A very disconcerting day

May I ask, dear Reader, that you afford me the small privilege of literary licence. I wish to varnish what follows with an arithmetic extension of the meaning of “day” to include for purposes of this manoeuvre the past twenty-four hours.  Not that any one incident is by virtue of its substance connected to another except by the ignominy of having been disconcerting.

It began last night when I went to bed.  Almost immediately the violence of “restless leg syndrome” affected me. It is an affliction which, were it not for its bewildering reality, I have hitherto been inclined to dismiss as the consequence of something manageable like having tricycled too much with the seat too low (thus – or so I unprofessionally reasoned –  causing stiffening of the calf muscles).

Restless legs syndrome (RLS), also known as Willis–Ekbom disease (WED), is generally a long-term disorder that causes a strong urge to move one’s legs. There is often an unpleasant feeling in the legs that improves somewhat by moving them. This is often described as aching, tingling, or crawling in nature. Occasionally, arms may also be affected. The feelings generally happen when at rest and therefore can make it hard to sleep. Due to the disturbance in sleep, people with RLS may have daytime sleepiness, low energy, irritability and a depressed mood. Additionally, many have limb twitching during sleep, a condition known as periodic limb movement disorder. RLS is not the same as habitual foot-tapping or leg-rocking.

The disruption did not soon disappear.  After thrashing about in bed for at least an half-hour, I succumbed and withdrew to the sitting room where I grasped the mini-Theragun (electronic massage device) and proceeded to batter every discernible muscle from my left thigh through the synthetic knee (lately implanted) down the calves (both sides) to the bottoms of my feet. And then I repeated it until satisfied I had obliterated whatever strain of muscular sensitivty remained, confident that in doing so I had overcome the problem. I returned to bed and slept.

This morning however when I arose I was barely able to walk. Seemingly I had been far too combative with the Theragun; and in the process I had overtaken my mobility. I almost collapsed as I approached the nearby shower stall.

After finally making my way through the ablutions I crawled with the aid of my walker to the sitting room where I attempted to regain my dignity by having steel cut oats and prunes while addressing the customary morning mail.  But the recovery was next to impossible.  I tried bouncing on the new Acon Rebounder to stimulate the former muscle strength.  It helped but only just.  I remained creaky and imbalanced.  By this time it was already late in the morning (my early morning analgesics had made me sleep late until about 10:30 am).  While I embrace the entitlement to late morning arousal, it nonetheless disappoints me when half the day is spent by the time I’m brushing my teeth after breakfast.

The only possible redemption under these restrictive circumstances was a drive in my new car.  I went to the garage, hobbled into the driver’s seat and drove to Stittsville for the routine ceremony at Halo Car Wash®. After first gassing up the car at Petro-Canada and then vacuuming the car mats, I went through the wash, feeling moderately relieved (though still punishing myself inwardly for my indolence and late arousal). While at the car wash I bought another 3-month subscription which will conveniently hold until our anticipated departure to Hilton Head Island for a month.

Given that it was then only about two o’clock in the afternoon or shortly thereafter I decided instead of returning home immediately to take the right hand curve at the end of Hazeldean Road onto Hwy#417 towards Arnprior, an extended ride to Renfrew County. As I did so I perprexingly became aware that my left and right turn signals, when activated, made no noise. Then when I turned on Sirius XM there was no sound. This at first I laid off as the result of poor WiFi connection in the country. But then the same thing happened to my Apple Car Play connection; that is, no sound. I retreated from the highway onto a nearby country road, looking for a place to stop to examine the difficulty more acutely.  I found a deserted property, stopped and went through a catalogue of settings, many of which I hadn’t seen before, but none with any success.

This unsettling development of my new car was also diminishing my erstwhile love affair with Cadillac, making me feel I had been too quick to jump from Lincoln, not to mention completely re-designing next year’s projected ambitions for an upgrade of the model I had only lately chosen on the lot in an early September morning frenzy of impatience. It was time to go to Reid Bros GM dealership in Arnprior. But by this time I was somewhere on a bumpy country road far beyond anything with which I was acquainted.  And my attempted commands to Google’s map service were not working. I was without GPS!  Fortunately there was enough sunshine to permit me to recognize east and west; so by moderate mental abstraction I found my way out of the limits of Fitzroy Township along the Ottawa River to Arnprior along the Madawaska River.  And thence to Reid Bros.

The chaps at the service bay of Reid Bros could not have been more obligingl. My only complaint (and I know this screams of obsession) was that the service fellow dirted the recently vacuumed front mat of the car with his work boots, and unsettled me with his cumbersome and less than delicate fiddling of the numerous buttons of the car. He was a large man with little obvious care or concern for the specificity of anything other than automobiles. When his examination of all the Settings did for him nothing more fruitful than I had garnered, he retired to a room adjoining the primary service bays and spoke to a gentleman who I assume was the Service Manager. The Manager caste an eye in my direction as I hovered by the open driver’s door awaiting the result of the confab. Next the service consultant opened another nearby door from which was revealed a young curly-haired blonde chap in coveralls.  I concluded instantly he was the tech guru.  After whispered consultation between the two, the young chap approached the car, the hood of which the big fellow opened. The young chap removed the cover of something, then twisted off a bolt with a wrench and did a bunch of other stuff I couldn’t fully see.  He then stood inert waiting for several minutes before he re-screwed the whatever, repositioned the cap and closed the hood. The intelligence was that there had likely been a software update by the manufacturer but it required a full twenty minutes for download without interruption (no opening of doors for example, exactly what I had been doing earlier in my amateur attempt to “reboot” the software). I reasoned that there had been an overnight software update which had been resisted by the car having been stored underground in the garage; and, later in the day the same download had been obstructed by the lack of internet connection which is so common in rural areas nearby, plus my opening and closing of the doors if and when the internet were working.  In any event I left Reid Bros with a cheery wave to the Reid Bros chaps, convinced all was well.

But I was mistaken.  As I left downtown Arnprior and redirected myself onto the highway towards home (actually towards the car wash in Stittsville where I was intent upon vacuuming the car mat again and then going to the gas station to get some damp paper towels to remove the scuffs from the entry sills), I became aware of a peculiar message on the display screen.  It instructed I was to put the windows up and down, both on the driver’s side and the passenger side.  As I did so it was evident that the automatic windows did not work.  But having once accomplished this mysterious undertaking all appeared to be reactivated.  Once again I comforted myself in this small victory.  But alas, one more defeat arose.  The Apple Car Play music did not work.  The iPhone needed to be reconnected.

It was in this condition, drained, that I landed in Stittsville to perform my purgative repetitions. Then I headed home.  By this time the atmosphere had entirely changed, revealing magnificent cloud formations on the horizon surrounded by colouring-book shades of pink and blue.  The look was too enticing to ignore. The moment I replaced the assaulted automobile in the underground parking lot I walked – yes, by this time my legs had seemingly recovered their strength and propriety – to my stationed tricycle.  Directly I raised the seat of the tricycle – my latest proposal to improve the cycling experience.  It worked!  The longer extension of my legs made the overall use easier and more endearing. Enchanted by this pyrrhic victory I gleefully tricycled about the community in the setting sun, pausing to take some enthralling photographs and stopping to chat with a realtor with whom I hadn’t spoken for the past ten years.

It was thus that I returned life to Middle-C and reclaimed my affection for General Motors and all that is dear to me. At home the whiff of a spendid meal awaited along with an hors d’oeuvre and something to drink.  The elevation was punctuated by an agreeable email from friends in Wisconsin. The disconcerting day was vastly improved by a reassuring concert. It was heavenly!