Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Doing my best

How are you? I hope you're not struggling. I hope you're doing OK and enjoying the sunshine.

One week I'm fine, the next week I'm not.

I know one thing, though: this past year has aged me. I am forgetful and absent-minded and clumsier than usual. Yesterday I left the car in the drive with both windows open all night; I have just pressed delete in error on a blog comment from Jenetta and had to paste it in myself; I have taken to wandering round the house looking for my reading glasses when they are on the top of my head; and yesterday I fell off the basket chair and flat on my back on the kitchen floor when I was lifting down the two jam pans from the top of the dresser. Thankfully they fell away from me, otherwise I could have suffered a serious head injury. Just my bum and my pride were bruised.

Generally speaking I've been feeling less than robust, but even so I've been painting, gardening and enjoying the spring.

A bridleway near our village

I have also been reading. I've always shied away from non-fiction as a reading choice, but in this last year I've read four memoirs, three of which were about the experience of being a woman at home during the second world war. The latest was Where Stands a Winged Sentry by Margaret Kennedy. What a terrible title, what a gripping book. 

My brother is bamboozled as to why I want to read all these WW2 memoirs from the homefront. Why would I want to immerse myself in such a miserable time?  (And that's another aging problem - finding the right word: I couldn't retrieve the word 'immerse' from inside my head, and typed 'submerge,' and only now, reading this through, immerse has come to me.) 

I've been reading them to see what they could teach me about living through a difficult period in world history. I thought they might help. It was a terrible time, and they didn't know when it would end, and yet we know they got through. And after the war things improved for a while. I've found the books fortifying.

Dave, meanwhile, has been reading Michael Rosen's Many Different Kinds of Lovea memoir about having Covid, spending six weeks in an induced coma, and after lengthy rehabilitative treatment, coming home physically damaged but recognisably still Michael Rosen. I'm just about to start reading it.

Dave has now moved onto Failures of State, written by two Sunday Times investigative journalists. The jacket inside cover says: '...the insider's account of how the government sleepwalked into disaster and then tried to cover up its role in the tragedy - and it exposes one of the most scandalous failures of political leadership in British history.'

Yes, we know already, but this gives all the shocking details and shows how the truth is even worse than we already thought. 

This is heavy going for a sunny Wednesday when the world - at least here in the UK - appears to be opening up again.

My good news this week is that my first sowing of sweet peas is coming on nicely in the shed, and my second sowing looks like a row of tiny green submarines on the windowsill:

Next, I'll be sowing cosmos.

Oh my! I've just been outside to take the header photo and it's seriously warm out there! Enough of this...I'm going outside...

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