Wednesday, 16th September, 2020

[Day 184]

How the weeks roll by! Since the COVID-19 crisis, we have shopped online with Waitrose and the order is scheduled to arrive each Thursday. But to secure our ‘slot’ we have to put in a make-believe order (based on an previous order) which we then have to refine before delivery. For delivery on a Thursday, we have to update our order the day before and before 12.00pm. As we cannot guarantee to be back from our walk by 12.00 we have to refine our order before we go out. Hence it is a job each Wednesday to update our order for delivery the following day.

Again it was a beautiful day today – sunny but not too humid and so we enjoyed our walk as normal. We met one of our park friends again and made the acquaintance of a couple of labradors who could not resist plunging into the pond and having a wet walk/swim (it is so shallow I’m never get sure whether the dogs who take the plunge walk or swim). They always emerge from the water dripping wet and with a kind of silly grin on their faces when they realise that they ‘may’ have transgressed against the wishes of their owner(s). Again, it was time for a salad- type lunch when we eventually got home.

This afternoon was scheduled to be our ‘lawn mowing’ day and everything worked smoothly although I realise that next time around I will need to buy a gallon petrol (the last of the season?) Miggles, our adopted cat, came along to supervise our activities both before and after the mowing and decided it would be a good idea to lie out on the grass in front of Meg to sunbathe whilst I got on with some necessary weeding (the cat did promise to help but eventually just adopted a supervisory position, checking that everything I did was up the requisite standard) Incidentally, there was a fascinating program on cats on last night’s telly – the average male cat has a range of about 100 metres whereas we reckon that Miggles‘ range might be as much as 400 metres as it is 200 metres from her own home to the end of our garden and I suppose that he/she ranges an equal distance in the opposite direction. The program put trackers and even miniaturised cameras on each of the 50 cats in an English village and discovered some amazing things e.g. although cat’s territories might overlap and therefore be a source of conflict, they learn to avoid/minimise such conflict by essentially ‘time-sharing’ the terrify – one cat might use it only in the mornings and the other in the evenings. Genuinely fascinating.

The COVID second wave is getting seriously scary at the moment – new infections have risen from about 3,000 to 4,000 in a single day. Boris Johnson was forced to admit in a liaison committee of MP’s that Britain does not have sufficient testing capacity and the interviews with distraught people from all over the country is distressing. People seem to be spending hours glued to their phones/laptops to try and get the system to give them a slot only to be dumped off the system, informed that the nearest test centre is in Inverness or similar, or that that there are no slots available and try again later(even though local radio and TV is telling them that the local testing centre is largely empty, but you cannot access it unless the system has allocated you a slot)

Meanwhile,Boris Johnson is engaging in a partial climb-down by suggesting to groups of dissident Tory MP’s that he will allow them a second vote before the provisions of the Internal Market Bill are actually activated. The interesting question is how many of his own MP’s actually believe him? The interesting question is that in the last Parliament before the Tory party purged itself of any Remainers, there was actually a ‘Anybody but Boris‘ movement because several of the older and wiser Tory heads reckoned, quite rightly, that Boris Johnson might be a good campaigner or utterer of simple slogans (‘Get Brexit Done‘) but that he might prove to be a disastrous Prime Minster were he ever to occupy that position – and how right they were!