My song today is ‘One Day I’ll Fly Away. This song was performed by American jazz singer Randy Crawford in 1980. The song was a commercial success in the international market at the time, reaching Number 1 in Belgium (Flanders) and the Netherlands while peaking at Number 2 in the United Kingdom. "One Day I'll Fly Away" is Crawford's highest-charting single and has been covered by many artists.
In early 2013, I developed terminal blood cancer. My condition has several major effects on my life. It shortens it considerably and it robs me of any effective immune system. What this has meant is that I have had to radically change my daily routine. What essentially, the country and world have had to do to avoid contracting Covid-19 over the past year, is behaviour that I have had to engage in for the past eight years.
Even prior to us ever knowing that Covid-19 existed, each day of my life since 2013 has been like a game of Russian Roulette in regard to my contact with others and my involvement with the wider community. Whenever I shake hands, greet another with a kiss on the cheek, laugh out loud with them, and do not maintain sufficient space between us, I run an extremely high risk of contracting any bugs, infections, or cold they have, but with deadly consequences. Their cold becomes my instant pneumonia, with no defence mechanism to fight off the illness. At the age of 78, pneumonia (even without blood cancer) is potentially fatal. Other people’s germs and bugs can become life-threatening to me. Over five of the past eight years, nine months of each year has been spent by me in a combination of the following: in hospital, in my own bed ill, or confined to my own home without visitors who were unmasked. I have always avoided crowds, and even meet up with family members no more than two at a time.
Up until 2016, like the rest of the country’s holidaymakers, I flew when we went abroad. Sheila and I flew to Italy in 2011 and we flew to Morocco for our honeymoon in 2012. However, by the time we flew to Crete in 2016, my blood cancer had adverse effects, presumably through the recycled air within the aircraft. My last week of the Crete holiday was spent in bed with me being violently ill. I do not know how I managed to fly back home without being constantly ill on the flight. In 2018, realising the limitations on all future holidays I might have, Sheila and I had a lovely holiday driving around Europe by car for a month and keeping out of crowds. We would eat outdoors wherever possible and never enter places with too many people inside which prevented my spacing.
Ever since our 2016 holiday in Crete, I have known that my flying days are over. Any future holidays for me and Sheila will have to be by car or ferry, and we shall have to observe the hands, face, and space slogan forevermore to remain safe.
One day I’ll fly away and not be seen again at this side of the green sod, but let us hope that flight will be propelled by the carpet of prayers you have sustained me thus far upon, and perhaps aided by the wings of the guardian angel that has been at my side most of my life since the age of 11 years.
Love and peace