COVID19

I haven’t thought about this blog for months. I only really write stuff when I feel like it or … well that’s it I couldn’t think of another reason. I don’t like to write because I have to, it’s not a job but a hobby I pick up and put down whenever I want then it becomes a pleasure and not a chore.

What can I say? We are already hurtling towards the end of April in the year 2020 and what a year it’s been so far. I am sitting here thinking shout the world and the situation we all find ourselves in now. It’s supposed to be that weekend of the year where we all emerge from the winter a bit bleary-eyed and bloated from the hibernation of the winter months. Fat chance.

Life is on hold while the Government scrambles desperately to find a vaccination to COVID19. I am trying to not watch too much news. I get despondent when hearing the grim daily death toll being announced seeing the numbers creep higher with each passing day.

It is usually when you have heard someone you know who has lost a relative to the virus does it become real. I said at the beginning of this pandemic that people will only take seriously when it starts to directly affect them or they know someone who has been affected. 

It is at this time when I looked to countries who have the ways and means to cope with the pandemic and take privilege, arrogance, selfishness, and superiority to a whole new level. Parts of the US have seen protests down to being ‘told what to do’. I can understand the need and want to work and provide for your family but when it comes to the expense of a nation’s health it is downright reckless and stupid. 

Even when you complain that the measures taken are too draconian and you end up losing your own life do some still believe it is some political ploy to remove ‘civil liberties’. 

My question would be to these protesters is if they could see the enemy and know it’s dangerous to leave their homes due to being taken out by a sniper or bomb and the government told them to stay indoors would they still complain about diminishing civil liberties?

The UK response to COVID-19 has been extraordinary where people have been organizing social events and looking out for each other in ways we haven’t seen for decades. The tremendous outpouring of heart-felt thanks for NHS has been amazing to hear. We are a nation who should be proud that we can rely on a service where at the end of the treatment we don’t have to worry about how we are able to pay for such life-saving remedies. 

 

 

 

Climate change

It is apparent that Climate Change isn’t something that President Trump is willing to take seriously. Pulling out of the Paris Climate agreement is short-sited and foolish. I know there are a lot of people out there that will be desperately disappointed at his actions.

When you dig a little deeper there is a lot of climate change denial that seems to go around the world and it’s troubling that it seems to run through the rightwing side of politics. Whether it is protectionism and a need to looking after your own this isn’t something that is going away or something we can pass off as a political idea.

Just for instance that you don’t think that global warming is real and that the ‘planet can take care of itself’ as one ex-Top Gear presenter once said. Just for an instance, you think that all of these scientists were wrong. Wouldn’t it actually be responsible, for future generations, that we look for alternative fuels that don’t rely on removing stuff from the earth? There is only so much coal and oil that we can remove from the ground.

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I got my electricity and gas bill the other week and it was the first time I noticed that on it was how much CO2 I had caused/used during the last few months. I was shocked that it wasn’t in grams or smaller amounts but a huge amount of CO2. Just me. Sitting in my own house. One out of millions just in this country.

So whether or not we care about the world we live in or whether our political beliefs lead us to deny climate change, we should take a moment to think that maybe in a hundred years time the people who are on the earth might wonder what we did to keep this planet healthy. Did we deny it and think that it’s someone else problem or too busy to even care.

Bucket List 2 (Update)

I checked my Amazon orders, as I thought my wonderful litter icker would be here today, turns out it hasn’t even been dispatched and will be here next Wednesday (31st). Not great when it was a prime order and should have been here next day. So I have put that bucket list item on hold for the moment.

I am sitting here waiting for the forecast thunder/rain we have been forecast. Apart from a small rumble, which could have been my stomach complaining, we haven’t experienced the aforementioned Armageddon. Then I thought to myself I know what I have always wanted to do and that’s storm chasing.

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Doing a little research on it though, it’s incredibly expensive – particularly if you have to fly to different countries to see where tornadoes and mega-storms occur. It is supposed to be a lot time waiting around and you’re not guaranteed to see anything. So it’s a pipe dream really.

Real fire

One of the things that I have always wanted in my house is a real fire. I know that from being at my grandparents house it always lent a cosy atmosphere to the place. Very homely. I was always put off by people say it will take a lot to clean and all that. But I have  decent central heating to the point that I don’t use the gas fire currently in my house.

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I am thinking of possibly an open fire like this or a contained fire in a stove and the technical name ‘inglenook’. There are three chimneys in my house and I know that there are fireplaces in each of the bedrooms. I might explore the possibility of opening them up again and using them on and off. Local council says that you have to use smokeless fuel and this is easily bought from firms in the north east.

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Last year my gas bill which includes the boiler for the central heating and a gas hob was approximately £800. I find this extortionate. I am being charged a fixed amount even if I don’t use the gas. What a total rip off. I know that once the fire(s) are cleaned and ready for use that I will look to see what the lowest possible tariff there is for gas. I could use it for times when the house becomes very cold. The amount solid fuel I could get for half of that amount would last beyond a few months during winter months.

 

Ostara

I had the misfortune of reading an article in The Sun ‘newspaper’ the other day that claimed that Easter eggs had been banned. They hadn’t. It was just another atrocious attempt by the right wing gutter press to get a reaction from the idiots that actually believe what is written in this so-called newspaper.

Christians have been bouncing up and down like demented Easter bunny’s today. At every moment I have looked on social media they are ready to implore that a preacher that lived two thousand years ago defied all laws of biology and science and came back to life after being brutality killed in an act of crucifixion. A version of a  Frankenstein’s monster is somehow seen as a way of getting rid of the worlds problems by delivering us from own thoughts and actions.

In my ‘christian’ days I would have been proclaiming this. I would have stood proudly in the middle of my town acting out some play or singing some songs thinking that I would be able to change the world and imploring others to join me. It was all a futile process.

I believe that looking at the changes of the world around us we should be thankful that plants are begging to waken from their winter sleep and animals will produce young at a time when in the northern hemisphere marks Vernal Equinox.

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Ostara or Eostra is an Anglo-Saxon goddess who represents dawn. It is a new awakening. She oversees the fertility of the earth and watches over births. The egg is the perfect symbol of fertility and Christians and non-so believers will incorporate this into Easter celebrations without really realising it’s pagan origins.

I love the beginning of spring as you can see blossom on the trees and daffodils rising up from the cold ground to give us hope of the forthcoming of time when new life appears all around us.

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Sunshine after the rain

Parts of the USA getting blanketed with snow. People stranded and others very sadly have lost their lives. We are at the mercy of mother nature and the ever changing weather patterns across the world. If you are in the UK you would have heard the news about the localised flooding which has caused millions of pounds of damage to peoples homes and businesses.

When you are in the middle of it all and you are seriously affected by it it seems like the pain and misery caused by the weather will never go away. People who have to literally rebuild their homes can take months and even years to put back together the life that they once new. Sometimes it cannot ever be the same again. You are left still with the mental damage that this has caused. My thoughts are certainly with the people who have lost loved ones in serious weather conditions.

This weekend has been the first time in months that I have felt ‘normal’. I was used to waking each morning full of anxiety and dread of what the day will hold. It took a few hours of that anxiety to go and somehow I would calm down. That no longer happens. I can wake in the morning and feel like normal human being.

After looking after mum and grieving for her you have to put your life back together. Things that were dismantled and put on hold will need to be restarted. The storm has passed but it’s time to get on with things and sort out that which needs to go and others things that can be salvaged. The key thing is not going too fast and making a mess of things. Progress of this sort takes time and patience.

Frost

It’s been a cold week. I haven’t been going out much as I have been recovering from a winter bug which saw me laid up in bed for the best part of two days doesn’t really help when you aren’t feeling the best in the first place. It was bad because I was waking up thinking I was back living at my parents and they, when you realise where you are at it, makes you feel like crap.

I don’t know what it is when I’ve got older I have become less tolerant of the cold. I was talking to a friend about this and they said it doesn’t bother them. Just put more layers on. I think it’s more to do with hardwiring in my head that has a lot to do with it. Trying to protect me and feeling safe. If I feeling I am a little out of my depth or insecure going to somewhere and it makes me uncomfortable for whatever reason it will cause distress. It is a self-preservation mechanism that kicks in.

The spring and the summer are great. Nothing better than flinging the windows and doors open allowing the warm air to go through the house. Sitting in the garden and admiring the view (when it looks nice and not like a council landfill site as it does at the moment).

Floods and the gays

It’s always a matter of time before someone pipes up and blames natural disasters on gay people and their wicked and dastardly ways. The UKIP councillor David Silvester is perfectly entitled to his opinions. I am also entitled to say that he is completely wrong.

One assumes that a god is ready to flood indiscriminately and even god-fearing people cannot escape because of a law that has been passed in parliament. Poor old Mrs Smith at number 32 had had her house flooded. She is a Christian who attends a weekly service; she gives to the poor and has a good heart. Surely god should have spared her in his pursuing of wrathful vengeance?

It is lunatics like Silvester that give Christianity and religion bad press in the eyes of the gay community. One assumes that places like Gran Canaria should have been wiped from the face of the earth by now.

Utter nonsensical garbage. It should be utterly condemned by all parties and politicians should remove themselves from speaking in such a way. It is for this very reason David Cameron was right in making sure that equality is for all.

Storms

So as predicted in the news there is a massive storm that is going to hit the UK on Monday. This has been mention on news channels, social networking and various other media outlets.

“Fail to prepare; prepare to fail”

I wonder how many stories we will get about those who have been stuck in cars or affected in some way by this storm when following the simple advice given has been ignored?

Like time and time again when severe weather hits a nation we complain and moan about everything has come to a standstill and we are held up by accidents and breakdowns on our roads.

So if you do venture out on Monday. Here are a few tips to ensure you have a hassle-free journey.

1. Check your car tomorrow (Sunday) not Monday morning. Check washer fluid. Make sure all the lights are working correctly. Make sure your car has enough petrol and oil.

2. Place a warm coat in your car. If you have a mobile make sure it’s fully charged on Sunday evening.

3. Leave the house 10/15 minutes early. If you arrive at your destination a bit earlier than you normally do it’s a positive thing anyway.

4. Listen to traffic news before you go. Tune your radio into a local station. They will provide updates.

5. Don’t use your mobile while driving and slow down if there are high winds.

6. Secure loose objects in the garden. Make sure shed doors and greenhouse windows are closed. The same goes for your house.

These are a few simple tips. It’s not an exhaustive list. If have your own tips leave them in the comments below.