Musty Cushions

Monday, May 9th, 201§

The weekend passed quietly and pleasantly.

Attila and I took a whirlwind overnight trip to visit my Mom, staying with my sister-the-middle-girl and her husband. Mom is doing great, slowly building her strength, recovering very nicely. On Saturday we all went to Niagara Falls, Attila and I, both of my sisters, and my Mom, expertly chauffeured for the day by my brother-in-law. It couldn’t have been a better choice of company, day, destination, or route. The weather was warm and sunny, there were orchards of cherry, peach, and apple blossoms along the way, although not nearly as many as when I was a girl. We visited and spent time walking through the Dufferin Island Park, which is beautiful. Mom treated Attila and I to admission to the green house in the park, which was tropical and lovely. It was great to be out with loved ones for the day, in such a beautiful setting. When we left the park, our tour included a drive along the Niagara River to Niagara On The Lake. I grew up on a fruit farm in the Niagara Region, so this is familiar territory. We had a lovely time.

There is something very precious about spending time with people who have known you your whole life through, at least that is how I feel about the experience.

The drive to and from Mist Cottage and my sister’s house was uneventful, but rather long. We took the 401 across the north end of Toronto and it was stop and go almost all the way across the city, both there and back. I am trying to determine if we can find a better east-west route through the city for visiting the Niagara Region, one that does not involve the expense of tolls.

Attila and I spent Sunday quietly together, cooking the meals for the upcoming work week, hanging freshly washed laundry out to dry, and gardening. When we had the basement dug up Attila moved most of the ornamental perennials to the back vegetable garden to save them. It is now time to transplant them to the front garden. We discovered that for this front garden a bed of day lilies, with a border of lungwort looks very pretty, grows from spring to fall, and requires little to no maintenance. We don’t have money for annuals this year, so it is lovely to have the lungwort blooming happily out front.

This morning there was frost on the neighbour’s roof, so it was cold last night.

I had a lovely chat with sister-the-youngest-girl this morning. She has a long commute to and from work, so she has a bluetooth unit that she uses, hands free, to chat with people during her commute. It sure is nice to hear from her early in the morning, as I am an early riser and there aren’t many people craving a conversation early in the morning. Her beau treated her yesterday to a meal out, and a second visit to the Dufferin Gardens.

This is the week I have chosen to work on the musty smell in Iris the trailer. Having much success clearing the basement of all mold and mildew with aqueous oxygen, I decided to drag out the appliance and see if it would function properly. It did, and I was relieved. The unit requires a certain level of humidity to function, and I haven’t quite pinned down what % of humidity is required, so I am guessing.

I took all of the cushions out of Iris, placed them upright on the front porch and gave the fabric on each a good dousing of aqueous oxygen. The roof vent, windows, benches, and cupboards in Iris were opened up and given a good dousing. The awning, which had been aired out and thoroughly dried, was hung up on the back porch line, where it received a good dousing. At the end of the day the mustiness was still in the cushions. Now it is time to move onto steam cleaning.

While I was on a roll with the aqueous oxygen I took all my footwear out the back deck and sprayed inside every last piece. The winter boots I wore while working at the Rideau Camp this spring needed help, the spray did the trick.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

This morning Attila dragged the rug shampooer out onto the back porch and set it up for me. We bought the cleaner 12 years ago, and it leaked the first time we used it, which unfortunately was past the warranty period, we were that busy at the time that it took us a long time to get around to using it. Last year Attila opened it up, applied caulking, and now it works fine.

I shampooed all of the Iris’ cushions. There was a bit of mildew around the zippers, so I opened up the zippers to discover mildew on the naugahyde backing and the foam. Back to spraying aqueous oxygen on the inner backing and the foam. It will kill all the mildew and the spores, and might diminish the smell. It may need to be done twice, but hopefully not.

Attila also removed the door lock on Iris, which wasn’t working all that well. It was cleaned and adjusted and works a lot better now, although not perfectly, the key needs a bit of jiggling to do its job.

I removed the last pieces of fabric from Iris the trailer, the curtains. The rods were held fast with zip ties, which were difficult to cut away, but I finally managed.

I got a message from my Mom this morning. I love hearing from my Mom. She has turned another corner on her road to recovery! Congratulations Mom!

Frustration

It was good to be busy, as the day was a one of the lowest I’ve had in quite a while. After being told by my country GP’s office that I am not longer on their roster, I discovered that the Ontario Government will have none of it, and insists that I am on the country GP’s roster, so they won’t help me find a local doctor. Even if I gave up my country GP who is far away, the government would not guarantee that they would find me a local doctor, and if they didn’t I would be well and truly screwed and afraid for my life. So far the country GP has been providing me with the prescriptions that are safe in regards to my anaphylaxis, if he stops doing that I am in desperate trouble, so I hope he will continue, and I will not ask him to cease caring for me. So effectively I can only access emergency care, which is extremely limited and will not provide for my prescription drugs. Every single government person I talked to today could only offer as a solution the one or two sentences provided for them for the public, none of which apply to my situation. They can do no more. THE COMPUTER SAYS NO!!

So I spent the day printing out sheets of every single doctor within the area where I live.

There were 41 doctors on the list.

Five of the doctors on the list were so far away that I would have trouble getting to them, and they probably wouldn’t take me anyway because I am out of their immediate area. For instance, Ottawa is a two hour drive away, not affordable. I don’t know why the government put them on the list.

Fourteen of the doctors on the list work in the emergency department at the hospital, they don’t take patients.

Four of the doctors work at a clinic in town that does not take new patients and does not have a waiting list.

Two of the doctors have retired, but are still on the list through inertia on the part of the government.

One doctor runs the Methadone Clinic, not a family practice.

Two of the doctors work at the Clinic where I have been on the waiting list since last October.

Three doctors contacted are not taking new patients and do not have a waiting list.

That means that of the 41 doctors on the list, 31 of those doctors cannot offer me primary health care.

That leaves 10 possible doctors to be contacted to ask if they are taking new patients.

Some of these doctors share an office, which brings it down to about 7 offices left to call. Calls to these offices resulted in no responses. The person answering the telephone was either not at their desk, or there was just an answering machine to say that the office would be open at a later date, which was usually specified, but not always.

That is how I spent most of the day.

It was depressing beyond words.

My tax dollars are paying for this health care system, and I can’t gain access to it.

One of the doctors answered the telephone himself, he was retired. He let me know that the younger doctors are now interviewing people to see if they will accept them as patients. Personally I don’t think they should be allowed to access funds from OHIP if they are not allowing public access to their services. Tax dollars should not be used for private practises.

Although I managed to keep at it, dead end after dead end after dead end, I felt worse and worse about it as the day wore on. If I hadn’t been misdiagnosed (hopefully) with Chronic Kidney Disease, I would probably be able to ignore the lack of access to health care. Even though my former country GP says I do not have Chronic Kidney Disease, it was also recommended that I come in and have tests done. The two different diagnoses should be followed up by tests, they are simple tests that would confirm that I either do or do not have Chronic Kidney Disease. But I can’t arrange those tests for myself, I have to go through a health care professional, and I can’t get an appointment with a health care professional.

My solution was to spend as much time working on my projects as possible, to keep my mind from dwelling on a situation I cannot change.

I have to try calling the remaining possibilities tomorrow. No stone will be unturned; the failure is not mine, although I am bearing the brunt of it.

Worldly Distractions

Weather

1°C
Date: 6:00 AM EDT Monday 9 May 2016
Condition: Fog
Pressure: 101.6 kPa
Tendency: rising
Visibility: 24 km
Temperature: 0.9°C
Dewpoint: 0.2°C
Humidity: 95%
Wind: NNW 7 km/h

13°C
Date: 4:00 PM EDT Tuesday 10 May 2016
Condition: Mainly Sunny
Pressure: 102.4 kPa
Tendency: falling
Visibility: 24 km
Temperature: 12.8°C
Dewpoint: 0.3°C
Humidity: 42%
Wind: S 21 km/h

Quote

“Wheresoever you go, go with all your heart.”
Confucius
551 BC – 479 BC

14 Comments

  1. The Dufferin Gardens sound lovely. DH and I will have to go see them. I’ve never been that far upstream from Niagara Falls before and I’m very curious. I use to love the gardens below the Falls but now many of them have been replaced with structures. 🙁

    I’m totally at a loss as to your aqueous oxygen work, having never heard of it before. What kind of machine do you use, Maggie, and where do you get the aqueous oxygen?

    I’m so sorry that you continue to have problems with finding a doctor! What happened to being near the top of the list for getting a doctor? Have you now been removed from the list?

    I talked to DH about this and this is what he said, based on his experience some time ago with not being able to get medical help for his younger son: “Go to your MP. If they say no, then email a news station and copy the MP on your email.” He says that will get you action fast. I hope he’s right and that you’ll be able to do something like this. You’re waiting much too long for a doctor when you have important conditions that need to be watched by a local physician.

    *hugs*

  2. WendyNC

    I have fond memories of visiting the Niagara region as a child. What a delightful visit you had with your family.

    I think health care is messed up everywhere. Your system covers you, but you can’t get access. I can get access, but can’t afford it after paying the hefty monthly premium for a policy with a deductible equal to six months of mortgage payments.

    I must learn more about aqueous oxygen. I’ve been intrigued since you first got the unit and it seems like a great thing.

  3. Teri, the Dufferin Gardens are beautiful, the green house is lovely and open all winter.

    Aqueous Oxygen is ozonated water, we have a machine similar to this: https://www.amazon.ca/TERSANO-LBU100-LOTUS-SANITIZING-SYSTEM/dp/B000P9MC2K
    ps we didn’t pay anything close to that price!!!
    The treated water works like bleach, but it reverts to plain old H2O within 10 to 15 minutes, then it just evaporates away. I like it because there is no acid involved to damage fabrics etc. It works, but mildew smell and stain are a special case, bleach won’t even touch the stuff.

    I am still near the top of the waiting list, but they have lost staff and are not taking new patients, and there is no time line on when they will be able to find new staff. The retired doctor I talked to today said that they approached him to help them out, he is thinking about it. So although I have my place on the list, it could be a long time before I get to the top. The clinic where I am on the list does not return my calls, but I do call them weekly with a friendly gentle question about how they are doing with their list. I don’t want them to skip over me by mistake.

    I like your DHs suggestion and it may come to that. It would be a last resort though, as I don’t fare well with politicians and I don’t trust journalists. Still, it just might work.

  4. Wendy, Niagara is beautiful, and has the best climate in Ontario. I grew up there and love the landscape.

    Wow, those payments and that deductible sound horrendous!! You need a pretty penny saved and set by for a rainy day!

    We pay a lot of tax, about 30% of our income, and then 15% on everything we purchase with a few exceptions like food. It ends up that almost half of what we earn is paid out in taxes, but not all of that goes to health care, I’m not sure what proportion is slotted for health care, but it is high.

    The aqueous oxygen has been very useful around Mist Cottage because the home was so neglected before we bought it. We seem to keep buying and loving old things. When I think about it, it makes sense, I love old things, old people, old ideas…

  5. Maggie, I’m frustrated along with you as you work through the problem with the medical system. This isn’t supposed to happen in Canada! Do you know anyone in the area who can put a word in for you with a doctor? Sometimes that works. My doctor moved suddenly, and I was left without a doctor. No medical problems, but at my age, I think I should have a regular physician for checkups and blood pressure monitoring. I went through three years going to clinics for my needs until I saw a young female doctor’s name on a online list. Happily she is my doctor now. I wish you the best with this.

  6. Diane, we only know our neighbours here on a friendly “hello” basis, I wouldn’t know how to breach the subject with them. Most of them are factory and construction workers, so I’m not sure they would be able to offer much assistance. It is something to keep in mind though, worth watching for an opportunity.

    Drop in clinics are quite a distance away, and I am not sure they will arrange the tests needed. They might, so when I’ve finished calling my list that is the next place I’ll try. I’m not really sure how that would work, with the confusion around the country GP, it remains to be seen if they will help me.

    Ontario’s health care system has little to be proud of when so many people are left without resources.

  7. That’s awful that you are having such hassles finding a doctor. It is bad here in the States, too. And it gets increasingly expensive, hideously, impossibly expensive. I’m glad you have a nice weekend visit with family.

  8. Joan, the universal health care came into effect at the end of my childhood, we had a pay as you go system in Ontario before that, so that as a child we seldom saw a doctor unless we were at death’s door. Then the Ontario Health Insurance Plan was put into effect and it became possible to get health care in a timely manner. The system started out well but has deteriorated to the point that now it isn’t working at all for large numbers of people.

    It makes me wonder who all the new medical breakthroughs are for, since ordinary working people either can’t afford medical care, or can’t access it.

  9. Your story boggles the mind re your health care, or lack thereof. I still like the idea of going to your MP and then to the press. TV or print. Print out all your blog entries here and any other printed matter you have on this subject. It’s obscene that this is happening to you. Also, whatever percentage of your taxes goes to paying for health care should be deducted from your payment of said taxes… until they cover you with a specific doctor. Why pay for something you don’t get? I think you need to make a big stink Maggie. There are probably thousands if not millions of other Canadians who are having the same problem! The squeaky wheel gets the oil…
    (and good luck!!!) oxo

  10. Thanks Bex, the health care situation is mind boggling.

    Since going public is such a good idea, I guess I should give a brief explanation as to why I don’t favour that route. I live under a death threat, a stalker, and being in the public eye is something I try to avoid. I understand how effective it can be, but I cannot use that avenue with assumed impunity. This situation has caused untold misery in my life, I have had to abandon my former life and I cope with things as best I can. I need to keep my location private. I and my children are still alive, so I feel I have succeeded in living a good life despite the specific ill will aimed at myself and my children. It is just a reality that has become a given in my life. I got my share of the lemons in the basket, but it could be a lot worse, and it is for some people.

  11. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    Maggie, I’m sorry to hear about your stalker, though I seem to remember you intimating something like that before. But things have changed a bit since that time, haven’t they? You’ve changed, I’m thinking your name has changed after marrying Attila. Not to mention that if you want to keep things mostly private that shouldn’t be a problem. There’s no reason for a reporter to show your face or say specifically where you’re from…

  12. Teri, what should happen and what does happen are not necessarily the same thing. I trust my gut feelings, and I know what I am doing. I know you mean well, but I do not want to discuss or justify my decisions, the information was offered only to inform.

  13. I was in the middle of writing a comment the other day when I got called away and my computer must’ve been shut off before I got home.

    I was saying, I didn’t realize you had a dangerous stalker. How terrible! I can’t imagine.

    And this: “There is something very precious about spending time with people who have known you your whole life through.”
    Yes, that’s exactly right. It’s one thing I love most about living here. Although I don’t live in my home town where at least three generations before me on both sides of my family have lived, I don’t live far away, and so in the town where I work and everywhere, actually, around here, I see people I’ve known my whole life. It’s a good feeling.

  14. Kate, I envy you the continuity of your life. Although I am sure there are drawbacks to living around people who have always known you, and your context, it seems to me it would mitigate the chaos of modern human society, and the natural difficult events that are part of being human and alive.
    Once a lover of mine asked me what I would wish for if I could have anything I wanted. My answer came straight out of my mouth without any thought: continuity.

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