The Shopping queue

Last week we had no trouble shopping at the pensioners’ time on Wednesday. This week was different. The queue snaked round the car park like the queue in an airport only with tapes on the ground to keep us six foot apart. It took about fifteen minutes to get into the shop! Once inside it looked very normal and all we wanted was on the shelves. I know Easter eggs are not supposed to be essentials but we bought one anyway. Then I paid with my card as requested.

I’m changing spring cleaning for cooking this afternoon and making cottage pies. I’ll do two and put one in the freezer, if I can find room. My exercise yesterday was to the butcher’s, to get a chicken for the weekend. Tomorrow I’ll stay in all day.tesco lines

Time for a Review. Star island.

I know being retired means we should be used to organising our own time but even posting on line doesn’t seem so urgent anymore.

I would tell you all about the sparrow hawk that frightened the woodpigeons off the bird feeder but it didn’t stay long enough to get a photo.

Instead, here is a review of Carl Hiaason’s Star Island. He is a new author for me and perhaps I would not have enjoyed it so much if it hadn’t been a change from the gritty crime stories and soppy love novels that I have been reading since I was stuck at home.

All my books were picked up from a charity shop before the lock down and this is the only one I have really enjoyed. I don’t usually go for American novels, except for Koontz and King but it was a relief to find a book written with humour that kept the action going without pages of turgid description. It has been said that all his books are variations of a theme. If I find more I’ll let you know.

Meanwhile, if you want a fast paced, snarky jaunt through the social strata of commercial USA with paparazzi and drug taking, fashion and fame try Star Island.

Plant verse (thanks to the alchemist)

The Succulent and the Cactus

So tall and strong the cactus stood, it’s prickles daring all to try

To challenge it, but no-one could until a succulent came by.

So soft and green and pretty, she displayed a warm and loving heart

And nestling close, it seemed that he was wishing they would never part.

But oh, alas, t’was not to be for in a giant pot he grew

While she sat, lonely, knowing that to share a home would never do.

Her chubby leaves were all quite full of water, more she did not need-

Keeping his thorns so sharp, not dull, took light and heat and extra feed.

So strong and silent he stood by and watched her spread her arms out wide

Grateful that they were both up high in separate pots, but side by side.



Scones disaster

Well, I tried. Somehow fruit scones always come out like biscuits when I make them. Cheese scones work but not fruit ones. Of course I didn’t have self raising flour so I used plain flour and baking powder – obviously not enough baking powder. I want tall, fat soft scones – any advice? Luckily I only made six and as my nutritionist said we shouldn’t be eating flour anyway they won’t last long.

A life without flour or sugar seems to me like a life not worth living, especially as I don’t have a food processor. Tomorrow is the day for oldies to use the supermarket between 9am and 10am. I’m out of tomatoes and we do like a salad lunch.

I have done two lots of washing today and written part of a continuous story that our writing group have started. I haven’t been out of the house but may take the dog to the end of the road for my exercise allowance. Not sure this picture fits this post.Diesel at xmas

It’s a Mystery!

Further to my last post B Stayt does not seem to be on Google so must have lived before computers. Whether he or she was related to a present Stayt remains a mystery.

I completed my list of poems. They were not the same as any I would list nowadays – much more verbose, but then it was probably compiled in the late 1950’s.

Today is a day of washing and going to the pharmacy. I really ought to build an exercise programme now we are almost self isolating. The thought that this might go on for months is alarming. I even started colouring in a picture printed in the paper in an effort to be more creative.

If I hadn’t run out of sultanas I might even make some scones!

on the line


More ripping up – this time, poems. I found an old hand written anthology that I designed for children and the pages are mouldy with damp so I have listed all the titles on the computer and will chuck the manuscript.

However, it dd show me the kind of verses that influenced me when I was younger, an awful lot of Robert Louis Stevenson and some extra lyrical nature poems as well as the old standards like the Night Train and If. Looking at them now it seems I chose verses that were great to read out loud, a foretaste of the poems I write and read at the folk club.

Walter de la Mare also features:

“It’s a very odd thing, as odd as can be

That whatever Miss T eats turns into Miss T.”

Only one author stands out as more modern and I’ll have to research them B. Stayt.

Well, it’s more fun than ripping up paper!bookwormclipart

Ripping up manuscripts

I must be desperate. The house is so full of paper that I have started to rip up original manuscripts of my novels. After all, I have published copies. Why would I need the draft notes?

It seems that the virus has at last made me start to clear out stuff I have held on to for years. This must be a good use of my time but it is very depressing. It’s like destroying history.

I can’t feel creative since I wrote the Daffs poem. The only thing I have written this week is a menu chart for five days, just to make certain I am using what is in the freezer while trying to get a balance. This craving for sweet stuff cannot be a good thing. I’m only walking to the end of the road but I did do some gardening yesterday so that was exercise.

Now, what do I do with two sacks of ripped up paper?img_0244