Talking to children about Parkinson’s

Earlier this month I visited a local school as part of their community assemblies to talk about Parkinson’s. It has been nearly seven years since as a primary school teacher I would regularly take an assembly and I was very nervous. However, armed with my lesson plans (yes, I could still remember how to write one) all went well. I spoke to the 4-7 year olds first then the 7-11 year olds adjusting the content as appropriate. With help from some materials from Parkinson’s UK I outlined the main problems, talked about how it affected me and how I can help myself and finally some ideas about how they might help.

Parkinson's UK booklet

Parkinson’s UK booklet

They listened carefully and, I hope, came away with some understanding and hopefully a few ideas about helping people in their community. I was touched when one of my fellow “Movers and Shakers” choir members said her grand daughter was there and found it very interesting.

There have been lots of opportunities this month to enjoy outings from home including Nabucco with Placido Domingo at Covent Garden

At Covent Garden for Nabucco opera.

At Covent Garden for Nabucco opera.

and a Swan Lake rehearsal at the Royal Albert Hall with the Dance for Parkinson’s group. A friend invited me to join her on a fascinating tour of the Temple Church, between Fleet Street and the Thames. It was originally built as the headquarters of the influential Knights Templar in the 12th century and has an amazing history, well worth a visit.

There has been plenty of eating and drinking with Ladies Who Lunch this month at some of my favourite restaurants including the fabulous Gravetye Manor with its wonderful gardens. Champagne seems to slip down very easily and I am sure it helps the left hand tremor! We managed a family meal together before the lovely daughter headed back to Australia. The dashing son and beautiful daughter in law were also home for birthday celebrations; the sun even shone for drinks outside!

Next week we have been lucky enough to secure tickets for the centre court in the public ballot for the first day of Wimbledon. It is some years since we were there so just praying for sunshine. The following day we are off to Italy, hence the early Blog this month!