Here I am, Readers, staying Very Alert and helping to stop the spread of coronavirus. You will notice that I pulled one of the garden sofa cushions into position, so that it supported my head. It has been an exhausting day and I really needed a long lie down this afternoon.
Last night I stayed up late to stand in the garden with She and Young Lad to see if we could spot the SpaceX rocket as it passed over us. Many people were heard to say doubtfully “is THAT it?” soon after 10pm, as they squinted up into the dark sky and tried to differentiate between stars, planes and space rockets. The first difficulty for my family was working out where South-West might be, as this was supposedly the best place to see the rocket – there was some discussion and pointing in a variety of directions until it was decided that the vague area of the river might be south-west. Young Lad was convinced that the light moving very high up in the sky over the river was DEFINITELY the space rocket, but She said it looked exactly the same as the other lights moving round the sky. Young Lad was not to be put off, and felt he could see an orange tinge to it, which would be the flames. Yes, I felt this was pushing things, too.
Eventually I tired of all this and went back indoors, and up to bed.
This morning I was dragged out far too early for my walk – the days have been very warm recently and so we have to go at 7.30am before it gets too hot for me. Nobody bothers to check whether I actually want to go and to be honest, I like going back to bed after breakfast and my comfort break in the garden – I resent being pulled off the bed and my lead being attached. Still, it was a lovely walk and we headed up into the bluebell woods (the bluebells are dead now, so they’re just the woods), through the field and down to the lake. I had a nice paddle and drink, to cool down, but was called away rather sharply as She spotted a dead fish by the lake and I have been known to roll in dead fish, especially when they’re beginning to decompose. There is no smell like it. So yet another pleasure was denied me and I didn’t roll in anything today. I did eat a lot of rabbit droppings though.
Once we got back down to the river it was like Piccadilly Circus, despite the early hour of a Sunday morning, and we had to wait ages by the bridge to be able to cross with any semblance of social distance. Bikes, dogs, pushchairs…. but people are terribly polite and upbeat these days, Friends, and everyone smiles and says, “thank you” when I’ve stood there waiting for half an hour.
She said something similar yesterday – about how people are very happy in the long queues for everything in these strange times, and nobody moans. Yesterday She popped out to another town to meet a dear friend, for a socially distanced coffee – there were no coffee shops open, of course, but an enterprising street vendor had opened up a sort of pop-up artisan coffee bar which is completely legal. When She saw the queue for the artisan coffee bar – there were at least ten people ahead of them – She said, “oh look, it’s only a little queue!” and stood there very happily indeed, 2 metres away from everyone, to wait her turn. Readers, in life before Covid19, I cannot imagine a scenario in which being eleventh in a queue for anything was considered acceptable and really quite fun.
Alas, Friends, there are no public toilets open anywhere at the moment and so people of a certain age find this a trifle difficult, after one cup of artisan coffee. After some futile walking around asking balefully if anyone knew where there was a toilet, defeat had to be admitted and legs crossed on the drive home.
Lad and Young Lad have been doing forced manual labour again this week, and during one particularly industrious afternoon, Young Lad was painting the back gate whilst Lad was weeding the front garden. This looked the picture of domestic bonhomie, but in actual fact they were supposed to be doing one task, together – but had argued so much about who would paint the top and the bottom of the gate, that separate tasks had to be allocated. I made the mistake of barking at a noise I heard and was told to “BE QUIET DON’T YOU BLDY START/THE KIDS HAVE ONLY JUST SHUT UP…. and so on and so forth.
As the weather has been so good, lunch has been eaten in the garden quite often which gives us a nice feeling of being on holiday, if that’s possible with piles of washing hanging on the line and bags of recycling stacked up. Today was no different, and Lad started an interesting dinner table conversation with Young Lad about the Moon Landing conspiracy theory. Lad does enjoy a conspiracy theory and was trying to explain all about Area 51 and such like. Young Lad was not convinced and the discussion moved on to which of them could swim the English Channel. I couldn’t see a connection either, Friends, but that is often the case here. Clearly neither of them could swim the English Channel so it was a pointless conversation but they managed to drag it out for quite a while. Every so often Lad said “are you going to eat those sausages?” to Young Lad, and it was very obvious that Lad was hungry and wanted them, but Young Lad said he did want them, he was just eating slowly and having interesting conversations. After the tenth time of asking whether he was going to eat those sausages, She said “oh for heaven’s sake give him one of your sausages to shut him up,” which was impolite and not good parenting.
The thing is, I had been asking Young Lad for one of his sausages too, but nobody gave ME one.
Well, let’s see what the first week of June and Easing Of Lockdown brings, Readers. It will be fun here, as She is working full time so Lad, Young Lad and I have the place to ourselves (plus Gingercat but he doesn’t really count). There will be text messages all day about Cleaning The Kitchen, Do Your Home Learning and possibly even EAT SOME FRUIT – but we will ignore most of these and have a jolly nice time.
I do hope you are keeping well and Alert, Friends, in these difficult times – please be reassured that I am bearing up well, considering.
See you soon,