Welcome to another Guest Blog
A Perfect Day in Lockdown by Jane Fielder
I am 70 and very fortunate. I have good health, an interesting husband, a wonderful garden – and a playground of a house full of exciting projects and ideas all awaiting time. Now, out of the saddest of events, at last, that rarest and most precious commodity TIME has emerged, and I am getting huge satisfaction and joy making the most of all the things I have been saving for years!
I’m up and down like a yoyo but I’m especially happy today. Little things make a MASSIVE difference. I was greeted by the most heartwarming, loving, hilarious letter and beautifully drawn card this morning, from my four year old granddaughter (written in her words, by her mum).
Names changed to protect the innocent, she said –
‘Say it’s by Betty Boo, artist extraordinaire, and also a normal person.’
Apparently she’s been asking if I’m normal, because I’m an artist and she thinks that means you can’t be. Well she’s right there, I’m certainly not normal! Thank goodness! That’s why my house is a ‘playground’ – others may think ‘tip’ and suggest decluttering, but I LOVE IT!
I like to do an hour or so’s sorting each day. A pile of rarely entered stacking boxes caught my eye.
The first – verruca stuff!! An assortment of tubes, files, blades… yuk! BUT I could use my fancy labelling machine, a brilliant gift from a son. It’s like the machines that appeared at railway stations, just after steam trains finished. You pressed buttons and a piece of metal tape came out with embossed writing on it, I LOVED those way back then!!! And I felt the same thrill, choosing the silver reel of tape and proudly printing ‘VERRUCA STUFF’. It looked splendid on the maroon box (ooh just the colour of an old steam train). The stacking boxes were themselves a much loved present from Granny Annie, sadly no longer with us.
The second box was cracker contents gathered over the years. They need to go downstairs, handy to send to the grandchildren in lockdown!
The third contained the most beautiful love letters from a very dear boyfriend, from way back when I was 21 and had just started life as a teacher in the early 70’s. A reminder that I once looked ‘inscrutably sphinxlike’ and ‘very touchable.’ Just what’s needed at the moment!
Next job – a heavenly picnic in the garden, with divine ham, fresh salad and fruits, delivered by Keelham Farm Shop yesterday. We haven’t dared go near a shop since lockdown.
A quick look at Instagram while lunch settles which takes us to 5pm! We get later and later! Just time for three hours’ gardening, sorting long-neglected borders, whilst hubby tackles a completely overgrown bed of st. john’s wort. Nothing better for keeping you sane. All the sad stories about the dreadful pandemic seem to evaporate magically once outside, as you become lost in a world of bird song, insect noises, delicious smells and exquisite beauty, colour and exhausting work. Everything seems perfect. You can forget.
In at 8pm for more delicious fare from the farm shop! This time beef casserole followed by rhubarb crumble… mmm yummeeee. Then we’re just in time to catch the last of the setting sun with a brisk walk along the canal to Micklethwaite Bridge. So beautiful watching the geese settling for the night and the ducks in pairs with their babies. One poor woman had NINE! Glad she’s not in lockdown!
Oh must just go a bit further to get my steps! I seem to be in a constant Fitbit challenge these days. That definitely helps, having to keep up with all the young ‘uns .
Back just in time for the news, crossword and bed. A perfect day in lockdown.
Jane Fielder is an artist, and recently retired founder of The Bingley Gallery.
She produces work prolifically and loves to play. She has exhibited widely, with solo shows in London, Dublin and Shanghai. Her website is www.janefielder.com – do take a look. She loves people, doing crazy things, gardening, tennis and of course painting and making things – and most of all spending time with her family and friends. She lives in beautiful Bingley, Yorkshire
If you would like to write your own Guest Blog, about your Life under Lockdown, I’d love to hear from you! Click here to see what you need to do. It’s more important than ever that we hear each other. And if you’re reading this, and thinking ‘she doesn’t mean me‘ – you’d be wrong. Get writing!!
Stay safe. Stay sane. It’s not forever. We can do this.
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