Category Archives: Bloggers Log

This section holds the blogs that have been posted documenting the recent road trips I have undertaken along with updates of the retirement challenges that I have been set.

Mantras,Malbec & Machines

Careful what you wish for will be my new mantra for 2021. I had joked about the possibility of dispensing with the Gregorian calendar in favour of lockdowns of variable length replacing seasons & days on continuous loop rather than segmented into hours. On the eve of what looked like another full lockdown I think someone in charge must have heard & taken me seriously!

Like many I suspect I am trying to avoid scraping the barrel of my mental well being by searching for new things to occupy my time, while we continue to ride the covid tsunami with fortitude and minimal dependence on alcohol.

Joy, it seems is to be found in the oddest of situations if you count singing favourite songs while en-route to the local shopping mall to buy woolly tights. Might not be everyones dream day out but desperate times call for desperate measures. When impulsively deciding to visit a different supermarket to purchase pizza counts as ‘the icing on the cake’ for an outing you can be sure you’re reasonably close to cracking up.

It’s hard to comprehend that it was only a year ago we spent a fabulous weekend roaming carefree around Dublin because it feels like a lifetime ago. At no stage did I envisage my future daily routine would morph into one where the daily walk would be followed by a home workout that includes a foam roller then grabbing a coffee to hide in my office engaged in various computer based activities punctuated with bouts of juggling practice.

Conference calls also seem to dominate my world in a way I never thought possible forcing the little pop up message informing me of how much my ‘screen time’ had increased to frequently appear. It now seems to have given up the struggle. I imagine it to be hiding tearfully in a corner of my phone sobbing ‘I tried to warn her really I did’. Meanwhile the guitars sit like sentries waiting for the moment to be plucked from their rests for my amusement.  Even my juggling balls are now located on the route to the kitchen for coffee replenishment to facilitate a regular practice. 

My son took up darts to provide welcome screen breaks while working from home & rashly brought the board with him for a flying Christmas visit. Hubby insisted I dug out his antiquated set but they weighed a ton and made my wrist ache. I think is was all part of a ploy to knobble the competition as I kept thrashing him. I have managed to hit the bulls eye 4 times so far so my new darts are working well.

When in Cinderella like fashion son & partner departed before the Boxing day rules took effect he left the darts board behind. This affording me the opportunity to fling sharp pointy things at the wall to vent my frustrations over the ongoing situation. Son replaced his board & now we can use an app & FaceTime to play one another even though we live miles apart.

At 7 years old my washing machine was bordering on geriatric so research has began to find its successor. Embracing modern technology I used a live chat to be connected to a branch of a well known retailer only to discover that particular store didn’t stock the sort of appliance I was after. Not easy to fill in the automatic feedback form that follows as it strictly wasn’t the assistants fault but I am now back to scrolling through pages of technical stuff. Oh for the day when you could just go in to point & say, ‘I’ll have that one please’. So the search continues until I find the one that self loads, dries & puts away I guess so I might be awhile! Couldn’t wait THAT long so took the plunge & ordered what sounded best from the description.

Im not a great fan of new years resolution so I have converted them to ‘intensions’ one of which into try and finish the song I have been working on & possibly write some more. I will post the lyrics so far on the creative corner pages first music at some point to follow. Ear plug sales will possibly rise so invest now!! Take care.

Looking for Light at end of gloomy tunnel

Across social media it seems it’s not just me that’s currently seeking an end to this fairly dark and gloomy tunnel we all seem to be stuck in. Battling the wind & mud tramping across my neighbours farmland we explored the slightly bizarre feelings of ‘mental claustrophobia’ that we seemed to be suffering from. Before all the lockdowns & tiers were even thought of our lives were filled with a heady mixture of travel, exercise classes & all manner of other interesting projects & interests. Most of these it has to be said coming to an abrupt end as the shutters came down collectively on our personal freedom. Leaving even those of us who despite considering ourselves to be very fortunate feeling trapped & really fed up.

For me it has manifested itself in the wearing of skirts & tights to do the shopping rather than jeans to give a sense of ‘getting dressed up to go out’ to trying to wring out a sense of pleasure & satisfaction in completing the most mundane of tasks.

Highlight of the week was to put my new motorbike helmet through its paces. Streaming music & enabling conversation between rider & pillion whilst breezing along was great. However I couldn’t remember how to take a call & possibly wisely decided that the perfect learning opportunity was not whilst we were screaming down the motorway.

Given the plans for Christmas were mutating faster than the corona virus seems to be, we abandoned the concept of a traditional roast. Mindful of not wanting to purchase food that potentially could be wasted we opted a ‘Tex Mex’ meal with my creative daughter making funky tree decorations. It was a ‘good call’ as the latest rules did impact our modest plans forcing us to revise the shopping list again as the guest list shrank further.

So in the meantime I get to plod on with what has become the daily mix of guitar practice, conference calls & other computer related tasks. To give me a break from the tv I have watched a few streamed music gigs which were fun. It feels that in the last few months, I have watched more television than in my entire life (or so it feels). I was shocked to see I had registered at least 300 home workouts too which doesn’t include the zoom yoga classes either. I have taken the plunge and posted one of my short stories on this site and possibly will add some other things too. if i am feeling really brave the song I have written but I might have to issue a warning before listening notice if I do.

As I write this it is actually what is known as the ‘shortest day’ so that means the evenings will start to get a little lighter by a few minutes each day. So maybe there will sort of be some light after all? I certainly hope so. 

Wishing all who read this a very safe time as the end of 2020 approaches & if you normally celebrate Christmas the best you can achieve in the circumstances. Lets hope that 2021 is a whole lot brighter.