This is Still Pish

Late February days; and now, at last,

Might you have thought that woe was past;

So fair the sky was and so soft the air.

William  Morris
Spring is coming but lockdown stays,  Apathy and some ways to tackle it
Blackthorn by Willam Morris

Every afternoon is lighter.  After the snow the weather feels springlike.  Everyone comments on the weather.  Walking everyday now is becoming a habit again;  it feels good to get out.  We took the campervan to the beach and Cannyrob cooked bacon for  our picnic.  It felt almost like being on holiday.

Don’t think of it as dying, said Death. just think of it as leaving early to avoid the rush’ Terry Pratchett

Last time this card appeared in my blog was on 30th March last year when we were still near the beginning of the pandemic.  Almost a year later there have been 123,000 deaths from Covid in the UK.  It is still around and on our minds, although as more of us have the vaccine the immediate threat recedes.  This is a card with many meanings – transition being the most significant.  Signs of new growth are appearing.  Maybe we can start to make plans, but change is hard after this long time of restrictions.

A new baby brings joy into a troubled world and I was thrilled when my Sister’s granddaughter arrived safely two weeks ago.

I put together some things for the baby and her two big brothers: a bunny comforter, comics and sweets. And made a card to put in the parcel

Thanks to WeeBoy for Henry Stickman inspiration

We’ve been trying to vary our weekend routine and had a French cinema evening with B and pizza.  We watched two Louis Malle films from a box set our friends C and P gave us: Lift to the Scaffold and  Zazie dans le Metro. On Friday we had a less successful theatre night – a new production of Romeo and Juliet. Various technical problems meant we were very late starting to watch it (on laptop instead of telly). It was very good with stunning performances by young actors. Sadly our streaming ticket expired at 11pm, so we missed the end!   At least we knew how things turned out.

We finally finished the Surrealism jigsaw. There is one piece left over It is blank but shiny like the other pieces. It doesn’t seem to go anywhere. A surreal twist at the end?

These are the books I’ve been reading in February – more Gothic tales and some recent psychological thrillers. Summer is the first novel I’ve read set in the time of Covid. The Sound of the Hours is an absorbing story of an Italian town in wartime (thanks to A for that recommendation), while Piranesi is a lyrical puzzzle of a book.   My audio book this month has been The Verdict, really engrossing, good for countering anxious thoughts.

As lockdown has continued, I have found it hard to motivate myself. I hit a low point two weeks ago when I had a Day of Apathy, unable to get out of bed, do the washing, go for a walk, prepare our meal. But then a lovely parcel arrived from Older Daughter, a ‘care package’ of homemade preserves and sweets. In the end I do it all and feel better. Guardian columnists Zoe Williams and Coco Khan have written recently about tiredness and tearfulness after coping well for months. You can find their articles at https://www.theguardian.com/uk

Wee Boy has gone back to school, excited to see his friends, his school trousers too short, his school shoes almost outgrown. But very happy. He described his first day back as ‘really excellent!’

My weird dreams are abating a bit.  Woke up thinking Cannyrob was handing me a mouldy chocolate tortoise.  I had to wake him to check if it was real. This is very unlike reality as he has been providing us with lovely meals all through lockdown, Currently these are low calorie as we have both put on weight, but they are still really good. Maybe the mouldy chocolate will put me off the non-mouldy kind?

Pictured is Cannyrob’s low calorie poached egg Florentine

I have started Duolingo Spanish again, having given up in disgust last year when there was no prospect of visiting anywhere Spanish speaking. The wee green frog welcomed me back to the app. I was able to pick up where I left off and take a revision test. I still get verb declensions wrong but did quite well with vocabulary. I’m enjoying it – just spending 10 minutes a day on it. It’s good for countering the lingering dread.

Thanks for being here again. I really appreciate you taking the time to check in with me each month. I love getting feedback by email, WhatsApp, Facebook,twitter or even letter! How are you doing? What are you reading? I think my avatar is in a Sound of Music fantasy. It could be worse.

Featured image: Flowers from my Neighbour, pen and watercolour, EK

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