Wednesday, 26th June, 2024

[Day 1563]

We knew that today was going to be quite a full day as our social worker and the care agency manager were scheduled to call around in the late morning to give another formal assessment. But first of all it was our time to connect with our domestic help who was as cheerful and helpful as always. We will not see her now for a couple of weeks because she is going with her husband and some friends for a week’s holiday in Valencia. We have visited this city on one or two occasions when we took a train journey just to see it when we were on holiday in Southern Spain. We tend to know these towns by their railway stations and by their cathedrals which are the things that stick in our mind. We also visited near Valencia a development called, I think, the City of Arts and Sciences built neat Valencia after a tremendous flood some time in the 1950’s. The City of Arts and Sciences is replete with what look like the modernistic buildings you might expect if (in the style of 1950’s comics) you were a visitor to Mars. In the complex there is an opera house as well as a science museum and much more besides but, all in all, well worth a while whilst in then vicinity of Valencia. So in the late morning, we had a visitor from the social worker and the care agency manager and everything went off with no surprises but in order to cope with Meg’s needs, there was a need for a tweak here and there.

Two technological things to report from yesterday, beginning with the positive. When the carer came to sit for Meg, this released me to go into town where I popped into our local audio dealers where I purchased a ‘signal splitter’ (which enables you to run two TV aerial cables from the same wall point) and a couple of little connectors with which to connect together some lengths of aerial cable. This being done, I brought into use a little portable bedside TV inherited from my son but now utilised for when Meg is been put to bed. The TV is installed on a little table and brought close to the bed and the bedside chair which means that both Meg and I can now watch TV close to her bedside. So last night, Meg and I finished off watching what remained of the Sky Politics hub which was shortly followed by the football. Whereas the night before, Meg had fallen asleep whilst playing programmes off the laptop, tonight she stayed awake until the end of the football, although to be honest it was the kind of match best forgotten rather than remembered. So it was not far short of 10.00pm when Meg set herself down to sleep and I think she slept fairly soundly throughout most of the night. Shortly before the evening shift of carers had arrived, the second pair of blackout curtains arrived so that now coverage of the relevant lounge windows is complete. I had a bit of a struggle with the ‘finials’ (ball decorations for the ends of the curtain pole) but managed to get them on just in time. And now for the negative bit of technological news. For a reason I cannot understand, the Wifi and consequent internet access has completely disappeared from the Lenovo laptop I purchased last January and which I use every day both to blog whilst Meg is otherwise occupied but also to read emails and the like. But without internet access I can do nothing of any value as Emails and FTP are also impossible. As the machine although refurbished is on a 12 month warranty, I wrote off to the firm which supplied it asking for a repair and/or replacement under the terms of the warranty. So far, I have not received a reply (which is perhaps not surprising – firms are always willing to sell you new stuff but returns and warranties just represent a cost to their business) so we shall have to wait and see what happens. As always, I will have to adapt my working day to the circumstances in which I find myself.

In the election coverage, the story about betting on the predicted date is gathering apace.The BBC Newsnight programme reported last night that up to 15 Tories have been implicated in this venture and at least one Labour Party candidate is being drawn into the mire, having bet that he would lose his own seat. The trouble about all of this as one respondent in a ‘vox pop’ opined the other day ‘they are all the same’ which of course they are not. I think the Labour party should mount a counter offensive to deny that they are all the same but it does seem that the sleaze infecting the modern Tory party is now being associated with all political activists. Tonight is the final head-to-head between the two contestants for Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer and I really do feel that voters remember the last encounter that they say so I think tonight’s debate is going to take on a particular significance. But Rishi Sunak is having to defend the actions of the members of his own party who have engaged on questionable betting exercises which means he has less time to bang on the drum of his traditional themes which is that electing a Labour government inevitable results in higher taxes.

As we are still in the middle of a warm spell of warm weather, I had Meg outside in the garden whilst I engaged in the last of what I call ‘heavy’ gardening. This involved clearing out a gully which represents the border between lawn and flower bed. I then lined the gully with folded black plastic (sacks), weighted it down with a variety of smooth pebbles used for a similar purpose in the past and now reclaimed and then finally gave it a topping of cream coloured stone of which I just happened to have one spare bag. Tomorrow, I can engage in the much less heavy task of spreading some of my weed control (formerly forest bark) to give the bed immediately outside our kitchen window a more finished appearance.