At last the heaving chest has subsided; I've been able to get to the hospital for my eye checkup, following my problematic cataract operation - very thorough tests today reveal there's a cataract in the other eye, but it's in its infancy and neither the surgeon nor I need worry about it for a good few years if we're lucky. I've had checks on the retina, the macula, eye pressure, and the next step is to go back to my optician for a new prescription to take account of the improved sight in my right eye and balance the spectacle lenses.
I've painted nothing for around a month now - either couldn't see properly, or felt too ill to approach a canvas in anger. I shall be making up for this very soon, and intend to flood the blog with new work - even though, if you neglect them, skills deteriorate; but working on them anew brings them back. You don't forget the veriest basics, but a fallow period invariably means that you have to work hard to regain the level of ability you had before. I wish I knew why this was, but I don't - however, it's been observed by many others; hence Constable's advice to paint a sky a day (which I wish I'd taken) - it does help to keep your hand in; And it hurts you if you don't - I wish that weren't true, but all the experience I've gained over 50 odd years of doing this suggests that it is.
But never mind: fish and chip day tomorrow! I told the fish and chip van proprietor that this was the highlight of my week - he looked at me oddly, and shook his head - "if that's true," he said, "I feel sorry for you."
But - if you live for the satisfaction of your stomach, as I fear I do, it IS a highlight. And anyway - I like fish. And batter. Crunchy batter. And chips..... come on, you've got to love SOMETHING!