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Lettuce (warning contains COVID rant))


What a difference the change in weather makes; from days of having the doors thrown open and coffee on the patio to skulking indoors with the heating on. Typical June I suppose; and no Wimbledon to break the monotony. The rain has done my lettuce good though and I now have huge quantities of the curly endive and this flat leaved one (can’t remember what variety it is), as well as the dark purple oak leafy one on the right. They are all delicious though.

I was just about to start this next sentence with 'Lucky to...' but I read the other day about this tendency during lockdown to constantly give thanks or being fortunate in any way and it was almost taboo to be miserable. And I realised that was what I was doing with any mention of how hard it is, I would follow up with "of course we are so fortunate' .....to have good food, friends, garden etc etc. So yes I am lucky to have delicious home grown lettuce or indeed a garden at all. But that's not to say that lockdown is making me utterly miserable the longer it goes on (more about that later)

And behind the lovely lucky lettuce is some beetroot that already looks big, at least the leaves do. I will have to research arch when to tell if it’s ready. I will be very upset if I miss the baby stage as those are what I want most.

Apart from veg the garden Is busy with bees and nice things:

I painted this Canterbury bell yesterday:

....and got a very nice comment on Instagram saying my paintings were ' understated yet impactful' which was good to hear. I also had some daisies:

Other than flowers I’ve been painting cherries which I’m quite pleased with:

It seems that everything is starting to open up again although as we’re shielding we are still unable to go out (unless to meet one person in the middle of a field I think). Now that the scientists are not prepared to be the fall guys they are giving conflicting advice ie it’s too early. I know who I believe.

Which probably means we are faced with an interminable lockdown as it becomes increasingly risky for us to go out. I think I’m beyond anger now and just feel exhausted by it. I can't comprehend the lies and contradictions ; why were we following the science but now we're not? I know the answer of course.

And it is utterly depressing to think that had the pandemic been competently managed we would all be much safer much sooner. It's easier to cope with tribulations if you understand that there is no-one to blame ie ultimately the virus isn't the governments fault, but it's much harder to undergo ongoing self imposed isolation when it's a result of such obvious mismanagement and blatant lies are being told to hide the truth. which is that they've unlocked without the necessary (stated) safeguards being in place like testing and tracing. And how many are willing to self isolate after the Cummings debacle when instructed to by Serco?

Apart from the unnaturalness of being shielded I do need to do normal things like getting a hair cut and my cataracts need sorting out. At least I have a trip to Papworth in first week of July to look forward to and meet other humans.

Although perhaps we’re most likely to get the virus from an online delivery as we seem to get parcels most days. I bought a beautiful dress but had to send it back as I’m totally the wrong shape for it now. Why was I buying a dress if I couldn’t go out?! Maybe to try to believe that I will eventually be able to. There is also skincare to be got online and make up.

I got some Anastasia Beverly Hills eyebrow stuff with a brush as I read in the article that recommended it that eyebrows are most important. So I do my eyebrows every day with no-make-up make up including some nice Nars lipstick. For inside the house. At least some semblance of routine and normality.

Talking of routine I have (also delivered ) a new cleaning system to start on cleaning day tomorrow which I feel sadly excited about. It promises great things from one all round product and includes a new mop with it’s own cleaning product tank. Well I guess if I have to do housework I may as well get some interest out of it. I chose this one for it’s utility but if it doesn’t deliver I will try the one that smells wonderful with essential oils.

I like these strong abstracts in ink and gouache by Olivier Umecker:

I am so pleased that we got Ralph before the lockdown as he is such a nice addition to our family unit and I guess a bit of a distraction for us too. Here he is at his most relaxed:

I just had a thought then about whether it was fair to post such an undignified photo but I don't suppose he is likely to be compromised by it ! Ralph also suffers when the weather is bad as although he does go out on his own he will just sleep all day inside if that's where we are. As soon as we go into the garden out he comes.

I have just about managed to stop myself spiralling down the tunnel of Covid madness today . Talking of which I did have a call with the Papworth psychologist last week so we are going to restart our sessions next week with an online face to face. Probably good timing as I will be able to complain about isolation.

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