April 13th, 2020

me: wrong side of the mirror

Day 60/183: When time becomes a loop

As it seems to be for many people, the days are starting to blur together. Because they're on what would in the Before Times have been the school holidays, the children have gone completely feral. Since we've been on holiday since Friday and we have all of next week off, their parents have rapidly followed suit.

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Just to assure myself that despite being trapped, we have not been idle, here is a list of some things we've done in the past week.

  • Cleared off all the building materials and most of the rubble from the garden, and stowed the useful stuff in the half-built extension, hence the bloke being able to trundle the wheelbarrow across the (desecrated) lawn.

  • Finished planting out all the veg and clearing the beds next to the path to the playhouse.

  • Moved the salvageable plants from the shady area next to our current, crumbling wooden shed to make space for the new, larger, metal shed. We are assuming that this won't be arriving 10 weeks from the end of Feb as originally planned, but it would be nice to be fully prepared for it when it does eventually come.

  • Cleared the shady area next the crumbly wooden shed. Dug through the ground and removed stones, rubble and weeds, and cut back all of the surrounding vines and plants. This has taken me most of the past two days.

  • Ordered concrete slabs for the shed, and bark chippings and edging to tidy up the beds. It now takes over an hour to "queue" virtually to access B&Q's web site, so the bloke devoted an entire evening to this.

  • Spread bark chippings over the beds next to the path to the playhouse.

  • Painted the playhouse exterior (bloke and children).

  • Planted pretty flowers in one of the newly tidied beds close to the house. Humuhumu was responsible most of this and she did a beautiful job.

  • Had a number of Zoom/Skype/WhatsApp calls with friends, including Quiz Nights, Virtual Pub Evenings, and just plain catch-up calls.

  • Attended a virtual concert put on by a friend of ours on Facebook. Humuhumu watched it as well - he's a fantastic jazz pianist - so I think this might count as her first show.

  • Talked to our parents/grandparents almost every day.

  • Competed in an egg-painting competition with the bloke's family, judged by Granny.

  • Eaten a load of Easter chocolate. Yum.

  • Drunk our first lot of Pimms and lemonade, and had a barbecue. I think this might be the earliest in the year we've ever done those things. I'd normally expect this weather around the first May bank holiday, not Easter.

  • Watched the bloke's hair progress to Mad Professor level.

  • Took more Polaroids. We are now out of film, but I've ordered more.

  • Made cyanotype prints of things we found in the garden with some very expired sun paper I found in a drawer. It still works! H/t to cha_mel_eon for the inspiration.


We still have quite a lot of work in the garden to do. We didn't order enough bark chippings. The bed edging will have to be put in when it arrives. The tree peony has to be moved to its new home, away from the shed. The trellis and gate need to be repaired (visible in the photo behind the bloke). I need to finish weeding the side of the lawn next to the hedgerow and move the salvageable. That area used to be flower beds but we've decided just to grass the whole thing now that we've finally cleared so much of the rest of the garden. We should be kept nicely busy for at least the next couple of weeks. I'm finding it quite helpful to maintain a near-constant state of physical exhaustion.

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