Hello from Eastbourne

Macrae children

An exciting week, by Franklin Lewis Macrae


We have had an exciting week. The weather was nice and we went to Cow Gap (Beastie Cove). Marli and I were allowed to clamber over some bigger rocks while mum watched. We're not allowed to get near the cliffs or climb the cliffs because they are chalky and crumbly and fall away. If they weren't dangerous though, I would definitely climb the cliffs. If you throw a piece of cliff rock, it breaks in the air! They are extremely weak.

Afterwards, I scavenged for sea junk for my robot. There is always a pile of sea junk on the beach because some people pick it up and put it all in one place then collect it later. I wanted to take an old lobster pot but my mum wouldn't let me. There were huge bits of a car and I took some metal bits. But then I asked my mum how a car came to be on the beach and she told us some people become so unhappy that they drive their cars off Beachy Head. I put the car bits back because I didn't want them when I knew that, they felt like bits of a tomb. I don't want my robot to have sad memories. I did find an old bit of pipe further up though and I took that.

Afterwards, we met my friend in the park and played football. He is coming to my house next week because it's my birthday. We will have a BBQ and then go to the park for football and then we will come back here for a dvd. We also had to go to Brighton to get my birthday present at the Lego shop because mum said they couldn't deliver it on time. We went on the train and had to wear masks. It was horrible and mum felt poorly because it was hard to breathe. Then the next day mum's Scottish uncle Bernard came to visit us at our house. He has webbed feet! I was desperate to see his feet but my mum told me not to ask him. The last time I saw him I was a baby and the twins were 12 but now they are 23! One of the twins inherited the webbed feet but I was told not to ask him either. They bought me a book about mountaineering and I started reading it in my bed last night. 

Stories by Marli Rose Macrae


This week I have been struggling to get to sleep. I'm lying awake thinking about stories I want to write. My great granny left me a special brooch and I lost it. My new story is about that brooch.


The Red Ruby Slippers by Marli Rose Macrae


"Once upon a time, I had a brooch. It was a Butler and Wilson brooch and it was red ruby slippers. Now, once I lost it".


That's as far as I've got but I know what I'm going to write about. I've been writing another story about a girl who is bullied at school and doesn't have a mother. They chant a nasty song at her.


Daddy helped me with my fractions this week. We also went to Brighton to get Franklin's Lego but mummy is taking me to Lewes to get a lamp for my doll's house. It has a wonderful  pattern on the lampshade like a Bloomsbury lampshade and it has a tiny battery so it lights up. Franklin is such a pain in the Lewes shops so he won't be coming! 


From a very small Island

Michael Johnston, Isle of Wight

This week I have changed my approach to writing. My entry in the journal is being written entirely on Friday morning. The week has ended on quite a high note in many respects, because, looking back, it has been a pleasant, a happy and a creative time. Of course, the weather tried to get n the way of that, but its success has been insignificant. There are several factors that have created my general feeling of contentment, and I shall divide them into categories before I expand on them.


The first category has to be the most important of my life, that of well-being, or otherwise, in relationship. Perhaps it might seem odd to you, dear reader, but during a time when best beloved and I have met but little physically, there seems to have been a lot of love in the picture. The time has been punctuated by many happy phone calls to one another. We also met joyously at the beach hut for an enjoyable interlude when the sun shone for a time last Tuesday. Relationships with others have been happy making too and I am contended because my youngest daughter has returned to the workplace and is seeming to find that good.


Music has brought a lot of satisfaction. I have played banjo and guitar for many years and was involved in an earlier pandemic - that of folk music - back in the 1960s. The lock down has provided great opportunity to revive this interest, particularly with regard to the banjo - I play a 5-string bluegrass instrument. Anyway, the past week yielded some real progress with this personal revival. Before the plague, I and two friends were planning to form a band of some sort. A couple of weeks ago we cracked the lock down issue by meeting, suitable distanced, in a double garage with the doors open. I had not played previously with the other two, they playing guitar and acoustic base, and found it difficult at first trying to get into the groove. Well, yesterday we met and cracked it! For a while we were really rocking, and what a joy that was! Also in the music area, I attended a Zoom pub open mike session on Wednesday and sang a song from the far off days unaccompanied, which was received without any booing I'm happy to say.


Another area of my life continues - that of being a computer nerd. The challenge continues to run as many obsolete operating systems as I can get running in emulation. For a nerd like me this is real fun and it stretches the brain quite a bit - certainly it beats Sudoku and crosswords for that. I think I will continue this for a long time ahead.


You might wonder - no perhaps you don't! - why a retired priest and engineer isn't writing much about faith. The truth is that events in my life over the past few years, including the plague, have dented what was at one time paramount. I haven't lost it, but my perspective on what is most important to we humans on this suffering planet has changed a great deal. This all needs to be ironed out before I turn my toes up finally - well it always is final isn't it! On that happy not I'm ending this missive now, wishing the best to all who might read it...


A View from Crazy Town

Chris Dell, Washington, D.C.

Giving new life to the old adage "you can take the boy out of Crazy Town, but you can't take the Crazy out of the boy," Dear Leader took himself off to celebrate the 4th of July at the graven feet of former presidents carved into the rock of Mt. Rushmore. Several thousand of the Faithful, sans face masks or social distancing, gathered to hear His Prophetic Words and watch the fireworks. Flanked by the lovely Mrs. Dear Leader's icy smile on one side, and the stony faces of his predecessors' gigantic granite-carved visages on the other, our Stern Leader delivered Himself of Traditional Remarks, destined to be little noted nor long remembered, focused laser-like on reinforcing national divisions, sowing discord amongst the populace, and generally stirring up his base. The Faithful in attendance responded as planned, in what may perhaps be long remembered and much noted as last The Last Hurrah (at least for many of them).


Mere days after this Historic Event celebrating ¡Greatness,! word leaked from Tulsa, site of the previous ¡Greatness! rally, of a spike of coronavirus cases in that fair city. Public health officials spoke ominously of "connecting the dots" between the spike and certain events two weeks earlier. Dear Leader had, of course, refrained from making any observations on the pandemic during his ¡Great! 4th of July Speech and was overheard back at the White House muttering that He had done everything in His power to ignore the pandemic and offer hope, and it was Unfair to try to hold Him accountable for any damned dots, connected or otherwise. Meanwhile rumor has it that there has been an outbreak of nervous side-eye glancing amongst the many Faithful who attended the ¡Greatness! event at Mt. Rushmore.


In related news, Your Intrepid Reporter was reminded how the pandemic can touch each of us personally. Brazil's very own Dear Leader revealed that after months of successfully defying the cursed bug, He had tested positive for the coronavirus. The news broke only two days after B-Dear Leader had attended the U.S. Embassy's 4th of July celebration. Photos of this event showed B-Dear Leader with his arm around the shoulders and leaning into the face of one of Y.I.R.'s former junior staff, now the U.S. ambassador. The latter is reportedly self-isolating while suffering a severe case of nervous side-eye glancing as he awaits test results. A timely reminder that Crazy is a cruel, but just, mistress, who will turn on even those who willing agree to serve, prostrate at Her feet.


Speaking of personally, Your I.R. also took himself off from Crazy Town for what Gentle Readers will surely agree was a week of well-deserved rest following months of intrepid reporting. Ensconced in the bucolic charms of Hillsdale, NY, Your I.R. lay down his burdens (content in the knowledge that other Faithful Correspondents were already on the job in Hudson Valley environs) to focus on the local flora and fauna. However, like rust, duty never sleeps, and Your I.R. is compelled to report on his discovery amongst the local fauna of a previously undocumented species of "homo nimbyus." It would appear that one of the defining features of local denizens is outsized resentment against New York City dwellers and other Outlanders removing themselves from various virus hotspots and sheltering amongst the aforementioned bucolic charms. Intrigued by these findings, Your I.R. is considering extending his stay. Purely in the interests of science, of course.


Walking in L.A.

Antoinette Samardzic, Los Angeles USA

Trying to meditate in L.A. is no easy feat sometimes. Today a police helicopter is circling overhead, again and again it roars over my house and I cannot help anticipating its return. No sooner has it finally disappeared then the gardener next door revs up his chain saw to attack the hedge. At last I can settle down and focus on the sound of the fountain and the bird song. I'm endeavoring to find peace and solace in the midst of all the negative news. Are things ever going to improve? On Sunday my sister (who lives with us) went to get tested for Covid since her ex-boyfriend tested positive (the first was positive, the second negative and the third positive). He has very mild symptoms and is fine but we're still waiting for my sister's results which were promised to be available 72 hours after the test. Apparently, with more and more people seeking tests the average wait is about a week. She is asymptomatic but still...


Another way to find peace and calm is by walking our dog Chooch at a local park. At the top of the park is a saucer-shaped meadow dotted with oak trees. Every time I come here I'm reminded that this was once the site of the Baldwin Hills Reservoir that supplied much of L.A. with its water, that is until 1963 when the dam burst releasing millions of gallons of water down the hillside onto an unsuspecting community. Fortunately, the police had evacuated the area in the nick of time and there were only five deaths, as opposed to possibly hundreds. I suppose that's what happens when you build a reservoir on an earthquake spur next to oilfields to boot...


Mary’s Projects Mostly

Mary Hildyard, Bristol

I have been issued two £50 parking fines in one week!

It’s a long, Covid related, story. My paper parking sticker expired end of March. In past years, Bristol City Council has emailed in March suggesting I renew. This year? No. Too busy with Covid things?

And, of course, we have not been driving until very recently so it never entered my head that my permit had expired. So, in truth, the “parking police” should have noticed sooner and I should have been fined in April.

On Monday we found the first fine. It had been issued the week before! We drove to a glorious part of Leigh Woods that was quite far away, did our walk, and on return I put two visitor parking permits in the window of the car - one for Monday evening and one for all day Tuesday. I thought I could thereafter put a note in the car saying that I had applied for my renewed parking permit sticker. I figured it would take about a week for the sticker to arrive as the post is very slow in Bristol just now.

Then, while Simon made supper, I went online to try to get a new permit sent to me, only to find that parking permits are now digital in Bristol, i.e. no paper sticker. (Who knew? Did anyone tell us? Did I miss the email? Is this Covid again?) After about an hour of online messing about I got mine! Hurrah. No need to put a note in the window about my application. Now, just need to pay that pesky fine quickly as it is reduced to £25 if you pay within 14 days.

Well, then on Wednesday we decided to drive again for our walk. This was to be a recommended Bristol walk along the river Frome to somewhere called Snuff Mill. But as we opened the car we could see taped to the windscreen a second £50 fine notice! It appears that a digital permit is not worth the paper it is printed on!

Now on to challenge the second fine. And so the long dreary life of isolation goes on. Gosh it wears me out.


Orbiting: London

Robjn Cantus, Cambridge

A trip to London


At midday from Cambridge Station I got onto one of the cleanest railway carriages I have seen in years to Liverpool Street. Being so late in the day may have been why I had the carriage to myself, and even as I travelled south through various cities, no one else joined me, it was quite luxurious, I would say there were twenty people onboard the whole train.


It was nice to sit and forget about the world, to not be in my house and to feel normal again, even with a facemask on and the perfume of alcohol hand gel. The one thing I love about travelling by train is the views, looking into peoples homes and gardens, looking in at their world and thinking that the trampoline that likely means they have children, or the various conservatories and extensions properties have had. I even enjoying seeing how the blurred scenery changes from houses to fields and then to the industrial Tottenham Hale in a series of scattered wipes. 


Into a tunnel lit by white disco balls the train slides with a La Monte Young symphony of train break screams into Liverpool Street Station, the railway cathedral of Edward Bawden made of iron.


The station is now one way and the flow of traffic pulled me towards Old Spitalfields Market where I met my friends Mark and Lawrence. Lawrence runs an art stall. If you don't know the history of the market, there has been a market on the site since 1638 when King Charles I gave a licence for flesh, fowl and roots to be sold on Spittle Fields, then a rural village. In the Victorian era was known mostly for selling fruit and vegetables. The market was acquired by the City of London Corporation in 1920, to serve as a wholesale market and in 1991 the market was in the heart of the city and made it harder to trade from, so it moved to New Spitalfields Market, Leyton, and the original site became known as Old Spitalfields Market.


On Lawrence's art and sculpture stall was a had a painting by Fred Dewbury. It is odd how a painting catches your eye and the infatuation of owning something takes hold. I asked the price and orbited the market to think about it. Rather like my train journey in I kept seeing the painting from different angles and view points as I circled around. On the train the houses and trees were blurred as I was moving past and as people got in the way or the sides of the wooden market stalls blocked my view point I realised it was the picture looking at me. Needless to say I bought it, but it's rare to look at anything from such different angles in London these days unless it is St Pauls.


On my train journey home the same buildings and trees past me but it had started to rain and was getting dark, the stage scenery was the same but the lighting director had gone to work. The square windows of someone's home became Christmas lights for me, a glitter covering the towns as my train washed down the tracks like a duck on a river.


The Runaway Diaries

Sophie Austin

Art is Open!

Today we went to the White Cube in Bermondsey and sat on the glorious poured concrete floor and looked up in awe at Cerith Wyn Evans’ beautiful light sculptures. We’d had to book online but that was the only difference to an activity we’d do at least once a month in the ‘before’ times.

The gallery was empty, just us in the 10am time slot. It felt familiar but also exhilarating to walk in through the huge glass doors. It was a longed for privilege to enjoy an artists work in the flesh.

After the gallery we went to the playground, they have re-opened too. You swung with glee and slid with joy and I smiled at the other mums, but my heart sank a tiny bit. I don’t really enjoy being corralled into playgrounds and held hostage at the swings, trying to resist the urge to check my phone and feeling embarrassed by my inability to make small talk with other parents. Since the playgrounds closed, we’ve had to improvise our outdoor play a lot more which has led to immense puddle splashing competitions and motorbike hunting, I hope you will be happy to shun the swings every now and again so we can continue our more playful playtimes.

In other news, the government announced a 1.5 Billion pound rescue package for the creative industries. I’m afraid I awoke to the news with my cynical head on. I really want to believe that this money will be equally spread across the UK and community theatres and art centres will be supported along with the more mainstream (London) theatres, that freelance artists like me will have access to funding to make work as soon as possible. But I fear that the money will support the obvious and some venues will be kept alive without necessarily serving their communities whilst the grassroots companies, independent artists and those taking the most exciting risks will be left to flounder for a long while yet.

Whilst I wait to hear how this rescue package is going to rescue us, I’m cracking on with what I do best, creating an outdoor production that I hope will hit the streets of Peckham in October. We heard today that outdoor theatre can start up again from the 11th July, I’m frustrated that I don’t have anything to send out immediately, but I’m working on it!


Bumpy landing on the south coast

Catherine, Sussex

Monday: ‘O frabjous day!  Callooh!  Callay!’

Friday: ‘Groan.’

And all stages in between.


The previous week had been stressful, and so by last Sunday I took to my bed with a migraine - or was it a sulk after poisonous remark by equally stressed J1? Anyway, over the long weekend the Js packed up their life, contained in house and garage, and on Monday it was all taken away by a couple of men and their van. (I think there must be the opposite of a charm school for removal men, from which some graduate with honours). No masks, of course, on anyone except me, and lots of huffing and puffing all over my little house, taking any route they pleased rather than the ones I had carefully prepared. (I couldn’t not be here some of the time as there was a complicated timetable of parking-space hoarding, key-fetching and removal-supervision to be divided up between the three of us). I could practically SEE the airborne virus swirling around and was appalled and nerve-shredded. It has been such a months-long, wearying, battle to keep the invisible Covid enemy at bay. Several car journeys, too, back and forth; on the first, noticed chap in parked car in quiet spot, apparently looking down. Nothing unusual. Ten hours later, on last trip back home, saw that he hadn’t moved. Unconscious, couldn’t rouse him. Called ambulance; call centre lady insistent that I get him out of car. I said not willing, as only had insubstantial mask (already on), not gloves or eye protection (as in the shakiness of the moment I thought - in fact they were stowed under my back seat). Still, he was medically better off where he was, more or less upright, engine off and window open, plus first aid training emphasises risk assessment, and risk of my catching something horrible (my mind shouting COVID! COVID!) by grabbing him under arms, my head next to his, to drag him out, and of his crashing onto road, perhaps cracking head, was not worth it, so I declined, to her audible frustration. Fortunately, ambulance then arrived (only two or three minutes!), so was saved further argument. By then, was also beyond exhausted, and glad to be sent on my way.


Cor, what a day.


Tuesday I revelled in My Own House! But I was feeling rough, so was secretly glad that my offer to help clean the Js flat wasn’t needed after all. Despite three promises, two in my presence, that it would be cleaned before they moved in, it hadn’t been touched, and was truly filthy. The agent had had three weeks in which to see to it. But J1 rolled up her sleeves and, big belly and all, got stuck in, finding her rhythm. She is a good organiser, strong, and perhaps currently fired up by nesting hormones, too. She also chivvied the agent into sending a deep cleaner later in the week, although much of the work will of necessity have been done by then, and everything will have to be moved again for his carpet-cleaning part of the job.  


In turn I, after much thought, bought my own rather swish carpet et al cleaner. With a baby on the way all three households (the Js’, mine and that of the other granny, who will be moving here soonish) need clean floors. J1 picked it up for me and has already used it to clean their ‘new’ sofa, delivered from the local charity warehouse; she sent me a photo of the mucky water. I will be very happy to clean my own carpets after such a relentless procession of feet.


While at the Js’ I took away a dozen or so emptied boxes to clear some space, forgetting that the removal men had so recently been pawing and puffing over them. I planned to burn them (the boxes, though the men were tempting) one a day, in my garden. Once home, discovered my nosy stream-of-consciousness neighbour in her garden (with see-through wrought iron gate), so rather than use direct route from car to own garden via twitten had to do cunning roundabout throwing-over-two-walls to get them there without passing hers, where she was on guard. I just didn’t have the strength to be interrogated. Her friend just happened to pass by as I was on the second wall, and I had to feign enjoyment of box-tossing rather then divulge real reason. Then it came on to rain and I couldn’t leave them outside to become soaked and unburnable, so back into the house they came, rather than repeat the whole bloody performance back to the garage. Welcome home, Covid! It just goes on and on.


By Wednesday I realised I was properly ill again: unsurprising, considering the amount of adrenaline which has been coursing around my body for the last couple of weeks. I tried to take it easy but there was stuff to do, still clearing and cleaning after Monday’s invasion and upheaval. Had insane conversation with lunatic woman in council tax department; I was simply trying to claim my 25% discount now I am ALONE!!  But it transpired that in the initial throes of shutdown and ensuing confusion my direct debit hadn't been registered, so large arrears had built up. How can someone make something so simple so complicated? I was prostrate by the time I got rid of her, though even that was difficult. Then wrote email to department asking for clarification of conversation: hope it goes to someone else and that I get a sane reply. And then the Js phoned to say they had no hot water (surprise, surprise!) and could they come for a shower, please? More invasion after all, but I felt their plight.


Thursday, still unwell (decided to broach the much-heralded monolaurin in addition to my trusty echinacea, just in case), but did more clearing, wrenching my back to boot. Clever me. The binmen have for two weeks declined to empty the landfill bin, so I tipped out the contents to seek reason. Turns out Js have been putting wrong stuff in (I hadn’t been able to supervise their last past-caring throwouts, and anyway the rules are different here from my last town), so I had fun time - in the drizzle - sorting, rebagging and relocating. Also heaved old dishwasher, which has been gracing garden for weeks, to garage - via long way round, so as to avoid steps, balanced on ancient imminently-falling-off-wheels porter’s trolley. Urgh. Growing collection in garage of stuff for tip, a future joy for which I need to gather my strength. In the afternoon, lovely Danny the electrician came to continue work, but there is now more to be done by Karl the carpenter/tiler, as the socket screws aren’t long enough to anchor them behind the new tiles, resulting in continued dangling sockets and live wires all over the kitchen - oh deary me, yet another visit from outside to look forward to. That said, Darling Danny is hugely respectful, wears a good quality mask and keeps his distance. Karl is also a darling but slowly dispenses with both as the job goes on. However, they have both been very patient about the fact that amidst all this my card reader went kaput and I can’t pay them online until new one arrives in post. No one has time or inclination these days to faff about with paying in cheques.


This afternoon Oscar the plumber, a further darling, is coming back to replace a section of spaghetti junction piping under the sink, which unexpectedly persists in leaking. This is the result of the water now coming direct from the mains and giving the joints a hard time; the pressure practically blows the taps out of their moorings, and pipes all over the house clank loudly and ominously, every time one is turned on, despite my partially closing the stopcock. Oscar is not at all keen on his mask and it is more of a token presence. I have yet to break the news of the card reader to him.


I know all these invaders are of my own making, so I have no grounds for complaint, but they have gone on longer than I anticipated. Boy do I look forward to the frabjous day that my home is at last my castle, and I can pull up the drawbridge and put away the bleach. Callooh callay indeed.

Meanwhile. While laid up in bed in between traumas I have been watching David H’s (and others’) Once upon a Quarantine stories. (Please allow me to say that so far I prefer your delivery, David: you act the stories, rather than just deliver them.) Thank you, thank you! Just what I needed, and lots more to go. I also watched the four sonnets, which prompted me to read them on the page, too, and savour them. Seems to me WS (about 45 when he began them, seemingly) had procreation firmly on the brain at the time, finding varying ways of saying the same thing. Wistful, or optimistic?


Heard this morning, Friday, that  J2’s new (to him) and newly-repaired bike, his pride and joy (after J1 and son-to-be) and which he needs to get to faraway work, was stolen overnight (no insurance). Sigh.


From Twickenham

David Horovitch, Twickenham

I've had my haircut. I've been in a pub. I'm going on a train and a tube next Wednesday, out to dinner in Ladbroke Grove. The cricket's returned. And I'm looking after my friend's 23 old cat, Homer, while he goes up to Scotland. It all feels rather exciting. 


I've also watched myself on television as Leonato in the RSC's sumptuous production of Much Ado About Nothing which can still be seen on IPlayer for the next month. I'd avoided watching hitherto because a)I didn't like the idea of watching myself giving a performance that was intended  for a large theatre in a little box on my wall and b) I'd had some costume trouble that night (substitute dresser, collar stud, dickie riding up) and the thought of it embarrassed me. In the event, I thought the dickie was  quite funny and the friend I was watching it with didn't even notice. And the production was gorgeous, set at Christmas at the end of WW1 with pastiche Ivor Novello music and a Downton type set that underwent magical transformations. 


A lot of time has been spent setting up the sonnets website and emailing everyone in my address book about it. It's not the sort of thing I'm comfortable doing as I have a voice on my shoulder

saying -"Who the fuck do you think you are? Shakespeare's sonnets? Amnesty Internationsal? 'For anyone who's interested it's www.sonnetsinisolation.com and there's a link to Just Giving if you feel inspired to contribute to Amnesty International. So far, the response has been very encouraging and we've raised over £1000,00 in three days. I decided on Amnesty as I've always supported them and I thought they might be rather neglected in favour of other more obviously medical charities and when I contacted them they were were very grateful as this was indeed the case. Seven sonnets are on line, two more go on every week. I've recorded and memorised 53, another 101 to go. 


Can't manage much more this week. Love to you all.


Corona Diary

Annabel, A village in North Norfolk

Have not stopped all week. I havn’t even caught up on the diary. Have been running about for a few weeks now. 

Last Friday someone shopped the pub as they opened the night before they should have. Apparently there were about a hundred people outside on the street. The police came and closed them down.


The main pressure this week has been the time frame for the house I’m working on but in the end gave up trying to swap things and persuaded the client to put more money into the pot which made it easier. My other client today said that my own kitchen was shit but when I was spending his money it was a different story. Its true, much more fun spending their money.

Shopping is not easy at the moment, nothing is in stock, people are working from home or can’t go back to work because their children are at home so things are slow or semi shut or factories are only producing things now so there are delays.


On the news, Johnny Depp is in court in a libel case. Horrible seeing the inside of a toxic marriage. Won’t do anybody any good. Disappointing to see the frailties of people splattered about.


Bob Geldoff on the telly last night in a film about the background to Band Aid/Live Aid which I remember well. Refreshingly un PC. Geldoff eff ing and blinding, shouting at people until they submit to his will. Amazing they managed to pull it off. Very early days for satellite TV so was an incredible feat and full of complications behind the scenes. I am a fan of Geldoff. Love the directness. I like people who have that sort of energy. 


On a different scale and in a different way, all around Holt which is a little Georgian market town, really reliant on second home owners and tourists, there are big colourful signs. 

Love Holt, Holt is Open, Free Parking, Street Food Market, etc etc. 

With Budgens burning down to add to all its other problems the main car park is closed as it is the Budgens car park and is probably full of cranes now.

This is energy coming from my other client, the one who said my kitchen is shit.

He has put so much energy into all of this. Trying to get custom to the town. Trying to support the other shop keepers, trying to keep his businesses going and all the masses of people who work for him and get work one way or another through these businesses. It’s really a lot of people including all the periphery like builders and electricians, decorators and even artists and the money whittles down through the area.

I think it is very touching. People don’t need to put this sort of energy into things but you can just see it and feel where ever you look in Holt. 


Last week or the week before people were getting their take aways from Byfords and sitting on the nearby bench, so excited to have a meal that they hadn’t had to cook. Thrilled they were.

I have been in the shop today. I am remaining very polite but it’s quite exhausting.


Yesterday I was interior decorator till about lunchtime as the new room at The Pigs was going live. Always fun getting it all together in the last minute scrum. Then shop keeper and then in the evening florist as I had a couple of orders for bouquets. It was dark by the time I came in and they weren’t even finished. It was pitch black as I was watering the garden.


In the news this week Rishi has been distributing funds to the arts. 

There will be luncheon vouchers. Eat for Britain etc. Shop for Britain. Go back to work for Britain. Not quite the correct strap line but thats the gist of it. Have we ever been ruled by 3 word slogans like this before? It’s as if were all 5 year olds. Rishi seems honest and full of integrity. He may not be but it feels like he is telling the truth. Boris always looks like he’s laughing at us. He wore a mask yesterday. Think they may be made mandatory which I will be relieved about. I have been carrying on with my mad strimmer look and look utterly bonkers.


Love Annabel x

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