I first met Helen in 1984 and I would soon start to call her Mum. She was a feisty Scottish lady and I was lucky to know her. Many of you will know about my feelings for my own mother. In the 36 years that I knew Helen she was more of a Mum to me than my own ever aspired to be. Thank you.
At the beginning of March we went to the O2 in Greenwich to see a charity concert for the Royal Marsden Hospital. We were lucky to see great performances from Eric Clapton, Yusuf Cat Stevens and many other great musicians. The concert was well attended. I wonder how many of our fellow concert goers are still around to talk about it.
We had arrived back in Spain, from seeing Mum, on 15 March the day after the lockdown came into effect.
There was never any confusion about what was expected from us when the pandemic hit Spain. The instructions were clear and the police enforced them when necessary. During the early days of the pandemic I was stopped three times at police roadblocks. Each time I explained why I was traveling and the police were courteous and clear with their instructions.
We, and I speak for our friends in Spain, have been constantly appalled by the lack of positive direction from Westminster and the couldn't´-care-less attitudes displayed by so many across the UK. As I´m writing this the pandemic is, once again, on the rise in the UK and the press are reporting that there is the possibility of a Tier 4 being introduced to the present Tier 1, 2 and 3 system. Going from bad to worse.
I remember watching a UK news report about a large gathering of people on the beach at Bournemouth sometime during the worst days of the pandemic. A fit looking young guy was interviewed and asked if he wasn´t concerned about contracting the virus. His answer was ´ I don´t know anyone who has the virus so I can´t get it.` So many people still seem to have this attitude or just don´t care. There are, as we have read, those conspiracy theorists who are still banging on about
how Covid 19 dosen´t really exist, just bad cases of the flu! They are probably also members of the Flat Earth Society.
Margaret and I have followed all the rules, particularly wearing masks, and have moved through the lockdown very well. We are both avid readers and have also used our time writing and building amazing quilts and wall hangings. Margaret has lost a considerable amount of weight and I´m at my fighting best. Because of the sensible approach to the management of the pandemic we have still been able to enjoy our visits to great restaurants and to walk the many roads and alley´s of the lovely village where we live.
Our friends have, like us, done everything expected of them and are all fit and well. What more can you ask?
Christmas Day will be bitter sweet for us because Mum would have celebrated turning 91. We hope to visit the UK at the end of March next year and spend time with Margaret´s brother Ray and his lovely wife Pam. We would like to revisit Japan and Canada but who knows what the next year holds.
Stay safe and enjoy a sensible Christmas and New Year.