Monday, 11th September, 2023

[Day 1274]

So it is Monday morning and the start of another week. We are having a slightly different ‘getting up, washed and dressed’ routine this morning which seems to be working as we intended. Basically, it involves Meg sitting in a chair whilst I bring the washing materials to her instead of Meg having to catch onto a washbasin whilst washing and this small change to our routine actually does yeild benefits. Last night,Meg and I watched the Wales vs. Fiji rugby match and it could fairly be described as pulsating. The Welsh built up a lead, though, in the second half which looked as though it might be impregnable but Fiji scored two quick tries and when the clock went ‘red’ i.e. full time, were only 6 points behind. In a magnificent move a long kick (or was it a pass) was sent to a Fijian player lurking on the wing and had he taken it cleanly, he would almost certainly have scored and if the try had been converted, then Fiji would have won by one point. But the player fumbled it knocking the ball forward and so Wales won the match by six points, leaving the Fijians to wonder what might have been.

This morning, Meg and I decided to go to our local Morrison’s superstore in Redditch as we know that they normally had a supply of wheelchairs for the benefit of customers. Just outside the store, we received a call from one of Mike’s Pilates class mates who had been intending to pay us a quick visit. But she had gone to take the dogs a walk and had been caught in a huge shower and had got soaking wet so we thought we would meet on another day. On the way out of the store, we were caught by the same shower and got thoroughly wet whilst getting into the car. Within the store, we particularly wanted to buy some ‘knee high’ socks for Meg but Sod’s Law ensured that they were out of stock. We bought some other things whilst we were in the store but then beat a hasty retreat home. Once we got home, we cooked a meal of chicken thighs (cooked on the bone but with the skin and leg bones removed) when we were dishing up the dinner. This afternoon, we entertained ourselves with some quite decent natural history and travelogue type programmes, knowing that we had had a glut of rugby and would have to wait until Thursday before we could indulge ourselves again. It now looks as though all 400 of the Wilko stores are going to close with the loss of about 12,000 jobs. A planned takeover by a rival store has failed to materialise after some initial hopes that about half of the stores/jobs could be saved but his proved to be a false dawn. It looks as though the job losses will take by October, according to one of the unions involved.

Normally on the second Wednesday of every month, we are invited to a special meeting for the frail aged run by AgeUK. We received a reminder about next Wednesday but I had to take a very difficult decision in replying to them to the effect that I considered Meg was too frail to be able to attend the event. For example, the last time we went everyone else walked to their cars but Meg fell over in the lady’s loo and, since then, her mobility has reduced somewhat. We are finding that the new TV with which we are delighted and which is situated in a good position in our Music Room means that we are tending to spend more of our time in this part of our accommodation. We are looking forward to seeing the social worker on Thursday next but needed to supply some additional documentation before Thursday. When I got into contact with the relevant unit to furnish them with updated information, I turned out to No. 10 in the queue and was subsequently informed that a reply might take up to 15 working days to resolve i.e. 3 weeks. This, of course, is a symptom of a service under severe resource constraints, not surprising after so many years of austerity.

Just when we thought that we had COVID-19 behind us, the new variant which contains a lot of mutations, is causing scientists some concern. There is even some advice that we should get used to wearing face masks again. Meg and I got booked into the combined fle and COVID booster jab but it is not until mid-October which sounds quite a long time away. I suppose we shall just to exercise caution from now on but face mask wearing sounds the option open to us. On the weather front, it seems that the hot spell is well and truly over and it is certainly the case that I got well and truly caught when Meg and I visited the supermarket this morning. It seems that a band of rain is stretching across the Midlands from the South West up to the North East and we seem to be right in the middle of the band. So far, apart from keeping windows open in the evening to help hot air to blow through the house, we have not been too badly affected but I shall be quite keen to experience a cooler days from now on.