Corona Chronicles ~7

Well my Corona Vacation is over after the weekend, and I have been called back to work next week. Not only that but I’ll be working full time for a couple of weeks as there is a list of 70 people waiting for me to do their earwax removal. Sigh. My boss has put/is putting new flooring in my little cinic- vinyl instead of the carpet that was there, and new furniture so things can be shut away. We will have PPE and a protocol in place whereby the client must come alone, do the handrub thing, wear a mask, and I will have a special mask and gloves and apron. I think it will be stressful to start with and then I’ll get used to it, just must make sure the patient is comfortable and feels safe (which I don’t, but they have to). I am dreading more hot weather, it’s already uncomfortable in my little room when it’s sunny, even without wearing all the extra gear. Roll on autumn!

It’s been nice here in my little cocoon of safety, haven’t done much really, lately haven’t even done much photography, just a few insta’s and iphone shots of Phil doing stuff. 🙂 He’s been on holiday for 2 weeks and also goes back next week. He’s been very productive whilst off, putting up a new shelf in my shed for me

new shelf

and painting our conservatory

it’s easy being green
doing the rose stencils

and also repairing the worn concretey stuff that seals the conservatory roof to the house

health and safety fail

and now we’re just going to enjoy our last weekend together before re-entering the new scary world.

I’ve been compiling a book of my travels through France last year, which we should have been doing again last week, and done a blog post for Sunday which took 3 afternoons to sort out.

Our hedgehog visitations are many and with a few different ones, the video channel gets updated once a week now, but I’m going to share this one here as it’s just too funny.

The news here in the UK is quite silly. Dominic Cummings the Prime Minister’s special advisor broke lockdown rules and lied his head off about it. Big uproar in the press and social media- off with his head kinda stuff, which, to be honest should have happened way before corona came along, but he’s superglued to Boris and it’ll hurt Boris too much to separate them. To try and shut the press up about Dominic’s transgressions, Boris has decided we can all meet up in groups of 6 in our gardens, still keeping 2 meters apart, but no-one is allowed in your house. I’m sure grandparents all over the land will make an outside toilet for the little ones to use.

The party people on our estate have been having BBQ’s all along anyway with all the great weather we’ve been having, so far they’ve stayed alive. Some but not all kids are supposed to go back to school next week, but our grandkids will not be, and a lot of others won’t be too. Parents not yet ready to believe in the govt advice and schools not sure how to cope. It’s a mess. Seoul in S.Korea sent their kids back a couple of weeks ago and are now in lockdown again because of the subsequent surge in cases. And I’m reading about 2nd waves in Japan & China, Germany etc etc. I think this is going to see-saw for ages, this thing isn’t giving up or going away anytime soon.

All we can do, is look after ourselves as best as we can as no bugger else will.

Stay well people, ♥️

The Corona Chronicles ~ 6

It’s been a couple of weeks since my last update, really nothing much changes here at Fraggle Towers. The rest of the country has changed though as now people can drive to where they want to go to do their exercise. Social distancing is supposed to be still ongoing, but that’s failing everywhere with public transport packed to the rafters as people who can’t work from home are now supposed to go back to work. My eye rolling is continuous when reading the newspaper, it’s all just bonkers. There will be a huge second wave I’m sure.

I am still mostly staying at home, and Phil is still working in theatres. He went in today and told me the traffic is back to normal, and he saw quite a few groups of people on his way home not doing the distancing. I’m thinking there’s a lot of people who either a) misunderstood what the advice was (easy when the government are such a shambles) or b) just don’t care anymore and are throwing caution to the wind. I keep my eye on the audiology group on facebook where there’s been tons of discussions/arguments about returning to work, the PPE we need for earwax removal and publishing of our governing bodies advice, which boils down to ‘go back to work and do your job but at 2 meters apart, unless you have to do face to face procedures when you have to have PPE’. Quite a few companies are opening up now and going back to doing wax removal, so I’ve done an online course in preparation which is all about PPE, donning, doffing, disposal of and the types you need for all situations. (Passed the assessment 100% 🙂 ) So far my boss hasn’t called me back in, so I will wait and see how she plans to handle it all before I jump.

Before lockdown I was forever on a diet, lots of salads and healthy eating, and a fair amount of walking, but that’s all gone out of the window, and I’m cooking comfort food. Annoyingly I haven’t put any weight on, which is a good thing really, but begs the question, what was all the depravation for??

chef’s corner

This year was supposed to be my year of film shooting, but that’s off now, yes I could do some rolls, but the lab I get them developed at isn’t up and running at the moment, so I haven’t the heart for it, but I’ve got a few instax films to get through as consolation.

I’ve also made a first attempt at making pastry and pasties, corn beef with veg, and chicken, bacon & mushroom, they turned out quite well and the one we had for dinner was so yummy! I am turning into a proper Geordie.

Pasty day

Also made a lamb byriani from scratch, (see chef’s corner above!) which was yummy too.

I will no doubt be appearing on Masterchef or British Bake Off if I keep this up. Not! 🙂

lamb byriani

We have had another wildlife addition to the garden. It started a few days ago with a commotion in our conservatory, and when we looked there was a magpie in there who had got confused tripping about in our blinds. He’s had some sort of altercation either with other birds or a cat, and didn’t have any tale feathers left, with a raw bum where they should have been.

I took a quick snap before placing a towel over him and then Phil lifted him out and put him in the garden. He seems to be OK and runs around really fast, which he has to do because he seems to be on the run from two flying magpies who swoop and attack him when they catch site of him. He is hiding in the Leilandi at the back of the garden, and they couldn’t find him yesterday, but today I saw them swoop into the hedge.

The Hunted One

I haven’t seen him yet today, so they either killed him off, or he’s keeping schtum. The pair of blackbirds who live in there and I think are breeding, are not too happy about it all, and Mr. Blackbird spends a lot of time patrolling under the hedge. We have nightly visits from hedgehogs, 3 different ones last night and I’m keeping the hedgehog Youtube channel up to date when anything exciting happens, mostly they just visit the feeding station, snuffle about and then disappear, but I did get some of the daft mating ritual which went on for 2 nights! There’s a lot going on in our little urban garden!

Hopefully, when the novelty of driving to places for exercise wears off for people, Sophie and I will have a meet up. Unfortunately she doesn’t drive, so it will have to be somewhere in Sunderland, I’ll be all right if I wear a crucifix and a garlic necklace. (Just kidding!! if any Mackems are reading 🙂 )

Well that”s the end of this update, so far so good, and Phil and I are doing OK. We are keeping well, and have our hobbies that keep us busy and out from under each others feet, and we get on really well when we spend time together, but I know that isn’t the same for everyone, so feel quite lucky in that!

Stay alert people! 🤣🤣🤣.

Stay tooned for Monday Movies next week.

Film Friday~ Lomography

It’s been a while since I’ve done any film posts. My rollei is in at the camera repair shop, and am awaiting news on whether it can be repaired or not, but I’ve been shooting 35mm film on my little Minolta Riva & Minolta 35 compacts,  when I’ve finished the rolls I’ll get them developed and see what happened!  I had more or less given up on instant with my polaroid cameras as The Impossible Project, the Dutch company which revamped the polaroid instant film has now acquired Polaroid’s brand and intellectual property and consequently the price if a pack of film has gone beyond what I’m willing to pay.   I had had a look at the Fuji Instax cameras, as the fuji Instax film sounds good, 10 in a pack instead of 8, and a fair bit cheaper than polaroid and the film develops quickly without shielding or waiting 5 or more minutes.  But in checking it out on amazon the cameras looked really naff, and the size of a shot was compared to the sized of a credit card, so I decided not to get involved.  But then somewhere along the line I read about the Lomo’ instant wide, and on further investigation learned that this camera used a wide version of fuji instax film, had extra lenses~ a close up and an extra wide,  and a doohickey that enables you to do double exposures.  So I succumbed, and spent my pennies on one.

It’s a bit of a big beast, rather unwieldy, with a bonkers viewfinder that doesn’t bear much relation to what turns up on your photo, so have burned a couple of film packs getting used to it, but I am having fun with it. As well as lens attachments there are a couple of controls on the back to play with, a + & – exposure button, a MX button for the double exposure thing, and a flash you can keep on or turn off. You can also use it in bulb mode, for long exposures and light painting, or choose a 1/30 shutter speed but not sure why you would. And the lens cap doubles as a remote control which is fab!

The main lens is a 90mm f/8 (equiv: 35mm) and the focus ring goes from 0.6m /1-2m /infinity

I like the warm tones of the film.

I attached the doohickey – actually called a ‘splitzer’ , and had a go at a double exposure

need a bit more practice at lining things up, and getting the focus distancing right.

I also cocked it up the first time I used it but ended up with this Ghost of Phil shot!

But best of all is the close up lens, which none of the polaroids can really do, with this lens you have only to be 4 inches away from your subject, and I think this is where I’m going to have most fun with it.


Film Friday is back! 🙂