Trying to help

So are you out and about now? Apparently, all the young people are taking the loosening of lockdown as an invitation to spend Saturday Nights fighting like Elton John on eight pints of lager. FOW1, who is a manager in a well-known chain of food/drink hostelries, says everything is fine during the day. Lots of beer garden-based, sophisticated burger/prosecco interactions. After 8 pm – it’s like one of those terrible Netflix Armageddon things where people act like they have been let out of an underground cell and must fight to the death to never to go back. Social distancing apparently becomes an alien concept and groups of twelve are coming in and moving tables together, only to be personally affronted when some poor waitress – who has been wearing a mask for her whole shift and it totally at the end of it – explains to them that sitting on each others’ knees will not be acceptable.

Where are you on the whole “mask/no mask” debate? I am wearing mine more and more in shops because I get the feeling that I should. I think they are mandatory in Scotland now which looks very decisive. I just wish I could get over the feeling that, when it comes to the Scottish government, they are more motivated by doing something/anything to look more on top of things than Westminster, rather than the actual science. (There are those that say that looking more on top of things than Westminster is not that difficult but I have nothing to say on that).

We both always wear masks to see Aged Parent. Apart from keeping her safer, the idea is that she won’t forget that there is a pandemic on and will remember to socially distance. She would probably be better with the old distancing, if she wasn’t permanently suspicious that, given half a chance, I will be rooting through her drawers and making away with her bottle of Tweed by Lentheric and her secret stash of Tim Matheson DVDs. (If you are not sure who he is, this is her favourite film of his – Holiday for Love. I think he’s very big on the Hallmark channel and is usually to be found using his acting chops to nurse beautiful women through their last days, discovering that he really always loved the girl next door or turning from a ruthless businessman to someone who finds his fulfilment wearing Arran sweaters by the beach and romancing the local waitress. Listen, don ‘t knock it – he’s probably worth squillions.) Anyway, it is a rule of trying to be useful whilst at AP’s house – cleaning, preparing snacks, unpacking shopping, that you will be followed by AP shouting – “What are you doing now? DON’T go in there!” It can be very trying.

To be fair, she has had a trying week herself. The local befriending service has arranged for her to have a girl come and sit with her once a week to talk to. These are usually young girls who are doing social care at university and are still at the stage where all old people are basically loveable rogues as far as they are concerned so it usually starts off really well. The student obviously isn’t able to start yet but everything is in place. Then AP got a call from the service. “They asked me if I was gay.” I’m taken aback for a moment I must admit but then I realise that it’s one of those diversity questionnaires that the service will have to fill out. I try to explain but, at the moment, she is still a bit suspicious. “They better not send me anyone who thinks I am gay and in the market for anything like that.” Well indeed.

This week, I tried to tell her how to switch the DVD on and off. HOH has set it so that when she has finished watching and switches it off, it automatically defaults back to the telly so she can spend happy afternoons tutting at Loose Women and getting frightened by the Covid spike in Australia. All she has to do is switch it on at the power button, put the DVD in then switch it off at the end. In a socially distanced way, I tried to help her pressing the buttons. Two buttons. On/off and open.

AP……Which do I press?

Me……That one. (Pointing from a distance)

AP……(Pushing button not even in general vicinity) This one?

Me……Nooo. It’s the one you have your finger on now but aren’t pushing.

AP……(Moving finger away from correct button) This one then?

Me……No. Why did you move your finger?

AP……(Quite snappish now) Because YOU said it was wrong. (Presses completely different button and ejects Charlton Heston before he has even got going with the first commandment)

Me……Are you doing this on purpose?

AP……I’m not convinced you have any idea how to work this. Where’s Colin? He’d better not be going through my drawers in that bathroom.

Is anyone else tired? Have a good week.



  1. July 13, 2020 / 6:44 am

    Feeling AP myself. OH added’better sound system than the TV built in one’. I now have to negotiate three different, almost identical, remote controls just to watch Pointless. Went into local town on Saturday with daughter and granddaughter. Masked up like Butch and Sundance. (not Rosie) First time since February. Most shops open, with hand sanitiser dispensers and arrows on floor and distance markings. 80% of people appeared to be acting as they always have done. We saw less than a dozen other mask wearers. Daughter was really stressed by it all. We concluded that many people in rural areas have little or no personal experience of covid19 so don’t really take it seriously. She actually heard it called London Germs. My local MP, Christopher Chope was on the radio explaining why we don’t need it to be mandatory in shops. I shouted at him. The man has no idea. He is 73 and I’m not sure he should be out and about anyway.

    • lesleyps91
      July 13, 2020 / 8:07 pm

      Isn’t Christopher Chope the upskirting man? Not exactly the fount of all wisdom then is he?

  2. July 13, 2020 / 10:54 am

    They say, and I’m inclined to agree, that Nicola Sturgeon is the only politician who has her hands firmly on the Covid rules.
    I cannot imagine why M.Gove said that we dont need to have a law about mask wearing, ‘we must trust to people’s common sense’??

    • lesleyps91
      July 13, 2020 / 8:05 pm

      Because there’s been so much common sense around – or maybe not.

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