Saturday 2nd March, 2024

[Day 1447]

Today has been turned out to be quite an interesting day. We needed to set our alarm for 6.30am so that we were up and awake before our two carers were meant to turn up at 7.00am. In the event, it was one only but between us, we got Meg up, washed and dressed and then I got Meg downstairs for breakfast. On Saturday mornings, we tend to meet up with our Tuesday+Saturday crowd and again we had a jolly time. I recounted the story to them of the rules that the Womens’ Moral Tutor made up to keep the girls (i.e. female students) safe from predatory males and this just seems so quaint by the standards of today. I then popped around the Waitrose store to buy one or two things of which I knew we might run short. I also espied a particular low alcohol beer which Waitrose stocks but where the preserved flavour is superb and it is difficult to know that you are drinking a low-alcohol product. Whilst paying for our purchases, I noticed from the person’s shopping in front of me that the store was selling off some its ‘Cavalo Nero’ kale which I have not seen on supermarket shelves recently. The traditional kale was called ‘Hungry Gap’ because it was often available for harvest in February when last year’s greens were spent and this year’s had not yet been planted. This traditional kale was often of a bitter taste and I suspect the greens of last resort. But the newly bred ‘Cavalo Nero’ is bred with narrow leaves with a spine that is easy to remove and the flavour is generally superb. So I bought some of this discounted veg and we ate one half if this lunchtime to accompany the fish pie which we generally eat on Friday but we carried over until today. So our lunch was tasty this afternoon and I successfully persuaded Meg to go and doze on the settee in our Music Lounge which she did for about half an hour. Whilst she was in a deep doze, I took the opportunity to email the daughter of Meg’s cousin to ascertain how Meg’s cousin was these days and whether we might organise a joint family meal both to see each other but more especially to exchange relevant information about the family members for whom we were caring. Although I knew Meg’s cousin was in a pretty poor state of health, I had not appreciated the triple whammy that she had experienced. As well as advancing dementia, she is also suffering from a terminal cancer and has recently sustained a broken pelvis as a result of a fall. All of this means that it has become impossible for her daughter to give her the sustained level of care that is evidently needed, so is now in a residential home in the village where her daughter resides. So I am busy exchanging emails and we are trying to work out the logistics of seeing Meg’s cousin in the residential home. It may be that Meg and I motor over to the suburbs of Derby and see Meg’s cousin, after which we will have a communal meal somewhere. I have got quite a lot of photos of this particular cousin spread around various folders of photos and I shall and extract as many of these as I can once a certain amount of searching has been undertaken and this collection, once assembled, we will be able to take over to Derby if that is where we actually meet in a week or so.

Earlier this morning, we had been told of an organ concert that was due to be held in our local Methodist centre, principally to celebrate St. David’s Day which was yesterday, March 1st. We thought that we might go along to this if Meg felt well enough and our friend told us she thought it started at 3.30 in the afternoon. But one way or another, the same friend managed to get hold of our telephone number to tell us that the concert started at 3.00 and not 3.30 So we had a bit of a race around to get there in time but we did it, only being about 5 minutes late in the event. The event was not quite as we imagined it might be but was enjoyable nonetheless. Most of the pieces were actually Welsh hymns or at least hymns well known and loved by Methodist Welsh audiences with some perennial favourites (along the lines of ‘Cwm Rhondda’) interspersed with some solo organ pieces (naturally, by Welsh composers) The whole event took a bit longer than we anticipated, being about an hour and a quarter in length overall. But we finished off having tea and biscuits in the ‘overflow’ area such as we do each Wednesday. I must say that we found those attending were incredibly friendly and we were recognised as being Wednesday regulars. We had our cup of tea with our Tuesday/Saturday Waitrose friends and felt that we had a very entertaining afternoon, although Meg was getting tired towards the end of it.

The George Galloway circus rumbles on and there is a view that all of this might prove to be very bad news for the Labour party. In a rousing victory speech, Galloway denounced Labour and the Conservatives as ‘two cheeks of the same backside’ and claimed he had put Sir Keir Starmer on notice. He declared with characteristic Galloway passion: ‘Starmer, this is for Gaza. You have paid, and you will pay, a high price for the role you have played in enabling, encouraging and covering for the catastrophe currently going on in occupied Palestine in the Gaza Strip.’ What is worrying for Starmer in that many tight constituencies, Galloway might just away enough of the traditional Labour (and especially Muslim) vote to allow the Tories to retain the seat (which may cut Starmer’s anticipated margin of victory considerably)