I so need to invest in a laptop.  No, let’s just say I need to buy a laptop.  That little word ‘invest’ smacks of financial advisers; then, again, maybe not.  The one I know gets a little confused between invest and borrow!  Back to the laptop …  I have had to leave the comfort and warmth of the sitting room, where the afternoon sun is beaming in, and come through to the computer in the study.  That’s a mood changer.  I am now looking out on a Leylandii hedge which does nothing for my claustrophobia.  In truth, I think I have claustrophobic tendencies – along with my fear of deep water!  I love nothing more than staring out to sea, at once fuelling one’s imagination and calming the soul, but being out there on it is another matter.  I cannot bear being unable to see what’s below me.  Seriously.  My worst nightmare?  A trip down to see the wreckage of Titanic in that miniscule pod contraption which takes something in the realms of four hours to descend through the darkness before, eerily, that bow appears.  Help!  
So, that’s me and my aversion to deep water.  Why?  Could be watching The Poseidon Adventure, as a little girl.  On the other hand, I am a strong believer in reincarnation – no surprises there, then.  That being so, I surmise I may have drowned when Titanic went down on April 14th, 1912 and, perhaps I had a child as Manny, too, has a phobia of deep water?  One can only guess as to which deck I was on but, obviously, I never made it to a lifeboat – picture the modern day scramble to board Ryanair and multiply!  To hell with manners, it’s every man for himself!  Should that be every person for himself – herself – or is that not suitably all-encompassing of the number of genders of today?  Forgive me, but has anyone else completed any forms of late?  The drop down box relating to one’s sex is as long as an elephant’s trunk!
Do you know, I had a brief outline as to my subject matter before I confined myself to my cell and I haven’t so much as touched on it.  Strange that which one learns about oneself.  Blank page, wind in my hair and I’m off!  Apparently, I have precisely one hour and a half remaining before Becca appears home – end of term at Perthshire’s answer to Colditz – complete with … everything!!  You see that’s one of the quirky things about Becca: she is like a tortoise carrying her entire worldly possessions on her back.  Actually, not her entire worldly possessions otherwise this house would be in a recoverable state; more like her favourite entire  worldly possessions which would facilitate a suitable wardrobe in the event that her desired destination be hit by a tropical heatwave, 10 feet of snow, a monsoon, typhoon or hurricane!  Get the picture?  The prospect of packing up this place – our home for the past 25 years – is daunting, not least because Becca will have to take a year’s sabbatical.
Actually, joking aside, that is a big problem today.  The younger generation cannot afford – or struggle to buy property without parental help (no, exercise restraint here!) and thus the family home remains their base, regardless.  In an ideal world, the contents of Becca’s ‘shell’ would be housed in her spacious flat complete with a walk-in wardrobe aka that of Carrie in  Sex & The City.  Too much to ask?  Didn’t used to be.  Mind you, anything I left at home my mother threw out, or gave away, including my entire collection of Osmonds’ Worlds and my beloved portable red record player!  I was the middle child …
Whilst in the sitting room bathing in the sunshine prior to this, I happened to notice a film on True Entertainment called Montana Sky.  My name written all over it.  As I wondered at the scenery, however, I was not prepared for the disappointment awaiting me at the credits – filmed in Alberta, Canada!  Is nothing as it seems in this world?  I have mentioned my lifelong hankering for the life of a cowgirl before and the fact that I have always wanted to go to Montana?  There is so much I could write about that particular subject – again, no surprise there – but suffice to say I have the outfit: hat, checked shirt, jeans and genuine cowboy boots.  I love them!  As ever, there is a back story to their purchase but the upshot is they were in need of a little breaking in.  I endeavoured to do so by walking round the house in them, venturing out rarely, but I soon discovered I had a problem.  Once on, I couldn’t get them off!  Add to the mix, my thumb injury – I bought them a year ago – and I had no hope.  There was many a time I faced the prospect of going to bed with my boots on!  I may have done that before, on the odd occasion, but …  I needed a boot-pull.
What’s strange about a boot-pull?  So useful for the removal of muddy wellies, whatever.  Anyway, no hope of finding something of that ilk in the Edinburgh of today renowned for Tiger Lily and the little green men at their wit’s end on the search for intelligent life. St Andrews, however, would be a different matter?  In a word, no.  In fact, I received nothing but questioning looks.  Bed and boots it would have to be then.  Or maybe not …
St Wolfgang, Christmas 2017, and Becca and I are doing some last minute shopping in the beautiful Austrian village nestled beneath the snow-capped mountains when there it is – a hand-carved wooden boot-pull complete with a horse’s head! Still makes me smile – as does being able to remove my cowboy boots before climbing into bed.  Little things.
Becca is back, the house is chaos once more but a home.  I count my blessings even though she is insistent that I have written about the search for my boot-pull  – and subsequent find in St Wolfgang – before.  I suppose, ultimately, only one’s own daughter can suggest one is going doolally!  My reaction?  No?  Really?  Oh, well, can’t be bothered trawling though previous blogs so, if anyone notices, I’ll put it down to … whatever!
Looking back at my notes to self, I have ‘Lottery’, ‘Bowl of Hope’ and ‘Ant’.  The common thread is money.  Means nothing, at the end of the day.  Was to be my theme.  I shall end with the latest entry in my book of Words:
‘I’ve been dealt a really bad blow but one thing it’s taught me is that you have to see the good in every day.  Even if you’re having a horrific day, just choose one thing to make you smile.”
Lisa Wells, 31.  Mother.  Diagnosed with Stage 4 terminal bowel & liver cancer.
This is Trish, signing off.