The Swan Of Avon


When a knee surgeon, having laid you out, stretched, twisted, and probed, opens his diagnostic announcement with a deadpan “Your chances are good”, that could be considered disconcerting. So it was this morning at my assessment at Old Hall Hospital. Chances, er, chances? What followed, still deadpan, was perhaps a reassuring explanation. “One in hundred have complications, usually because of surgeon error. Unfortunately one in ten thousand don’t make it.” Apart from my abused knees I am apparently in good enough nick to take a punt. It is of course my choice.

I took it. I need total knee replacements; the left one as soon as possible, the right after six months. Normally the first operation would be carried out within two months. Would I be available for any possible cancellation? You bet.

Clock House

My appointment took place in the Clock Tower of this listed building. It is good to be worked over in a location that satisfies my soul.

Jackie, who, of course had driven me to the hospital, took us back through the forest.

We revisited the mill house, its outbuildings, and the race beside the bridges over the River Avon where I had photographed Richard’s ‘Casting Practice’ three days ago. A solitary swan demonstrated the the two wings of the river link up in the distance. Braemore Great Bridge is the one on which I stood to focus on the angler.

I have featured the parasitic mistletoe before, mentioning how prolific it can be. These avenues leading to and from Hale House appear to wear their summer foliage. This is not so. All we see is mistletoe. Daffodils and primroses still line the verges.

At Brook we lunched on excellent fish and chips in The Green Dragon. The view from the window would perhaps have adorned any chocolate box.

This evening we dined on a scrumptious, thick, mushroom omelette.




  1. Oh, wow, Derrick. I’m so sorry you have to go through that. That being said, my mom went through one 1 1/2 years ago with flying colors. I hope yours will go the same way!!!
    I want that omelet. Now, please.

  2. I hate to hear of a friend of mine going through that knee surgery, but you’ve been in pain for quite a while now – time to get it taken care of. Love the photos, so thank Jackie for the trip through the forest!!

  3. Great light and clarity on some lovely compositions. Mushroom omelette makes me hungry.

    New knees will have you bouncing around like a spring lamb soon and you may have to drive Jackie around for a change.

        1. Don’t wait too long, Sherry. I did that. It was only an X-ray that demonstrated the op was urgent. Just days after the diagnosis I can barely walk at all. I wish you well.

  4. Knee pain is never fun. I’m glad you’re getting this taken care of sooner, rather than later. I know many who’ve had knee replacements and their quality of life has certainly improved. Yours will too, Derrick. I’ll keep you in my prayers.

  5. You have been really careless with your knees, wearing them out like that! I hope you take better care of the replacements,
    Things look truly beautiful back where visiting daughter has now returned; but she says she misses the sunbathing and scant clothing.

  6. Isn’t it grand that wonky knees can be made unwonky! Your surgeon could do with some bedside training though……… It won’t be too long and you will be bounding through your English countryside like a young buck again 🙂 I particularly like today’s header featuring the swan – it looks peaceful.

  7. Good luck with the knee surgery, Derrick. Hopefully a cancellation will come up, but two months will go by in a flash.

    The forest drive scenes are always a treat, and that fish & chips dinner looks wonderful! It’s hard to get good fish & chips here.

    Give our best to Jackie. 🙂

  8. Ouch!! Most of my friends who have had the surgery have said they wished they had got it done sooner, instead of suffering for so long! The recovery isn’t easy, but the results can be blissful. Go for it Derrick 😊

  9. I think you’ll do really well with this, Derrick. People I know who’ve had it have done well and all haven’t been in as fine a fettle as you seem to be. I’m glad the doctor was a bit dry. He probably sensed you didn’t need a lot of reassurance. And your photos–lovely–the kind that make me take a deep breath and exhale.

  10. Having had … well, decades of orthopods ‘manipulating’ my knees, I know exactly how your examination felt. Good news about the surgery dates though. I’m glad the Dr laid it out for you. I used to get so tired of prying information out of the ‘don’t want to upset you or hurt your feelings’ brigade … although, very early on in the game I did have one ijit ask if I’d like him to speak to my husband.That conversation went downhill fairly quickly from there. 😀

  11. The tree-lined avenue leading to Hale House has been ably transported to my screen. All those doctors terrify me with their godly worldview. I wish the best to your knees.

  12. They have been doing knee replacements for quite some time and it is really very safe. Naturally they have to tell you all possibilities for a complication, like for any operation. For guy who has gone thru 2 knee operations on my left knee but unfortunately at such a young age (in my mid 40’s)….you will do just fine.

  13. Oh Derrick I wish you all the best of luck with your upcoming procedures. and may you continue to glide along gracefully like the swan on the Avon River….

  14. I hope that cancellation manifests quickly, Derrick. The waiting is hard. I imagine you just want to get on with it now 🙂 And hopefully you will be recovering soon – under sunny skies in your beautiful garden 🙂

  15. Ah! Sorry to hear you are joining the ranks of the ‘prosthetic’ club Derrick!! 🙂 However, after having cared for many joint replacement patients when I was still nursing, I do believe you will find the results a great relief and well worth the exercise (:) excuse the pun!). Holding thumbs for a swift resolution for you…

  16. knee surgery, you’d do anything to get out of gardening, hmmmm? Ha, just kidding, you’ll be like a young buck again once they’re done, running circles around the ponies 🙂 peace and best of luck, K

  17. Wonderful photos, as always, Derrick. That mistletoe is amazing, and the swan is lovely. I know so many people who have had knee surgery, and they have all been pleased with the results. I hope all goes smoothly, and you have an easy recovery. They seem to get patients up and moving now it seems very quickly after the surgery.
    I agree with the others that the mushroom omelette sounds delicious. 🙂

  18. So sorry to hear you have to go through this but in the end you’ll have the latest knee model to serve you well. Your photos are wonderful and that fish! WoW!

  19. Best, best, best! As other readers have commented, I know you’ll come through with flying colors. That fish looked very tasty. And the mushroom omelet? Oh, yum!

  20. My husband has had both knees replaced with great results. He had some issues with the anesthesia, but other than that did very well. Let us know when yours is scheduled and we’ll send extra good vibes your way. Jackie is going to need good vibes, too.

  21. Living in an over55s occupied by people with private health insurance we have an abundance of surgery going on, hips, knees, rotator cuff being common. All seem to come through with flying colours. Assisted by their high level of good health and general fitness before surgery, so I’m guessing it will go well for you too. All the very best with it!

  22. Having been through a double knee replacement myself, I know how daunting it can be, but I’m confident that after the initial pain and the hard work of physical therapy, you’ll be so glad you did it – I definitely am! Wishing you all the best with it Derrick, keep us posted. 🙂

Leave a Reply