Wool, Wiltshire and All Manner of Wonderful Things!

Good Friday Jottings.

First of all Happy Easter, I hope you enjoyed your hot cross buns today. I was pleased to discover that the Easter Bunny is an essential worker, chocolate always helps the world go round. For those of us lucky enough to have a faith, this weekend signifies new hope, re-birth and a wonderful life to come. I do consider myself to be lucky in this regard.

So how has everyone coped during this last week? I’d like to say a great big thank you for all the wonderful comments you made in response to my first Friday jottings. I made a huge effort to be positive in the things I do, thanks to your encourgement.

I began with sorting out the magazine rack- do people have such things these days- ours was a wedding present from my B.I.L, and usually ends up full of random magazines and newspapers. I figured we probably wouldn’t want to move house with the contents. However two papers survived the cull, one with the announcement of my fathers’s death (2014) and one with youngest son’s passing of his accountancy exams (2016) or thereabouts. The rest of the rack were glossy mags I’d bought for my husband when he was recovering from radiotherapy. I had a very happy afternoon cutting out pictures, for when I get round to making a junk journal.

The following day I found my mindfull colouring journal, and spent a contented hour just colouring. Then I made it to the garden for a bit of Spring weeding. I’d not expected to be doing this in our current house, and for the first time ever I found myself enjoying gardening. The sun was just the right temperature for me , as I slowly pulled out the roots from couch grass.

Next day I managed a walk, and took my camera.

The secondary school’s playing field with a good view of the castle.

Down the side of the old quarry where violets bloomed. Into my favourite field known as the Rookers, and there was the hill I had come for.

So many happy memories of sledging as a child and egg rolling at Easter , as a child and with my children and grandchildren. There’ll be no egg rolling for us this year.

The views from the top

across the valley towads the North York Moors railway- strangely quiet in what is usually one of the busiest times of year. The hill was perfect for the Shout that Pauline aka the Contented Crafter advocated. I took a deep breath already to utter those words ” I f*****g hate this”, when I noticed I had company.

So I just told the cows very nicely that right now humans had made a complete mess of things, and we were very sorry for ourselves. They just ate grass and looked at me disapprovingly!

Gardening has continued to be the one thing I really really look forward to doing each day. When I used to do jobs outside I was always in a rush to get this or that done in the shortest possible time, always pushing on for something. Now I just plod along a tiny bit at a time, and the hours just pass, I don’t want to go too fast now in case I run out of weeds.

I picked up my knitting again too, again proceeding slowly, why the change of pace? A reaction to all the frenetic activity to 18 months of house hunting/ not moving? I know some have experienced a feeling of lethargy, I’m not lethargic, I’m just not in a rush anymore. Has anyone else felt a change of pace?

By Tuesday I was so laid back I was almost horizontal.  Then the phone rang from the estate agent, wanting a catch up, the chap whose house we are buying has lost his job, he is downsizing, he needs to proceed asap. Rude awakening for us. We must not forget that at some point we will have to resume packing boxes. At some point removers will be back at work. At some point shops will re-open, cafe make coffees again,  builders build again, hairdressers cut hair again, children go back to school. How will we all react to that? Will we be mentally prepared for the odd new normal?

There are a few things I need to sort out before we pack them away still. I began with three boxes full of things from Dad’s house- turned out I want everything in them- old photos in the main of his childhood, and of my lovely Granny. They will come with me not in a removal lorry.

I braved Lidl again yesterday. I don’t enjoy shopping at the best of times, I now dread it. I wake up at 5am unable to get back to sleep just at the thought of having to stand in a queue, anxious about what 2 metres looks like, what will they won’t they have in store, how to get food for 7 days- Mr E still has problems swallowing, and is limited in what he can eat, pasta was one of the easiest things for him, sometimes there is some, sometimes not. Unbelievably there was hand gel, alcohol based- I bought one bottle! Oddly I don’t worry I will get ill, I just take precautions seriously. When will shopping not feel like this? I’m glad to be home again, and can’t wait to find a patch of sunshine and some weeds.

It’s so sad to read of all the people who die each day from Covid-19, I have even found myself worried about Boris and his unborn baby, for all the babies and children who will have to live with the aftermath, for the health workers and other key workers who never wanted to be heroic but find themselves on a front line.

Anyway, that’s quite enough from me, I’m off outside to see if I can find some more couch grass. I’ll leave you with this years daffodils.

The catholic church is in the background, now closed of course, but it’s the bench I need you to look at. My brother and I and our two friends would sit  on the bench to eat our ice lollies in the summer. Picture us swinging our legs in our summer clothes  with red lolly juice running down our faces.

Made you smile!

Do join in the chatter in the comments. Enjoy Easter as best you can.

Stay well,

Cathyx

 

Comments on: "Good Friday Jottings." (35)

  1. Great post and I am just commenting on one part of the post – shopping. I barely tolerated grocery shopping in the past and now I also find it miserable. I have to “suit up” to go to the store with mask and gloves, maintaining distance and then standing in a queue, quite unpleasant. We are learning to stretch lots of food so we can avoid the market.
    Sorry about the challenges with your home move. Glad you are enjoying gardening and knitting. Hang in there.

  2. Again this week you brought tears to my eyes – in a happy sad way as I thought that what is happening now is a gift giving you time to properly say goodbye to the village that was your childhood home – and maybe has always been you home? Otherwise I was simply shocked that you would say the F word – let alone shout it.
    I too feel anxious about going shopping – although, like you, I don’t worry about getting it. I think it’s more about shopping suddenly changing into a different experience with new rules, like standing 2m apart, and maybe the thought that the food we want won’t be on the shelf? – although really that’s no great shakes, we can buy something else.

    • I am still struggling to understand why I find the supermarket so tough. I can pop into the
      Co-op for milk etc without the same fear. Maybe it stems from the mid March when I first went in and found the shelves empty, and nearly cried myself- I could so understand the nurse who did cry at the end of a shift. Maybe as shelves become fuller I will be ok. I do feel very responsible for Mr E, who is only ok and will never to back to full health.
      Believe me I can swear- don’t let the little old lady act fool you!

      • First off, I’ve NEVER thought of you as a little old lady!
        The most frightening thing in all of this for me was the behaviour of those who panic stockpiled. I didn’t see them first hand and only saw the shelves partially empty down here – although some of that was to due to me holding back and not going when panic was at it’s height. But still that experience has left me feeling ‘nervous’ of the supermarket. So I can hear where you’re coming from. Hopefully fuller shelves and a new supermarket when you move will make things easier for you.
        I’m so sad to hear about Mr E’s health. Call me old fashioned, but I think we gain a lot of strength from having a man we feel can physically protect us and becoming ‘responsible’ for them at time is unnerving. I know you’re a strong lady though and you will feel stronger as you get more into your stride with all the change around you. And remember once you’ve moved those kids of yours being nearer will be a greater strength too. Much love xx

        • Thanks Bekki for you kind words. Mr E was often working from home, so I did get used to being on my own with the boys, but it’s completely different looking after children to becoming a carer, even if Mr E is still able to look after himself, his contact with the outside world is through me, and he is still very underweight even two years on from his operation.
          It would be lovely to see my family even at two metre distance, as I am sure you feel too.
          But as the wonderful Captain Tom says it will be alright tomorrow…

          • LH also used to work away a lot and I agree that’s very different and I was always absolutely in my element on my own then. I’ve just noticed now there’s just the two of us I feel more protected by LH being around than when he isn’t – even though in reality I could manage on my own.
            Oh yes, would love to see my girls even at two meters.
            Hurrah! for Captain Tom! xx

  3. Having to deal with your impending move on top of the whole coronavirus situation must be so stressful for you – I’m sure the cattle forgive a scream! You need to let off steam somehow. K does our shopping (usually at Lidl) and has found that it’s improving: less queueing and crowds, more on the shelves and better organised for social distancing. I did run up a couple of masks on the sewing machine from a YouTube tutorial. The jury still seems to be out on how effective they are – even if it reduces the risk of virus transmission a little bit that’s got to be good – and if the sight of K wearing a mask acts as a reminder to others to keep their distance it’s even better! Stay safe.

    • I don’t wear a mask but I do put on my glasses which I don’t wear all the time- they remind me not to touch my face, then I have several pairs of gloves, which get changed at various points, then hand gel when I get back in the car and immediate hand washing when I get home. No wonder I find it stressful. Hope you had a Happy Easter!

  4. Hi Cathy I can’t imagine moving house in these wierd times so you are coping very well with it all. We are in a kind of limbo anyway but you must feel doubly so. Does your town have a market? Have been doing most of my shopping there. Amazingly it’s great for mostly everything, even pasta and doesn’t get to busy. Xx

    • We do have a small street market on a Monday, but you couldn’t do your shop at it. We do have lots of good local shops, and oddly I am fine going to them, they seem to have everything they used to have in way of the butcher, the greengrocer and the bakery.

  5. The Thinking WASP said:
  6. Murtagh's Meadow said:

    I enjoyed your lovely walk and your ponderings – I have had some of the same thoughts as you. Like you I hate shopping at the best of times but I used to find my husband wouldn’t get half what we needed but now I am writing very comprehensive lists and he is doing well! The house move would be stressful without the situation we find ourselves in. I hope it gets sorted for you. Stay safe and well.

    • The very first week of lockdown amused me in the supermarket with chaps trying to do the shop with wife on the phone. I overhead one bloke getting a bit testy as he poked the melons- ” How do I know if it’s ripe, I’m getting it anyway!” Now the wives are back to doing the shopping.

  7. Those daffodils are amazing, and I love the bench and that it’s still there.
    You made me laugh with your weeding, the last thing I ever want is to drag out that particular chore!
    I will be going to the supermarket in the morning, and am Very Excited about seeing all the people and picking out a couple of chocolate eggs, just in case the EB forgets me on Sunday.
    I go to the smallest one I can, which is a small franchise-owned branch of a huge chain called Pick ‘n Pay. I only ever buy about 10 items so never need a huge choice, plus the parking area is not so large that I forget where I parked.
    Our President announced last night that he is extending the lockdown until the end of April. I try to take my mind off the disastrous consequences for our economy and the poorest of the poor, who will die – not directly from the virus, but from extreme poverty and malnutrition. Sorry, didn’t mean to end on a depressing note.
    Lots of love to you and Mr E xxx

  8. Like I said to someone the other day – if we’re lucky the virus won’t kill us but given a chance the stress and strain of trying to avoid it probably would.
    Sending Easter greetings to you and your family at this special time of the year Cathy

  9. The Husband isn’t happy about me going to the shops, and I’m mostly in agreement, because I get so grumpy with people who will NOT stay a respectable distance away. So far I’ve managed to avoid yelling at them from behind my tasteful masks, but I feel sure the time will come… I dislike not being able to pick my own groceries because I want to see what’s there before I decide, it makes cooking more fun if I don’t always do the same things. I’m still able to walk Mouse because the streets around the house are wide with generous grass verges and very soon turn into countryside. We are on greeting terms with a number of other walkies pairs, with doggos saying hello at the end of 6ft leads. I speak loudly over the fence to my rather deaf 85 year old neighbours to see if they need anything. And I sew and do housework. Weeding is waiting for the cooler weather, so I can grovel in the borders without frying, and prune and lop without squinting into the sun. It won’t be long now.
    I wish you both a very happy and hopeful Easter, dear Cathy, and hope that the bunny brings you chocolate ❤

    • The bunny will be bringing chocolate- as the person who does the shopping I made sure of that. There was a very short period of time here when certain police officers rather over extended themselves and threatened to search people’s shopping trolleys’ for non-essential items such as Easter eggs and hot cross buns. Fortunately they have been re-educated into being told that if a supermarket sells something people can buy it. As for people who don’t stay their distance I have perfected the STANCE- whereby I wait in a pointed manner and STARE, until they shift themselves!
      I’m like you, I need to see food before I can buy it. I have only once tried internet grocery shopping and the choices confused me, and so much stuff that came was near it’s use by date. Never again.
      I know that my troubles are very very minor compared to people who have lost jobs, or their education or a family member or are poorly themselves and I am cross at myself for being such a weed, and I do stay home and keep my distance, and I’m fine except when the world intrudes- like I have my car tax to pay now, and Mr E needs to renew his passport and because he has no voice I have the sorting out to do……. Oh I’m whinging again sorry.
      Books, weeding and a bit of knitting will get me through. I have just spent a happy hour picking daffodils, making an Easter display and enjoying an Easter card I’d kept from my late Mum.
      Mr E made some freshly brewed coffee. Life is ok.
      Happy Easter, and I hope you have lots of choccy too. Hugs for the wonderful Mouse. xx

  10. I send Mr. T. to the supermarket as, at 6’4″ he towers above most of the tiny French and I have convinced him that it’s safer for him because any nasty droplets will be at his chest level and falling. Also, he can only be sure of getting adequate supplies if he goes as i tend to underestimate. The only thing that seems to be hard to get locally is flour but, apart from that, the shelves are quite well stocked. Panic buying never really got to us here.
    I actually think I’m getting a bit agoraphobic as I don’t really want to go out at all – apart from in the garden which will never run out of weeds. I still walk the dogs but the walk I’ve done for fourteen years, seeing a handful of people in all that time, has suddenly become populated with strangers – although relatively lightly. Where do these people normally go for exercise or to walk their dogs? We’ve had to put a ‘private property’ sign up at the top of the garden so they don’t think the path we’ve worn ourselves over the years is a public one.
    I can’t understand that you would be allowed to move house – I would have thought the chain you’re in would have come to a shuddering halt for the duration but I remember you telling me it was quite a complicated chain and I know the lockdown isn’t being enforced in the U.K. quite as strictly as here.
    I love the bench outside the church and the memories it holds. You will miss all those things when you move but the compensation will be to be nearer to your family and you can make new memories with them.
    xxx

    • Mr E is tall too, but his health isn’t good so it makes sense for me to be the one who goes shopping plus he will buy the wrong thing! I have always found supermarkets overwhelming. When we used to go camping in Europe first stop was always a French hypermarket, where the sheer size of the place would totally discombobulate me and I’d come out with nothing. Eventually I learned to write a list.
      My son complains about new dog walkers appearing on his dog walk- one day he said there 6 people with 6 dogs clearly not one household.
      The problem with our move is that we have a legally binding contract with an agreed date on which we have to give vacant possession. The only way out of this is to agree a delay with all parties, but you don’t have to despite the lockdwn which says to stay put. It’s very confusing. The removal firm told me they had 43 moves postponed like this.
      I can’t wait to be nearer the family, and make those new memories, but I shall be back here for holidays!

  11. All that lovely empty countryside. I walk to the Common most days but have to be strategic in avoiding people which makes it stressful. The change in routine has not helped my ME/CFS and so my plans for getting on top of the housework have had to be abandoned for now. Weeding as you say can be relaxing but my small garden and past assiduous weeding meant it only took about twenty minutes. So I have been concentrating on crochet and blogging. My son brought me a big bunch of flowers yesterday and the roses in it are actually scented. This was a bright spot. All allowed as he came to deliver some shopping I had asked for. It was good to actually see him however briefly and of course at least 2m apart.

    • How absolutely wonderful to be able to see your son, even at 2 metres. Yes going out is stressful, I had a couple of narrow bits to negotiate on this walk, when I stepped back to let people by, they certainly weren’t going to make way for me. I have loved seeing your crochet angels in development, certainly helps to be engrossed in something.
      I hope the roses keep for ages and bring you much needed succour. Happy Easter and stay safe.x

  12. Ha, your aborted shout made me laugh. Animals understand, I think, that we are are not the rulers of the world we like to think we are. They probably would have just looked with disdain on your out roar, then carried on with their grazing. So pleased to hear you are/were so laid back as to be horizontal. It doesn’t hurt at all to be like that for a bit. I find it a bit odd though that as you are in lock down, folk are putting pressure on you to hurry up and move. Here we all know nothing is going to ‘move’ until the time is right and everyone is staying put and coping with whatever their lot was at the moment of lockdown. Mind, we do have a woman in charge so there is a focus on the needs of the people not on the needs of the economy and the already wealthy. Have a nice weekend – and your walks are lovely. I hope your new home will be surrounded by the same kind of countryside.

    • The cows certainly helped me ground myself that day! It’s odd about the move , we are in lock dwon and instructions are clear, but we have a legally binding contract that we will complete the sale on a certain date, at one time our purchaser talked about letting us stay here for rent!
      I was so relaxed before that phone call, and have not got back to that state since, maybe over the weekend I will.
      We have some great countryside to look forward to in the new house- can’t wait to be there.
      Hope you and Siddy have some lovely Autumnal walks. x

      • We have a national State of Emergency, which supersedes any contracts – or at least that’s my understanding of the situation. Did your government not declare an Emergency? No wonder you are stressed – Maybe you need to climb that hill again and hope the cows aren’t there – or just let rip anyway ….. 🙂

  13. What a lovely gentle post. I am really enjoying life in lockdown, it turns out it was what my inner-self was yearning for, so I see it as a gift to me.
    I am loving that the environment is benefitting from this time, that makes me breathe easier.

    Obviously I feel concerned for all those people who are in terrible situations, but the best thing I can do is stay at home, and for that I am thankful. I have a huge amount of gratitude that I have a garden and my family are all well and happy.

    I feel for you having to brave the supermarket. I am lucky that several small local shops are doing deliveries, or will take a telephone order and leave shopping in a box outside the shop, so I have not been near a supermarket for weeks.

    Now, I’m off to find some weeds to pull up as well. xx

    • As long as I am at home, I am fine, but trying to continue with normal things that have to be done is hard. If I weren’t so fussy about the food I buy I would have been doing on line shopping years ago, now it’s too late! Collecting Mr E’s prescriptions feels like running the gaunlet in our tiny chemist!

      I’m not quite sure what it is I hate so much about having to go out, I just find it makes me anxious. The car tax needs to be paid- normally I’d do that at the post office as I believe in putting business their way, I may have to give in and do it on-line.

      Hope you find some good weeds! Happy Easter.

  14. I am so glad that you braved the supermarket, but so sorry that you couldn’t sleep! We did the whole Easter shopping on Wednesday, because we just wanted to be done with it, and, lo and behold, we got everything! I am even starting to get used to queueing up and keeping my distance, etc.
    I hope that the move will happen, and with as little stress as possible, whenever that will be. Take care, and Happy Easter!

    • I dislike supermarkets at the best of times, having a list that works helps. A list now doesn’t help when confronted with empty spaces. Yesterday there was very little cheese, and no flour. Just glad to have it all behind me for another week. Take care, x

      • We had the same problem, and I have noticed that the empty shelves is what really freaks me out, because I am absolutely not used to it and it feels so unreal. Luckily enough, we found a supermarket that isn’t as frequented as the big one where we usuall get our things, and if you manage to get 8 or 9 items out of 10, you don’t mind it so much.

        • We only have two small supermarkets in town, and now people aren’t going to the bigger towns for work but working from home, the demand here is greater than it used to be. Lidl have always been problematic in their supply chains and it has just got worse.

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