Not sure where to start today. I missed a grim demonstration of nature in action this afternoon, but Julia reported it to me. A small brown bird was chirping in the gutter, clearly trying to entice its parents to come and feed it. Suddenly there was a flutter of black and white as a magpie landed, snatched the little bird up in its beak and flew off. It’s hard to imagine that there was a happy ending. I’m not sur whether I feel sorry for the fledgling or regret that I wasn’t able to film it. Sometimes I am not a very nice person.
I spent the first part of the morning struggling to get to work through multiple roadworks. This was very annoying. Then I struggled to get home as a lorry had broken down on the Ring Road. Some days you feel more like a commuter than others.
We seem to have had nothing but news of people dying recently. One of Julia’s ex-colleagues died a few weeks ago and we only just found out and a neighbour died yesterday. Neither were covid related.
I looked up the crematorium in Gedling and found that they offer a range of products containing the ashes of the deceased. I knew you could get ashes compressed into diamonds at great expense (£1,400 for an amber coloured quarter carat stone to £16.500 for a clear 2 carat stone – plus extra for cutting if you want a more ornate cut of stone), but I didn’t know you could get the ashes of a dead relative used as the design for a paperweight. In a world that has gone mad with big weddings and conspicuous mourning, I don’t suppose it should be a surprise.
The Georgians and Victorians were very big on putting hair into mourning jewellery. However, there was a certain amount of thought and design in earlier times, which you don’t seem to find in a paperweight or pair of cufflinks. I would hate to think bits of me would have an afterlife as a piece of tacky jewellery. I really don’t know whether I should despair or laugh.
We had twenty three poppies this morning, but yesterday, having failed to deadhead for two days, only got ten. I may have to drop my estimate a bit, or deadhead with more enthusiasm.
That’s about it. Covid rates are rising again, the Government is in turmoil, a holiday company is going to take the Government to court because they haven’t put enough holiday destinations on the Green List, and I’m complaining about traffic and bad taste mourning jewellery. That, as posterity will show, is a truer measure about the thoughts of ordinary people than anything you will read in the papers twenty years from now. Covid will pass, but bad taste is always with us.
I haven’t slept well for the last few days, so I am going to go to bed after finishing this post. I have to be up early tomorrow – another blood test.
I’ve seen bluejays here take nestlings. As Annie Dillard wrote, “nature is red in tooth and claw”. I’ll add “beak” to that.
Blue jays, from what I’ve seen, are very similar in size and shape to magpies. but blue. There is obviously a niche in nature for their activities.
Modern mourning jewellery does sound tacky. Magpies are such nasty little predators – like all bullies they disappear when a photographer appears
🙂 I remember when I used to think magpies were rare and exotic, then they started to spread and our garden, once full of birds and their nests, became a wasteland.
Good luck on your blood work
I wimped out – just couldn’t face it. Am going next week.
Take care and be strong. Do it as it is necessary to help you get better.
It felt good to take control instead of being ordered about all the time. 🙂
I stopped watching the news. I’d much rather read about the real thoughts of real people and always enjoy your candid blog 🙂
Thank you. Yes, it’s much nicer interacting with people rather than watching misery on TV. I get to see all sorts of things I wouldn’t normally see.
Sorry to read that the Covid-19 rates are rising. Why is that, do you think? Good luck with your blood work.
When we slacken precautions, the rate rises. plus we had arise with the variant from India because we didn’t want to appear racist and cut off travel to India. We cut off travel to Bangladesh and Pakistan, but they don’t hav the financial clout of India.
Courage! We will defeat it! 🙂
Dead heading is the only way!
I hope that you get a good night’s sleep.
The sleep was better, thanks. And I’ve had a word with my deadheading staff . . .
Good all round.