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Archive for April, 2009

Chemo 6.0

April 30, 2009 1 comment

Yay!!! It’s the day that ushers in round six of my favourite toxic drugs. I am currently getting the pre-chemo infusion of anti emetics and glucose. They had trouble canulating my arm this morning which I hope is not a sign of things to come.

I’m expecting this round to be even tougher again, each round is definitely getting harder, so whilst I’m looking forward to getting them over with, I’m simultaneously not. Anyway, posts are likely to drop off again over the next bit, until the fun and games subside.

Till next time…

Categories: Cancer Update Tags:

Chemo 5.2 Synopsis

April 28, 2009 Leave a comment

This update is a little late in the making. Firstly, I have to apologise for the lack of activity last week, Hannah and I had a great weekend away at a bach at Lake Tarawera. It was largely a chillout 5 days, lots of reading, walks by the lake, sleeping in, freezing in the abnormally cold temperatures when compared to Auckland, etc. We try to get away when I’m feeling well, cos the apartment becomes a bit of a prison at times due to all the time I spend here, so its nice for a change of scenery.

Anyway, this last round was definitly the worst, as will probably be the next round, and the round after that. The symptoms were worse (although nausea was reasonably well controlled), and they lasted a few days longer. Also, the rebound between rounds has not been as good as other rebounds. I’m much more easily fatigued, even when I’m well.

So, in 2 days time I hit round 6, which will mark the 3/4 mark. I’m pretty much over the whole chemo thing, so not particularly looking forward to the next 3 rounds, but I guess each round I do, is one less I have to do.

Categories: Cancer Update Tags: ,

Beat Box Kid

April 25, 2009 1 comment
Categories: Interest

Stop Motion Wolf and Pig

April 25, 2009 Leave a comment
Categories: Interest Tags:

NZer Killed in Brunei

April 19, 2009 Leave a comment

This is from NZHerald.co.nz: Summary – A 47 year old recent breast cancer surviver is killed whist riding her bike. What is the more interesting idea to this article is that I could get hit by a bus tomorrow, or be killed in a car accident.

Does it therefore make it more ironic when you are trying to so hard to preserve your life through battling cancer with chemotherapy? I guess we all could go at any time from any unsuspecting accident, and accidents don’t discriminate over past medical history.

“A Kiwi mother killed in a hit-and-run in Brunei survived breast cancer and was due to fly back to New Zealand this week.

Lee Jefford, 47, was cycling along an expressway in Lambak Kanan on Monday when a car hit her from behind.

She was rushed to hospital but died of her injuries without regaining conciousness.

Her husband Mike Jefford, a pilot with Royal Brunei Airlines, was told when he landed a flight from Saudi Arabia on Monday night.

“We’d been on the ground for about two minutes when my best mate came on board and said ‘come with me’,” he said.

“He walked me out through the terminal to my son [12-year-old Connor] and that’s when he told me what had happened.”

Mike was taken straight to the hospital but Lee had already died.

The couple moved to Brunei about 10 years ago when Mike took a job with the airline.

Lee was cycling with a friend when she was hit. The woman told the Brunei Times newspaper she was behind Lee, who was wearing a helmet, when a car sped past and hit her.

Lee was thrown from her bike and over roadside railings into bushes. The car did not stop or even slow down.

Lee’s parents Annie and Bryan Sharp flew to Brunei immediately.

The airline paid to bring Lee’s body home this week.

Mike said Lee had been due to fly to Auckland on Friday to have a check up with her cancer specialist. She had breast cancer 2 years ago and fought hard to beat it.

“She fought the cancer really well and then some mad driver kills her,” said Mike.

Brunei police say they have found the car that hit her.”

Categories: In the News, Interest Tags: , ,

How Somalia’s Fishermen Became Pirates

April 19, 2009 Leave a comment

This is a really interesting article from Time.com. It’s an interesting insight into where all this piracy has come from, and the fact that it it is really the creation of the rest of the world’s own greed in Somali waters. Of course, it does not excuse the piracy that is going on at the moment, but it does mean that the west has to take responsibility for creating the industry, rather than complain about being a victim of it.somalia_fishing_0417jpg

Amid the current media frenzy about Somali pirates, it’s hard not to imagine them as characters in some dystopian Horn of Africa version of Waterworld. We see wily corsairs in ragged clothing swarming out of their elusive mother ships, chewing narcotic khat while thumbing GPS phones and grappling hooks. They are not desperate bandits, experts say, rather savvy opportunists in the most lawless corner of the planet. But the pirates have never been the only ones exploiting the vulnerabilities of this troubled failed state – and are, in part, a product of the rest of the world’s neglect.

Ever since a civil war brought down Somalia’s last functional government in 1991, the country’s 3,330 km (2,000 miles) of coastline – the longest in continental Africa – has been pillaged by foreign vessels. A United Nations report in 2006 said that, in the absence of the country’s at one time serviceable coastguard, Somali waters have become the site of an international “free for all,” with fishing fleets from around the world illegally plundering Somali stocks and freezing out the country’s own rudimentarily-equipped fishermen. According to another U.N. report, an estimated $300 million worth of seafood is stolen from the country’s coastline each year. “In any context,” says Gustavo Carvalho, a London-based researcher with Global Witness, an environmental NGO, “that is a staggering sum.” Read more…

Categories: In the News, Interest Tags: , ,

5 Years After: Portugal’s Drug Decriminalization Policy Shows Positive Results

April 16, 2009 Leave a comment

This is article from Scientific American was published recently. I wonder if this approach only works in a country where drugs are rampant, or whether a slightly lower grade drug den such as NZ would benifit from this kind of law change.

“In the face of a growing number of deaths and cases of HIV linked to drug abuse, the Portuguese government in 2001 tried a new tack to get a handle on the problem-it decriminalized the use and possession of heroin, cocaine, marijuana, LSD and other illicit street drugs. The theory: focusing on treatment and prevention instead of jailing users would decrease the number of deaths and infections.

Five years later, the number of deaths from street drug overdoses dropped from around 400 to 290 annually, and the number of new HIV cases caused by using dirty needles to inject heroin, cocaine and other illegal substances plummeted from nearly 1,400 in 2000 to about 400 in 2006, according to a report released recently by the Cato Institute, a Washington, D.C, libertarian think tank. “Now instead of being put into prison, addicts are going to treatment centers and they’re learning how to control their drug usage or getting off drugs entirely,” report author Glenn Greenwald, a former New York State constitutional litigator, said during a press briefing at Cato last week.

Under the Portuguese plan, penalties for people caught dealing and trafficking drugs are unchanged; dealers are still jailed and subjected to fines depending on the crime. But people caught using or possessing small amounts-defined as the amount needed for 10 days of personal use-are brought before what’s known as a “Dissuasion Commission,” an administrative body created by the 2001 law.

Read more…