Monday, 24th July, 2023

[Day 1225]

Today dawned in the by now traditionally gloomy fashion. Both Meg and I myself feel a little ‘knocked out’ this morning and we are wondering whether we might be suffering from a cold virus. Why I mention this is because both my son and his wife are suffering from very bad colds at the moment and, as the doctors like to say, ‘there is a lot of it about’ Certainly, last night I felt very snuffly not having had a cold as such for months or years but these symptoms have abated somewhat for me this morning. But Meg felt a little poorly, so I encouraged her to stay in bed awhile whilst I got myself up and showered. Then after I had my, by now minimal, breakfast, I shot out of the house to collect our newspaper and to collect an item from Poundland of which I had need. When I got home, I made Meg some tea and I had my mid-morning coffee and then I showed Meg my latest acquisition. After visiting Poundland, I had made a lightning visit into the Salvation Army shop just next door to it and my eye fell upon a range of cushions which were on sale. But I immediately spotted a ‘stand out’ item which was a cushion complete with cushion cover and a very original design on it as it has a an owl applique-ed (if this is the correct term)onto it and complemented with a series of little owlets on the rear of the cushion. I gave it a spongeover and then discovered that the cover was removable and had been used to cover a complete smaller cushion in a quite high quality red fabric. So into the washing machine it went together with some other items all being washed on a cool wash with some extra spin so as soon as it is finished in the dryer, it can take its pride of place in our music room, where there is a location just tailor made for it. To help Meg come round a little, I sat Meg in one of the armchairs and then put on some incredibly soothing choral pieces (a lot of Fauré). To complete the aura of relaxation, I retrieved a little lavender aromatic candle which I lit and then Meg and I had the most a most wonderful, and soothing, half hour. Even so I say it myself, I am very pleased with the vareity of pieces with which I have furnished our music room. On one side, there is a ‘black and white complemented with blue’ theme, as we have our Panasonic music centre as well as our Casio keyboard and the various covers which I purchased recently complement the black and white of the instruments perfectly. On the other side of the room, the pride of place is taken with the double manual organ which is my pride and joy. Next to that I have a tall wooden standard light which casts just the necessary degree of light on the various instrument keys that is a feature of this type of organ whilst on the other side is the little mahogany table which I spent some time restoring. All of the furniture on this side of the room tends to be darker shade quality woods which form an incredibly harmonious blend with each other. Then, in a moment of inspiration, I popped into our lounge and ‘liberated’ the little plaster/plastic bust of Mozart that has been in my possession for years and which I probably purchased in Salzburg when we visted it decades ago. This little bust of Mozart, some 11cm in height, now sits on the corner of the organ and I hope that he approves of my efforts to master the instrument. Incidentally, Mozart labelled one of his most famous piano concertos (either 20 or 21) as ‘just for beginners’ which rather points to his own supreme master of the piano from a very early age.

Meg and I did not feel particularly hungry so we made ourselves a simple rice meal to finish off our ham from the weekend. No sooner had we finished our meal but I got a telephone call that turned out to be quite long and complex. After my making touch with Worcestershire Association of Carers, there had evidently been an onward referral to an Occupational Therapist who was doing what she could to make an assessment over the telephone. After all of this, she concluded and with some justification, that Meg probably needed a home visit so that she could be seen in the flesh, as it were. I am afraid I could have told them this in the first place but the experience of the past two or three weeks or so is that encounters with social service departments generally start off, and sometimes completely end with, a telephone call but in the end, people have to be seen to be properly assessed and there is a limit to what can be done by phone.

To further bring our politics into disrepute, two recent nominations by Boris Johnson have taken their seats in the House of Lords. One wonders what advice (or services) was offered by Charlotte Owen, the 30 year female recipient of a perage to deserve such an honour, because the vast majority of the political elite have never heard of her – and she can stay as a legislator in the upper chamber for the next half century.