After the pumpkins

This last month some of the early mornings have been an absolute joy, it’s light at around five o’clock and if the sky is clear and pretty well cloudless fine mists have formed making the landscape feel as if it has travelled back to last autumn. This print was a first print and really a test for me when I returned from hospital, well not so much of a test for the press but of my mental state and co-ordination. The strange thing was that ideas were clear in my head but I had difficulty translating them onto paper in the manner I wanted, a bit like having a few wires that weren’t properly connected. The doctors and surgeons put the condition down to the effects of prolonged and powerful anaesthetics so who am I to argue? Needless to say the quickly cut and printed result should be viewed as a personal stepping stone, or perhaps a personal milestone is a better description. Within a week of making the print the few remaining pumpkins lying in the field were gone, ploughed into the soil and the field was a uniform dark brown. Now, in springtime, the field is a vivid bright green with spring barley as another growing season starts.


    1. Thank you Chris, a bit of a gruelling year but the Norfolk &Norwich Hospital were brilliant if a little brutal at times. More prints to be done over the next few months plus book illustrations. All the best and thanks for your good wishes. John


  1. Hi John. Though I only know you through your blog, I’m very sorry to hear of your ordeal and am glad you’re feeling stronger now. Your prints are wonderful as ever. All the best, Lily


    1. Lily, thank you for your kind and supportive thoughts. It’s been a rugged eight months and all from a routine visit to the Dentist. he spotted the anomaly, as he put it, and withinn a week I saw the Consultant who confirmed it was a tumour. Then the nhs simply picked me up and ran with me. A twelve and a half hour operation, plastic surgeons at work too, followed by thirty days of radio therapy. That was hell. however the NHS have been brilliant and now I have to give a talk to cancer patients awaiting and post treatment. I’ve made some solid and new friends whilst other friends have disappeared. A new perspective on life you could say. Ironically I’m busier than ever. I’m delighted you like the prints. Kind and appreciative regards, John

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Congratulations on your milestone! As for your quirky brain function – speaking from a nursing perspective – anesthesia can definitely take a while to move completely out of your system. And my understanding is the longer you are “put under” the longer it takes to recover. That said, it looks like you have definitely recovered. How very lovely that you were able to catch this moment in time when a few pumpkins dotted the landscape that has now been plowed up. Time changes everything, doesn’t it?


    1. Linda, mnyhanks for your comment, to answer your ‘how long’ question I was under for twelve and a half hours, during which the tumour in my tongue was removed, plastic surgeons pinched a lump of my right thigh to rebuild my tongue, six molars went and they did a tracheostomy. The surgeon said I may lose my speech and have to re-learn but that’s was swiftly overcome within ten days. I’m moving onto solid food now although Sue uses the Vitamix to make some fine dishes. My sense of taste has improved and my weight has stabilised 12.6 stone which the nutritionists say is perfect. Well, as perfect as it gets. The brain fog from the 30 sessions of radio therapy aint great though. However I’m here and with a different outlook on life as you can Imagine! Take care and thank you for your support. Best wishes, John


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