Thursday, March 26, 2020


Well, I'll say this much -- if we're all going to be confined mostly to our homes, it's helpful to have spectacular weather. Being outside is a joy right now, even just in the back garden. I actually have mild sunburn!

Yesterday I ventured to the big Sainsbury's on Finchley Road in search of provisions. I went earlyish, and I was in a well-spaced line waiting to get in before 10 a.m. (The store controlled the numbers of shoppers allowed inside.) When I was finally admitted, I was able to buy ground beef, a whole chicken, some fresh veggies and -- score -- a 9-pack of toilet paper! Woo hoo!

I also got a bottle of wine, although the normally widely varied selection was decimated and I seemed to have pretty much two options, a Spanish tempranillo and some kind of basic white. (I chose the tempranillo.) And purely on a whim I bought a bottle of blood-orange-and-fig flavored gin. Gotta stay entertained somehow.

I brought all the food home, and then went to Homebase, which because it sells home-repair supplies is classified as an "essential" retailer and thus not closed. (I guess if someone's toilet breaks they need to have a way to fix it.) I bought some batteries and a bag of concrete with which to make some stepping stones for the garden. (Lugging that home was a blast.)

I also rescued a flat of primroses that were passing their peak and were priced at 97p. They were a bit wilty yesterday, but I moved them to a planter and they're looking great this morning. Can a person ever have too many primroses? I say no.

Oh, and I rescued this campanula for the bathroom -- also half price.

All this did not preclude me walking the dog, who needs her exercise too. We went up to Fortune Green and walked through the cemetery, which I was happy to see is not closed. We had no trouble maintaining adequate distance from people, except on a few narrow pathways where you just have to pass a bit closer. In such situations I find myself breathing like I'm in a smoky room -- I squint my eyes, close my mouth and breathe shallowly through my nose, if I'm not holding my breath altogether. I'm not saying this helps. It's just my instinct to treat the air around other people as noxious.

Anyway, otherwise, this was the mood here at home!


  1. Such a glorious day. We're enjoying a clear and sunny day finally, as well. I've never found a flavored gin I've liked as much as the basic. That combination sounds interesting.

  2. "Woo Hoo!" is also my favoured brand of toilet paper. As for your question - Can you ever have too many primroses? I say yes! To lug heavy things home you need a canvas shopping trolley on wheels. Useful and they look so cool too!

  3. Glen got me some orange and fig flavored marmalade recently which is delicious. Keep us posted on the gin.
    What beautiful pictures! I love how you rescue plants. And Olga looks as happy as a dog can look. Sweet girl!
    Never too many primroses! Ever! Don't listen to that grumpy Mr. P.!
    Glad you got your toilet paper. Now you don't have to fret.
    Carry on!

  4. The sunshiny days make all the difference. Getting out there and feeling that spring warm sun is truly a balance to the madness of these times. Nice rescue of those primroses. Take care there and stay well.

  5. I'm trying to imagine you carrying all of that stuff from Homebase to your house. You must have some strong muscles. I love that photo of Olga sleeping in the sunshine.

  6. Olga, Perfect Stamp On The Post


  7. At this time I get a chuckle out of your comment, "The cemetery fortunately was not closed."

  8. I hear what Red is saying! Business is booming at the cemetery.

  9. I love, love, love that last picture of Olga! What a sweetie, and what a beautiful home you have.

    I, too, hold my breath when I must pass close by someone at the supermarket these days. I know it's probably silly, but I can't help myself. And I also punch the buttons on the keypad (when I'm paying) with just my pinkie finger....THEN I go out to my car and drench my hands in sanitizer.

  10. I love your new rescued flowers. They are beautiful. And Olga looks as thought she is really enjoying the sunshine. You got quite a nice haul at the market. Stay safe and have a wonderful day, hugs, Edna B.

  11. A person can never have too many primroses. Glad you were able to re-provision. We were up and out very early today. It took trips to two grocery stores, but I now have eggs, flour and sugar and happy I am about that.

  12. Blood orange and FIG flavored gin??? I haven't been this horrified by the English palate since my first trip to London in 1975 and went to Safeway on the King's Road and found rutabaga-flavored yogurt in the dairy case. I was appalled.

    But good luck with whatever you're going to make with that gin. Maybe just plop some ice cubes in it?

    Sweet Olga, looking like the canine version of euphoria. I'll remember to come back here and look at her to calm down when I catch up on the dip-shittery that is going on in Washington DC these days.

  13. Spectacular flowers.

    But that gin sounds repulsive.

    And Olga napping in the sun is a perfect way to end the day.

  14. Campanula! Another favourite of mine! And no, too many primroses is not a thing.

    The good weather just adds to the surrealness for me. Feels like we should be having earthquakes and hurricanes and lightning strikes, or at least driving rain, to match the way a lot of us feel inside our heads when we listen to or read the news. Actually we're in the midst of our second snowstorm in a week so not every day has been nice, but the snow doesn't feel like a disaster film the way that more severe weather does.

    How heavy WAS that concrete? Holy moly.

  15. Mitchell: I'm glad your weather has improved! I agree, I'm normally not a flavored gin person, but I thought I'd take a gamble.

    YP: Are you sure it's not "Loo Hoo"?

    Ms Moon: Even though we weren't yet in dire need of toilet paper, it was making me a little nervous that it was so hard to get!

    Robin: It's true -- the sun makes an amazing difference.

    Sharon: It was a balancing act, for sure!

    Padre: Olga is always the perfect accessory.

    Red: Dark humor!

    Jennifer: Isn't it funny how we do these things? And I'm not sure it makes a bit of difference.

    Edna: I was so glad to get our shopping sorted!

    Allison: Yeah, funny how some stores are out of certain things. I've found going to the big supermarket is much more productive than going to our smaller neighborhood store. (Which I guess isn't a surprise.)

    Vivian: Actually, you'd be surprised -- I made a gin & tonic with it, including lime, and it was quite good. I don't think I'd buy it regularly but it's not bad for a change of pace. Rutabaga yogurt?!?! Are you sure it wasn't rhubarb? The British don't even normally use the word rutabaga -- they call it Swede.

    Catalyst: It's NOT repulsive, surprisingly!

    Jenny-O: It was a 20 kg bag, so 44 lbs! I was carrying that PLUS plants. It was insane.