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photoWe believe in some way, all of us have limitations. We can be limited by ailments (like mine), circumstances, perceptions, or resources. At worst, these limitations can invite despair, stagnation, or aggression. They can make us stop in our tracks if we let them.

camino-de-santiago-by-wheelchair-caminoways-300x225This is a quote by Justin Skeesuck who, together with his friend Patrick Gray, went to walk the Camino de Santiago. Justin is disabled and can only move in a wheelchair. This year, over six weeks, his friend Patrick pushed him and his wheelchair, a load of 120 pounds, the 800 km of the ‘French Way’, with the occasional help of other pilgrims when he couldn’t manage just by himself. At times, he carried Justin on his back, pushing the wheelchair through the mud. He developed chronic cramps in his legs, and now has muscles in his chest that he didn’t even know existed. But they made it. “I’ll push you“. What an inspiration!

imagesWe recently heard some news about the water charges in Ireland… It’ll be a bit like Germany, it seems. As you know, we have a small apartment here in Hamburg in a house with about a dozen others. And we have a water meter. Not for the house. For our apartment. In the bathroom. After each flush, each shower, and each hand wash, we can check how much water we have used. How incredible is that? – We heard that people are being warned in Ireland to check out visitors to their house – in case they bring their tooth brushes. They are also being advised to give the bathroom door a knock – if guests overstay – in case someone is trying to have a hair wash or, even worse, a full shower. No doubt, people will try everything to bring down those charges!

We did not manage to go out today, but we will keep at it. It’ll happen one day… In the meantime, Pádraig continues to be sitting out in his wheel chair, having a (bit of a) warm dinner and (most of the) desert. Today was tilt table day; great to see how the physios continue to be working with Pádraig. Over the past days, we have been blocking the tracheostomy altogether for a few minutes to see how well he manages to breath not just out, but both in and out using the “normal” airways. We extended these periods slightly and it seems that he is getting better at it. Looks like we’re on the right track.

Just learned that there was an article about Pádraig in the Boston Irish Reporter.

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Finally: Don’t forget to sign up for the poker night of the year, and spread the word to your friends: 23 August 2014, 19:30 – 01:00, Wishing Well, Newtown Park, Blackrock, Dublin Co. Dublin. You’ll find all the details here.

Remember: you don’t have to be a professional (or even a good) poker player. The rules are easy, you just have to keep a straight face!