Monday, 9th May, 2022

[Day 784]

It was an intermediate day today but pleasant enough for our daily walk. My routine differs a little these days in that I tend to take the car down into town on my own in order to collect our daily newspaper and this means that Meg and I for a walk only to walk as far as the park (about 800m at a rough guess) and not the 1200m to the newsagent. Although we visit the park every day, we always notice new things that hadn’t impinged upon our consciousness. As we looked down the hill towards the cafe in the park, I noticed that it was one of those modernistic 1970’s type designs in which the roof took the shape of a ‘V’ rather than the conventional hipped roof. At the same time, I noticed that there were no rainwear goods attached to the outside of the building and therefore I speculated that the design of the roof must be such that with a slight ‘fall’ for water to drain away, then might be the need for only one drainpipe in an unobtrustive space towards the rear of the building. Perhaps some of my park acquaintances might be able to put me wise on this. Whilst sitting on our normal bench, I started to speculate how far the distance was from the point at which we were sitting to make a complete detour of the lake by the normal paths and return to one’s starting point. At a guess, I would think this is 1km so I may ask some of the regular runners and/or walkers in the park if they have any measuring devices with them to measure this distance for me. I suppose I could get an app and do it myself on the iPhone but it might be easier to ask someone. On our way back from the park, we walked past the garden of our closest Irish friends one of whom was gardening (until we interrupted him) and the other was busy hoovering. As they are going on a trip shortly and will be away for eleven days, no doubt there are a lot of domestic jobs to be done before they depart in a day or so’s time.

After lunch, I had only the briefest of rests because I wanted to really ‘crack on’ and get the weeding of the patio outside our kitchen window completed. I have got my technique off to a fine art now and after about an hour and a half of concentrated effort, the task is now completed to my satisfaction. I think the ‘root’ of the problem, if I can put it this way, is that we used to have a regular gardner who kept the terrace looking neat and tidy. However, I suspect that the strimmer that he used took the top off the weeds but left the root systems in the ground, free to grow away again if left unattended. Now that I have done a ‘root and branch’ clearance, I intend to keep it that way. I think that I may use a combination of an old but stiff washing up brush together with a small wire brush to eliminate any weeds too small to be grasped by the fingers. If I do this on a regular basis, then I can keep the terrace looking pristine. After this task had been completed, I dashed off into town because I wanted to go into our local Waitrose to avail myself of some cupcakes because it had been intimated to me that the rest of my Pilates classmates would expect no less of me in a birthday week. Having got my cupcakes, including some gluten-free goodies for my Pilates teacher, I then bought two or three things to keep us going until our next shop up. Then I was the ‘victim’ of one of the most obscure accidents in the history of shopping. I was behind one other customer and so I slapped my £10 note, my car parking token and my Waitrose card on the conveyor belt. When I came to be served, the £10 note and car parking token had disappeared and the assistant and I concluded that the belt had transported both of them neatly into the internal workings of the belt. Neither of us had ever known this to happen before but I said I was quite happy to wait a day or so in case an engineer had to be called. I left my name and contact number with the assistant who served me and came home to tell the story. Then I got a call on my mobile. The Waitrose manager had equipped himself with a screwdriver, taken off a panel by the side of the belt and retrieved the errant note! They are going to leave it at the Help Desk so that I can retrieve it when I return from my Pilates class tomorrow.