Friday, 22nd July, 2022

[Day 858]

The day dawned today as one of those murkey looking days with a yellowish type of tinge to everything. We suspected that it was going to be one of those overcast drizzly type of days and so it turned out. We eventually decided that it would be a good policy to collect our newspaper by car, which we did, and then we made our way to the park carpark. At this stage, although the main rain showers had passed by, it was still spitting somewhat so we decided that today was one of the bandstand days to which we typically repair in weather conditions like todays. Two other groups of people had also intended to have a little picnic in the park so that they, too, also headed for the bandstand. This does have the slight disdvantage that there is nowhere to sit so I have thought of a little reminder to myself to hunt in the garage to see if we have a really lightweight little camping chair which we can take with us on days like these so that Meg has something upon which to sit. Needless to day, the sun was practically shining by the time it came to leave and we decided to pay a quick visit to Waitrose to see if any of our park acquaintances had finished up there. I popped my head round into the coffee bar area, saw no-one we recognised and so we made for home and thought we would treat ourselves to a quick viewing of the 1.00pm news before we started on lunch preparation. We had a simple lunch incorporating the one kipper fillet I had dug out of the freezer into a Friday risotto which used to be a staple for us every Friday lunchtime.

In my long, leisurely read of The Times over the last day or so, I have taken great pleasure in reading a commentary upon the important speech that Liz Truss made to the Food and Drink Federation when she was an advocate of remaining within the European Community. In this speech, she gave several detailed examples of the ills that would befall us were we to leave the European Community and the really interesting thing is that she was remarkble prescient, and accurate, in the things that she said before she ‘changed her mind’. Evidently, this is causing some glee amongst erstwhile Remainers amongst the staff writers and commentators. Of course, when it comes to a General Election, all of these just have to be constantly repeated back to Liz Truss and no doubt she will constantly asked exactly why she changed her mind (if not for naked political opportunism) and why she things she was wrong then (although she was right) and right now (although she is wrong) A rather shocking statistic is that only 31% of Tory MP’s actually voted for Liz Truss and, assuming she does become leader of the party, then some 69% of the parliamentary party of which she shall be the leader did not vote for her. To put it mildly, even some Conservative thinkers are worried that this will be a recipe for long run political stability even though loyalty used to the ‘secret weapon’ of the Tory party. In fact there is quite a massive tension between the ideological, Brexit-driven wing of the Tory party and a more centrist managerialist wing, typified by Rishi Sunak. To a large extent, this is a mirror image of the problems that the Labour party used to have where Jeremy Corbin led a parliamentary party here the majority of members had not voted for him.

I spent some of the afternoon exploring the email client provided by BT, now that I have eleven spare addresses ‘free’ provided to me as part of my new fibre broadband deal. If you look at the reactions of many users, there seems to be a consensus that the BT offering is terrible but as I am only going to use it fo the most occasional of uses (including quoting an address might eventually be ‘spammed’), this is not really source of concern to me. I have worked out a way I can navigate straight into my preferred email without having to go through the more general BT portal in the first place. I have also set up one auto-forward which means that anything that lands in my BT mailbox will be forwarded to my normal email client so that I can see what it is. Tonight, as we have our TV stitched into our new wifi-through-the-mains service, we are going to treat ourselves to an opera and see if we can get this viewed without any buffering problems which have plagued us in the past. I have one of those Amazon ‘USB’ gizmos stuck in the back of the TV and through this, I can access YouTube and hence to whatever operas they happen to have available. These tend to be very dated but nonetheless excellent productions, probably made 20-30 years ago.