18th March 2020

Sun pouring in the windows this morning, very heavy dew, but a great improvement on yesterday and Monday. I put the washing on. When it was done I stuck on my lovely new (to me), yellow wellies, bought from the Jersey Arts Centre sale a few Saturdays ago. They have Jack written inside each boot, I think they were used in Wind in the Willows, which I took Daniel to see the Christmas before last.

Anyway I plodded across the meadow that should be a lawn and put up the rotary line. It couldn’t be further away from both kitchens, and I would like it moved to in front of the downstairs kitchen, but when I dared to mention this, the look I got confirmed that it’s quite a long way down the priority list, if even on it at all, 95 I think he was heard to growl …

We keep losing things – my mother’s mirror for one, that I insisted I wanted to bring from the flat. I don’t have many mementoes of her, and it’s a nice mirror. I thought I remembered packing it in the van when we left, but we’ve looked everywhere. Later it was to be found fraternizing with the flatpacks in one of the bedrooms. Then I wanted to cut out the dead wood from the hydrangeas at the side of the house on the drive, and we couldn’t find the long handled secateurs. Viv loaned me some but later my secateurs were discovered canoodling with a large saw in the boiler room.

Viv printed out some forms for us in case we wanted to go out. Even walking a dog needs a form and you can only go 1 km. it’s a fine of 150€ to be caught without a form. Two lots of washing done and dried, very proud! Mike cleaned out the room he painted yesterday and put it back together. Very smart it looks, just needs some pictures and a mirror to make it liveable innable.

I cleaned out the upstairs bedroom he painted the first time we were here, but only after he had removed 2 peculiar looking large insects with lots of legs and antennae. Washed that floor and the bathroom upstairs.

Outside I raked the leaves off the pool cover and Mike got a bucket on a pole and took some of the water off.

Its going to be a long job, it’s been a particularly rainy winter here. We need a gardener and a pool man but I don’t suppose either can come in lockdown. I am in contact with a guy who does pools and who could provide a summer cover. Without that it’s going to be too cold to swim in.

Its been a funny day. On the first full day of lockdown, you could hear the sound of hitherto neglected gardens being tended – strimmers, mowers, clippers – all the weapons in the neighbour’s armory were out. I wonder how long this will last … Under the circumstances, I think we have to write off this year for letting purposes. Unless we get some interest at the back end of the summer, because people have to cancel overseas trips, we may possibly get some French, German, Dutch, coming down for a break.

Mike’s daughter Sue rang to say the UK schools are shutting as of Monday. Lucy, my niece, a Phd student in Swansea has very sensibly gone home to Derby. She did not want to be isolated in Swansea when she could be at home with Mum and Dad.

Mike made a good Chinese meal last night, the bigger supermarkets have a small section with Chinese food – noodles, bean sprouts, soya sauce – we enjoyed it for a change. The night before I did an all purpose fryup and kept it warm in the oven until everything was ready. Didn’t put enough protection on the wooden dining table and it’s left a ring. Very annoyed at my own stupidity. However, by coincidence we had watched a clip from ‘The Repair Shop’ advising that mayonnaise would restore wood after a burn, so we’re trying it and we’ll see what happens.

I made attempts to ring Orange but all I got was the irritating American female voice – ‘all of our aperaders are busy, try again layder’ – really pissed off. But what put me in a worse mood was watching the documentary on Dominic Cummings and how he seems to have masterminded and manipulated the referendum, the elections since and probably the crucifiction – what a nasty piece of work he is. Can no-one stop him and his bid for world dominance?