Wednesday, August 26, 2020


Well, what to say about this year? It isn't over yet.

Hagos was somewhere in Scandinavia when the first waves of Covid-19 started to wash across the world. He was on tour with Ash, and they drove from Scandinavia to Germany, chasing cancelled gig after cancelled gig before finally on Saturday, in Hamburg, there was an urgency to return home, as fast as possible. They booked a flight for the following day, but even that was in doubt and as the enormity of the situation revealed itself, they ended up driving overnight through Europe to London (in their tour bus), then hiring a car to drive from London to Edinburgh (dropping Mark and Becca off in Northumberland en route).

The year had started so well with a New Year's gig in Dublin.

It was so much fun.

What I've appreciated this year, and has helped my mental health, has been nature. Our bird feeder has fed a woodpecker family and a magpie family, as well as lots of little birds. My favourites have been the long-tailed tits who swarm en masse and are so cute. We also had a yellow hammer, which we'd never seen before. And a nuthatch family.

A mix of nature and growing vegetables:

And finally being able to see friends and family again. The animal friends have been crucial.

We even managed to film a music video! If you Google Donkey Sanctuary, Kill Kill Daffodil you'll see a fun sight and a great tune:

I have managed a few craft projects: hand warmers; masks, of course; socks for my newest great-niece Myla Rose; a keyring for Rick (embroidered drawings by his daughters) Merchant and Mills Fielder dress, which I made from cheap Ikea fabric, dyed and then knitted the cuffs and neckband for (pinned on for now, still to be sewn on); kids' masks for Willow and Freya; bean bag chickens for two friends; a knitted phone cover for my work phone; and I've almost finished the second sleeve of the yellow cardigan. Mostly small projects, but I've made more than I realised.

And finally, we bought a piano just before lockdown. We did a crazy all day drive to the Midlands to pick it up. We were sold on it when we saw the seller's dad playing it in a recording. Lovely man. I've just started at the beginning of The Complete Piano Player, trying to erase bad playing habits and instil good ones.

 And now, the swallows are swirling in the sky, getting ready to migrate again. Always sad to see the swallows leave. The wild raspberry, strawberry, redcurrant, blackcurrant, and gooseberry bushes have gone over and are bare. We're waiting for the blackberries to ripen, along with the apples for cider-making.