Easter Monday, April 13th
A rare sunny Bank Holiday: today would have been perfect for going to the Lakes, or Blackpool, or one of the National Trust or English Heritage properties. Oh well! Thank goodness for Heaton Park! And, whilst I was on my way to the park, I saw a Sikh family taking photos in their front garden, dressed up in traditional white robes, with orange turbans and shawls for Vaisakhi, which is today. That was lovely. Then, when I got to the park, the peacocks from the farm centre had flown up to the top of the wall. They must wonder where all their visitors have gone! I went to a part of the park I haven’t been to for years – decades, in fact! – today, the Dell Gardens. We used to walk through there on “nature walks” when we were in the infants! I’m going back there tomorrow.
I don’t know when this is all going to end. Spain and Italy are talking about easing lockdown restrictions, but we’re a few weeks behind them. The death figures are still horrendous – and they don’t even include deaths in care homes. And so many different industries are calling for bailouts, and I sympathise with all of them, but I don’t know where the money’s supposed to come from. There’s one thing I can do to help, anyway – I’ve booked a blood donation appointment, I was due to go on Saturday, but the local session was cancelled. However, the main centre in town’s open, and blood donation counts as essential travel. I’ve also ordered some face masks from Amazon (one washable and some disposable) : some countries are making it compulsory to wear them, and it may well eventually happen here too.
I posted my fanfic today. No-one said it was inappropriate, and some people have posted very nice comments, so I’m glad that I went ahead with it.
Tuesday, April 14th
On my way to the park today, I saw a hearse going down the road – no funeral cars, just a hearse. This is one of the worst things about the current situation: people can’t even attend loved ones’ funerals. My cousin who makes professional videos is organising live-streaming of funerals for free, which is brilliant of him.
Earlier, I’d had to queue for 20 minutes to get into Tesco, even though I went early. At least it was dry and sunny!
I’m getting rather stressed about my hair. I haven’t got the nerve to cut it myself, or even to dye itself – I keep thinking about Anne Shirley dyeing hers green! – but I can’t just leave it indefinitely. Hmm.
On a more cheerful note, I’ve now got the Now ’80s channel on during the day, rather than any of the news channels. I’m loving having ’80s music on. I may even have got up to dance to a few old faves 🙂 . And I’ve started walking up and down the steps in the garden – 20 times each session. It’s not quite the same as going to the gym, but it’s something! Speaking of ’80s music, though, the Pet Shop Boys concert I was going to at the end of May’s been rescheduled for next year. As with everything else that’s been cancelled/postponed, I knew it was coming, but it’s still disappointing. Everything people were looking forward to over the next few months, all the holidays and little treats, is being taken away. But I do like this Now ’80s channel.
Wednesday, April 15th
A big envelope addressed in my sister’s handwriting came today. Inside it was a picture of a rainbow, done by my nephews, for me to put in one my front windows. Oh bless! A lot of kids are drawing rainbow pictures to display on windows. I’m really chuffed with it!
And there’ve been some new arrivals at the park – the ducks in the pond near the farm centre (I’m not sure why some ducks live there rather than in the lake!) have had ducklings! So cute 🙂 . Life goes on …
My £75 shopping gift voucher (for changing insurance companies earlier in the year) arrived today. Valid at a load of High Street shops. A lot of use that is at the moment!! I’ll have to see which of them’ll accept it on line.
Lockdown in Northern Ireland’s been extended until May 9th. The same thing’s going to happen in the rest of the UK: I don’t know why they don’t just say so. Everyone accepts that it’s coming.
Thursday, April 15th
This morning, I watched (live on BBC 1) Captain Tom Moore, a 99-year-old Second World War veteran, complete 100 laps of his garden … which has raised over £15 million for the NHS! His original idea was to raise £1,000 by doing the 100 laps before his forthcoming 100th birthday, but the whole thing’s gone viral, and now he’s a national hero! He’s in the news on other countries as well. So many people were trying to donate that the Just Giving website went down, although I did manage to get on it this evening. 99 years old. “Captain Tom” – the nation’s new superhero!
UEFA are talking about the season ending in August. I wish! They’re being very dictatorial, saying that countries where seasons aren’t finished could lose their Champions League and Europa League places. Control freaks are not coping well with lockdown … there was an unpleasant work-related incident (by e-mail) today, which better hadn’t been repeated.
The washable mask came. It was made in Burnley, so I’m supporting the historical Lancashire textile industry 🙂 . I took a selfie of myself wearing it, and sent it round the family WhatsApp group. Mum said I looked like a gangster!
Saw my brother-in-law’s dad whilst out for my walk today. I see someone I know pretty much every day. It’s OK (maybe not by the letter of the rules, but it’s not hurting anyone) to stop for a quick chat, as long as you stay 6 ft apart.
Then this evening was “Clap for our carers”. And lockdown’s been extended for another three weeks. It’s not even that newsworthy, because we knew it was coming!
Friday, April 17th
The Duchess of Cornwall opened the G-Mex Nightingale Hospital today, by video link. I was trying to see what the books on the shelves behind her were! “In creating this Nightingale hospital, you have truly brought light to a dark time. But this is not surprising. Manchester is a past master at bringing light to dark times.” It’s amazing how quickly these hospitals have been made ready … just so sad that they’re needed. The NHS are coping brilliantly, though. We feared that hospitals would be overwhelmed, but it hasn’t happened.
Virus-related hospital admissions are dropping, but the daily death figures are still very high. Spain and Italy are still suffering badly too, as are Belgium and the Netherlands, and the situation in New York City’s horrendous. When will this ever end?
Quite windy today. The wind was blowing the blossom off the trees in the park. It’s a shame, because once it’s gone, it’s gone, but the carpet of blossom petals on the ground, beneath the trees, looked absolutely amazing.
Norman “Bite Yer Legs” Hunter died with coronavirus today, aged 76. Sad news.
I’ve sent a 100th birthday card to Captain Tom Moore! So have tens of thousands of other people!
And tonight’s episode of Emmerdale showed Sam and Lydia’s wedding. Such a nice, happy episode – a loving couple getting married in front of all their family and friends, and then a party afterwards. When will we be able to have celebrations like that again? It’s so hard to plan anything at the moment. Strange times.
Saturday, April 18th
I’ve now lost over half a stone since lockdown started. Most people are saying that they’ve put on weight, but having the chance to go on long walks every day is doing me good … and I’m binge-eating/comfort-eating far less now that I’m not going to the office, which might make an interesting psychological study for someone.
Saturday is “#Sconesinthegarden” day, and, this week, I photographed the tea and scone by one of the lavender bushes!
I went to the park mid-afternoon today, because it rained a bit late morning/early afternoon. The sun’ll be back tomorrow, though. I’ve never known such a long spell of good weather in April.
I have acquired some “roots touch-up” spray. I just haven’t found the courage to use it yet!
Sunday, April 19th
Oh FFS. First it was the toilet flush, now it’s the toilet seat! The lid suddenly just cracked. OK, it only cost £12, and that was a few years ago, but did it have to choose now to break? I think B&Q might actually be open, but it seemed better to order one from Amazon. Unfortunately, most toilet seats are now “top-fixing”, and mine’s “bottom-fixing”, so there wasn’t much choice, but I found one in the end. I hope it’s not too hard to fix: it’s hard to tell just from a picture.
A helicopter flew over a few times today. Not sure whether it was delivering stuff for hospitals or on RAF manoeuvres. Seeing aircraft go over used to be commonplace until a month ago: now, it’s a novelty!
As well as going for my walk, I’ve caught up on some reading and film-watching, and ordered some more photos. And opened my second Easter egg. Well, it is Orthodox Easter today!
And I do wish certain elements of the media would STFU. Yes, OK, if we could turn the clock back then maybe we’d do things differently, but we can’t. You do what you think’s best at the time. Mistakes have been made, both here and in other countries, but we can’t change that now: we’ve got to deal with the situation as it is now. As for some of the politically-motivated things that have been posted on social media, they beggar belief. I’m just trying to ignore them. We all need to work together. Pointing out mistakes in the hope of making positive changes to how things are being dealt with is one thing. Political point-scoring is another. And some of it’s just utter crap. Best ignored!
And, whilst I’m ranting, some git’s dumped three mattresses, a broken vacuum cleaner and a load of other stuff in the little bit of woodland round the corner. I know it’s annoying that the tips are closed and the public bins are sealed up, but that does not make fly-tipping OK. It’s becoming a problem in a lot of places. Gah! OK, enough ranting now /rant.
And so endeth another week in lockdown!