Niamh update - all continues to go well treatment wise. Her back is pretty red now and is bothering her more than before. We have creams to put on it and that seems to do the trick. She's feeling more fatigued now too, but we also expected that. Side effects so far seem to be mild and she's been enjoying lounging around and relaxing FaceTiming her friends and fiddling with her IPhone (as teens do). As you can see from the photo she really is looking very well and much more like herself. She's had physio early this morning, worked really hard and is now pretty exhausted so she's resting before proton at 2pm.
We've had a fun weekend - quite a few laughs and jokes whilst keeping an eye on developments "Isaacwise". All should be fine there for us here on the East Coast, save for a bit of rain and wind. It seems to have moved west and is tracking a different path now- hopefully the folks in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi and the Florida pan handle will not be badly affected. Weather is not great for us today but it's bearable. I keep saying "at least it's hot" - in Scotland we have wind and rain but it's also freezing which is not a great combo. This is a breeze to us!
So last Thursday was Family Fun night at the Proton Center, this weeks entertainment was provided by 'Weird Science' who were totally awesome. The lady in charge got Conor's attention immediately with her opening line "OK guys, who wants to come and blow things up?" Conor was there faster than a rat up a drainpipe and proceeded to learn about blowing stuff up safely, messed about with liquid nitrogen and causing tops to pop off old camera film cases with alka seltzers. Obviously the kids had no idea what a camera film was. One thought they might have seen one in "a museum or something" - I started to feel old at this point as the scientist explained about how you used to have to put a film in a camera, wind it on, take photos you couldn't see, put them in the chemist to be developed then wait a week for them to come back. "Ask your parents, that's what they used to do when they were kids" she merrily told them. The look on Conor's face was priceless as he looked at me and Paul in total disbelief as if we were fossils and said "Woah!" Err slow down son, I'm only 37!!
It's a sign of the times, listen Niamh can barely remember CD's never mind camera films, video tapes or vinyl.
Friday was quite a lazy day, lovely and sunny so we spent a bit of time round the pool making the most of it. Then we had supper at Maggiano's Little Italy which was really nice. Conor's kids pizza was massive and they do a BOGOF pasta which means they basically give you another pasta of your choice to take home for the next day. Marvellous and very tasty.
On Saturday night we were invited over to Shona (my neighbour at homes sister in law) and her husband Kenny's house. They emigrated to Jacksonville in 2006 and have enjoyed Florida ever since. Can't say I blame them, what's not to like? We had never met before but they were so welcoming and we had a great evening chatting and enjoying a drink or two. They have a son, Harry, who entertained Niamh and Conor very well and they both had a ball.
Amusingly, Shona told us about a shop nearby called Puppy Avenue, which yes - you guessed it, sells puppies. Now, I know that these places are not allowed in the UK however, we are trying to experience as much as we can of American life - good and bad aspects so we decided to check it out. Yes, the pups were adorable and we could clearly see they were very well taken care of there. Niamh loved it because it reminded her of Nintendogs (a game she used to love on her DS) with dachshunds, shih-tzus and the most adorable cocker spaniel pup. The reason for telling you about this is that we discovered a dog breed we hadn't heard of which cracked us up - a HAVAPOO. Seriously??? A Havapoo? What a cute little guy - a cross between a havanese and a poodle. A designer dog! Poor little thing with a name like that!!
Conor wanted a havapoo - I thought he wanted to have a poo!! You can imagine the confusion!
Last night we went to Clark's Fish Camp seafood restaurant which was really good fun hence the name of this blog post - Paul had gator tail and frogs legs, Niamh had crawfish tails, Conor had scallops and I had seafood gumbo. We all sampled Paul's gator and agreed it was really nice. This restaurant is unusual in that it houses what is rumoured to be one of the largest privately owned collections of taxidermy in the country, Clark's menagerie of preserved animals includes lions, tigers, monkeys, bears, giraffes, deer, bobcats, and a flock of birds that gaze eerily at guests in the bar area and dining rooms. Niamh got that look in her eye when she's a bit scared which amused me although it was a bit freaky to say the least. She went to the restroom in record time accompanied by Conor - she doesn't usually like him going with her - and returned in time to order a huge slice of Chocolate Suicide Cake which was a bit like Death by Chocolate. I had obviously already insisted on a spare fork so I could check it wasn't poisoned or anything. You never know do you?
By the way, frogs legs taste just like chicken lol
So, who knows what this week will bring - weather is forecast to be quite rubbish for a few days so we might end up catching a movie or two. This weekend coming is a bank holiday weekend here in the US (Labor Day) so we are hoping to do something good. Niamh has her heart set on Washington D.C because it's her dream to go to the Smithsonian. Paul and I would love to take her but the flight costs have skyrocketed up this week so we're unsure. My heart is telling me to go because no one knows what the future holds and I know we would seriously regret not taking her. I'm filling up as I write that but I think we'll end up going for that very reason.
Life is too short for regrets isn't it?
Over and out
PS I'll leave you with Paul's Facebook status from yesterday which pretty much sums up the craziness here
"This certainly isn't the UK I'm in - this weekend (in no particular order) I've seen men as old as my dad surfing huge waves at the beach, narrowly avoided running over a tortoise on a motorway, handled a host of firearms including shotguns and semi-automatic rifles, had an Italian meal where they give you another one free to take away and eat the next day, browsed through a large selection of adorably cute puppies for sale at a shopping mall, eaten a combo of frogs legs and alligator tail at a restaurant adorned with the world's largest private collection of stuffed animals (inc giraffes, lions and tigers), all the while anxiously keeping an eye on the weather forecast to see if we get hit by a hurricane!"