Busy & Unsettling Times…

The reason there were only daily tweet summaries for the last couple of days, was not that I gave up writing real entries. And I probably even would have had enough to write about, but I just didn’t have the time! After a busy weekend and a free Monday morning I was insanely busy this week. I had a different green party meeting every evening and my mom is still in the hospital. Which lead to me not spending anytime at home in the afternoon or early evenings, because it would have been to stressful to get home only to leave after 30 minutes.
So for the last three days I left my apartement around 8.00 AM and got home around 10.00 PM. My sink was full of dirty coffee mugs and plates and knifes from making a sandwich. I even was too tired to get my laundry of the laundry rack, which I put up in my livingroom and thus had to navigate around for the last couple of days. Well, the 1-2 hours I only spent awake at home. I took it off tonight though and put the next one up. I have to work from noon till 7.00 PM tomorrow, will probably be home around 9.00 PM and then my weekend will finally begin. Yay!

My mom finally had the heart catheterization this morning, after this procedure was postponed a few times for various reasons. The scheduling of procedures or tests could definitely improved in that hospital. But on the other hand, they had valid reasons most of the times. The waiting and not knowing still sucks for the patient and the family. My mom felt pretty ok and just was getting bored. And worried of course. Anyway, the heart cath showed that two of her coronary arteries are starting to be block again. The doctors strongely suggest that she should have bypass surgery and she agreed. The cardio surgeons of this hospital saved her life last year, so we trust their judgement.
She has to be transferred to another hospital for that surgery, spend a few days there in the ICU and will get back to the first hospital for recovery after the surgery. Of course this surgery has to be scheduled first and it might take a whole week until there is a open slot for my mom, because it wasn’t scheduled early and she isn’t an emergency. But due to her health state and the risk of a heart attack, she has to stay in the hospital for observation until she can have surgery. So all in all she will probably spend the next three or four weeks in the hospital. I really hope everything will go well and she will at least be home for christmas.
I try not to think about the fact that she had the heart attack exactly one year ago tomorrow. That day was the most horrible day of my life and I hope I manage to push aside any memories of that tomorrow. Maybe I should be grateful that I’m so busy :-)? Although I know that she is in good hands and is monitored and nothing is going to happen tomorrow and I trust the surgeons at both hospitals to know what they are doing (whenever they will do the surgery) the whole situation still is unsettling to me. Especially because this all happens almost exactly a year after…

To make my life even more unsettling on Monday we got news that one of my mom’s sisters suffered a stroke caused by a bleeding in her brain. She is in the ICU and that’s basically all we know at the moment. My other aunt who I talked to on Monday didn’t know a lot more than it was a bleeding in the brain and that the left side is affected. My mom talked to her brother-in-law two days ago and as far as I understood, my aunt is sleeping (sedated?) for the most time, but she also already talked. Which sounds good, but I have no idea if she really talked and if what she talked made sense, if you know what I mean. I hope to have some more information until the weekend and then I will have to interrogate Hai_di about everything :-)
My mom actually tried to push all this information aside and concentrate on herself and her state of health. She seemed to have developed a surprising calmness about things she can’t control. What will come, will come… I really hope the next few days will go well for both of them.

Writing about the health status of my family took longer than I thought. And I forgot what else I wanted to write about. It must have been random bits and pieces and probably bitching about the weather and most of all about rude and stupid drivers, who seemed to be stalking me whenever I’m in the car with Bro3. Sometimes you have to wonder if driver licences were handed out in a lottery or something.
The construction of Bro2’s house officially started but it doesn’t really look like it. At least not during the few moments I spent at the place anyway. I have to take a thorough look at it during daytime on the weekend. I finally bought some rubber boots yesterday, because it’s impossible to explore the construction site, the garden and yard without wearing rubber boots. And I didn’t wear rubberboots since… probably elementary school. Anyway exploring all of the construction site is on this weekends “To-Do-List” among a lot of other things. I probably really should compile an actual list.
I just hope reading a compelling novel won’t keep me from checking off the things on the list. But “Eine Billion Dollar” (by Andreas Eschbach) finally managed to get me totally hooked. And there are a couple of TV show episodes I didn’t manage to watch this week. With the next week actually just two days away. The life of TV Junkie sometimes is stressful :-)

In the process of actually putting this post up I forgot one thing I wanted to write about. Damn, I really should have kept a list in advance, now this post loooks pretty incoherent. I’m too lazy to revise it now though. Anyway, I dare any German readers to take the “Ruhrgebiet Einbürgerungstest” (“Ruhr Area citizenship test”) It’s just for fun and even I as a proud “citizen” of this metropolitan area only scored 38 out of 45. But that’s due to the many stupid football questions.  You don’t get a end result in the end so you have count the wrong answers yourself.

Ruhrgebiet Einbürgerungstest


  1. This is weird – my blogstats say that you have a link in this post… Can’t find it :) (being vain as I am).

    Forgive me for taking this chance of illustrating my masters thesis’ subject (non-canonical use of the definite article in Irish English)…

    “my mom is still in the hospital”

    I know it’s quite rude to reduce this rather unpleasant topic to purely linguistic matter :) Hope you know me… And as the linguist that I am, I’m not saying you’re wrong, you’re just using it in a non-“standard” way. Very interesting indeed from a applied linguists perspective, second language acquisition in the widest sense (though I don’t consider myself to engage too much into AL)

    Anyways, shut up, Suz.

  2. Oh yes, should but doesn’t go without saying I have my fingers crossed for your mum’s well-being. Good luck.

  3. Thanks for keeping your fingers crossed.

    When I started to read your comment I was indeed worried that I said something terribly wrong :-) How would a native speaker say it?

  4. That’s the thing you see. For a linguist, there is no “right” or “wrong”, just different varieties. Whether native or not, is not the issue. For classfication only, phenomena are said to be “standard” or “non-standard” (although there is considerable disagreement over what “standard” actually is or if there is such a thing at all).

    In your case, you said “the hospital” in a case where you probably meant a general institution, not “THE hospital around the corner with the red roof” (or such thing). That’s a typical feature of Irish English, but also occurs in Singapore and Indian Englishes – all native varieties. If you allow me to be technical, it would be a case for a contact variety, for which – it could be argued – second language acquisition cases also qualify.
    In general, prescriptive linguists would urge you to say “she is still in hospital” or “she was taken to hospital”, however, I’m a descriptive linguist and you would probably never hear from me that you say things “wrong” (although I have detected a slight tendency to double the negative past in “didn’t + past participle” :))…). Prescriptive linguists (e.g. teachers) dwell on the “standard” being the varieties of British and American Englishes, although they are only spoken by a minority of the people. Descriptive linguistics aims at analysing why people “deviate” from a “standard” and how grammar is realised in different geographical areas, social backgrounds, gender etc., all without fingerpointing. In which case it is possible to say – probably unthinkable to the German ear – “I could have went” (last heard two days ago from an educated Irish-born monoglot English native speaker). However, he’d probably not use this in written English.

    My mission is never to “correct” people, but to fight the general notion (and idealisation) of a native speaker and correct English. That’s yet the harder task, trust me :)

  5. Now I get a glimpse of what you are actually studying and I have to say it sounds really interesting. Probably because I’m a bit of a linguistic freak myself. At least in some ways, like being annoyed be this terrible terrible “Denglish” everywhere.
    I don’t know why the “didn’t + past participle” happens to me that much, because I absolutely know it’s wrong. But somehow my linguistic instincts (? if I even have any) never catch the mistake in advance. Sometimes (quite often, actually) I realize it’s a mistake, when I read the post again, but then I’m usually to lazy to correct it :-)

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