Friday, October 24, 2008


We both gave blood yesterday morning. It is a process where the donor wades through several pages of questions delving into diseases, sexual preferences and habits and contact with foreign diseases.

Today, they had a new regime which brought Malaria into the picture. In the early 1960s I contracted Malaria in what was then the Territory of Papua and New Guinea. I had one bout whilst teaching in the Gulf of Papua and another whilst on leave in Perth in 1962. Nothing since.

The questionnaire asked about Malaria and I fessed up to having it way back then. When I resigned and returned to Australia in 1964 I took the recommended big hit of Camoquin and have had no more trouble with the big M since. In the second period of my PNG service in the 1970s I had a wife to ensure that I took my anti-malarials regularly.

The interviewer consulted various texts and made notes on my forms and it seems that they will run some tests on my donation to determine if any of the parasites are still living in my liver. That being done, I gave my donation and sat down with Joan to have a coffee and biscuits. A young lady came in and sat down at our table. She is a Police Cadet and it turns out I taught her at Willetton SHS when I was doing relief teaching after my retirement. Lovely young thing!

She is in her first year of the cadetship and when she turns 18 can apply for full police training. The cadets are on a small salary and out of the approximately 200, just 60 will be accepted into full training. I reckon she will make it.

Also, yesterday afternoon, we drove up to Hillarys (that’s a suburb) to be with bro-in-law Mike whilst his wife Dorothy has a knee rebuild. Mike is doing quite well since his Deep Brain Stimulation operation, but needs a bit of a hand with some of his personal care. We stayed over and visited Dorothy in hospital this morning. We dropped him back to his home where a carer will be with him until 4.30pm when we will return for another overnighter. Dorothy has planned this for some time with a roster of friends and family to look in/after Mike. She has cooked and frozen meals and set out all Mike’s tablets for the eight times a day he doses. He takes about 25+ tabs during the day and night reminded by a loud, smart, wrist watch.

Parkinson’s disease is not a walk through the park.

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