This week

While most of the UK are furloughed, unemployed or basically on holiday, I’m finding myself busier than normal working a solid ten hours at the garden table. I forget to stand up and have to unfold myself at the end of each day easing my back straight and stretching my legs.

Whatever happened to working from home being more flexible?

It seems there’s no excuse for being late to work, not attending a meeting, going to a doctor’s appointment or just taking a day off.

Holidays are a thing of the past as there’s nowhere to go.

I haven’t taken a day off since Christmas and have weeks of annual leave to take. Still, the annual treat of summer Fridays will be starting up in a couple of weeks and I will happily be taking Friday afternoons off.

As recession, rising taxes and unemployment will inevitably follow the fun times of Coronavirus, I’m just happy to have a job for now and am doing everything I can to hang on to it.

Getting back on track

As it looks unlikely that I’ll be going back to work in an office for a while, things had to be taken in hand.

I am now on day three, low carb, no booze and clean(er) living and I’m feeling much better for it.

It was getting too easy to drink on Wednesday (the new Friday), eat massive plates of food, do no exercise and take part in virtual quiz nights and cocktail making. All good fun but quite detrimental as the scales crept up and the mental health went down.

And so, time to get things sorted as things are not going to change for a while.

I have ordered a new chair as I need to organise a better work set up. The garden chair is doing my back in and the garden table is not ideal for a laptop on a yoga block. Not working well from home.

Good news today as we have managed to persuade the kitchen fitter to come and finish off our 90% kitchen next week. Great excitement as we currently have half a door on one cupboard and can’t open the soap drawer on the washing machine.

All this is looking positive and what with trying to find loopholes into France, we’re hoping we might even be able to go in early July.

After all, it would still be working from home.

VE Day Celebrations

Seventy five years later and we’re still banging on about VE Day. Will it ever be laid to rest?

This year Coronavirus has reignited the Blitz spirit apparently as everything is being compared to WW2 including Captain, now Colonel Tom shuffling round his garden and “We’ll meet again” having a resurgence in popularity. For goodness sake!

Walking across the road to our nearby park yesterday afternoon, I would challenge you to spot anyone in Lockdown.

No one was social distancing, football, frisbees, kids, dogs, bikes, sunbathers, picnics and not a face mask insight.

It was all there and while everyone was having a jolly time and it’s a bit like an extended holiday for a lot of people, what’s the point of shutting down the entire economy?

And so back to virtual VE Day where we’re all supposed to go outside for a singalong this evening, let me guess… We’ll meet again!!

Lockdown Lardarse

I am going public and stating that I am now officially a lockdown lardarse.

I have put on a bit of weight due to lots of delicious home cooking, lots of comfort eating, not exercising much and possibly drinking to cope.

Last night I dreamed I was the fattest I’d ever been and was eating food with a pair of kitchen tongs. Sadly not far off the truth.

Something has to be done before I can’t get out of the front door. Time to get back in shape and ready for release!

Hyde Park

Another Saturday morning and a lovely morning to walk to our new favourite place, Hyde Park.

A huge open green space in the middle of London, where, with few tourists in town, locals are widely dispersed through the long grass. No problem social distancing here.

And with a Whole Foods conveniently located near one corner which was like going to Nirvana after shopping in our local shops for two months, and a happy dog chasing geese and swans at the Round Pond (oops) a good two and a half hour walk was had by all!

A bit samey

As I embark on week seven, work from home, things have become a bit samey especially as this was only supposed to be for one day.

The weekend fun list feels a little repetitive although we’re still loving walks to Hyde Park and around west London. This weekend we walked down Portobello Road which was completely deserted and not the throng of tourists it’s been in the past.

I started Spring Cleaning just in time for the weather to cool off a little as we’ve been enjoying a strangely warm spring for the past few weeks.

Convinced the lack of pollution and jet trails must have let the sun in, it’s been absolutely glorious but sure enough, the next ten days look a bit more gloomy (normal) so perhaps I was a little premature in packing up my winter coats.

And generally the response when anyone asks is, “Same old, same old.”

There’s no end in sight, at least not in London where it’s hard to imagine how things will go forward as apparently there’s no going back.

Just another Monday morning…

 

The Weekend Fun List!

This weekend’s fun list looks quite a lot like last weekend’s:

Bake a cake

Paint/blobby paintings of flowers

Embroidery/dubious cushion cover

Clear out clothes/optimistically put winter clothes away

Hang new blinds in the kitchen (hold on, that’s an exciting new item!)

Walk to Hyde Park, stay two metres away from everyone

Friday night quiz with friends/drink too much

Saturday evening cocktail making with family/drink too much

And that’s the weekend sorted!

Lay offs and furloughs

Exciting new terms are being bandied about this week as we complete Week Five, WFH (work from home) WTF. Furlough keeps making me think of furrow, perhaps it’s the furrowed brow of worry.

For the first time this week, I heard mention of company lay-offs within my department. Contractors, freelancers and non-essential staff are all being considered for lay-offs and it’s fair to say that the longer lockdown continues, no one is safe.

Ironically I’m insanely busy but who knows how long that will last as the changing face of retail means that things are not what they were and the salad days are well and truly over.

We are discussing contingency plans, should the worst happen.

Do I start looking into a Deliveroo cycling career (I have a bike and a face mask) or head to Tesco to take up one of the supermarket jobs on offer (I am experienced after all)? Apparently we need 70,000 fruit and vegetable pickers as people are too posh to pick in this country and we’re now importing mask-wearing Romanians to come and do it for us.

So with another weekend looming, it’s time to write the Weekend Fun list!

 

 

Kitchen Yoga

The kitchen (partially finished and partially furnished) has become the multi-purpose room. By day I sit and work on the garden table on a laptop and the rest of the time it’s a room for cooking, painting, dancing, socialising and now, yoga.

I have given up on Joe Wick’s P.E. for kids which is on every morning at 9am. Too many squats for my liking and have returned to Iyengar Yoga having found a good online class which I can play on YouTube.

I rolled out my trusty mat this week and tried a few of the old poses. The (older) body remembers the basics and with practise I should be more flexible than I have been… if only the dog would get off the mat!

My first shoulder stand for a while, not quite straight. Agnes was less than impressed!

IMG_2688

 

A lovely weekend

This weekend we wrote the list of fun and crossed things off as we did them.

As the ultimate hobbyist I painted a few splotchy paintings of flowers and started embroidering a cushion cover.

I baked scones for the first time and cooked a confit de canard which took six hours of very slow cooking and was worth every minute of it.

We planted plants in our courtyard and walked around Paddington basin for our essential exercise. We discovered a quiet sunny spot outside a deserted M&S where we sat and had a drink.

It was very tranquil and quite relaxing until we realised we were sitting in the shadow of St Mary’s hospital and the chimney above us might have been the crematorium. Epicentre? Possibly not the best place to sit.

Essential exercise continued on Sunday as we headed off to Hyde Park. We skulked down the back streets and kept to our obligatory two metres in order to avoid contamination.

Luckily Spring wasn’t on lockdown as the weather was beautiful and the flowers were in full bloom.

And with all that done, it was a busy weekend with hardly enough time to watch the news.