Sunday, 3rd July, 2022

[Day 839]

So a Sunday morning has dawned again which means that I get up fairly early and then make my own way into town to pick up an early copy of our Sunday newspaper. Then the Sunday morning routine takes over which is breakfast of cereal munched during the Sunday morning (politics) show, hosted by Sophie Raworth. The questioning of a government minister about whether Boris Johnson knew of the proclivities of Chris Pincher led to the following statement : ‘To the best of knowledge, the Prime Minister was not aware of any specific allegations’. Of course, the interviewer should have then followed with the question ‘Were you aware then of any general, if not specific, allegations?’ but failed to do so. As Chris Pincher had a reputation as a sex pest and even Boris Johnson had said of him ‘Pincher ny name, pincher by nature’ (not denied by No. 10) then it beggars belief that Boris Johnson did not know or did not care about the reputation of the man who he appointed as the Deputy Chief Whip. When the government minister called upon to defend Boris Johnson was asked how she knew that the Prime Minister had no knowledge of Chris Pincher’s reputation, she indicated that the source of her information was the No. 10 Press Office which is hardly the most reliable or objective of sources. One does get the feeling that eventually this MP will be thrown to the dogs and another by election will be forced upon the government, even though they are fighting tooth and nail to prevent it.

After we had some breakfast, Meg and I consulted the ‘Weather’ app on our phone to try to work out whether to take a walk or go by car if rain was threatened. In the event, we went by car which proved to be a judicious decision. After we had had our coffee, we were joined by Seasoned World Traveller but we did not have too long to chat because the sky darkened and we started to get rained upon. Accordingly, we walked briskly to our car and then got home to have an early lunch. We had a ‘spatchcocked’ chicken cooking away in the oven and it was just nicely done by the time we got home. We prepared the vegetables of a baked potato and some Savoy cabbage and then we found that one breast was easily enough for one meal. So we have at least two more meals of this chicken ( a breast and two legs), with the remains bagged up and ready for consumption later in the week.

After lunch, we studied the sky and then our weather app to see if we get the weekly lawn mowing fitted in this afternoon. Fortunately, the weather brightened a little and so I got the lawns cut only a day behind the normal schedule. It must be the time of the year and the combination of both rain and sun but the clover, both white and purple, seems to have gone mad on our communal grassed area but the mowing regime seemed to at least keep this under control. It seems that we may be having a few days of hot weather in the week ahead so this is a cue for me to get some much needed gully and border clearing done whilst I can.

I have started to think ahead a little of the trips and ‘staycations’ that we might have during the summer. The more I think I think about the hotel room we have booked at a four star in central Harrogate later in the month, the more convinced I am that with breakfast included we have got an incredibly good deal. It is my sister’s birthday in late August and as it is her 80th, we may well plan a further trip to the same hotel in August so I can treat my sister to some birthday celebrations. A very good friend of ours now lives near Scarborough and we may well make some plan to meet halfway, perhaps in York, where we can travel easily by train from Harrogate. We will probably be able to find a restaurant appropriate to our needs in the vicinity of the station so I think we shall try and get some arrangements made.

Now for a final political story. The Tories have promised that we shall have 40 ‘new’ hospitals by 2030 but the National Audit Office are going to investigate this claim as part of a ‘value for money’ initiative. It transpires that a ‘new’ hospital is so called whenever a hospital upgrades some of its facilities such as they do regularly in any case. Ministers and the health department have been instructed to refer to refurbishments or the construction of new facilities at existing hospitals as ‘new hospitals’. So the claim of 40 new hospitals is misleading in the extreme as we might expect from this government by now and won’t be delivered in any case.