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Un-lockdown


I've been trying to paint the perfect pears. I've sold (more later) some pears so want to have some more as they seem popular, I like the Japanese bowl here.

Another week of lockdown passed. And now we have un-lockdown but by the back door (excuse the pun}. Now that ‘stay home’ has been replaced with ‘stay alert’ there is no reason to stay home for those whose employers need to get them back to work or who need to get back to work themselves. No mention of shielding.

Coincidentally I had my first foray into the outside world this morning to visit the optician as I’m finding it increasingly difficult to see. He does a one on one out process and disinfects everything in between so I’ve taken the risk.

Which turned out the right thing to do as I have cataracts. It’s like looking through a dirty window. So he’s referred me for surgery but there’s no telling how long the wait might be. The cataracts are caused by the high dose steroids after surgery, although I’m still on a lower dose. Annoying, as apart from not being able to see very well, it’s another faff with hospitals and not least mingling with other people.

We’ve had such beautiful weather this week and have been out on our bikes most days. The lanes are just lovely: bursting with wildflowers and the only sound is birdsong. I'm not sure what these are; I keep meaning to look up the wildflowers so I can identify them:

Even with the warm weather I’m afraid I think we put our beans out too early as they are struggling to survive the wind and drop in temperature. The poppies and geum are, if not running riot, at least providing a good splash of colour:

This week has been much like the last 6 or 7. Blog day today and laundry, cleaning tomorrow and then I start thinking about next weeks shopping lists. Bread and vegetables and supermarket on Thursdays and fish and meat on Fridays.

It seems important to have a routine as it tethers you in some way, otherwise you flounder around hopelessly. Even small rituals become important: I take my nebuliser every morning after my first cup of coffee, having started the day with tea and toast in bed and morning meds. Then I have my mid morning meds with fresh orange juice. Anyway the days have taken on a certain rhythm revolving around food and painting mostly. And M disappears into his dark room.

Lunch is not much of an event; I’ve started having banana on toast and a satsuma to follow. And I always have an espresso with a medjool date.

Dinner is the main meal; we’d normally have something with left over chicken on Monday but this week we couldn’t get a chicken which put me out a bit. So it’s sausages and lentils tonight.

I like the dark green Puy lentils cooked with celery onion and carrot. I might have a watercress salad too. I’m obsessed with watercress although it is sometimes disappointingly straggly but when it’s good I love it’s pepperiness and greenness with a nice mustardy dressing.

We were lucky enough to have some wild sea bass as well as some gurnard this weekend. I don’t think I’ve ever eaten so well as these last few weeks.

I’ve been painting most days and have sold some which is always a boost for morale; 5 to an online shop and my friend Ann commissioned 2 for her birthday. These are her yellow and grey ones:

My painter this week is Andrew Cranston His work is enigmatic; it seems as though a story is being told but you don’t know what it is. He paints on hardback book covers which gives the paintings a particular quality. I am captivated by them:

I am interested to see how the un-lockdown progresses. Maybe it’s because I went out today but it does seem as though something has shifted; well we know it has due to the change in slogan, but will it mean that everyone now starts to go out/ back to work?

I am not going anywhere that I don’t have to ie I don’t think it’s safe to go to the shops yet. i’ll be watching the week unfold.

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