A gift for the binmen

Walking up the street this morning on my once-daily dog walk, all the rubbish bins out ready for collection, I spotted something a little out of place.

A bottle of pink bubbly, placed on top of a bin, a thank you to our refuse collectors. Those key workers we all take for granted at the best of times and rely on utterly at the worst of times.

I got home, raided the fridge for some cans of cider and put them out on our bin, with a little note attached. It’s the least I could do at a time when so many of us are doing nothing at all, apart from catching up on all those jobs we’ve been putting off for years.

I didn’t sleep well last night after hearing the news that our prime minister is in intensive care after his coronavirus symptoms have worsened. I’m not a Boris fan, and I didn’t vote for him, but it’s a terrible situation for the country, as well as for his family.

I thought momentarily, almost blasphemously, that if he comes out the other side he will be invincible, a Winston Churchill for a post Covid-19 age and be in power as long as Putin. I rapidly banished these conspiracy theory thoughts to focus on the fact that our country, our world, is in crisis, and our leader is in St Thomas’ Hospital, struck down by a virus that looks like the Clangers planet but has the destroying power of the Death Star.

Get well soon, Boris, your country needs you.

Meanwhile, in other news, I’ve been challenged by three Facebook friends to post a picture of myself to demonstrate that women are supportive and not critical of one another’s looks.

It’s a nice thought, and thank you for asking me, lovely ladies, but I avoid chain requests like the coronavirus, especially where selfies are concerned.

What Facebook needs now is wall-to-wall pictures of all of us with our families and friends having fun, before we forget what that looks like.

Here’s one of mine.

Now you’ll understand why I don’t do selfies.

That’s about it.

Love Maddie x

Lasting respect for the NHS

Last night, the whole Square turned out to clap their hands and rattle those pots and pans to support our NHS and other keyworkers for carrying on working in this world crisis.

It began with a ripple further up the village and then everyone was at it, even a doctor at the bottom of the lane with a gong.

This celebration of our NHS is now going to happen every week during the lockdown. But, as my GP niece said on social media, thanks for the applause – but I just wish people would listen, be a little less selfish, and treat us (and each other) with respect and consideration. We’ve always deserved that- but it matters now more than ever.

It breaks my heart that some people are abusive to health workers, biting the hand that heals them. It upsets me when successive governments use the NHS as a political football and sell off bits of it when we’re not looking, with people I know actually heaping praise on the very politicians whose ideology threatens to destroy the thing we’re clapping for every Thursday.

This groundswell of support for the people we rely on to properly live our lives has to be captured and nurtured after all this nonsense is over.

This is the second weekend of lockdown and, despite the brilliant memes and cheery social media posts, I think we’re all beginning to get sick of it. When will it all end? When will things get back to normal?

Depression is knocking on our door and we don’t want to let it in.

So many things – from operations and exploratory tests to family gatherings and holidays – have been put on hold.

On a lighter note, it’s my dog’s birthday today. Six years old and she still can’t read.

Happy birthday, Artemis.

That’s about it.

Love Maddie x