Sunday, February 25, 2018

Diary w/e 24 Feb 18

SUNDAY 18 Feb 18

As dawn came I took Libby on a fifty minute walk. We came across two large noisy guard dogs and Libby gave a good barking contest. We sa four peahens by one house and found a quarter on the road so this walk profited me 25c as well as the exercise of my longest stroll for many months. This is hilly country so we were not on flat roads.Fewer than ten vehicles on the road all that time.
   After breakfast Jule and I left Dennis for church in Sacramento half an hour away. This is a new CRC church plant, City Life, where Joanna and family now attend. I was the oldest person there among perhaps fifty adults. Very reformed with lenten liturgy. I do not think any prayers were extempore. Only three songs and one of those was in Spanish so obviously this is missional. It was not at all dumbed down and was seeker friendly. The sermon was lengthy and relevant though not a verse by verse exposition. It was about baptism and the wilderness with good theology and application . The one criticism I have is the Lord's Supper. The table was not fenced and they did what I think is called tincturing, dipping bread in wine. Why? Hygiene? I cannot see this in scripture. Bread and wine IMO were taken separately and I simply o not like my food dipped in my drink with one exception. Ginger biscuits in tea.
   Lunch was with Joanna and her three eldest and her inlaws the Jonson's. Her father in law Wayne is a Reformed elder in RCUS Sacramento. He is very well read in all matters theological and a  political consultant so we had a great time of lunch conversation on all manner of things. Local craft beer good at the second eatery we tried. The first wanted us to wait two hours for a table. I commented loudly that I thought the US was known for service but having dined on four continents I had never been so treated. Obviously too popular a restaurant.
   Back to Dennis and later ready for bed, Dennis was in such pain from his catheter that we took him to the VA hospital in Sacramento where I waited until after midnight for the results of examination by urologists. He is on opiates for analgesia and we hope to have him home with a diagnosis of bladder spasms. Been here four hours so far.

Mon 19 Feb
The urologist gave Dennis opiates by injection and sent him home saying he had bladder spasms. I got to be at 4:30. At 7:30 I was up walking the dog for 55 minutes. I photographed a fowl on the Drakes lane pond, saw two deer I believe and had a resident tell me it was a private road and there were unfenced dogs. I had walked to the end. No barking from alleged pit bulls and no sign for a private road and where the surface was the same as a public road. I reckon she was a lying unfriendly local.woman. No more journeys out except walking the grounds with Dennis and dog. She goes mad when you throw a stick running round and round you on the leash so fast I was becoming dizzy and had to stop her. She does not retrieve the stick, only runs fast in circles with it.

Tues 20 Feb
Libby wanted out before dawn so off we went for an hour and went minutes. Half way we saw the sen rise and the dawn chorus was heard. Once again it was cold. This time I borrowed gloves but I still came home with a frozen fight hand. The left was kept warm by controlling the dog.
   Name dropping. The son in law of my host with whom I have been chatting today is the cousin of the governor of California.
   Visited am amazing sporting goods store, Bass Pro. Full of taxidermy, trophies and guns. Then a Walmart for shopping. Daughter Esther came to look after Dennis while we were out. We think he is sleeping a lot today's his steroid dose is reducing.

Wed 21 Feb

IM Billy Graham (1918-2018)- I first heard him Haringey 1954 when I was eight and I did not get out of my seat. Jesus invited us, not to a picnic, but to a pilgrimage; 
not to a frolic, but to a fight. He offered us, not an
excursion, but an execution. Our Savior said that
we would have to be ready to die to self, sin, and
the world. 
--Billy Graham (1918-2018)
(In Martin H. Manser's _The Westminster Collection
of Christian Quotations_ [2001], "Discipleship") 

If I didn't have spiritual faith, I would be a pessimist. But I'm an optimist. I've read the last page in the Bible. It's all going to turn out all right.--Billy Graham
Anxiety is the natural result when our hopes are centred in anything short God and His will for us.--Billy Graham
No matter how hard we try words simply cannot express the horror, the shock, and the revulsion we all feel over what took place in this nation on Tuesday morning. September 11 will go down in our history as a day to remember.--Billy Graham, Speech, "National Day of Prayer and Remembrance" (14 September 2001)
We've always needed God from the very beginning of this nation but today we need Him especially. We're facing a new kind of enemy. We're involved in a new kind of warfare and we need the help of the Spirit of God. The Bible's words are our hope... --Billy Graham, Speech, "National Day of Prayer anRemembrance" (14 September 2001)
I had a Carey walk of one hour 55 minutes. I was slow uphill but like Carey I can plod. It was also an idolatrous walk. I put dog before God. I wanted to read my Bible first thing as per normal but Libby was barking for her walk and I am soft. Off we went and here are the pictures.
   My hostess went to the bank and post office in nearby Newcastle. I took some pictures which I will post. My host, Dennis has put video of Libby and me on facebook which I have shared. 
   Later Julie and I went to see their daughter Joanna and family in Sacramento. I was treated to In n'out burger and home brewed stout. A spirited exchange of views on a variety of topics followed.
Th 22 Feb
We went to the hospital to have Dennis's wound dressed. He was told it had to be cleaned out after IV analgesia but the urology department could not give the opiate injection that needed the emergency room and they had no bed available. It was a very long wait of about four hours. Christian, Esther's husband kindly came and took me home leaving Julie with Dennis for his painful procedure. They were home after 8pm
Fri 23 Feb
7am out for a good hour with Libby in the frost.
About to go with Julie to pick up Dilaudid (hydromorphone) for Dennis's pain. Let's see if hospital pharmacy here is quicker than NHS - which is tortoise pace. I used to be a community pharmacist hare. No more than five minutes for a one item script and would do 300+ in an eight hour day so under two minutes an item average.
Hospital pharmacy here is as slow as NHS. Wait half an hour. But what amazed me was the level of security, not merely ID to pick up a script but the glass partition. Medicines need more security than cash. Both bank and post office no glass screen. Pharmacy being glass. For more pleasant viewing, Libby.
Dennis resting waiting for the analgesics to lick in at home so nurse Julie may change the dressings. Major frustration today. Loss of Dennis's wallet since yesterday. Searched home and hospital to no avail.

Sat 24 

6am getting up and impatient Libby is barking downstairs demanding her walk. As my grandmother said, ‘Patience is a virtue. Possess it if you can. Seldom in a woman. Never in a man.” And not in this dog either. So out we go up before the sun and before I read the Word. Now frustrated. Six Nation not on TV or internet. At half time I am glad to be out of the country and unable to watch the rugby. My only consolation is Wales lost so no rugby illustrations in Levy's sermon tomorrow. I can but pray it is a game of two halves and England wakes up. I am eating breakfast. Not porridge. Visit from Christian, Esther, Joshua and Clementine then with Julie to Antiques bazaar and Walmart. The former is far too expensive compared with UK.

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