Onwards and 40ft upwards

So… on with challenge 2 and we’re getting a feeling it’s not going to be as simple as it first seemed!

A search for “architects with experience building 40ft giraffes on residential properties” returned zero results in Google.

And they say you can find just about anything online?

I remember when I was young, for my homework I did a cross section drawing of a giraffe lowering it’s head to drink water, showing the leg bones squeezing the main neck artery from the heart. I wrote that if it didn’t reduce the pressure from the heart to the head, it would blow off.

The head that is.

I still have no idea how it works in a real giraffe, but we’re assuming a giraffe, real or otherwise is a highly technical piece of building that we can’t just trust to any fly-by-night architect… so we’re going for the best-of-the-best of famous award winning UK architects.

It’ll be a 10-way pitch situation, so we’ve put together a request for designs (which we’ll upload later).

May the best architect (with no previous experience of building 40ft giraffes on residential properties) win.

[Guest blogged from David, Rachel’s brother, as she’s suffering a fair bit from the 3rd chemo & too sick to post but wanted to get the challenge started.]

(By the way – for the giraffe homework I got an ‘A’, my only ‘A’ ever… until my teacher asked how I knew that was the reason the head didn’t blow-off… and I confessed that I’d made it up as it seemed possible. She immediately marked it down to a ‘D’… in-front of my face! I must have been about 10 at the time and it put me off homework forever after.)

28 thoughts on “Onwards and 40ft upwards

  1. So sorry you are having a bad reaction to the chemo. Keep your chin up (you’ve not got a giraffe neck fortunately – imagine being sick with that!!!!!!!!!!!!). Looks like David has an even better imagination than you (if possible) so watch out for your roof caving in in these gales.

    Love Auntie Jane

    • Good morning Rachel and David

      This is so cool to see a blog from a patient and well done David for stepping in. I am sure this will become a regular event, but the chitter chatter will be entertaining for Rachel.

      I had Breast Cancer in 2006. Before my operation I had 8 cycles of Chemo (over 6 months) followed by 6 and a half weeks of daily ‘radical’ Radiotherapy – EXHAUSTING – But I am now fully recovered and here to tell the tale……

      I wish you all the good health in the world and don’t forget the ‘blood count’ Dance.

      • Thanks Sophie – welcome – Glad you’re ‘here’!!
        Daily sounds rough?!? – any tips to getting through the tough times?
        many thanks again – all the best.

      • Tips for getting through the rough times??? Umm let me think. …… Tough one.

        Take your anti sickness drugs regularly, not just when you feel sick. I discovered they are cumulative, like the grrrrrr Chemo, so just pill pop – as you are being dosed with so much, a little more shouldn’t hurt! I also took, much to my upset, sleeping tablets. It was worth it. Sleep is the most important thing. Nobody functions well with little sleep and the world always looks worse than it is. Oh, and by the way, the same goes for alcohol, it’s far less poisoness than Chemo, so a glass or two should keep you smiling.

        My daily job (as I wasn’t capable of doing anything else) was to make myself a fresh juice – it’s important you have your 5 a day. If you don’t have a juicer, you are very welcome to borrow mine (I am in Staines, but happy to come to Bucks). Drink lots of water. It helped me mentally too as it felt like I was flushing all the poison out of my body. Eat well. I found cooking next to impossible with chemo brain…… Luckily I had a fab partner, family and friends who, between them, fed me daily!

        I know it’s not always possible, but try to be as happy as you can. Happy mind, happy body – my Dad’s motto. I know it’s easier said than done.

        I have a dog so I walked every day, no matter what. A good slow walk each day should help. I found by Chemo 8 I was only able to do about 20mins, but YOU MUST NEVER BEAT YOURSELF UP. 20 mins is better than 10 and 10 is better than nothing.

        I think David taking over your blog is great. I got terrible Chemo Brain. So much so I was nicknamed ‘Brian’ as I couldn’t even type the letters in Brain in the right order….. We laughed. I also found it hard to reply to text messages and the phone, but hopefully from your Blog, your friends will be able to keep up with how you are doing here.

        Have you had Neulasta to help your boost your white cell count from the bone marrow?

        And, most importantly, take each day as it comes. Don’t plan ahead – you can’t – and don’t worry about what is to come, it will fall into place.

        I’d be really happy to chat with either of you if you would like? I will stop now as I’m waffling on way too much. But please feel free to ask me anything you like. Or, tell me to shut up – lol

      • Superb – sounds like good advice with the day by day – think we all learning lessons – ones we never really wanted to have to learn – but with the love of friends & family we’ll getting there.

        Rach just came back from a go at acupuncture – taking, not giving(!) & it seems to have given her a bit of a clearer head and a feeling of more energy so that sounds promising?

        Sounds like your Brian Brain is bretter now?

      • What super news the acupuncture has helped. Anything that makes Rachel happy should be ordered, this is her time to indulge and be spoiled.

        ‘Brian’ left me a couple of years ago, the brain, not the man….. I think I could say, my cancer adventure, hopefully, is behind me. It’s not something I ever imagined during my treatment as sometimes it is hard to see the light.

        I am sure you will be just like me, Rachel.

        How is the old hair fairing up? There are some fantastic charities who help with wigs and cutting. Although, for me, with the menopausal hot flushes I was getting (at 35 years old!!!) I chose to go nude on top……
        My hairdressers were and are a massive support to this charity and they were my life savers. They gave me the best advise, which should be passed onto all new suffers, “take control of your hair before it takes control of you” If you would like any hair/wig advice, pop into Elements in Teddington High Street. Stephen is the ‘boss’ and will be able to tell you all about it.

        PS: My hair started to grow back in the first two weeks of Radiotherapy, which was about 6 weeks after I finished Chemo. Woo Hoo.

      • Elements in Teddington High Street??!

        It’s just up the road from my work – I’m in Harlequin House (ugly 5 story brown building opposite Natwest)

        Small world!!

      • I’m Sarah Platts’ sister in-law, well almost….. I thought a Teddington ref may help. I’m glad to hear there is no hair loss. I can’t say I missed the waxing or having to washing my hair for 6 months. My man Adrian ran out of shampoo, I had no idea. Instead of letting me know he washed his hair with shower gel – LOL

    • Thanks! [I’ve asked them:]
      – – – – –
      Dear markreclaimedsupplies,

      Hi – can you make them any larger?
      Many thanks
      – – – – –
      he he he!

      • wow – quick reply, but unfortunately:
        – – – – –
        Good afternoon
        Unfortunately that’s the largest size they come in.
        Regards. Mark.

        – markreclaimedsupplies
        – – – – –

      • just thinking that having a complete giraffe might be difficult, stability wise unless it straddles the ridge of the roof with 2 legs either side.. Perhaps a long neck pushing up through the roof would be better? Drawings? you’re the artist lol! xx

  2. Good idea Bec the remainder of the 40ft can be in the bedroom and lounge – much more stable. The neck should be rotating to create more interest. Get drawing David!! x

    Another suggestion from my dear husband – you could have a large A frame to form the straddled legs and then the head could be down in the middle as if drinking water!!

  3. To be honest I don’t know why you are bothering with permission… I’d just do it. Try and see them enforce you taking it down when they hear why it’s there – there’d be an uproar! We’d all be knocking up plackards and chained to your picket fence quicker than you can say ‘planning permission bureaucracy’ 🙂

    Hope round 3 eases up for you soon xx

  4. We went to see Lion King at New Year – the costumes there looked quite good – maybe we could be a herd of human giraffes, on the roof – it’d look a bit like a giraffe single dads protest but I’d be up for it!

  5. I think Homebase are doing a post-Christmas sale on 40 foot giraffes at the moment. Failing that, you could always try Crazy Ron’s Discount 40 Foot Giraffe Emporium on the High Street. If they are sold out I suggest you pop across the road to “40-Foot-Giraffes-U-Like” which is just next door to “40 Foot Giraffes ‘n More”.

  6. Many thanks Spohie for your helpful advice and encouragement. I am sure it will be a boost for Rachel to hear of someone who has gone through the same experience and come out well the other end. And thanks for offering to lend your juicer. We considered the one recommended for the Gerson therapy but was advised to go for a Champion Juicer, which we are using. Rachel has’nt gone down the Gerson route but we are trying to get as much organic stuff as possible including carrot and apple juices. She has not experienced any loss or thinning of hair so far, but she was prepared for it at the beginning and had a look at some outrageous wigs in the Oxford Churchill cancer unit shop! She has a good positive outlook but it is good to support that, so many thanks again for your encouraging comments. Rachel’s Mum and Dad.

    • Hello Rachel’s Mummy and Daddy, what a tough time for you guys too. It broke my heart telling my Mum and Dad – not the news you expect to hear from your children.

      I am glad you are all doing as well as possible. I bet you had a giggle with the wigs and I am so glad to hear Rachel has a good positive outlook. I spent some lovely times with my closest friends and family while I was unwell, it changes your outlook on life for the best. Surprisingly there is a lot of good to find at times like these.

      Lots of love. xxx

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