We sleepily half-watched the Andrew Marr show on TV this morning, mourning the loss of a precious hour as we put all the clocks in the house forward. (Makes no difference at the moment, though, does it? Pick an hour, any hour; they’re all much the same.) On the programme, MP Michael Gove said he’d gone out twice, yesterday: once to do some exercise and once to do some necessary food shopping. WELL! And there’s us doing our level best to be good, leaving the house just once a day; combining our short walk with a bit of shopping – or, in the case of this weekend – shopping only. No exercise. At all. Both days. Not so good! Unless you count Googling Joe Wicks’ and Anton du Beke’s respective exercise and dance videos on YouTube. (I have to admit to being far more interested in their taste in home décor and whether we would catch any glimpses of their gardens or not.)
Now, some of you may remember a previous blog of mine, in which I went into the pros and cons of owning a cat or a dog, or both. It’s something we want one day but not just yet – the dog, that is. Preferably two. I like cats as well but dogs are more sociable. My point being, someone put on social media the other day to “get a dog”. She said hers had saved her sanity in the present climate: good company, exercise, reason to get out of the house, etc etc etc. Another friend, who lost her husband last year, said much the same thing. And dogs know, you know; they know that there’s something pretty major going on in the world right now.
Friends have said their dogs are unsettled at the moment. Next-door’s dog, who we sometimes look after, even came round the side of their house the other evening, to tell us all about it. (He often does this to check that his secondary food supply is still here.) We responded with: “I know, I know, there’s a good boy. Who’s a gorgeous boy, then? Who’s our favourite boy? Boo’ful boy! You’re SUCH a good boy to tell us, thank you!” He wandered away with a satisfied grunt. Job done.
Cats, on the other hand, are really only interested in the baby birds in our garden at this time of year and it’s a full-time job, chasing them out. They give us such pained looks of utter disdain and outrage while we’re doing it, too. (“Who the hell are YOU, and what are you doing in MY garden?!”) They kill because they can, not because they need to; the pampered moggies around here have got it all sewn up, I tell you.
A friend told me today about her horse, Lucie. On the day it was announced everyone had to go into social isolation and virtual lockdown, she decided she was having none of it, and took herself off into the next field to join the herd. Three days on the trot, she did it (terrible pun intended), until my friend found out which bit of fence she was escaping through.
On our way out in the car again today, to another supermarket close by (it’s a new hobby of ours), I spotted two women politely sitting either end of a bus-stop bench and wondered what would happen if someone else came up and also wanted to sit down? Would it be a bit like a never-ending game of musical chairs? Passes the time, I suppose.
We also drove past some local woods: a very popular spot for dog-walking and also – er – dogging; or so I’ve heard. Wonder if that’s been affected by all this as well? Bound to have been. As I said before, everything has a knock-on effect. (Look it up if you don’t know what I’m talking about, though I don’t believe that innocent face for a minute.) The cars were all parked very close to each other; clearly, they weren’t too bothered by the new rules of social distancing.
Much like yesterday’s foray, everyone at today’s supermarket behaved themselves – well, all except me, actually. First off, I tried to buy four of something (cereal bars, if you must know. I like them for breakfast) and was told I was only allowed three (I wobbled there for a split second – my OCD hates odd numbers – but needs must in these uncertain times) and, on leaving, I didn’t follow the separate “Exit” route and was frowned at and shouted at by two members of staff. I hadn’t noticed it, honest! It made no difference; there was no one coming in at the time. Rules are rules, though, of course. There for a very good reason (usually). Try telling that to Lucie!