I got an idea how my Dad must have felt before his heart transplant this morning, getting out of breath just walking to the station!

We spent a lovely weekend in Bristol, staying with Auntie Conny – but also with Nico the grumpy cat, to whom I’m incredibly allergic.

We arrived late Friday night, put two exhausted (but still cheerful) children to bed.  I followed suit a couple of hours later, while the Lovely Melanie stayed up chatting with Conny until the wee small hours.

Allergy level = Green (no problems)

Millie swingingSaturday morning was looking glorious, so after breakfast and once the girls had tidied up the back garden we headed off to the local swings for an hour.  Millie made friends with a local girl called – I kid you not – Storm, which the Lovely Melanie and I both agreed was a very Bristol name.

Why did it seem so Bristol?

I love Bristol – it feels very welcoming and happening.  I like the people there as much as anything else; they seem to have a colour and coolness that makes Bexley feel dull and unimaginative by comparison.

Allergy level = Amber (asthma inhaler needed, some breathlessness)

Then we went into town for Record Store Day, visiting a great record shop called Rise.  Unfortunately, I’d gone and bought any CDs I wanted online just the day before, so there wasn’t anything I wanted there (idiot!).  However, Millie and Amber bought a Wham! CD and an Abba CD, and I was impressed with the range of stock they had, so it wasn’t a complete waste.

We had some lunch at a place called Boston Tea Party, too, which was delicious and ethical.  Well done, Bristol! 🙂

Conny and meAfter this we caught the bus home – everyone was exhausted and we all had a nap (except Amber – who, despite falling asleep on the bus, then decided she was no longer tired and that the Lovely Melanie shouldn’t be tired either).

Allergy Level = Red (inhaler being used regularly, breathing becoming difficult)

In the evening my parents had generously agreed to come all the way from Swindon to babysit so that we could all go out for some food and drink (mostly drink).  We met up with some friends at a little Indian place and had a light but delicious meal (again, well done, Bristol!).  Then, at a packed nearby pub that somehow still managed to be welcoming, we bumped into some more friends and had some more drinks.

We’d promised the babysitters that we wouldn’t be too late, however, so left the pub soon after 11.  Boo! 😦

But some friends came back to Conny’s house for more drinks.  Yay! 🙂

Allergy level = Red Plus (real difficulty breathing, inhaler having very little effect).

I slept very badly that night because of my allergies – waking up in a panic three times convinced I was suffocating (I wasn’t – not quite).

Sunday, we hit the swings one last time (not easy for me, they’re up a very steep hill!) before getting an almost-traditional brunch at the Banco Lounge and heading for home on the train.

Well done to the girls, who were very tired, but really well behaved throughout the long journey.  The Lovely Melanie and I were exhausted, too, and things could have gone very badly, but they didn’t. 🙂

Allergy level = Red (I now have a chesty cough and my inhaler is still of only limited use)



  1. Urgh I feel for you – my asthma was bad enough that I was in A&E a couple of times a year and hospitalised every other year or so – until they got my medication sorted a few years ago. Awful. You got a peak flow? Use it a couple of times a day … my worst attacks happened when I thought I was getting better.

    Bristol sounds lovely though – I love that picture, it looks very retro!

    • What’s a peak flow, Mel?? Would it help? I don’t *technically* suffer from asthma, it’s only when I visit people with cats or dogs that I have this problem, but it does slightly spoil what would otherwise be perfect weekends…
      Which picture is retro? The one with Millie or with myself and Conny??

    • A peak flow is like a breathaliser, it measures your lung capacity – so more of a monitoring tool than a solution. You’ve probably used one at the doctors? It can be hard to know if you’re getting better or not because you’re body can get used to reduced lung function and you might be fooled in to thinking you’re improving when really you’re just compensating. My asthma is only really a problem now when I come up against allergies – I carry antihystamines everywhere and chew two if I’m having a reaction to anything – gets in to your blood stream quicker.

      I meant the picture of Millie – for some reason it reminded me of the play parks of the eighties!?

      • Ah, yes, I’ve used one at the doctors’.
        Interesting that you chew TWO antihistamines – I always follow the packet advice and take just one. Maybe I should be upping the dose (god knows, I completely ignored the dosage advice on my inhaler this weekend!)

      • Yeah – the immunologist Dr told me to – I don’t think it would be very easy to overdose on them, since I don’t get reactions very often as I usually know when something needs to be avoided. That said, the antihystamines don’t help too much with breathing, they reduce the rashes etc though.

  2. So sorry we were so out of sync this weekend, would have been great to see more of you lovely lot. Glad you briefly got to meet the Milton though. Next time you can use our spare room 🙂 Jokes aside, hope you feel better soon. And oh… i kid you bot, do you know what Storm’s younger brother is called? O. As in O. Just O. Gotto love it! lots of love to you all x

    • Not at all, Jennie – it was nice to see you and Niall at all, and to finally meet young Milton – he’s a cutie!
      And don’t even joke about the spare room – I might have to! 😦
      Do you know why they called him O? “Storm” I can sort of halfway understand, but O…?

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