Sunday, March 29, 2020

Covid-19 Virus Diary of a Mad Woman

Well, Well Dear Folk,

What did it take to get me back to blogging, a Pandemic.  After Hennypenny posted on my Instagram, why was I planting bittercress in pots?  That I certainly must have turned a corner into madness, because then I realized that later in the summer it turns into this wiry weed that takes over the lawn, I will be out there tout suite and rip it out, thank you Hennypenny.

How has everyone been?  I think a lot of spring and summer plans have come to disappointment.  I personally was planning a trip back to see family and friends in the UK, but will put that on hold for now.

We have been hunkering down.  Actually I find it to be a guilt free time.  One can positively stay at home with no guilty conscience and with that comes a certain freedom.  I am so happy that I got my she shed built last year and I can take a wander down to the bottom of the garden and escape.  As a child I remember that feeling of running out the back door at the end of a school day, across the lawn and turning the corner into the wilderness of "the bottom of the garden."  It truly was a wilderness down there.  A giant old cooking apple tree, very large apples but sharp, great for pies.  Loads of blackberry brambles and stinging nettles in profusion, with dock leaves their remedy.  We had a shack in the middle and a stream that ran by at the edge, with willow trees, we thought it was the greatest place on earth.  So I always think of my she shed as a trip to the bottom of the garden.  I've named it "Deux Portes Francaises" due to the fact that it has two sets of French doors, I hope that is the correct French.

I send Mr. B. out on food foraging trips, as little as possible and make a list.  We had, to a certain extent seen this coming so had a little reserve, but there's always those everyday things, like milk.  Rob our son is still working so we feel he is the weak link in the dyke and since he's already out in the world of coronavirus, I will get him to stop off for milk or odds.  It's all a gamble.

I have Netflix, Prime and Acorn, all those platforms must be holding people over and everyone wishing they'd invested in them instead of other things on their 401K which took a dive, as we all know.  Of course if it takes another twelve years as it has from the last dive of 2008 to recover, I may not be around to see that, or be too old in life to even worry.  The world is a roller coaster these days and it's not the tranquil little mouse ride that I'd take Rob on, at Bush Gardens as a boy, but the neck breaking sort of rides I avoided.  Of course if we'd have known what the CEO of the owner of the New York Stock exchange and his senator wife knew back in January, we could have jumped ship too, unfortunately we are just the pions of this world.  I wasn't going to get on this tack so let me reign it in.

I've been working on my crochet Sunset Shawl in the very fine Noro yarn, you need a lot of time to make it grow and I have that.  Finding the Great British Sewing Bee on You Tube and then the Great Pottery Throw Down held me over for a bit, although that might have been earlier before we really had to lock down.  Have found some quite good Icelandic series and watched Gracepoint the American version of Broadchurch, which does follow it quite closely, except for the ending, but shall I say it, yes I will because I'm in that mood, it was not as good, what are your thoughts?

Reading, oh my, what an escape reading can be, it is almost like going back to ones childhood years, reading was an escape then and it can be now.  I'm re-reading Rilla of Ingleside by L.M. Montgomery, that story was set during WWI and Montgomery dedicates it to her cousin Frederica Campbell MacFarlane who died January 1919 of Spanish Influenza, which of course brings you right down to earth and you think of people not just as statistics, but lives and families and hope.

It has been a mixed bag for us.  Mr. B. had two part time jobs, one he lost a contract on earlier in the year, not due to the pandemic and then he lost the second one due to the pandemic.  After Mr. B. lost the first job we decided he would collect his Social Security early and I would collect mine at 66, but since he lost the second job I moved my Social Security up to collect it earlier.  We are only too grateful to shuffle these resources around as many people are not in that position and I feel for them.  I think he should also be able to collect some unemployment, not sure how that works really.  Since the government has promised some money for each family, that should certainly help.  Not quite sure what that will work out to be.

I will end on a gardening note.  I am so thankful to have a garden, I have pretty much finished with the big clean up from the giant oak tree, which as my neighbor put it so succinctly "the gift that keeps on giving."  If I gave someone a million dollars they could never collect up every oak leaf that arrives down in my garden.

As you might have seen on my Instagram I made another little patio area to sit and enjoy.  The bistro table and chairs date back to our very first house, almost forty years ago.  Originally they were white, then blue and now black.  I have other garden furniture that all needs a lick of paint, but will have to wait as I'm not going out for that.  I need to name the patio, any ideas?

Daffodils, forsythia, crocus, celandines are blooming along with primulas and Virginia bluebells are coming up. Yes spring is here waiting to burst forth.  I will end with some poignant passages from Rilla of Ingleside:

"How can spring come and be beautiful in such a horror," wrote Rilla in her diary.  "When the sun shines and the fluffy yellow catkins are coming out on the willow-trees down by the brook, ..."

"We never do," said Miss Oliver "That is why we are not left to chose our own means and measures of development, I suppose.  No matter how much we value what our lessons have brought us we don't want to go on with the bitter schooling."

Take care dear folk, keep safe, self isolate and be good.



  1. Good to read your blog again and that you are all safe and coping. Like you I feel a certain freedom and lack of guilt for leading a slower life. The worse bit is not seeing little GD but we are using skype etc so something to be very glad about. Keep well.

  2. We’re all kind of in the same boat, except the rich and famous ... who have their yachts! I think those of us who have yards and gardens are so fortunate. I’d go bonkers if I had to stay inside an upper apartment or something.
    I’m looking to crochet a shawl and I looked up the pattern for the one you are doing. I was wondering if you could tell me how difficult a pattern it is to read. I’m a knitter but I want to crochet this.
    Take care!

  3. Nice to see you back here in blogland. Glad you are coping so well in these very unsettled times. Take care.

  4. It's good to see you back and to know you two are coping well these days. So far, so good here. We're staying in to stay well. Take care.


01 09 10