Filming, festivities and general anaesthetics...

31st Dec 2015

Xmas hat Post Op Nice cuppa Dancing shoes

Happy New Year, 2016 is here!

(Image left: my sister Ali with Theo (our little man) who didn't like wearing his christmas hat!)

I had quite an entertaining lead up to Christmas with a couple of experiences that couldn’t really have been more different from each other.

Firstly, I was doing some filming for a C4 programme at Lawrencefield in The Peak District. It was the perfect location being sheltered and picturesque, as although we were having unseasonably warm weather, the rain was ever threatening and the wind was very blowy up top. In fact on our recce the day before, we had to cancel Stanage as the venue, as the weather was just unworkable.
The filming was for a new ‘Health’ show coming out sometime next year with Davina McCall. She actually seemed very nice and it was a pleasure to meet her. The consummate professional, as you’d imagine but very friendly to boot. I had to do some climbing on exceedingly wet rock (so it was top roping only) and then some abseiling too, with interviews at the bottom of the crag. We also had a couple of guys (Will and Sam) over from N Wales who were putting up their portaledge over the pool; they will be providing one of the series participants a nights sleep in a portaledge over on Anglesey. She has insomnia, so I’m wondering how a night out on a portaledge will help with that! But hey, you never know...

But the very next day after the media experience, I found myself in hospital having an operation. It was all planned I hasten to add, no sudden trip to A&E due to another stupid accident of mine.

(Image left: Another general anaesthetic and this time it went well)

I had recently asked my GP if I could speak to someone about having a metal plate removed from my leg. This was put in when I had a nasty spiral fracture to my fibula in Jan 2012. I was always aware of the plate, it made my bone ache, rubbed on boots and hurt when doing lower leg stretching. I was also worried about it being too stiff and not allowing my bone to be elastic when I fell off climbing/bouldering etc and causing another break in my bone. The orthopaedic surgeon said these were all valid issues and agreed to remove the plate, I thought I was going to have to go in and really persuade them to take it out. And the added bonus was that it was done a few days before Christmas, something actually happened quickly on the NHS for once! It’s not a bad time to be convalescing over xmas and New Year, although all those extra calories aren’t feeling too great, haha and not being able to walk properly isn’t ideal.

My leg is now feeling a lot better though and I can walk normally (and also have a shower, hooray, which I couldn’t for two weeks), I just can’t wear wellies etc which in this wet weather is a bit of a bind when out on a dog walk. 

(Image left: Probably the best cup of tea I've had for a long time. After no food or drink since the day before, this tasted like amber nectar!)

 I have succumbed to plastic bags in my trainers, seems to work. I’ll have to wait a few more weeks to see if the op will help with the aches and pains I was getting before, as it is still quite sore from the operation. Also, the surgeon said not to expect it to suddenly feel amazing, as some of the pains I was getting may just be because I broke my leg and of course I don’t expect it to feel perfect after that.


I somehow ended up in a private hospital for my op and had a posh sarnie for my afternoon meal.

So I have had some time to do rehab on my elbows which is good. I’m not sure it’s working particularly, as I haven’t been able to climb, which is obviously a good thing too. But I’ll just plug away with the exercises and hope for the best.


All in all Christmas has been nice and chilled out. And tonight we will have the best view over Sheffield and all the midnight-fireworks in our local park, Meersbrook. It stands above the city and loads of people gather with fireworks, drinks and music and it’s one of the best places to be to welcome in the New Year.

Hope you all have a good celebration and best wishes for 2016!!
May all your new year’s resolutions be achieved and your climbing goals reached...

(Image bottom left: Buis getting on her dancing shoes for the New Year Party)


Watching the dawn rise from my hospital bed, can't complain about the view!

RIP John Ellison: CAC founder and generally lovely bloke.