Monday, July 6th
What a difference it makes when the sun’s out! It was lovely in the park when I went for my walk. The cafes were busy, and people were sitting at the tables. And the boats on the lake are running again. Please, weather, stay nice! The economy needs it. And it makes people feel better.
Dad managed to knock his hearing aid out whilst putting his mask on before going into the bank! Fortunately, some kind passers-by stopped to help him look for it, and one of them found it. People with glasses are having trouble with mask loops as well.
Financial assistance for the arts sector’s been announced, but who knows when theatres will be able to reopen? And now Pret A Manger’s announced branch closures and job cuts. And the virus news from America, India, Serbia and Israel’s grim. When will this ever end?!
Tuesday, July 7th
Today has not been a good day.
- It has rained all day. Next week will probably be glorious, because it’s the week I’m not going away (having decided to wait until August, when it’s bound to rain!).
- The café I went to on Sunday’s sent me a thank you message, which is lovely, but does suggest that they got very few customers. There are so many eating places and so many hotels in town – how can they all survive under these circumstances? And a few pubs which only reopened on Saturday have already had to close after customers tested positive for the bloody virus.
- I couldn’t get going today – went to Tesco, M&S and Iceland, and to the park, and going to the frozen yoghurt shop soon (in the rain), but have eaten way too much and done very little work!
- Can’t make any progress with the holiday company as the person I’ve been dealing with – who is very nice – is off until Thursday.
- A very nice local restaurant is now doing deliveries. So I thought I’d try it. But they won’t take orders under £30. That’s the cost of two average main courses. So a person living on their own is effectively excluded, unless they’re exceptionally greedy.
- Millions of people in Melbourne have been put back into lockdown for 6 weeks. 6 weeks!!
- Rafa’s said he’ll play Madrid, which strongly suggests that he doesn’t plan to play the US Open. Given both the coronavirus situation and the problems of switching from hard courts to clay courts so quickly, it’s quite understandable, but … bleurgh.
Maybe tomorrow will be better!!
Wednesday, July 8th
Today should have been men’s QF day. And it’s the 30th anniversary of the glorious 1990 final.
It’s actually been dry today, hooray!! Although it’s rained down south instead, delaying the start of play in the Test match at Southampton.
And the boats and cafes in the park were quite busy, hopefully bringing in money. The Chancellor’s announced cuts in VAT for accommodation, attractions and eating out, and even a 50% discount for eating out during August, but, unfortunately, I don’t know what can be done about the fact that people are nervous of going out. And, whilst I get the whole test and trace thing, I think it could damage the economy more than the virus has done. I got an e-mail from the big garden centre today, informing me that, should I go there, my details will be taken from my loyalty card for test and trace! If you’re sat next to someone in a café, fair enough, but the garden centre’s enormous: the chances that two people who were in there at the same time were anywhere near each other are remote. At this rate, people won’t want to risk going anywhere.
Thursday, July 9th
Grey and miserable today, but at least it stayed dry. I actually went to the park without my umbrella!
Watched some of the cricket, and also some of the tennis from Kitzbuhel.
Tesco have scrapped the one-way system, which seems very odd.
Gyms are going to be allowed to reopen from the end of July … although I’m not sure if I’ll be going back, even if mine reopens, because of test and trace.
I feel totally detached from work. I am doing some work at home, but we get no contact from the office, other than the odd bit of nastiness. I am past caring!
And the holiday company say they can’t do direct flights because they no longer deal with Jet2.com and EasyJet only go on certain days, and, on the days that work with Easyjet, they can’t book anything because the tours aren’t guaranteed to go!
Friday, July 10th
TGI Friday! I am obviously not comparing myself to someone who works in healthcare, or to people doing other essential jobs, but I am struggling with the fact that I’ve been chained to the office laptop throughout this, with absolutely no support from the office. And, whilst I appreciate that people can’t help the fact that their workplaces have been closed, some people have been off work on 80% pay for nearly 4 months, whilst many of us haven’t had any sort of break. The lack of a break really is getting me down. I should have been going to Iceland next week. And, of course, the weather will be glorious next week, because it’s the week I decided not to go to the Lakes because it seemed too soon.
It has been dry for most of today, hooray … although the park is very muddy.
But I really do need a break …
Saturday, July 11th
Hooray, I have been to Windermere! First time in four months. I have missed it so much. There should, of course, have been clear blue sky. Instead, there was a lot of grey cloud, and a breeze which messed my hair up, but, hey, at least it didn’t rain!
I did my “socially distanced” steamer cruise, complete with mask. It’s a pain that you can’t get off at Ambleside and then get a later boat back to Bowness, but it was just great to be back out on the water at all.
It was pretty busy. I dread to think what the traffic and parking situation’ll be like by the time I go in August, but I’m glad for all the businesses there, which have been so badly hit. I was amazed by how busy all the cafes and bars were … and they’re quite busy here, too. I stuck to takeaways … not because I think there’s much chance of getting the virus in a café, but because of bloody track and trace. Having said which, I wouldn’t usually sit inside on a dry day in Bowness anyway. But everywhere was doing takeaways, and trying really hard to be careful – there were perspex screens up, a lot of places were only taking payment by card, everywhere had sanitiser at the doors, and there were one way systems in some places.
The public toilets didn’t open until 10am. FFS! It’s July! People are out and about well before 10 o’clock.
It was a lovely day. I’ve missed it so much, and I feel so much better for being there. Then I called at Sizergh Castle (pre-booked!) on the way home.
I kind of wish I was going now, rather than in 5 weeks’ time, but I had to make a decision and, at the time, I didn’t know when the hotels or the boats would be reopening. And maybe castles will have reopened by mid-August?
I was feeling great until I got home and there was a depressing article in the paper about how rates are rising in our region, the rate’ll probably rise everywhere once summer’s over, and we’ll probably all be put back into lockdown. Why do newspapers print articles like that?! I’m trying to forget that I read it!
And this is the first day since lockdown started that I haven’t been to the park. I didn’t get home till half 5, and, although part of me OCD-ishly wanted to go, it was too late, and I’d done plenty of walking already. So glad to have been back to Windermere <3.
Sunday, July 12th
Of course, today, when I was supposed to be catching up on boring stuff, was warm and sunny! So I went to Hollingworth Lake this morning, and the park this afternoon … and tried not to get upset over the fact that it should have been Wimbledon final day.
Hollingworth Lake was fine, but a group of 4 rude people in the park refused to get into single file so that I and other people could get past safely, which was annoying, and the kids’ playground was absolutely heaving. Dozens of kids were absolutely crammed into the small square where you wait to go down the slide. I don’t wish to be a killjoy, but it’s not on. Michael Gove’s said that he trusts people’s courtesy and common sense. Unfortunately, some people haven’t got any of either!!
What a strange year this has been. I had some strawberries and cream in honour of the day, but … no Wimbledon, and I don’t know what’s going to happen with the US Open. Apart from anything else, any non-American player who goes is going to have to self-isolate for a fortnight when they get back, ruling them out of the French Open warm-up events. And, whilst New York isn’t too bad now, America had 66,000 new cases yesterday alone.
Strange times. Strange times!!