Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Lockdown week 14 - Monday and Tuesday

Yesterday we spent quite a while at Daughter 2's Edinburgh flat. The new carpets are now in the bedrooms - grey, neutral, to be a blank canvas - so we brought the beds back, which made the rooms seem more finished. It also improved the living room hugely, not having it full of beds. I partly made up the beds with bits and pieces that were around, too, just because it's quite fun to play houses.

The new vinyl is now down in the kitchen, so we struggled the washing machine and fridge freezer back in. Well, I mainly encouraged. Mr L did most of the struggling.

Mr L put up the new light shades in the hall.

He's also been recovering the dining chairs. What a star he is. The nice clean covers left by Daughter 2 when she moved out of the flat some years ago had been rendered indescribably filthy by the tenants. I found this green fabric in my cupboard and it goes well enough with the chair covers and curtains, now washed and no longer reeking of smoke. I hope the prospective buyers like green (as we do), but the walls are white and the floors are wooden so they don't have to love it, just be able to imagine the room empty.

And an electrician came and fitted a new shiny hob, which we hope will distract potential buyers from the fact that the kitchen is not new. But it's serviceable, with a newish oven and washer/dryer. The oven cleaning chap comes on Thursday. (I was surprised to by asked by Margaret, my American friend, what a hob was. This. What do Americans call it, I wonder.)

Then today we had something to post, so walked along the old railway track,

sat in the graveyard of Corstorphine Parish Church for a while - it's currently rather unmown -

and noticed that all the bees on the fuchsia were giving their attention to the tops of the flowers, not, as you'd expect, the polleny bit sticking out. The stamens? Then when we looked at the flowers, they had what looked like a wound at the top, as if the bees were puncturing it, presumably to suck out the... nectar??? I must look this up. The things you notice when you're not so busy as usual.

Then we strolled in St Margaret's Park, which was relatively full of people and their dogs, visited the post office and

walked home along the main road, which was actually busier than it looks here - though not as busy as normal. 4.1 miles.

Over lunch, we watched Nicola Sturgeon, our First Minister, telling us what she thinks we should do. I don't think she knows any better than the rest of us but she has to stand there every day and make pronouncements. I don't envy her the job, but on the other hand she did presumably want it, if not precisely the job as she has it now. Later there was a sudden announcement that the schools will be going back full time from August 11 (unless things deteriorate,which I imagine they well might) - which is quite a change from the previous plan, which was, I think, for each child to get three days class contact every three weeks. 

Meanwhile, as someone said the other day, we seem otherwise to be doing things exactly one week after England, which is her way of appearing to make independent decisions. 

I quite like her. She's extremely articulate - not an "umm" or "ah" to be heard, which is admirable. I think she's very bright. But she's a Scottish National, which we very much are not. A tiny sentimental part of me would like to be. But there's enough division in the world without inventing more, in my opinion. 


  1. I would call it a stove top. But most of the time it is not separate from the oven and together they are called a stove.
    I hope your daughter gets some good tenants soon!
    Our governor of Ohio, Mike DeWine, along with Amy Acton head of our Department of Health, did an excellent job of quickly making decisions that kept people safe. And they were excoriated by a hideous vocal minority. But most of us appreciate them.

  2. When I read the term "hob" in books from the UK, I often think of an open fireplace. But I am pretty sure that is not what you ever mean. I wonder if this is an older use.

  3. Kristi has explained it perfectly! Like her, we have an excellent and cautious governor who has been trying to stress science and safety, to enormous criticism from the right wingers. Now he is requiring masks in public, which will set off the crazies yet again. We've had a huge outbreak in some of our eastern WA counties, the conservative ones who don't believe the virus is any big deal. :( I love gray, so I think the place looks cool and serene. I like to put greens and purples with the gray to give it color!

  4. A cooktop, in Australia, although I would say 'you've left the ring on' or 'take it off the element', which shows you that I grew up with one of those hideous coil stoves that you could never properly clean! It looks like Scotland is taking a reasonably sensible approach, I admire the leaders who admit they don't really know and it might well change...