Monthly Archives: March 2022

Z really loses Focus

Ronan ran into a problem when insuring the car, because they’d only insure a car that doesn’t belong to him if the owner lives at the same address. So I’ve transferred it to him a couple of months early. He’s got a savings account that matures in May. It’s all very easy to do online nowadays, i didn’t have to send anything in by post. So the car ownership is transferred and the tax has been paid. Tomorrow, the charging point will be installed here, outside the workshop and the next day I’ll pick up my new car, thanks to Wink who is giving me a lift to Beccles.

I have a lot of papers, dating back several years and Wink and I have been sorting them out. I need her to drive me forward, I start to panic whenever there’s something I need to attend to. I can do it at once or I hide from it. But we’re getting towards the home straight. I unpacked a couple of boxes that I’d brought back from Tim’s house, packed by our sister-in-law. I won’t keep everything and there’s a quantity of nice stuff for the charity shop. I was puzzled by a few items that I couldn’t place, I may have to check with her. But it’s nothing to fuss about. Tomorrow, there will be a live video tour of his house, which I don’t know that I will watch. It seems a bit much for me. Several people have registered an interest with the agents and I’ve told them they’re free to arrange viewings for the next couple of weeks – and after that too, but I may need notice to keep out of the way, if they’re arranged for when I’m down there.

I’m a bit concerned about mama cat, who doesn’t seem to be eating much. She’s very picky for a feral cat, but she’s eating less than usual, or seems to be. I love her very much and she’d be a house cat if it weren’t for Eloise cat’s objection. I don’t know how old she is – at least 8 but she could be a lot older.

Z loses Focus (the car, darlings, the car)

Wink and I took Ro out for lunch at his local pub, which was really excellent.  His small children were with us and the children’s menu was a decent one, including the option of the Sunday roast that Ro and I had.  The children were adorable and behaved very well.  It’s worth getting children used to being in restaurants, if possible, because they learn how to behave in company.  Young Perdita had fish fingers, mashed potato and peas and she pretty well ate the lot, and it was a generous portion.  She’s only just two, but she has a very healthy appetite.

The reason for going, in the first place, was to deliver my car to Ronan.  We had a quick run with it this afternoon – it’s the first time he’s driven an automatic and he didn’t quite know what to do with his left hand or foot.  It’ won’t take long for it to be second nature.  I’ve always alternated between automatic and a car with a clutch, it’s fine … mostly.  Next time I go to Reading, later this month, I’ll go in the BMW and it’s fine until, after a long time on the motorway, you come to a junction and, ahem, forget about the clutch.  I haven’t actually stalled yet, but there are a few instances of kangaroo petrol.

If you’re used to an automatic, an electric car isn’t that different.  A few things to learn, though, no doubt I’ll report back.

I filled up at Tesco on the way, because that was the nearest petrol station open. Everyone fills up on a Sunday at noon, it seems. I joined the shortest queue which, as so often, was a mistake. I appreciate that the new thing of taking £100 in advance if you pay by card is a problem for some, but if it isn’t then why would you not pay at the pump? No one did and they joined yet another queue indoors. But one young woman had problems before she got that far. It was splendid entertainment. She took a long time to even get out of the car and I can only think she was making phone calls. Then she did put in her card, got the hose out – and it wouldn’t reach across to the other side of her car. So she got back in, went forward then back, got out again, realised her rear end (the car’s, of course) was sticking out too far, went forward and back again, tried again and the hose still wouldn’t reach. I’m sure it would have, I’ve used them on the ‘wrong’ side of the car before. She tried to cancel her card payment, couldn’t, shifted her car yet again – and then I was able to fill my own car, so I didn’t see the rest, but she wasn’t there a few minutes later, so the floor show must have ended in success.

Z’s having a rare evening out

Last night, the blog wouldn’t load, either on the computer or my phone. This isn’t the first time recently, it’s annoying. So I gave up, went to bed and slept more soundly than I’d expected.

I went out to block off the chickens’ feeder a bit later than usual yesterday evening and found half a dozen young rats clustered underneath it. This is supposedly a rat-proof feeder and it certainly is no such thing. Wince had to do repairs on it recently as the legs were falling off and he had to drill new holes to screw them back on, it really was not a good buy. Anyway, I put a bucket with a tin inside to stop more food falling, because the rats will try very hard to outthink me, and went on to the cats, only to find that Zain cat had a lot of ticks on his head. I was able to pull most of them off, but the ones on his ears were too small. I bought a tick remover this morning, but it was fairly basic and was useless, so I used tweezers. He was very good and let me hold him, but it was tricky as he twitched his ears, so I haven’t got them all. I suspect muntjacs, or it could be sheep, they both get them a lot, but it’s odd that he seems to be the only one of the cats, he must have had a nap in grass where another infested animal had shed them. I’ve ordered a better tick remover, I’m concerned that Eloise cat might pick them up too.

Unnerved and dispirited, I was glad that I’d bought extravagantly at the deli and fishmonger. I invited Wink for prosecco and asked if she’d join me for dinner – she was already sorted out but suggested we each eat our own meal, but have it together. So I had dressed crab and bean salad and she had cod. I was going to have squid tonight, but remember now that I’ll be out at a concert, so have put it in the freezer and used the rest of the crab for crab cakes, with the rest of the bean salad, to eat before I leave.

Tomorrow, I’m taking Ro and the children – and Wink of course – out for lunch and leaving my car with him. I’m busily distracting myself from the knowledge that it’s six months since Tim died. A measured number of days means nothing, but it feels as if it does. It’s not really worse than any other day, though.

I’m getting a lot of enquiries for the next auction. If they all result in items being sent to me, I’ll have nearly enough for the sale already, which is brilliant. I’m waiting to hear back from a couple of people, have two more definitely and have another person to talk to, then just another 15 or 20 pieces to go. A nice selection, too.

Red red wine

Because Tim’s house is officially up for sale and it’s not easy to cope with. I’m too sentimental, but it’s because of love and respect and I’m not going to mark myself down for that. I know I’m treating everyone concerned as well as I can and I’m doing it all for love of Tim. And, though my heart is messily on my sleeve, I’m just going to let go and watch something engaging, if possibly trashy, on tv for the rest of the night.

Hunger at the Zedery

One always has to do everything oneself, or at least check on it. Not that it was Wince’s fault in the least, when he kindly filled up the chicken feeder, that he didn’t mention to Wink that it was the last bag of corn. I was away at the time and she was in charge, but there was no reason for her to know. It was completely my responsibility but, having been away in America and then in Reading, I lost track of when I stocked up. So I went to tip a new 20 kilo bag into the feeder last night and the storage bin was empty apart from bags of chick corn and oyster grit. There was enough for a light breakfast for them, but I had to go out first thing (no breakfast for me, I didn’t deserve it) and get them more food. It was raining, so I just took a bucketful of food for the day and have left the rest in the boot of the car for now.

The girls are averaging about 4 eggs a day now, so there’s a gradual buildup. I didn’t bother with pancakes today and I have fish at the beginning of the week, but I had an egg for my late breakfast and I’ll eat eggs the rest of the week to catch up. Thank goodness that fasting for Lent isn’t required nowadays (and never was in my family, I suspect my parents would have thought it a bit ostentatious) because all those lovely new-laid eggs would have to be stored for weeks and weeks. Lent is really at the wrong time of the year for those who followed it strictly.

The Arts Society lecture, as NADFAS is now known, is tomorrow and the friend on the committee to whom I made a half-hearted offer to help with the website will probably want to talk to me about it. If it’s complicated, I’lll have to plead old age and an inability to learn – which will be true if I can’t do it on my Mac. I can use a PC, just not very well.

We have been without a post office in the town for the past year or two – or rather, with a temporary one in a room of the Council offices, with only one postmistress (I can’t think of a gender neutral term and it does describe Fiona) and space for one customer at a time. Everyone else has to queue outside. The silly thing is that the proper post office building has been unoccupied for the five or more years – could be a lot longer, I can’t remember – since it was closed down. It moved to a newsagent, but that shut down, so it was homeless. Anyway, it’s been announced that the post office has got a new permanent home at the Gay Shopper, a small supermarket in the town, next to Boots the chemist and just behind the main bus stop, so it’s a very good situation. Not as good as the proper post office building, of course, which was always busy, but we are glad that we’ll be able to queue indoors and at least poor Fiona will have some company.

This week, I’m thinking of my family in America. Dan’s daughter has been having stem cells removed from her blood, for them to be donated to him to attempt to cure his rare form of leukaemia. They’re all looking on the positive side, he’s up for a long and gruelling time and he’ll have to quarantine at home for the whole year, only going out to doctor’s appointments. Victoria will have school, but Rhonda will be almost as isolated as Dan is. They’re facing it all head on, with courage, and there’s no alternative if he wants to live more than a very few years, it’s a very daunting prospect though. My heart is with them.