Friday, 21st June, 2024

[Day 1558]

Last Wednesday, our domestic help had called around and whilst she was cleaning our Music Lounge and bobbling around in the vicinity, she could keep an eye on Meg thus releasing me to wander up and down the High Street in Bromsgrove to buy supplies of cosmetics and the like. As I passed the AgeUK furniture shop, I had a quick pop inside and espied what I think is called a tub chair on sale for less than £10.00. Probably at that price it was a PU (polyurethane leather) which is considerably cheaper than the real thing and so often used in furniture manufacture. But it would serve the use that I had in mind for it which is to access the laptop in our living room whilst having somewhere to rest my arms when I am not actively typing. As I sat down in the chair to test it for comfort and general suitability, an elderly couple approached me and asked if I was all right. They must have discerned a generally exhausted look on my face and my flopping into the chair and wondered if I had been taken ill all of a sudden. I reassured them that I was fine, paid for my purchase and arranged for delivery (at a price) the following day which was yesterday. In the late afternoon, I decided to give the chair a once over as I always do with newly acquired pieces of furniture. I first gave it a thorough wipe with one of those general purpose wet-wipes but was pleasantly surprised to discover that it seemed to bear no surface or shop grime whatsoever. Thereafter, it was a simple job to spray it with a general purpose silicone based leather spray (about which users used to rave on Amazon), pop a couple of cushions into its cavernous seat and then bring it it into use as I intended. The chair released now has taken a place by Meg’s bedside so I can sit and chat whilst having our early morning cup of tea. Last night, I am pleased to be able that Meg slept like a baby in sharp distinction to the night before. I am thinking that perhaps the spell of fresh air that we had in the garden in the late afternoon might have been beneficial. So whilst Meg was abed, I started to watch the football. On the end, I could not believe how lack lustre the England team happened to be after a 1:1 draw with Denmark which the football pundits were predicting would be an easy victory. It was not surprising that the team was booed off the pitch at the end of the match. The lack of enterprise was vividly illustrated when in the last five minutes of the game when every effort should have been made to secure a last minute victory, the England team were engaged in sideways passes to each other whilst in their own third of the pitch – hardly the way to secure a victory. Some commentators have seen a pattern here as in the last Euro football competition, a narrow 1-0 win on the first game was followed by a draw in the second game in the series. It is no wonder that I much prefer to watch Rugby Union these days. The Italy-Spain match, which I dId not watch, was by all accounts the kind of match that one expects in the Euro finals.

This morning I texted our University of Birmingham friend to inform him that we would be in Waitrose cafeteria for about three quarters of an hour. By happy coincidence, he was free for just about this period of time as well so we had our normal pleasant chat together. I bought some of the special low alcohol lager which is sold in the store and which I can occasionally drink without feeling guilty of excessive alcohol consumption, as it is only 0.4% but a superb flavour. Then we got back home just before the carers were due to arrive as I had a cunning plan to shoot off to our local Morrisons supermarket to buy some forest bark substitute which they had on special offer. This material is advertised as ‘Weed Control’ and is similar to forest bark being made with a mixture of wood shavings and bark ‘fines’ No doubt the suppliers of this kind of material need to be ecologically conscious these days but I reckoned that if I got a supply in whilst could, then whilst Meg is enjoying the garden I can be doing some gentle garden maintenance jobs. What I hoped would be a simple transaction turned out to be complicated as it needed a (male) assistant to carry one of the bags into the store to check the bar code (after a wait whilst person after person was buying lottery tickets) but eventually I finished up wit six bags of product loaded into the car. Meg and I had a salad lunch with a tin of ham which I like to keep in stock for occasions such as this and the salad was very tasty. Then, Meg and I enjoyed a spell in the garden as we intend to do when the weather is fair for us these days and I got the forest bark substitute unloaded from the car and ready for use. The very kindly and sympathetic nurse who specialises in Meg’s condition phoned up half way through the afternoon and, as always, she gave me some useful advice and tips how to overcome problems we have been having. After our spell in the garden, I sat Meg in our lounge with a copy of the Dr Michael Mosley book which I had purchased recently (‘Just one thing – how simple changes can transform your life’) which I am pleased to say that Meg is dipping into and seems to be enjoying. I thought I would buy this book as a sort of fitting reminder of how much good work Dr Mosley must have wrought throughout the world and I am still immensely saddened when think about the circumstances of his untimely end, dying of heat stroke and exhaustion on a Greek island.