Thursday, 10th March, 2022

[Day 724]

Thursday is my shopping day and so, in theory, I should have got up in plenty of time to get to the supermarket as it opened at 8am in the morning. But I overslept a little and it was practically 9.00 am when I arrived at the supermarket but it seemed pretty uncrowded at that hour in the morning so I was not too unhappy to be an hour later than planned. Today I was trying an experiment which was to go the smaller of the two Aldi stores that we have here in Bromsgrove and also to go round the store without the benefit of a list. Taking one thing with another, I think that both of these strategies worked as I intended. Without a list, there was less chasing about the store looking for one particular item. Also, the fact that the store is quite compact means less overall trailing up and down. As it turned out, there was one or two items that I could not find or they did not stock but I can always rely upon the Waitrose at the bottom of the road to remedy any deficiencies. Whilst I was out, I also collected the newspaper and this means that when we eventually walk to the park, there is a slightly less long walk for Meg to cope with. So after the shopping was unpacked, Meg and I went on our customary walk and the weather was almost springlike with the flowering cherry starting to blossom in various places and other shrubs and trees ready to burst into life at a moment’s notice. It was fairly late when we got back so we had a somewhat delayed lunch of quiche.

This afternoon, we had three pleasant surprises to brighten up our afternoon. The first of these was the fact that I had ordered yesterday a 64Gb micro memory card – I nearly always tend to buy SanDisk cards as they have a 10 year warranty upon them which is good enough for me. As this was cheap enough, I also bought a microSD card reader which plugs into one of the USB3 ports in my MacBook. This, in effect, gives me the facility of an additional card reader on my MacBook and I have already made a backup of my usual working files. The second pleasant surprise was that my sister called me on the phone and we converted this into a FaceTime call between my sister and Meg and I. We exchanged news as to how we were both coping on a day-to-day level and my sister seem to be getting her ‘act together’ in seeing neighbours. She is talking about getting a mobility scooter when the spring advances a little and I think this is an excllent idea. I am trying to encourage my sister, despite her mobility difficulties, to do what she can to maximise social contacts as a way of counteracting the loneliness she undoubtedly feels after the death of her husband. The third good thing to happen this afternoon was that we were preparing to eat out little bit of supper in front of the TV, the doorbell rang and it was our next door neighhbour distributing some hot apple crumble and cream that she had just dished up and wanted to share with us (a sort of ‘Meals on Wheels’) We did not have the time to have a chat on the doorstep but it was a most wonderful,and neighbourly, act to look after the ‘old folks’ next door.

Talking about the ‘person next door’ the house that had belonged to our neighbour, across the way from our communal green area, has been up for sale since the death of our neighbour last August. It has on the market with the ‘Purple Bricks’ estate agency and although there is undoubtedly a presence online, we have not observed anyone coming around to confirm their ‘online’ views with a site inspection. As of yesterday, though, we noticed that a ‘Sold’ sign had just been affixed to the board and today we did notice a couple of largish vehicles were paying a visit to the bungalow. So it looks as though in the fullness of time, we shall be expecting some new neighbours. I suspect that it may be a month or so yet until people move in as in all probability the house has been bought in order to secure it and as there is no onwards chain, the vendors will be disposing of their current property before moving into their new one.

In the Ukraine, the artillery attacks on the Ukraine cities seems relentless. Some are arguing that the Russians have derived their tactics from their conflict in Syria where at least one city, Aleppo, was systematically flattened. On the other hand, the Ukrainians seem to be having some success when it comes to ‘taking out’ strategic parts of the convoy of miliary vehicles (as in north of Kyif) when they come across them.