Monday, May 14, 2007

Where I should be

Running around at work today, too much to do but feeling good because it's week 3 and I'm full of energy, it could be easy to forget where we were meant to be right now.

Somewhere in Uganda, where the hippos grunt their booming laugh, trying to work out how to run a backpackers' lodge.

A couple of weeks ago, in order to remind me of where we want to be, while we go through the routine of chemo, I ordered a massive framed picture of an old map of Africa.

It may not be a politically correct, or even geographically correct map (Uganda appears to not have been discovered when this map was drawn) but it's sitting on the desk to my right waiting to be hung on the wall, where it will stay to be looked at longingly from time to time.

And it finally gets something on my living room wall. It's been 18 months since I bought this place - you'd think I'd have got round to it sooner.


Amanda Castleman said...

Hiya Anne-Marie,
Amanda here with the PDC dreams. Thanks for rocket-fueling them.

I've only read a few of your blog entries – deadlines loom – but your spirit is right-on. My mother runs one of the larger breast cancer clinics in America (she's a director now, former radiation therapy tech), so I grew up around oncology units. One of my favorite characters was Bernie Siegel:

Some people call him a quack, but most find him innovative and inspiring, since he studies the connection between stroppy, sparky patients and survival rates.

If you can ignore the "Patch Adams" flashbacks, his books have some fine advice...

Anne-Marie Weeden said...

Well, when it comes to PDC all you need to know is how best to wear your bedouin head-dress for the desert section and from your photo you obviously have that down pat...

Thanks for the Bernie Siegel tip - his is a new name to me but I shall investigate him. I am soaking up everything at the moment. One of the good things about all of this is how fascinating the whole process and human biology is (to someone who grew up firmly convinced she was not a scientist and dropped those subjects early on).

Hope the travel arrangements in Italia improve...and that you get it together to do the PDC one day. Never have met either you or Marie but I get the feeling you'd love it...

Amanda Castleman said...

Marie's wavering (she wants to be smuggled a nation or two, but otherwise concentrate on her own writing goals. Fair dinkum.).

My literary agent told me to think about an article first and "interview characters that could anchor a book".

Um, can't I just drive a clunker 3,500 miles and work from there?

Apparently not. So ... can I pick your brain about colorful competitors some time, please? And maybe grill the Pink Ladies?

I saw Bernie Siegel speak when I was just a wee anklebiter. He impressed me with the tale of the angry patient, who shouted, "I can't undergo therapy, it's rose season" and stomped off.

The doctors shook their heads. Oh, they could have bought him three months, maybe four...

Several YEARS later, Grumpy Gardener wandered back. "I've got some time now. How about that therapy?"

A sport on bell curve, perhaps, but a nice one to hear about.

Anne-Marie Weeden said...

Amanda, email me direct at and give me your email and I'll send you some more info about the colourful characters we travelled with and more. And the mad stockbroker who started it all. Plus other rally details with rally veterans (London to Tashkent anyone? Timbuctu? Mongolia? etc etc...).

It is a whole subculture of its own and I seem to have been sucked in by its vortex....