• neil

Day 10 (27 March) Make Do and Slippage


Time-keeping seems to be one of the first things to start slipping in our new lives. I am going to bed ever later and staying there longer. This morning I woke at 9 but stayed in bed going through gigabytes of messages on WhatsApp, Messenger, iMessage, Facebook and e-mail. Yes son people still use e-mail. Do I want to Skype, Zoom or FaceTime today? Have I seen the latest memes and videos? Suddenly it is 10 o’clock and I’m still in bed. Jump up, shower, shave, clean the tooth, feed the fluffy guinea pigs (aka R.T.R.s or reserve toilet rolls). Half the day is over and I’m not even on the bridge setting a course yet.

To Do List for Friday

  • All the things I didn’t do on Thursday

  • Quadrinity Check*

  • Meditation

  • Write the blog (this point seems a tad self referential. A blog where I note about writing a blog? Still, it adds to the word count)

  • Yoga from my Daily Yoga app with a lovely young woman who is spared the sight of her devoted acolyte. Dying Dog my speciality.

  • Go for a walk from the house - no taking the car anymore. It never learned to chase frisbees.

  • Clean out the R.T.R. cage (should I use air freshener?)

  • Read some Hilary Mantel. Spoiler - Crowell would have done better to self-isolate

  • Satisfactions**

Making Do

My grandfather, who served during both world wars in the Royal Navy, used to talk about “make do and mend”.

It would seem that we are going to be doing some of that ourselves. And perhaps it is no bad thing. We might come to the other side of this experience less willing to trash our habitat willy nilly***

This morning I had my first experience of making do.

Like all of you I have been staying at home. I have been out only for shopping and for a daily run. I thought I would take this a step further by doing online shopping, but clearly I am not the first to have had this idea and the systems are buckling under the onslaught. I have spent hours getting nowhere - and me with so many places to be. To cut a long story short (and bugger the word count), after having at last got the list together and accepted by the system I was informed that many of my selected items were unavailable and would need to be replaced by equivalent products.

So - and this where we at last get to the making do bit. Thank you for your patience - I was obliged to take crackers instead of runner beans, soy sauce instead of chocolate biscuits and tomato paste instead of organic beer. I do not pretend to understand. I am, like a dead fish, going with the flow.

Finally, the coup de grâce, the system informed me:

“No available delivery slots. Eat your sodding guinea pigs” Which I thought was a bit much.

So I am stuck with seventeen tins of various canned beans and am incredibly grateful to Joanne Wilson for sending me Jamie Oliver’s “7 new ways with beans for any meal”. I have provided the link. We will all be needing it.

Talking to Strangers

A delightful American lady whom I met on the Camino de Santiago sent me a link to an intriguing article in “The New Yorker” which might be of interest to anyone in need of a chat:


The beginner’s knitting kit I ordered on Amazon has still not arrived - what can possibly be delaying them? : ) So those of you who placed orders for the Sexy Beast Hat I’m wearing in the photo which accompanies the Day 5 blog entry will have to wait a bit longer.

Keep safe and reach out

Big hugs!



* A takeaway from the Hoffman Process whereby you start the day examining how you are in your emotional self, your intellect, your body and your spiritual self.

** A five minute exercise each evening. Write down three things you appreciate about yourself and three things you are grateful for in life.

***I have been determined to write “willy nilly” since beginning this blog. If you have any particular words or expressions you would like me to use please send them on a postcard.

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