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since 02/01/2006


Microlife BP3AG1 17/10/2010

Higher or Lower

Microlife BP3AG1 Health As I have several illnesses, which I have had for six years now, it means I take lots of different medications two or three times daily. With some of them I don’t have any side effects but with others they cause me extra illnesses. It’s sad really that one drug prescribed to me to help with one part of my illness is also responsible for making my blood pressure rise. My high blood pressure is kept at a more acceptable level with the use of three different tablets. About half of the over sixty fives and a quarter of middle aged adults suffer from high blood pressure, (hypertension), and is more common in people that like too much salt, or not eating enough fruit and vegetables, lack of exercise, caffeine and alcohol and the ever increasing obesity problems here in the United Kingdom. A family history of high blood pressure is also a factor as is those who have diabetes, as I now have which was steroid induced. Having high blood pressure increases your chances of heart disease, strokes and other cardiovascular diseases. Keeping a close eye on your blood pressure would normally be done at your local health centre by a Doctor or nurse but I much prefer to keep a check on mine at home, this saves me and the health centre a lot of valuable time. To do this I purchased a Microlife Blood Pressure Monitor (automatic) model number BP 3AG1, approximately six months ago, and is a upper arm fully automatic inflation and deflation cuff device. Where to buy I purchased this ...

Maritim Jolie Ville Luxor Island Resort, Luxor 28/08/2010

From a Croc' to a King

Maritim Jolie Ville Luxor Island Resort, Luxor Hotel Maritim Once owned by Mövenpick and called Jolie Ville Crocodile Island Luxor has now changed to Maritim Jolie Ville Kings Island Luxor. Maritim is a family owned and run company and they have been around since 1969 and are more well known in Germany in a lot of the large cities but their hotel portfolio is now over fifty strong in several countries around the world. Maritim’s motto is ‘meetings and accommodation under one roof', and they pride themselves on good old German hospitality. The Maritim Jolie Ville Kings Island Luxor is just one of five they own in Egypt, they have three in Sharm El Sheikh one in Alexandria and the one I’ll be reviewing in Luxor. This was my fourth trip to the island and it may not be the last as the planned, and already underway, revitalisation and modernising thus doubling of the capacity with extra new bungalows and two more swimming pools is a bit tempting to say the least. A large new reception was already nearly completed when we were there and the expansion of the bridge making it possible to have two way traffic on and off the island at any one time. My first two visits was when it was Mövenpick and there has been changes since Maritim took over but that’s mainly to do with management the resort itself is just as tranquil, lush, relaxing and beautiful as it’s always been. I must add that for all the building work that’s going on at the moment we never once were bothered by any of it. The Journey We booked our holiday with ...

Olympus µ-mini DIGITAL S 26/02/2006

Pretty in Pink

Olympus µ-mini DIGITAL S With the travelling that I do these days I would not be without my trusty camera to record the events of everyday moments in time. To keep a record of all those colourful images that the minds album, even through my ageing eyes, stores up but lets them slowly fade away over time. Ugly, cumbersome, heavy, large and quite fragile are just some of the words I would use to describe cameras in general use at one time in the past but not anymore, they have come a long way forward since then. The new µ [mju:]-mini Digital S from Olympus is the one that I will review at this time, I bought it for the wife but I'm the one that uses it most of the time. Firstly I will give you a brief history of the Olympus company, they formed in 1919 and they started by making microscopes and thermometers. In 1936 the first Olympus camera called Semi-Olympus I was unveiled and then again in 1948 when Japan's first 35mm camera with a lens shutter system was introduced called the Olympus 35 I. In the 1950's saw the introduction of a Gastrocamera, a biological microscope and the Olympus Pen half-frame camera. They have been involved in dozens of groundbreaking innovations since then, especially in the medical world, but have become well known world wide for the design, production and supply of top quality cameras. I have always had an Olympus camera, and others as well, but this latest one seems to have it all even though it is small it is packed with so much you just wonder where they put it all. ...

Braun BP2510 17/02/2006

It's all in the wrist action.

Braun BP2510 I have had high blood pressure - or hypertension, for over a year now and it is steadily rising due to some of the medication that I am given for my illness. It's sad really that one drug prescribed to me to help with one part of my illness is also responsible for making my blood pressure rise. A whole new way of life has changed me over the past year to help me control, and if possible bring my blood pressure down to a less worrying level. One great help I've had, apart from my wife who is a rock, is a wrist fitting Braun Blood Pressure Monitor with Sensor Control, the model number is BP 2510 UG. I bought it from, for £30, about nine months ago as I had some vouchers at the time. I've always been a bit dubious of these types of gadgets and I did often wonder if they would be consistently reliable or not, what if it kept giving me the wrong readings that alone would probably put up my blood pressure. I thought really long and hard before purchasing the monitor, and asked a few of the nurses around at the surgery, give it a go then check it with the readings at the doctors and so I sent for it. I do go to the doctors a couple of times a week but would have to go several more times a week if it was not for this monitor, which has turned out to be very accurate over the months that I've been using it. Using it properly and having some understanding of what blood pressure, and the monitor reading results mean, does help but at first you may need to try quite a ...

Lexmark P 315 13/02/2006

Portable Mimic

Lexmark P 315 Since its launch in 1991 Lexmark, and its products, have won over 2000 awards and industry accolades from all around the world. One of their secrets of success is that they develope and own the technology in their products, they were the first company to develope and market 4800x1200 dpi (dots per inch) resolutions. With this and several other advances in the industry they have been at the front, with other leaders, in laser and inkjet printers either for the home or office user. They will, in my opinion, continue to grow as long as they keep the consumers interests and input paramount during the design and development of their future products. Bearing this in mind, and already being a Lexmark product user for some number of years when these new all in one photo printers came on to the market well I had to have one. This one, the one I'm about to review, is the Lexmark Portable Photo Printer P315 weighing in at 2.2kgs or 4lbs 13ozs approximately. Its dimensions are 142mm/5.6inches High x 274mm/10.8inches Width x 211mm/8.3inches Depth which means it is very much a portable printing lab that we have used on many occasion, like taking it with us on some of our many trips up north to see the family. Taking pictures and then being able to print them out at will whenever needed and as many times as you want, without the added expense that you would have at a kiosk or photo printing shop. Each high definition borderless 10x15 cm/4 x 6 inch print only takes 38 seconds when you ...

Sleep Inn & Conference Centre Darlington 10/02/2006

Try this Sleep Inn

Sleep Inn & Conference Centre Darlington In December 2005 we travelled up north from Portsmouth to Darlington to see our family, this being a regular event for us as we love travel, and we stayed for a couple of nights in a hotel. It's called Sleep Inn Hotel & Conference Centre Darlington and can be found at the south end of the A167 at Newton Park approximately 35 metres from junction 59 on the A1(M) either north or south exits will get you there. At the entrance to Newton Park you will find a MacDonald's and a petrol station then it's straight on to the hotel and the automatic barrier that lets you into the car park. The hotel is only two and a half years old and is very well lit with it's very neat, clean and tidy landscaping and the very large free car park had plenty of spare places, in fact it was near enough empty. In front and at the sides of the main entrance there were plenty of disabled parking bays with a gentle slope leading in through the main doors to the reception. It was very bright and modern looking in the reception with a few tables and chairs to rest in while you checked in. This being a simple check on the computer, as we had booked a few weeks beforehand through their website. The process of finding and booking a room on their website took only minutes and is very easy to follow, you check the availability and then select your room type. The two main room types are Executive or Standard and are priced at £65 and £55 with both these options offering full English breakfast included, ...

Premier Travel Inn Durham (Newton Aycliffe) 02/02/2006

Travel Inn time

Premier Travel Inn Durham (Newton Aycliffe) We have just come back from a visit to our family up north in County Durham and we stayed there for two nights in a Premier Travel Inn. This was situated at Newton Aycliffe, which is listed under Durham on the Premier Travel Inn website, and is about 12 miles south of Durham, 20 minutes approximately. It is less than a 2 miles from the A1(M), seven miles north of Darlington on the A167, I have put the full address and telephone number at the end of this review. In the surrounding area, and all within 25 miles of Newton Aycliffe, there are plenty of places of interest to visit such as Beamish Museum at Stanley and Croft Motor Circuit just south of Darlington, Barnard Castle and Raby Castle are close by, and of course there are several places to visit at Durham. The Metro-Centre is about 31 miles north and is our favourite shopping centre anywhere. It had taken us six and a half hours to drive up to Newton Aycliffe and it was dark when we arrived but we had no problems finding the hotel as it was well lit. The car park was nearly empty and had several parking bays painted for the disabled which were the closest to the main entrance. Although the hotel states that it does not have any rooms adapted for the disabled you can always request a room on the bottom floor which is what we did. The reception was very small but the welcome was polite, warm and sincere from the check in lady who was very bright and bubbly. We had already booked our stay, for my wife daughter and myself, ...

Member advice on Polymyositis 25/01/2006

Sick as a Parrot !

Member advice on Polymyositis Polymyositis (PM) is a weakness and degeneration of the muscles and is a very rare chronic connective tissue disease which can show different signs and symptoms from person to person. It is thought to be an autoimmune disease which can continue to attack the body's own normal and healthy tissues after fighting infections and viruses that have caused swelling, weakness, degeneration and inflammation to the muscles. It is believed that some medicines may trigger autoantibodies and white blood cells in the blood to attack the muscles after a viral infection and leads to degeneration of the muscle. Diagnosis takes several months with plenty of tests, which include physical examinations, biopsies, electromyography and many more. Treatment can vary depending on the individual but Steroids will be given in high doses to begin with and you can be on these for a long time if not indefinitely. If you have Polymyositis the chances of your children being affected is very small. It all started for me in June 2004 with an itch. I had an itchy chest that would not go away with constantly scratching and I soon had a very sore and red chest area. The only relief was to soothe the area with a cloth soaked in iced water. The whole experience lasted approximately 5 hours and I would not of wished this on my enemy. As soon as possible I got to see my Doctor who said I had a severe reaction to something and gave me some cream. Two days later it came back just as bad as the first time and I ...

General: Egypt 12/01/2006

Christmas day on Paradise Island

General: Egypt The first Sofitel hotel was opened in Strasbourg, France in 1964. Now Sofitel, part of the hotel brand of Accor, has 180 hotels in 53 countries around the world. They employ approximately 12,500 people in different countries around the world. The one that I am going to review is the one in Hurghada, Egypt and it is built on forty hectares in the Arabian desert and has the luxury of its own private beach by the very clear and lively Red Sea. It is 450 kms south of Cairo and 280 kms north of Luxor. It has 312 rooms and four villas and we stayed there for two glorious weeks over the Christmas period of 2004 and we loved it, the staff at the hotel were extremely friendly and helpful. We booked to go six months in advance and arranged everything with Portland Direct, who are part of the Thomson holiday giants, and payed for it through their website at The price was around four hundred and sixty pounds each, flying out from Gatwick on a very crisp and cold early Tuesday morning, and this was for bed and breakfast, and it was not much cheaper for our daughter who was eleven at the time, although fair enough it did cover Christmas and this was a bit special. The hotel has: A conference room holding 130 people A children's club (6 - 12 years old) Ten bars Three restaurants An open-air amphitheatre Discotheque Shops include: jewellery, rugs, internet cafe, gift shop, Beauty salon, perfumery, sports and photo processing. Bank Sauna and Turkish ...

Nile cruises 10/01/2006

A Cruise to remember

Nile cruises During one of our holidays to Crocodile Island at Luxor in Egypt we signed up to go on a Nile Cruise with our tour operator, Thomsons. It was for four days and three nights and cost £330 all inclusive this included an outside cabin, (a window cabin), all meals some buffet some a la Carte, our own guide, (English speaking Egyptologist), all the trips and entrance charges to the temples and museums. We were so excited as we had not planned to do a cruise before we came to Egypt, but we were shown a short film and given all the details at our welcome rep meeting when we first arrived. They made the cruise sound so exotic and beautiful and yes they were right it was everything and more. We were advised on what we should wear and that we would need plenty of water as all the trips to the temples and museums would be at the hottest time of the day. Plenty of sun block for my wife and daughter and hats or caps for us all. I'm just thinking now how much has happened over the centuries up and down The Nile the mind wonders at the romance and history of it all, and we were a part of that history, nothing spectacular I know, but still a part. We were told to be up for five o'clock Tuesday morning ready to go on our journey, we had arranged with the hotel, The Movenpick Jolie Ville, to have three packed breakfasts to go and sure enough they were there at reception waiting for us. There was only six of us altogether from our hotel so a mini bus was waiting outside for the start of our ...

Luxor (Egypt) 07/01/2006

Crocodile Island

Luxor (Egypt) Flying out from Gatwick at 10:45 am Wednesday 1st week of May 2005 with Britannia Airways, was my wife, daughter and myself. We booked the whole package 6 months previous through Portland Direct who are part of the Thomson holiday giants. We were off on a really excellent, exotic and truthfully unforgettable 14 day holiday to the 5 Star Jolie Ville Movenpick Hotel on Crocodile Island in Egypt. Situated on a private island, 4 km from Luxor surrounded by the beautiful and clear River Nile. Prices at Portland Direct for the same two weeks Bed and Breakfast in May 2006 are £389 per adult and £327 for first child. Movenpick was founded in 1948 and employs 13,600 people around the world, it is a Swiss Hotel chain with 53 hotels in nineteen countries. The one we are going to was built in the early eighties. The flight was on time and we landed 4hrs 45mins later at Luxor International Airport, as we left the plane that's when we knew we were in sub tropics the heat was in the eighties and it was 6:30pm , we were then promptly hurried from the transfer coach in to the passport control area where we had to queue for a short time at the visa kiosk. They cost us £10 each and the stamps were stuck in our passports and then stamped by one of the officers at passport control, you can get your visa well in advance from the Egyptian Consulate in London website :- but the cost will be £15 each, we then made our way to the luggage reclaim carousel ...
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