Monday, 22 June 2009

Doggone dogs gone

On Thursday, after several phonecalls from eager dog people, the man that bred Dennis came down from Trondheim to fetch him home on the train. We met on a rainy station platform, and it was a bit sad to say goodbye to Dennis, who was such an aristocratic little gentleman. So I only had Bianca left - the neurotic little bundle of fur. Reidar's sister had changed her mind, and Bianca needs plenty of the great outdoors to run around in. This is not a picture of her, but a close resemblance. I took a couple of pictures with my phone, and can't figure out how to transfer them here. When I told her to sit, she lifted her front right paw to shake hands. Friday evening was a sad time too, she was so affectionate and trusting. On Saturday morning a man came from Valdres to fetch her. He's a hunter, and used to dachs, so she'll get to do what she's bred for, as well as being a loved member of the family. So we're happy for her. I washed the dog smell off my floors and returned the cat dishes to their corner. All three cats have come home, and after sniffing suspiciously around, have settled back in a safe dog-free home.

Saturday, 20 June 2009


On Wednesday 17/06 Reidar started his chemotherapy treatment at our local hospital in Hamar. There is a special department for cancer patients that's fairly new. We talked to the oncologist, Knut Fjæstad, and he was very pleasant and down-to-earth. He let us take all the time we needed, and answered even the stupid questions with patience and understanding. Next we went to the room where the treatment took place. Reidar was hooked up to a drip with a whole bunch of bags of liquids. He lay comfortably on a bed, with a large TV to watch, and was served lunch while he was there. Including the blood-tests and consultation with the doctor he was at the hospital for six and a half hours! The following day the infusion only took two hours. Now he has twelve days to get over it before he starts the same process again. This will be repeated all together four times, so the course will take 8 weeks. After that he takes a new CT to see what effect the treatment has had.
When we left the hospital I was very nervous to see if he felt any ill effects, but he felt absolutely fine, and enjoyed his dinner that evening.(The most common side-effect is nausea). The next day was just the same, so we are feeling optimistic about getting through the next 8 weeks. We get so many messages of goodwill from so many people that we are surrounded by positivity, and that's what we need right now. Thank you Project Cheer supporters!

Sunday, 14 June 2009

Going to the dogs

It's a long story, but this weekend we suddenly accquired three dogs. On Friday evening an old friend, Alf rang us to ask if we would like three pedigree dachshounds, absolutely free. A friend was going to be travelling between the Netherlands, Bergen and Thailand, and now had no girlfriend to look after his three dogs. I would have said no at once, but our friend Arild, who already has one dachs was already thinking about getting another. I also though that the local dachs club would help to find good homes for them. We gave Arild the dog owner's number, and he arranged to go up to Valdres to look at the dogs on Tuesday. So far so good... Imagine our surprise yesterday evening, while enjoying dinner with friends, to get a phonecall from Jeremy, saying that Alf had arrived out of the blue ( as always) with a dutchman and three dogs. We hurried home, and found them all in our back-garden. Alf, anxious to show the dogs off at their best, let them all of their leads. Mistake. Sniff disappeared into the forest, and reappeared nearly 8 hours later. The owner and Alf sat and waited until he returned, so finally left at 3 am.! There was alcohol involved. (Not Alf, who was driving.)
Today has been doggy from start to finish, beginning with three dachsturer before breakfast, a walk all the way round Mosjøen before lunch, a return visit from the owner and Alf ( a two and a half hour drive each way, incidentally),
a visit from Arild. May Sissel and their dachs Snorre - Arild fell instantly for Sniff and they took him home with them - and finished with taking the remaining two away in the car so the owner wouldn't be sad saying goodbye, and ending up visiting the leader of the dachs club. Dennis, the pretty long-haired one, has a wonderful pedigree, and should be snapped up at once when he appears on the club's web-page.
Reidar's sister Sigrid wants the female, Bianca, so she'll be moving to Tønsberg later in the week. I'll take a picture of her before she goes.
Our three cats, and cat supporter Jeremy are less than thrilled with the whole affair. The fact that Reidar's other sister Mia arrives tomorrow, most likely with a big black labrador, doesn't make for peace and harmony in our home.
The flowers were to Reidar from his amateur theatre group. The card tells him to "hang in there", which he has every intention of doing.

Thursday, 11 June 2009


This is Reidar, my husband for 32 years, and my best friend for even longer. He is Tamsin and Jeremy's father. He is the brain and muscle behind the Book Loft's success. A keen amateur local historian, and an even keener amateur actor. He's never happier than when he's on the stage, making people laugh. He's very friendly, and loves long chats with total strangers. He's generous, and always willing to lend a helping hand.
Now he's the one who needs help. He was diagnosed with bowel cancer at the beginning of May. He was going to get that operated on on May 18th, but it was decided that the tumour needed to be shrunk with radiation first - a set-back for us. We went to the cancer hospital on June 3rd, and were set to start radiation treatment a week later. Yesterday. In the mean time pictures were taken to make sure that the cancer hadn't spread to Reidar's liver or lungs. It had. To both.
So now we're in a state of shock, trying to take it all in, to think clearly, to make new plans. My mind swings between dark thoughts, desperate hopes and the safety of trivial everyday things.
Telling family and friends the bad news hurts as much getting the news ourselves.
We have no need to be completely pessimistic - he's in the best of hands, and there's lots of methods of treatment that can help, but it's going to be a long hard road to go...

Sunday, 7 June 2009

A daytrip to Paradise

On Saturday we drove to Trysil to spend the day with Arild and May Sissel at their cabin in Trysil. It's situated idyllically by thr river, in a forest ( with carpets of blueberries and other yummy berries) right by a mountain with little patches of snow on it. That's why they call it Paradise. When we arrived Arild and his son-in-law Tor were in the middle of building a veranda. Reidar joined in, and we were able to eat our barbecue sitting on it. Arild's daughter Mari stayed indoors with little Ada Elise is exactly four weeks old, and obviously the centre of attention.