Hooray! At Last! I can hear you cry! This newsletter is so late that I don’t
know what to say, other than this has been a real rollercoaster of a year
with plans falling apart and others coming to fruition in a rush, as well as
charging back and forwards to England, Germany and France. To top it all,
when we did look forward to family and garden time, we endured the worst,
wettest summer on record in Ireland.
One bit of news you can now order Roger's "In
Kenya" DVD. Note It is available in PAL format only, so make sure it
will work in your area and on your player before ordering. You find
out more by using this link:
In Kenya DVD
The year started with Roger dashing to England to do some promotion for his
“Golden Years” album, which charted the first week on the market, but then
had to go to Germany for the start of the 5 weeks leg followed by 10 days
When Roger came home for his break in the concerts, he developed the worst
viral cold he has had in years with high temperatures, hacking cough and
days in bed. Nearly all the musicians etc., had had it but he had hoped to
avoid it…no such luck!
Here is a
Slideshow of Family Pictures from 2009
At this point I was holding on to writing a new newsletter until immediately
after Jessica and James became parents again with little Max (Maximillian
Michael Brabazon) who arrived exactly 2 years and one hour after his sister
Bella. A great boon for grandparents of 9 that two now with the same
birthday to remember!
With Roger back on tour, Jessica had asked me to go over around the time of
his impending arrival, and luckily I had 10 days off, so over I went. She
was working up until the afternoon before the due date, never expecting that
a baby actually arrives on time. But that evening after organising Bella’s
2nd Birthday party for the following day, I told her that he was ‘imminent’.
No she said! I sent her off to have an early night and I went to dinner with
my brother at a local restaurant. We had not even ordered our food before
the phone rang, and she was ‘off’. Great excitement all round. Bella’s
godmother looked after her, while we waited. Not for long! Max arrived
wonderfully, and I have to say is one the easiest babies with huge smiles
all the time. Isabella is besotted with her brother, as are all the family.
Then I charged back to Ireland for a few days before Roger and I left again
to do the filming in England of the German MDR Magazine programme
introducing the baby to Roger. We couldn’t do it in Ireland, but apart from
being very tired Roger was thrilled to meet little Max, than aged only 3
weeks old for his debut television appearance. Bella ‘acted’ to perfection
for the cameras, as did grandsons James and Milo, who joined us.
Back for a 2 weeks in Ireland and then return to Germany for Florian’s
Spring Volksmusic show, when Roger was his usual professional self, but I
messed up my lines horribly, and had to wear bedroom slippers until the last
second before slipping on glam. shoes to appear on stage before the cameras.
But that is a further tale of woe for later.
We then ‘upsticks’, as they say, and went to France for 10 days peace and
quiet. We also enjoyed, and took part in the town International arts
festival, with Roger reciting some of his lyrics as poetry and my reading my
favourite poems by Patrick Kavanagh.
Other people from at least 8 different countries, read, exhibited sculpture,
paintings , sang or danced, and then in the middle of it all, a wedding
party took to the streets with a band playing behind…all very romantic. In
the evening 200 of us gathered for a sumptuous feast, folk music, and
flamenco dancing! Enormous fun
On our return, Roger went straight into ‘writing mode’ having completed
nearly 8 new songs, (the count now standing at 16!)
So I thought I would go straight into doing this newsletter, but the fates
were against me, as I stubbed a toe, breaking it badly and it wouldn’t heal.
My back and neck were agony again, to the extent that I couldn’t sleep more
than a couple of hours a night. I couldn’t
Concentrate on work or anything, so doctors took the decision to send me to
a clinic for full skeletal scans etc.,Rheumatologists, orthopaedics surgeons
- you name it. I have had acute arthritis for years and a few joint
replacements but the scan showed I have an advance form of bone disorder,
not osteoporosis but some other weird and wonderful disease. I am on so many
pills I cant count them, but the pain is far less. I am now waiting for
surgery this year on my left foot, as I can hardly wear any shoes, and then
next year my right foot, ankle and heel.
So I wait while they sort things out.
By now Roger was getting into learning his new German album lyrics for
recording in November/December for release in March, and which Roger said he
could sit and do in France, as Jessica, James and their lovely little family
were joining us for a break there. But again luck was not on our side!
The week before we were due to leave, Boris our 5 year old bulldog, who had
been unwell for weeks with an internal problem, suddenly was in agony
walking, lying or anything, for even a few minutes. So he was rushed to the
vet clinic where they X-rayed his spine and found he had a slipped disc. He
was to be caged, not allowed to go up and down stairs, and only allowed to
walk to a patch of grass for his necessaries. So we went to the flat next to
the office which is all ‘on the flat’ and Roger cancelled his trip, but told
me to go ahead.
Boris was utterly wretched in the cage, and within two days had rubbed his
face raw, and had tried to get out to the extent he bent the bars of a piece
of equipment meant to house dogs up to great danes in strength.
All the phone calls from a distressed Roger, who could not concentrate on
his work, was back and forth from the vets clinic, and wasn’t cooking or
eating properly, made me cut short my trip and fly back to help out.
I’m renown for being a ‘bossy boots’ and I could immediately see that one of
the problems with Boris was that he was miserable in his surroundings and
felt he was being punished. So I moved him back to the house and told Roger
‘we take our chances’ with the stairs etc., Within a day he had perked up
and was visibly improving. He still has to have painkillers and is stiff in
the mornings, but he is back to his naughty personality, taking my shoes
off, if I am not paying enough attention to him, but not yet bouncing in the
air, but sufficiently mobile to steal the footballs that come over from the
schoolyard next door! We will keep our fingers crossed, but being realistic
we know his back will never get right. So it will be a judgement of ‘quality
not quantity’ of his life that will matter. But it has certainly been a
draining emotional time. Isnt it crazy how much we love our animals and the
older we get , the more they replace the care and attention we gave to the
children before they flew the nest!
Now that things are calmer we can both concentrate on the future and while
Roger flies off to record before Christmas, I hope my foot will be done, and
whilst it is in plaster, I will start on the book of his lyrics as poetry
with some of his brilliant photography as illustrations.
He had forgotten over these hectic years, how much he loved his photography,
and how he looks forward to spending more time in the dark room again.
I will not promise WHEN I will get the next newsletter out but I will
certainly post on line the moment we have news of the German album release,
and also the possible English album.
In the meantime, all our best wishes to you all and do keep writing.
Roger loves scrolling through the guestbook and takes on board all the
wonderful things you write.
Take care of yourselves,
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