Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘family’

I really really need to finish working soon…..I woke up this morning straight into a full-blown panic attack. Scary. I struggled to breathe and my heart felt like it was going to jump out my chest. I’m not sure why!! Is it because I’m beginning to feel really closed in (despite being able to get out for walks), or is it my underlying stress of travelling next week? I don’t know. Or is it because the true reality that life post-lockdown is never ever going to be the same again, is starting to sink in.

Frankly, I’m really glad the planet is getting a chance to recover, that pollution levels are down, and the skies, rivers and seas are benefiting from less traffic, and animals are enjoying the freedom of less humans. But it’s the underlying fear of being in contact with ‘other’ people who may or may not have been exposed to the virus, the fear of inadvertently coming into contact with a smidgen of the virus left by someone else on a bus rail, supermarket trolley, underground escalators and so on. My grandson, although he doesn’t know it yet, is going to grow up in a world where hugging and playing with his school mates is going to be fraught with anxiety, a world where he will be wearing a mask….the most sinister aspect of this whole scenario (besides the virus itself), the worry of hugging my daughter and son-in-law when I visit – the inherent possibility of inadvertently passing the virus on, of entering someone else’s house….are they as hygienic as what I am? Do we still hug family when we see them again? Do we allow anyone to kiss us…even on the cheek? Being tactile could be the death of them or me!! Fortunately I’m not a very sociable person anyway and seldom go to places of high-density gatherings anymore, but there are still times when BC-19 we could just freely and easily mingle….especially the many wonderful London events I used to attend. Will all the amazing historical events go by the board? The annual traditional events around the country? Will I ever get on a plane again? All of these thoughts jumble around in my head…day after day. I leave here next week. I know I’ve been absolutely militant about keeping the house as uncontaminated as I possibly can (even upsetting the district nurses as I’ve said before), but I’ve got to work again…a new client, at new premises….has that environment been kept sterile? And then there’s the fortnightly travel from ‘home’ to work. I feel like just decamping to a remote island ๐Ÿ˜œ๐Ÿ˜œ๐Ÿ˜œ

The fact that the UK’s death toll is now the highest in Europe doesn’t help either. And I’m not even sure we can trust that the government is giving us the full picture. They did a sneaky job of not reporting the care home deaths in the first few weeks, leading us to believe its less than it was….I’d rather it was less, much less, but to under report the true situation is just dishonest.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/uk-coronavirus-death-toll-highest-europe-cases-covid-19-italy-spain-a9499181.html?utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Facebook#Echobox=1588669521

After all the misinformation and inconsistencies he has made so far in relation to the true number of deaths (under-reported) and the correct number of tests done by 30th April (over-stated), I for one will treat this statement with the suspicion it deserves: “Health Secretary Matt Hancock said there is “high privacy” in the coronavirus contact-tracing app.” So no go app… https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/breaking-uk-now-highest-coronavirus-21975258

I won’t be downloading it. I simply do not trust anything they say, anymore.

Anyway……

I didn’t go out today, decided to have a sleep instead….either read or sleep in times of trouble ๐Ÿ˜œ๐Ÿ˜œ and afterwards I had a marvellous facetime call with my little family again….my grandson, albeit only 15 months old, is very astute. Normally either my daughter or son-in-law will give me a call and the boo will be with them or running around….but today Mummy was in the bath when she called and added Daddy and the boo to the call….he found it absolutely hilarious that he could see her in the bath and on the phone…..he immediately picked up the absurdity of the situation and went into gales of laughter. At one stage he closed the door between himself and the bathroom as if to say “I’m not getting involved in this silliness “. He’s such a divine child. We laughed so much at his reaction.

I’ve been watching the BBC1 programme ‘Life and Birth’ ๐Ÿฅฐ๐Ÿฅฐ๐Ÿฅฐ its so extraordinary watching those babies being born, I cry each and every time. It truly is a miracle. Each time I see that little life come into the world, I’m reminded of the extraordinary day my grandson was born….being there to watch him make his way into the world, was an experience beyond all others. Truly we are blessed.

And that’s it really…a relatively quiet day…..cooking, cleaning, preparing cups of coffee and….et al. I love routine, but its beginning to wear on me now….5.5 days…

As a matter of interest, if you have the time, I’d be interested to know whether or not you would download this new app they’re talking about?

Take care folks and be safe.

Read Full Post »

Okay so perhaps the term should be changed from lockdown to lockup…

Okayyyyyy. Time to call the men in white coats. 1 slice toastโ€ฆ.half marmite, half marmalade. So eating the first halfโ€ฆexpecting marmalade, but kept thinking hmmm it tastes so much like marmite? Had a closer lookโ€ฆseems I smothered the marmite half with marmalade ๐Ÿคช๐Ÿคช๐Ÿคช we had a place in South Africa called Taraโ€ฆ.if you’re looking for me, that’s where I am ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿค”๐Ÿค”๐Ÿค”

Happy 100th Birthday Captain Tom ๐ŸŽˆ

It’s so cool the the Post Office has recognised Capt. Tom with his own blue post box. Reminds me of the Olympic 2012 gold post boxes…I hope he gets out to see it.

“We are celebrating Captain Thomas Mooreโ€™s 100th birthday with a special postbox in honour of his incredible efforts to raise money for the NHS. The postbox is painted โ€˜NHS blueโ€™ and includes a golden balloon and birthday greetings in honour of Captain Tomโ€™s 100th birthday. The special postbox is located on Bedford Road, MK43 0LA in Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire close to where Captain Tom lives.”

Although it was quite overcast and misty today, I pushed myself out the door and went for a lovely walk around the village…I decided that since all the country paths would likely be a muddy quagmire after the rain…I’d walk around the village and along every street, road and close on the east side…I can say for sure, some people are definitely not in the same boat…crikey some of the houses ๐Ÿ˜ฎ๐Ÿ˜ฎ๐Ÿ˜ฎ and they have the audacity to include the word ‘cottage’ in the name….๐Ÿคช๐Ÿคช I didn’t photograph the houses, but I did capture some colourful flowers….can you imagine such colours and just how tiny some petals are. I loved the caterpillar face. I got in just over 3ย  kms and that makes me a ‘trail blazer’ on the Hadrian’s Wall challenge๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

The tone of the Covid-19 stories are starting to become more accusatory. Started off with the general tone of confusion and dismay, then informative and riven with horror as the number of deaths and infections escalated, and now…slowly they’re becoming increasingly questioning and accusatory…. Covid-19 has laid bare the longterm failure of our collective governments to build a secure economy and future that is fair for everyone.

Two sides of the same coin…different headlines, different stories….same difference….look at who our countries are run by!!

When Covid hit, the United States was also among the vulnerable, and the virus has exposed so many of its long-term ailments – its income disparities, racial inequality, democratic sickliness, inoperative government, toxic polarisation, decline of reason, the downgrading of science, the lessening of its global influence, the absence of global leadership.

Britain has not been exceptional in much, except in its refusal to inform and debate with the public over lockdown. It has behaved like an old-fashioned centralist bureaucracy, with ministers and officials mouthing slogans and giving orders. What is the matter with the government? Why canโ€™t we sit on a bench?”

And on the subject of PPE – I do hope that there will one day be a time of reckoning – I will sign every single petition that calls for a public enquiry .

Ending on a more positive note – how cute is this : helping hedgehogs.

Again today we caught up on facetime and it was a party…I finally figured out how to capture a screenshot…so here’s the blur kissing Mummy

Now to sort out my expression ๐Ÿคช๐Ÿคช

Take care folks. There’s talk of UK schools opening on 1st June. Way too soon in my humble opinion, and from the comments on Facebook, many parents feel exactly the same. The 2020 school year should just be written off…let the schools open on 1st September and start over. All that’s going to happen is an increase in stress, fear and unhappiness….and children who are already emotionally affected by the whole situation are now going to be pushed to catch up, causing even more stress. Its mad.

Read Full Post »

So this is what Lent feels like…I haven’t had physical contact with a single person for 40 nights and 40 days. May as well live in the desert…

I suddenly realized today that I haven’t had any physical contact with anyone since 22nd March when I said goodbye to my daughter….its bizarre. I’m quite a tactile person and even when I was walking the Camino on my own in 2017, I still had loads of hugs from fellow pilgrims, albergue owners and sometimes just a fist bump with a random stranger.

Much as I’m really glad the earth is getting a chance to heal, I’ll be glad when lockdown is over, although I suspect that hugging and fist bumps will no longer be on the agenda. How awful its going to be, to be afraid of hugs. ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ

I just hope that we won’t lose much enjoyed hugs between family. Talking of family I had a delightful facetime with my daughter and grandson today. Gosh he’s adorable. I was talking to him and blowing him kisses, so he took the phone away from his Mummy and walked around kissing my face ๐Ÿฅฐ๐Ÿฅฐ๐Ÿฅฐ๐Ÿ’™๐Ÿ‘ถ๐Ÿป oh my gosh it was so cute. All I could see was his forehead and the adorable curl on his head…my daughter was beside herself with laughter…he’s a real charm.

My days in Nether Stowey are numbered now, only 9 to go and I’m off….although of course, all being well I’ll be back in July. Weirdly I’ve been quite happy here and although I’m desperate to see my family, and I’m really quite tired now (and sick of meal planning ๐Ÿคช๐Ÿคช), I’m quite sad to go. It’s a lovely area and once we got past the initial issues, I’ve gotten on quite well with my client. I am not looking forward to the journey though. Its going to be long…I just hope there will be trains ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿค”๐Ÿค”

I’ve started a new book; The Pure in Heart – Susan Hill….one of my favourite authors. So this will be the 9th book I’ve read since being in lockdown.

Had a lovely long walk today; 5.4 kms. I just felt like I really needed to stretch my legs, and the area is so beautiful its hard to resist…although of course I have done quite a lot of that ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

My sister mentioned that the SA government has now started on phase 4 ; a lifting of the lockdown is in progress…means they can now actually go out for a very short walk. It all seems very organized and puts our shambolic government to shame

To see how the number of deaths is mounting is quite terrifying, and seeing how the government is putting a spin on everything is disgusting. I’m so sick of their dishonesty. Even one of the most fundamental issues of getting a grip on this virus; testing, has had their warped spin applied

https://www.hsj.co.uk/quality-and-performance/revealed-how-government-changed-the-rules-to-hit-100000-tests-target/7027544.article#.Xqw3EoFpNi4.facebook

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/may/01/ministers-accused-of-changing-covid-19-test-tally-to-hit-100000-goal

I truly hope there will be a public enquiry and that certain members of the party will….I’d like to say hang, but I guess that’s a bit harsh…however if you consider the number of people who have died due to their incompetence…well…perhaps drawn and quartered might suffice.

Piers Morgan wrote a very accurate piece on the Covid-19 timeline and how the Tory government seriously missed so many red flags….while our emperor was cavorting with his latest piece of fluff, Rome, so to speak was burning….or in this case the UK. And now we have the 2nd highest number of deaths in the world, the most shambolic distribution of PPE and a bunch of bald-faced liars who pump up the numbers to make it look as if they’re being ‘successful’. The day of reckoning will come. https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8275365/PIERS-MORGAN-Boris-boast-wants-death-toll-tells-real-story.html?ito=facebook_share_article-bottom

I’m not (usually) a Daily Mail reader and I’m not actually a fan of Piers Morgan, but by golly he’s hit the nail on the head.

And do another day goes by…who knows what the future might hold. With all the saber-rattling going on in the White House, I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw nuclear warheads flying overhead between Beijing and Washington one of these days.

Stay safe folks…

Read Full Post »

So today we had my ‘virtual’ birthday tea and cake. My daughter and her hubby and son joined me on WhatsApp facetime with their tea and chocolate cake and I had all the essentials for a party during a pandemic lockdown

The cake was bigger 2 days ago ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚
Social distancing

Even though the network reception was dastardly as usual, it was a fun time…we’ll get to do the party for real when I visit in May. ๐ŸŽŠ๐ŸŽ‰๐Ÿฅ‚๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽ‚

This has probably been the most amazing spring that I can recall in the UK for the last 18 years….Being in lockdown has curtailed my walking explorations to 1 mile from home,ย  but it hasn’t curtailed the prevalence of subjects for photos…โ˜บ๏ธโ˜บ๏ธโ˜บ๏ธย 

In a way, because I’m not trying to cover as much ground as possible within my allotted 2 hour break, and taking my walks at a slower pace, its given me the opportunity to observe my environment at a more leisurely pace and notice the plethora of beautiful flowers on my routes. And that’s the long-winded way of saying I’ve seen a lot of beautiful flowers on my walks ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜Š Here’s a short video

Spring 2020

Watched a programme on BBC2 this morning. The industrial revolution and the Victorians may be lauded as so ‘progressive’ but the reality is that the Victorians were terribly destructive, especially in the ‘colonies’ and industry has destroyed the planet….and the animals have suffered the most. There’s no such thing as man’kind’….of course there are many people doing wonderful things with love and caring and compassion and they don’t get the credit they deserve, but ‘mankind’ is a misnomer.  Humans are so terribly destructive. Yes, we’ve built amazing buildings and constructed incredible cities and technology has made our lives better (worse) and science has made some incredible progress, but it has all been at the expense of nature and the natural world. Our demand for cheaper, and more and better is destroying the planet. The Victorians killed thousands upon thousands of tigers in their quest for land, destroying the tropical forests in their wake…and we’re still doing the same thing today…in the name of progress.  We are a stain on this planet, the ultimate virus.

Oh and the ultimate ‘moron in chief’, that orange swamp thing across the pond…has suggested that you can get rid of the virus by drinking disinfectant ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿคฌ๐Ÿคฌ๐Ÿคฌ

There you go donny, take a nice deep breath

I truly cannot understand the mindset that elected that ….I don’t even know what adjective would suit him best…but what I really cannot comprehend, is that seemingly intelligent people are prepared to stand by and say nothing while he spouts his own brand of insanity…they are complicit…..power hungry, soulless individuals….

I went for a lovely walk this evening to the top of the mound…hoping to see the most recent of the Starlink satellites; SpaceX…..but unfortunately there was too much cloud cover and the sky too light to be able to see them. As for the clouds…there’s a cold front moving in and it was a lot chillier than yesterday….still beautiful though.

And on that cheerful note I shall bid you goodnight. I can’t quite believe that I am actually still blogging, and that we are still in lockdown.

Oh yes, one last thing…..I saw this in The Times newspaper today…finally a use for the skeletal pencil ๐Ÿคจ๐Ÿคจ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿค”

Not much use for anything else…

Read Full Post »

Goodness me….day 31. I never in my life ever imagined such a thing would happen ….although we can still go out for exercise etc, it still feels totally surreal.

Went outside forย  the 8pm to clap for carers and saw something I haven’t seen for quite some time….contrails. a plane!! I can’t recall seeing a plane for weeks now so was quite surprised to see this. I just read this article and I think we areย  certainly for the foreseeable future, going to see less planes than we are used to.


https://www.traveller.com.au/travel-and-covid19-say-goodbye-to-economy-class-as-the-golden-era-of-cheap-travel-is-declared-over-h1nkai

I got into a bit of a spat a few days ago about Richard Branson wanting a bailout….and of course I complained bitterly, especially considering he’s a billionaire…so today a friend of mine sent me this ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘ the website is fake btw….

Brilliant ๐Ÿคช๐Ÿคช๐Ÿคช

So today was my 65th birthday!! ๐ŸŽ‚๐ŸŽŠ๐ŸŽ‰ and I am so surprised that I got this far ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ I’ve decided that in honour of this milestone I should keep a diary….so let’s see…I’m not very good at keeping a diary, but you never know…..

They my daughter and family, sent me a delightful box of decorative biscuits from biscuiteers…almost too good to eat

So pretty
Gorgeous tulips from the lady who does our shopping.

I got to chat to my daughter and grandson this morning and we had planned a virtual afternoon tea and cake via facetime, but the wee cherub fell in down the outside stairs and gashed his head….so instead they dashed off to A&E to get him checked over. So perhaps tomorrow…

A virtual birthday
Awwww ๐Ÿ˜ฅ๐Ÿ˜ฅ๐Ÿ˜ฅ๐Ÿ˜ฅ๐Ÿ’™๐Ÿ‘ถ๐Ÿป

Other than that, a quiet day….had a snooze during my break and caught up with my paperwork, did my chores and that was it really.

Read Full Post »

Well, here we are….day 28 of lockdown. What a surreal 4 weeks this had been. I don’t even know what to think anymore.

I’ve pretty much given up watching the news because it infuriates me beyond measure. I simply can’t watch them trotting out the same excuses anymore.

I read an article in the Sunday Times shared by a friend, and truly the list of failures is appalling. I know Bozo considers himself to be something of a Churchill reincarnation, but truly, beyond both being racist….at least Churchill was decisive.

Johnson should have stuck to either writing witty articles for the papers, or continued his career as a travel presenter. His ‘finest hour’ came and went with the 2012 Olympics… He sure as hell is not a leader. Like the orange swamp thing across the pond he talks in sound bites….although we should be thankful we can at least understand what our clown says….

Talking of across the pond….it takes a serious level of stupid to behave the way those idiot protesters are behaving. One can only hope that Darwin’s theory is correct and nature will seek out the stupid….

For some weird reason, today just flew by…..I wasn’t particularly busy and I didn’t do anything out of the ordinary, but suddenly it was 9pm….I seem to have hit the jackpot lately with my client’s meals…she’s eaten just about everything on her plate the last 2 days. Its really gratifying when the people I cook for enjoy their meals, so its been nice to see a clean plate. I also hate waste and throwing food in the bin is anathema to me. Albeit into composting, its still a waste.

Unfortunately my brother-in-law is back in hospital with further chest pains, which apparently he is not meant to be having after they inserted the stent, so that’s a huge worry. I’m concerned for my sister…they’ve been married for decades and have been joined at the hip since they met….so this is particularly stressful for her. I had a look see for flights to SA in the event I need to go, but the UK is listed as a ‘high risk’ country and citizens are banned from entering the country…at least for now.

The irony of a 3rd world country considering a 1st world country as a health risk has not escaped me….

Shoe is on the other foot….

Its extraordinary to me that to date they have only had 58 deaths

https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/south-africa/

I remember my scepticism when Ramaphosa put the country into lockdown….I’ve had occasion to eat my words. For such a poor country, and with so many millions living in close proximity to each other,social distancing is like as wishful thought…but he acted decisively, he acted fast and there was no mucking about with going out for exercise or walking the dog….it was Stay at Home or else….draconian perhaps but its worked. They’ve been on lockdown for almost the same length of time as the UK and yet their death rate is so much lower it doesn’t even warrant a percentage. “South Africaโ€™s lockdown was imposed before a single death had been recorded and has been ruthlessly enforced by the authorities ever since”.

However its not all rosy in the country and they’re experiencing severe food shortages and rioting…

Besides which the projections for Africa as a whole are not good. The worst is yet to come.

Anyhow, that’s me for today…I’m off to bed now. I had a restless night last night, so hoping I don’t have a repeat. As I’m lying here it’s so quiet out that I can hear a tanker hooting in the Bristol Channel….oh and I haven’t seen any shooting stars yet…I live in hope ๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿค”

Take care folks. I’ll post the Sunday Times article right after I’ve posted this in the event you’re keen to read it. Be safe…..wherever you are in the world.

Read Full Post »

Lovely sunrise this morning. Twas a beautiful day in Somerset although as the morning has gone on, so more clouds are building up. That rain they were talking about perhaps…

“With the new day comes new strength and thoughts”. Eleanor Roosevelt

I popped out to the store as usual just to get more milk and bread. My client goes through lots of milk each day and I’m concerned we’re going to run out. Especially after seeing this posted in the walk 1000 miles group this morning:

Not sure how accurate it is, but considering the pattern of infection in other countries it makes sense. So far we haven’t had any cases (that I’ve heard of) in our neck of the woods, the closest being Taunton. But this thing travels fast, so…

This is a text from an NHS worker

“As of tomorrow, do not leave home for bread for anything! Because the worst begins tomorrow as the incubation date is met and many people that are positive with the virus start to peak!! Itโ€™s at this time other people are most vulnerable! so it is very important to stay home and not to be in contact with anybody, even members of your family if possible!! Being very careful is very important and very crucial at this time!!

As from tomorrow we are going to see the start of the peak of those that are positive, then there will be two weeks of calm and then two weeks where it decreases.

  • What happened in Italy is that they neglected the contagion period and that is why all the cases turned out together and so badly, plus they didnโ€™t know what they were dealing with *.
  • And finally, please do not receive visits from anyone, not even from the same family. This is all for the good of all. * WE WILL BE IN THE MAXIMUM STAGE OF INFECTION.
  • DO NOT HOLD ON TO THIS MESSAGE, PASS IT ON TO ALL YOUR CONTACTS *

So forewarned is forewarned/ and better safe than sorry…

Isn’t it ironic that the very people who are meant to be leading the country during this time have tested positive and have clearly NOT been following their own advice.

To avoid watching any further depressing news I’ve been watching Call the Midwife….so much more palatable.

My daughter has given me permission to share the WhatsApp image she captured yesterday during our grandparents call. The wonders of technology

My lovely family ๐Ÿฅฐ๐Ÿฅฐ๐Ÿ’™๐Ÿ‘ถ๐Ÿป

I had a spot of luck this morning…on my way back from the store I happened to notice a box of stuff on the bench near the clock tower. Looking closer I saw a note from a local farm; Inwood Farm, saying to please help ourselves to the items..free in order to not waste. I took a few boxes of chocolates and 2 boxes of biscuits and one packet of tortilla wraps. How lucky is that. There were quite a lot of items so I hope other people also got to share in the windfall.

All I wanted to do was sleep this afternoon after a bout of wakefulness in the early hours, but I forced myself to go out for a walk since if indeed the virus infections are going to peak next week, we may go into total lockdown and be unable to get out. So making the most of it. I managed 2.4 kms… This area is so gorgeous

Nether Stowey Castle from across the road

I followed part of my usual route and then crossed the road and climbed to the top of the next hill. This is reminding me more and more of the Camino ๐Ÿคช๐Ÿคช It was very cloudy, windy and cold up there but oh, the views…with a fantastic view of the castle. From that elevation, 140.3 metres I could see Steep Holme Island in the Bridtol Channel. Stunning.

Nether Stowey Castle

The steps leading up to the field reminded me of Box Hill and the fall I had that put an end to my pilgrimage in 2018.

Steps

I’ve just finished reading a brilliant book: The Mermaids Singing by Val McDermid, one of my favourite authors. It’s the first book where she introduces Tony Hill and Carol Jordan of Wire in the Blood TV series. Now I’ll have to follow the editions and reread some of the later books I’ve already read.

Altogether a good day.

Hope you all had a fab day and are taking steps to remain safe. I suspect things are going to ramp up quite a lot over the next couple of weeks so please observe the protocol for keeping safe and try to not get the virus.

The very best to you all

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

A Polish odyssey and other stories

The all too infrequent adventures of an Englishman in Poland and, as it says, other stories...

The Art of Blogging

For bloggers who aspire to inspire

ExploreOurWorld

Travel, Adventure and Exploration

The Partying Traveler

Survival of the Littest

retiredmartin

On permanent exploration of places, pubs, people and new music.

Ruth's Coastal Walk (UK)

Coastalwalker.co.uk - walking around the British coastline, very SLOWLY.

Raising My Rainbow

Adventures in raising a fabulously gender creative son.

A Guy Called Bloke

Storytelling My Life For You!

the traveller's path

The blog of L.A. Smith, writer