English Countryside Views

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I spoke with my father in Pennsylvania last night after he’d gotten the results of his heart test on Thursday. In August, he had been ambulanced to the hospital with only 15% heart function. It is now, three months later, up to 26% – thanks to medication, exercise, a much reduced salt intake, and totally following doctor’s orders.

His cardiologist was impressed at how he has done EVERYTHING he was asked to do, but 26% was not enough to satisfy the doctor that he was out of danger; he wanted to see at least 35%. He said that after 3 months’ recovery that 26% is likely the peak the heart will ever reach on its own, so recommended an implant.

On December 1, my Dad will have put into his chest a 3-wire, tiny device that helps the heart squeeze, which should take him to about 50%. (My Dad said the cardio had previously explained that “elite athletes” like runners tend to be at about 60%.) The device should end the chance his heart will simply slow to a stop. He will have it implanted the rest of his life.

All told, that’s a huge relief. So I thought, for this post, how about some beautiful views?

We had taken a long walk last Sunday – 7.9 miles, to be exact; distance marked courtesy of an iPhone app – up and down hills around Bratton Camp, which borders on the Salisbury Plain Defence Training Estate. We finished at the Westbury White Horse. My legs ached for 24 hours afterwards!:

Bratton Camp and White Horse, Wiltshire. [Photo by me, 2014.]
Bratton Camp and White Horse, Wiltshire. [Photo by me, 2014.]
Sign noting the bridleway as well as the next door military firing range, part of Salisbury Plain Defence Training Estate, Wiltshire. [Photo by me, 2014.]
Sign noting the bridleway as well as the next door military firing range, part of Salisbury Plain Defence Training Estate, Wiltshire. [Photo by me, 2014.]
Don't open that gate or cross that fence! Edge of Salisbury Plain Defence Training Estate, Wiltshire. [Photo by me, 2014.]
Don’t open that gate or cross that fence! Edge of Salisbury Plain Defence Training Estate, Wiltshire. [Photo by me, 2014.]
Quiet, solemn, St James's Church, Bratton. [Photo by me, 2014].
Quiet, solemn, St James’s Church, Bratton. [Photo by me, 2014.]
Westbury White Horse [Photo by me, 2014].
Westbury White Horse [Photo by me, 2014.]

Being new in the area, it was naturally a new hike for us. Sadly, though, we didn’t encounter a pub en route. So besides its unexpected length (we’d taken a wrong turn and walked about a mile out of our way), that was the only big disappointment. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Have a good Saturday.

______
UPDATE: November 17:

Bratton does have a pub: “The Duke.”

It’s an attractive one too. We drove by it yesterday. On our walk last weekend, we hadn’t wandered into that part of the village.

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