Hospice Appeal: Last Night of the Proms


Ladies and Gentlemen. Thank you and Good afternoon.

My name is Ed Lunnon and I am a patient cared for by the St Francis Hospice of Port Elizabeth.

Today, we witness the best of the human condition, through song and music and dance.

Let’s give Richard and all the artistes a very warm round of applause.

But, ladies and gentlemen, just as we witness the best of the human condition, we are all only too aware of the worst of the human condition – the elephant in this room:

death through cancer, TB, HIV/AIDS, and Motor Neurone and other degenerative brain diseases.

Just a few months ago, we witnessed the very public suffering, death and funeral of rugby Springbok Joost van der Westhuizen who had motor neurone disease.

Let’s see by show of hands … How many of you have been touched personally, or have had a family member or close friend touched by one of these illnesses in the twelve months that have elapsed since we attended the last Last night of the proms?

Yes, sometimes it takes the worst of the human condition to draw out the best of the human condition in us … That of generosity, compassion, love and charity towards our fellow human beings.

So, in these few minutes, I would appeal to you to help the Port Elizabeth St Francis Hospice to help us, who battle the ravages of these illnesses, which for you may be just a name, but for us, is our reality each and every day of our limited lives.

I challenge you and you and you to empty your purses and pockets as you leave this hall tonight and to fill the coffers of the Hospice placed at the various exits.

This past year it was your parent, your spouse, your sibling, your child or your friend.

This coming year, it may be your very self!

Remember, these diseases spare no-one .

May I thank you in advance for your kind generosity?

Baie dankie, muchas gracias, merci, enkosi kakhulu , thank you very much.

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Another New Year: 2017


Ill 10 years 4 months | Physical Advantage CBD / Mental Advantage CBD

(C) 2017 Edward C Lunnon

I have not written or spoken for a long while now. Let me not try and find any reason for this other than just being absolutely forthright. I have been struggling to keep the pieces together.

So much has happened in the last few months and I have not been able to stay on top of it.

Mentally, things are going awry. Physically, my body is taking a pounding. Psychologically, I am not coping. Emotionally, I am in a dark space.

So, as we enter the second week of the new year of 2017, please keep me in your thought and prayers. Let’s hope that it will be a better one than the previous year. 

I need to get back on top, and I will. I promised myself right in the beginning of this journey that I would not let it overtake me. I won’t!

So watch out … I will be back soon and fill you in and what has been happening!

May it be a Happy New Year for us all.

Fly Me to the Moon


9 years 8 months Ill |Physical: Adv CBD / Mental : Adv CBD

It’s week 2 of my new medication.

From 1 tablet a day last week ( that’s over and above all the others), I now have to take three a day!

And now I’m flying again.

This morning at 4am, I experienced more side effects. A guy wearing a balaclava put his hand over my mouth and tried to smother me. I screamed! I screamed so loudly that Pera came running through from her bedroom. In the process, I had knocked over my glass of water and the reading lamp. I could have electrocuted myself!

Well, some of this happened and some not!

Lesson no 1 of the new meds: push back the pedastals next to the bed (at least until I’ve acclimatized to the increased dosage).

All very dramatic and very different to our quiet walk along the beach front on Sunday morning. 

We haven’t done that in a long while. 

The morning was crisp. The sea was flat.There was not a breath of wind. The sun was just edging from behind the wispy clouds. 

There were yachts out, canoes, walkers, runners, kids, the elderly – all doing their thing …

In me, the pills were doing their thing, and I was flying – despite the serenity of the occasion. On the positive side, I had not experienced any spasms since Saturday. And I had laid in for a while on Sunday morning, savouring that moment. On the negative side, I was seeing the world through the haziness of my meds again. I guess, you’ve got to take the good with the bad!

We walked from Hobie Beach to Something Good and back. Then a latte at Bluewaters cafe. 

We need to do this more often. 

Tonight is the Thomson retirement function at the Old Grey Club. Forty years for Tommo and thirty years for Pam. I’m looking forward to that and all the old (yes both meanings!) familiar faces.

Fly me to the moon … 

FiVe Years Later: From Vuvusela to Vitriol

(c) 2015 Edward C Lunnon / 8 years 9 months ill … / Physical: Deuce – Mental: Adv Ed 

  
Five years ago to the day, we watched the opening game of the 2010 World Cup between Bafana Bafana and Mexico. We were at the Brazenhead in Stellenbosch where we watched the game played in Johannesburg on TV with hundreds of other Matie students. The “gees” was at an all-time high in the Land.

Later that evening we drove through to the Peaches in Paarl where we spent the night.

It was the start of a few weeks of a New South Africa.

Now, five years later, we have a New FIFA! Vitriol, scandal, bribery, corruption, arrests, resignations, extraditions, prisons, …

Was our hosting the World Cup rigged? What was the $10 million really for? Was it a bibe?

And the legacy? Wonderful memories and costly stadia that are unused and falling apart.

We are still paying for the party.

The construction firms who built the stadia have been fined for collusion and price-fixing – they are paying for the party.

Blatter and Valcke and the other top dog FIFA executives are the only ones who have been smiling all the way to the bank.

Will they still pay for the party?

In the Waiting Room …

I’m sitting in the waiting room at Greenacres Hospital.

I’ve been here before. MRI scans, CAT scans etc – not my favourite place! I think of that horrible tunnel! Chunk chunk chunk bang boom cheeeet …

Now its Ultrasound on my hip!

Surrounded by hordes of people each with his/her own battle, otherwise they wouldn’t be here!

I wonder what each is thinking … It gives me time to think too … It’s been a tumultous week!

But now must go … I’ll continue later …

In Remembrance Dieter Pakendorf Rector 1977 -1992

 
The interment of Rector Pakendorf’s ashes takes place on Friday at 10h00  in the memorial quad at the now 100 year old Mill Park campus of Grey High School. All are welcome to attend!

In lieu of flowers please consider buying one of the In Remembrance of Dieter Pakendorf lapel pins.

All funds raised will be deposited into a Class of 1990 trust fund in order to start a Green the School project in remembrance of Dieter Pakendorf.

Just 400 pins will be available at reunion venues during the weekend.

Please consider a donation of at least R100.

Thank you!

The Merry Month of May

(c) 2015 Edward C Lunnon

8 years 8 months ill …

Physical: Advantage CBD / Mental: Advantage CBD

  

Our radio programme ED is in wED came to an end at the end of April. I shall miss it and the large number of people that I have met through it. I am grateful for all the messages that I received and am humbled by the many lives that we have touched. Again. my grateful appreciation is extended to AlgoaFM and Lance du Plessis for 5 years and 260 interviews, and to all the listeners worldwide who tuned in every  week.

In the meantime, I have been learning to cope with more pain (not always succesfully!) and have had to see the neurologist, the doctor, the physiotherapist and the pharmacist at varying intervals.

I am not in a good space at the moment.

I have had to cancel a few trips ( to Cape Town and the Karoo) and find the days are becoming longer and longer and more difficult to manage.

At the same time, there are exciting projects in the pipeline and I am ever grateful to all of you who keep me in the loop. As soon as I feel  better, we wil tackle those exciting ideas! 

Watch this space!

I have not written much, but the world remains an unhappy ball(s up). Volcanoes in South America and earthquakes in Nepal have resulted in thousands of deaths and injuries, elections in Britain and in South Africa have left some in and some out, defacing of statues and other historical places in South Africa leave some feeling happy and others feeling dejected, murders and xenephobic attacks at home have some calling for the death sentence and others wanting to emigrate.

The world has become a moving mass of mankind looking for a better place to live. Ironically, it was the colonialists who established the colonies in the centuries gone by. Now, it’s those who were colonised who return to the colonialists searching for that elusive sunshine. We see it here at home, in Asia, Australia, the Americas and around the Mediterranean Sea. 

We live in an unhappy world and many of our lives are unhappy. It is left to us to manage ourselves and our surroundings.

We, too, will be moving soon and as i write we still await our Canadian visas. What usually takes ten days has now taken more than a month. I am told the Canadian embasssy is inundated with applications from South Africans who are wanting to emigrate!

I have been watching My Last Summer on Tuesday evenings on BBC Knowledge network. It tells of the last days of people who have various life-limiting illnesses. It’s worth a watch and reminds me that I am not alone in this world. My experiences are yours, too and my frustrations are shared with so many others. My thoughts are with so many of our friends who also battle illness on a daily basis.

If you have good health, treasure that gift and thank God!

See you soon …

  

I Cried a Tear

(c) 2015 Edward C Lunnon
8 years 8 months ill …
Physical: Advantage CBD / Mental: Deuce

The best of times … the worst of times!

It’s been a difficult few weeks: Earthquakes in Nepal, Murders in Port Elizabeth, Xenophobic attacks around South Africa, load-shedding in the country, pain in my leg and bum, my last radio talk with Lance on AlgoaFm, … the list continues.

It has been a difficult time for me – both physically and emotionally. I promised myself that I would not allow myself to become emotional on air last week, but I did! I cried that tear!

The CBD not only takes your body away from you – it also robs you of your ability to work and hence your job, your livelihood, your assets, your friends, your social life, your personality, your memory, your driver’s licence, your being … the list continues!

Hidden away among the hype, the “skinder” and the rallies of the Port Elizabeth Jade murder last week, has been the ground-breaking court case in Pretoria related to assisted death (euthanasia) for people who suffer from life-limiting illnesses.

It is an emotive subject. One that will divide the population.

Thou shalt not kill!

Is it OK to call for the death penalty in the case of murder, but not assisted suicide in the case of severe illness and pain?

I must admit – I have cried a few tears this week.

It’s time to face the world again.

Cry Freedom!

8 years 8 months ill …

(c) 2015 edward c lunnon

imagine the scene last monday

freedom day in sa

on the hill … overlooking algoa bay

gathered on the donkin a crowd

all come to shout it out loud

it’s all such a pity

please heal our city

enough is enough

we want our freedom

and vincent swanepoel sang 

the most spine-chilling rendition of

no longer slaves

listen here

https://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=XxkNj5hcy5E

ED is in wED (finale) – 29 April 2015

(c) 2015 Edward C Lunnon

8 years 8 months ill …

Physical: Advantage CBD / Mental: Advantage Ed

  

It was the worst of times. It was the best of times.

It was round about March of 2010. I had been ill for 3 years.

Lance and I met at the Mugg and Bean at Greenacres and discussed the possibility of  doing a radio interview regarding my illness. I had been told that in 2010, three years into my illness, I could expect to become severely incapacitated and that, in all probability, I would die within the next two years.

So, we had our first interview on Wednesday 31 March 2010. The rest, so they say, is history.

Fast forward the clock. 260 interviews later.

I am not yet dead – nor am I severely incapacitated.

Algoa Country, the broadcast area, has got bigger to include the southern Cape and places like Plettenberg Bay,Knysna, George and Mossel  Bay. Together with the Border, the Eastern Cape, the Karoo … the listeners have increased across the country, on the air and online. The number of readers of my blogsite, which I commenced at the same time as our interviews, has increased from zero to just short of 200 000 hits.

I have in a small way been able to raise awareness about my illness, in particular,but in general about living life with whatever the hand is that is dealt to one. ED is in humblED by the reaction of the public and the support and assistance that he has received over these years. 

ED is in wED, yes, for one last time this coming week, but ED is also in blessED.

I am thankful and grateful to Lance du Plessis who believed in me from that first meeting, and who  has supported me and kept me talking behind that microphone during these last five years.

Thank you to AlgoaFM for allowing me those ten minutes every week. Judging by the response that I have received over the years, you cannot imagine how many lives have been touched across Algoa Country.

To the AlgoaFM colleagues who have met me in the passage, chatted to me and encouraged me, thank you for your support and encouragement. I shall miss you all. To Tove, Briony and KayCee, who have also at times interviewed me, thank you for your time and encouragement, too. Daphne, at the front door, always with a smile and a good word –  I shall miss that friendliness ever Wednesday morning!

Yes, it will be quite a change when from next week, I will wake up on a Wednesday and not have to think about the radio or the listeners. As my niece and nephew, Sebastian and Michelle, refer to me, the “radio man” is in retirED!

Thank you to all of you who have listened to me talking to you from the studio, my bed, London, Dublin, Phuket’s massage beds and the length and breadth of our beautiful country. It was only on one occassion, in the Western Cape’s Cederberg, that we were totally prevented from having our talk due to lack of reception!

You, the listeners, have listened in our homes, your offices, your cars, your favourite picnic stops, your forecourts, wherever … thank you for listening!

Thank you for listening, for sharing, and for caring!

We have seen and experienced and discussed numerous events over the last five years. We have seen the best of times and the worst of times. We have seen the best in people and the worst in people.

May I continue to encourage you to  Live Life each and every day. I invite you to continue accompanying me on my journey, however long or short that may still be, by reading my blogs on this site, http://www.edlunnon.wordpress.com or http://www.edlunnon.co.za.

I thank you for allowing me into your homes and into your lives.

Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika!