The Coronavirus Diaries, 28th March 2020

When Celia and I met for our walk along parallel paths this afternoon we were trying to remember how long we have been on lockdown. Is it a week? Less? Time has taken on an elastic quality. Tonight the clocks go forward an hour and we welcome British Summer Time. However, March has got its animals mixed up. It is supposed to come in like a lion and go out like a lamb. After days and days of blue skies and warm sunshine this afternoon March remembered it is supposed to be the windy month, and sent me back to coat, hat, gloves and scarf. It also got my washing dry very quickly. Definitely more leonine than lamb like.

All the people taking their daily exercise allowance near their homes, are they becoming more aware of their local environment? Certainly Celia and I are not the only ones to stop to watch a crow gathering soft material to line its nest, a robin eyeing us from a low branch, sparrows clustering around a bird feeder.

It is both comforting and disorientating to see the non humans going about their normal lives. The swans are nesting by the lake in Burgess Park again.

Nesting swans

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The Coronavirus Diaries, Wednesday 25th March 2020

MasterB is one the sofa behind me – I am in my usual subservient position on the floor – and he’s snoring. The world may be going to hell in a handcart, but My Boy remains blissfully ignorant. That is only right because our current crisis is entirely human made. That’s globally human, or more properly, greedy exploitative humans who view the world as their personal breadbasket. So no, I am not blaming China, though an astonishing number of people who ought to know better are. I don’t include DJ Trump in that, because even if he did know better I would expect some sort of disgusting xenophobic blame game from him.

As is now my routine, I stayed at home most of the day. I did some shopping which included items for Celia and Charlie so braved the Walworth Road. I admit after reading this in the Guardian online I was worried. The market in the photograph it mentions is my local market’ The Walworth Road is the road at the end of my street, the one I wrote about yesterday with the too close queuers. So hardly surprising I delayed and delayed going out to buy some necessities- mushrooms, bread, tofu, capers – the usual sort of vegan stuff. Had I not committed to get a few things for Celia and Mr Celia I might not have got out of the door.

The Incomparable MasterB

I headed up the road for the tofu, past the supermarket with a longer, closer queue than I liked, past the post office which made me think the package I was carrying to post for Great Niece Number Two would be coming home with me. Most fellow pavement users were doing the same dance, slaloming from side to side to avoid close contact, slowing down to let some one get ahead or speeding up the someone was too near. A few insouciant types just ploughed through the middle, leaving waves of distress at the possible fallout from their behaviour. Celia wanted tofu too. Upon enquiry I discovered this was because she has liked the sound of the scrambled tofu to which I am somewhat addicted. Continue reading

The Coronavirus Diaries 24th March 2020

Another glorious spring day, blue skies, sunshine. Warm too. No need of a coat or even a cardigan when I took my exercise allowance late afternoon. I reckoned the later I took it the better, so that I had that break outside my home to look forward to. It seemed to work.


I pegged out my washing this morning, put the recycling in the correct bin, emptied the coffee grounds into the compost. Celia and I arranged a swap, I took a jigsaw for Charlie, some lavender oil for Celia and the current copy of the New European for both of them, and my hula hoop for Celia to try. Celia had dug wild garlic plants out of the garden, put some disposable gloves out for me and an empty jar which had had sage pesto in it I given her.

Looking out of my window when Celia called me I was surprised to see Javier coming into the garden. I assumed the garage was now closed, and my car keys locked up in it. As I keep MasterB’s basket in the car I was thinking it was going to be a problem if he needed the vet’s attention. It turned out Javier had decided to come in and complete all the work on cars in the garage and return the vehicles, and in my case keys, to their owners and then shut.

Yesterday Celia thought it was Sunday, and that was how it felt today too. Very quiet. Some people walking along the main road I could see from my street. Actually, when I did go for my walk there were more people about than I expected. There was a queue outside Oli’s, so it seemed the number of customers allowed in was being restricted. The trouble with the queue was the people in it were too close together. I swerved in the opposite direction and saw a similar too close queue outside the post office.

I quickly left the main road and returned to side streets where there was almost no one about, and when I did meet anyone, we all made efforts to keep apart. Admittedly it’s safer to step off the pavement into the road when you are in a back street. To do so on a main road could mean death from something other than coronavirus.

I have heard this evening that one of my relatives is recovering from the virus. She hopes she did not spread it far, had not been out for several days when the symptoms showed themselves, and is now hoping she is immune. Continue reading