then a few months later, one evening when lying in bed waiting to go to sleep, I lost the vision in my right eye.  That was quite scary initially, but when I blinked my vision came back.  This happened a few times until my vision didn’t come back.  I thought that because i was tired that if i went to sleep, by the morning all would be ok.  Which oddly enough, by morning i had full vision in my right eye.

During that day, i had difficulty seeing when climbing the stairs at work. Whilst driving home that night, i slowly experienced the vision in my eye disappearing.  I know now, it was called the curtain effect, and thinking about it now, it was just as if someone was drawing the curtain over my vision.I drove to the near by walk in centre, who informed me there was nothing they could do about it that night, but strongly advised me to go to the emergency eye department at the local hospital, in the morning.  This I did, to be informed, after many hours of assessments, eye tests, eye drops etc etc, that i had two tears in my retina.  They booked me in for surgery the following day.

I had a surgical procedure called “a buckle”.  The consultant monitored me but in two weeks time I was undergoing further surgery to my eye, as the repair they did hadn’t worked, and i needed to undergo further surgery.  This time, i was to have a “gas bubble”.  Both lots of surgery lasted 2 to 2 and a half hours under sedation.  No GA for me – consultant  choice (think he thought i was tough – little did he know!). Fortunately he was an extremely good surgeon who specialised in retinal detachments.

During my recovery, for the first two weeks, i had to spend looking down at the ground.  I was not allowed to look up. That was quite hard, though i did realise how dirty my carpets were!!  I ended up with a total of about 10 weeks off work – day time TV has not improved over the years!

I went back to work two weeks before Christmas in 2008, and then had to have a cataract op in February 2009. This was due to the gas bubble clouding my lens.  A contraindication to the surgery.

I can remember little bits and events of each of my eye ops, some funny and some so not. Though my eye is much better, i do experience some high pressure behind the eye, which i am now on daily eye drops for.  However,at the end of the day, i am very thankful to my consultant. Thanks to him, i have fairly good sight back in my right eye.

Probably, like most people who have lost their slight (hopefully) temporarily, from a detached retina, I realise how precious my sight is.

If you’d like to sponsor Nickie and the rest of our team, you can do so at: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/rd-ramblers.  Alternatively, you can donate by texting: “ISEE66 £5” to 70070 (or whichever amount you prefer, of course).  All donations, no matter how small, are hugely appreciated!  🙂