I like it warm…

but not this warm! We have a heatwave in the South West of England. So we got on the ferry and had a small tincture by the sea. I was slightly concerned by the colour of that sky as I knew we would have to get back on the ferry and would rather not do it in torrential (if warm) rain. You may well have it hotter. We also have a tourist wave. Devon and Cornwall are officially full according to local police etc. That is, under COVID-19 reduced capacity rules we cannot fit anyone in.

It is a difficult balance, isn’t it? For every person leaning over a motorway bridge with a sign saying “GO HOME!” there’s someone else with a small cafe or B&B that needs every penny of the business. It seems to be a bigger deal here because the South West has done quite well so far with the old R rate (probably as much to do with the population density as it is the sterling work undoubtedly done by us) People in St Ives are particularly fascinated by tourists’ inability to keep to the left side of the street, despite lots of signs supported by stout and helpful ladies in green polo shirts called Barbara who are giving up their free time to help direct you around. (Mind you St Ives’ streets are notoriously narrow and winding).

Speaking of directions, can I just draw your attention to our local shopping mall – Drake Circus? (It’s Plymouth – Drake’s Island, Drake’s Square, Drake’s Place. The City Council were having huge palpitations when the Black Lives Matter movement turned their gaze on his troubling slave-trading beginnings). To follow the social distancing directions in the mall you need a good compass, Google Maps and if possible the services of Hiawatha or Henry Stanley. I keep finding myself facing the wrong way while I am trying to get into Waterstones and one person cutting across the lanes in the opposite direction seems to throw the whole shopping centre (all three floors) into disaster movie-level chaos.

Anyway, these are piddling things. I would just like to thank everyone for the remarks and prayers that you sent last week. I have deliberately not replied one to one because it didn’t seem appropriate and also it felt a bit inadequate. But I was moved and encouraged and felt the way people feel when they have been prayed for – which I have known before. So my heartfelt thanks.

I have had a week where I have tried to slow down and lament a little but it has mainly left me a bit confused. (And behind at work). However, I did have a lovely conversation with one of his friends from the Sixties who had gone to church with him. No-one had been in touch with him and I thought he ought to know. He lives in Torquay and we had a laugh about the holidays there when I was very young. Conversations like that are good for the soul. Also, HOH took me out for breakfast which we did in a socially distanced way – sitting outside (at least until the thunder started), ordering on the app (no provision to order sausage barm WITHOUT butter) and leaving details for contact tracing (pen and paper rather than “world-beating” app). It was very lovely.

I was a bit concerned about Aged Parent but, whether it’s dementia or the fact that their relationship wasn’t exactly Pearl Carr and Teddy Johnson, she hasn’t mentioned it – except to say that she won’t be going to the funeral. I’m not sure it was ever an option – for either of us. She was more worked up because they couldn’t get the DVD to load on the communal showing of The Sound of Music, to be honest, and I think that is a good way to be, taking into account all the circumstances.



  1. August 14, 2020 / 8:12 am

    Pearl Carr and Teddy Johnson… I remember them. Mainly because my impoverished parents had one of their singles. The record player had been given to them, along with a box of worthy Christian records… But they had ONE secular disc. PC&TJ singing Sweet Elizabeth. I was about 4. I knew all the words., and sang it incessantly in my tuneless way. She died in February aged 98. I am glad HOH took you out for breakfast. Signing the covid19 visitors book in tea shops seems such a quaint custom, I feel they should reintroduce Lyons “Nippy” waitresses in black frocks and dainty headbands… Feeling my age this morning

    • lesleyps91
      August 16, 2020 / 9:54 pm

      I’m ALWAYS feeling my age

  2. August 14, 2020 / 9:42 am

    They can’t all be called Barbara! I do assure you, I’m not one of them.

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