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Doodlecat's Homepage

Picture of Doodle - a 
black cat

Welcome to Doodlecat, where we enjoy the pleasures of life (with a slight bias towards the outdoors). This page is regularly updated with news and views plus information about any additions or changes to the various parts of the site. It acts as Doodlecat’s Blog too, so the odd rant considered opinion may pop up from time to time.

I would love to be able to say that Doodlecat is all my own work, but it isn’t. Much of the outdoors content is courtesy of the splendid people who participate in the annual TGO Challenge (there is a section entirely devoted to this unique event) and many others.

To help in tracking down that elusive morsel on Doodlecat, the search facility under the title bar above is tailored to help you find it, either on this home page (Doodlecat's Blog) all the rest of the site (Main Site) or – if all else fails - the internet!

So have a rummage around the old cat basket and enjoy your time with us!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Stone Free

I've not written much recently, mainly because I've not been out and about as much as usual. The reason has been a few months constant nagging pain under the ribs interspersed with a few eye watering nights of absolute agony. Having recently got over surgery, radiotherapy and drug treatment for prostate cancer, the onset of these symptoms was slightly worrying. Was there something unwanted in there?

I didn't really want to know.

However, a visit to the Doc produced a cheery diagnosis.
"Gallstones", he said. "Pop along to the hospital and have a blood test and scan to make sure, but gallstones are what they'll find, I'm sure".

And so they did, and before you could say "knife" (ha ha) I was having a chat with a surgeon.

"Oh, we'll have that out in no time - very straightforward"
"Er, have what out exactly?"
"Your gall bladder. No need for it. You won't miss it"
"Um ... surely it's there for a reason ... ?"
"Concentrates the bile"
"That accounts for a lot", snorted Miss W.
"It only takes 40 minutes - you can come in the morning and be back home in time for tea if all goes well".
"Will I be able to eat pork pies again?"
"Not what a dietician would recommend, but yes. Anything you like really".

Doodle DozingHe was as good as his word. I arrived at the Day Surgery unit at 8.00, and by 1.30 Miss W was whisking me home and complaining that my early discharge had interrupted her lunch. She never finished it anyway, being rather put off when I produced the jar of stones that the surgeon had given me as a souvenir.

The rest of the treatment has simply been a week or two taking it easy. I'm not that good at taking it easy, so Miss W directed me to take my cue from the Doodlecat, for whom relaxation is an art. "Join him on the settee", she said. One of the leaflets "Natural pain relief" recommended distraction therapy, and one of the distractions was 'stroking a pet'. I don't know what idiot wrote that leaflet, but 15lb of solid cat leaping onto a perforated tum and giving it a good kneading does NOT take your mind off it!

Let's face it, the Doodlecat is quite a large cat - in fact the settee in my office scarcely accommodates him. However, his example of how to relax cannot be faulted, so I have spent a few days in a similar pose (on my own settee as I got attacked trying to share his).

I have now been out for a few short walks, and I'm pleased to report that all the internal bits and pieces have settled down nicely, despite the Doodlecat's best efforts at rearranging them. Plus, during my enforced 'no fat' diet whilst waiting for the op, I've lost 10lbs! Now weighing in at a sylph-like 11st 10lb, though I fear that the yummy pies and cheese butties are swiftly undoing the good work there. I need to get out for a bit of exercise.

Firstly a few local expeditions with the dogs (we do volunteer dog walking for a charity) and then I'll be ready for a proper day out. I rather liked Llangollen, so it looks like I'll be headed there again before long, especially now there's a bit more daylight to play with.

But the best part of the whole thing is being back to pain free consumption of pies and pastries - washed down with the odd healthy fat-free ale of course.

Yum yum ... burp.



Blogger Mark Alvarez said...

Sorry you had to go through this, Phil, but I'm glad you got good treatment and are feeling better.

My daughter had what her doc technically diagnosed as "a great honking gallstone" this past summer, and also had gallbladder surgery. So it doesn't just happen to us old crocks!

Very best wishes.


January 27, 2011 at 2:28 AM  
Blogger Phil said...

Hi Mark, and thanks for the good wishes. I am feeling as right as ninepence now, and I hope your daughter is the same! I do like her doctor's colourful 'non technical' diagnosis.

January 27, 2011 at 1:32 PM  
Blogger Louise said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

January 27, 2011 at 4:54 PM  
Blogger Louise said...

Some (who shall remain nameless, but I'm sure they've let their opinions known) might suggest surgery was cheating...

I'm glad you're feeling better.

PS. My daughter wants to know what do you feed the cat?

January 27, 2011 at 4:55 PM  
Blogger Phil said...


Cheating? Ha! I can guess who that is.

Does your daughter have a pet rabbit? If so then Doodle's preferred supper should be kept secret.

No-one nibbles our lettuces ;-)

January 28, 2011 at 9:53 AM  
Anonymous Peewiglet said...

Excellent news! Piglet was a bit down-at-the-snout upon reading your reference to 'pork pie', but the cat has comforted her with the information that all your pork pies are happy, have been hand raised :)

January 29, 2011 at 7:29 AM  
Blogger Alan Sloman said...

Louise - Losing a pound of meteorites from your insides does seem a sensible route to lightening your load, but whipping out various internal organs while the surgeon is rummaging around your insides does indeed smack of taking advantage.

And Lord Elpus has no need of anything that concentrates his keen sense of Schadenfreude on the Challenge.

Its as well he lost all that weight as his profile was beginning to resemble that of Doodle.

January 29, 2011 at 7:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

best wishes for your recovery

January 30, 2011 at 2:59 PM  
Blogger Phil said...

Thanks Robin & Shirl. Alan, remember - that belly's just waiting around the corner, and it's gonna getcha!

Just back from a 6.5 mile walk. Scoffed a (happy pork) sausage roll too. Quite chuffed.

January 30, 2011 at 4:03 PM  

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