"for the happy, the sad, I don't want to be, another page in your diary"

Sunday 27 June 2021

Beyond Sympathy

I’m back to working from home for a day on Monday as a chap comes to service the boiler but the Lad seems to think the weekend has been extended by a day which isn’t ideal.

After work, which is 5pm despite The Lad insisting it’s 3pm, I take him for a run. Which was probably a bad idea but my knees survive and therefore Monday might subsequently become our run night. We do just over 4k.

Daughter takes up Kung Fu or it might be Jiu Jitsu. L doesn’t seem sure.

England play the Czech Republic, or Czechia as they now wish to be stylishly known, at the Euros and win 1-0. Taking them through to the next round.

L takes a trip to Harley Street for work on Wednesday and is again beset by Mango problems getting to the train station by bus. So I’m sure like many others she swerves away from Trent Barton and gets a City bus instead.

I post a video of the Lad’s training night and everyone seems worried about his knees as he flies over the equipment. I suppose my own knees are already beyond sympathy.

Friday, according to my Garmin, delivers a new best pace (6:17) for our morning run.

Matt Hancock is caught on camera being a naughty boy. Kissing someone from another household was most definitely not allowed at that stage of lockdown. The Sun runs pictures and a video while Boris Johnson just looks on in admiration but Hancock resigns the next day.

Saturday sees L over at her parents watching 1970s music with her Dad and she returns home with a fresh supply of spiky squeaky balls for the boys.

We run another 16k on Sunday and reward ourselves with Sunday Lunch at the Hand and Heart while simultaneously tearing our hair out at the Mango App.

(Sunday 27th June)

Sunday 20 June 2021

Freedom Delayed

Our famous ‘Freedom Day’ scheduled for next Monday has been delayed for a month to not great surprise after the red carpet treatment was afforded to the Indian variant.

I cycle this week wearing my brand new Oakley’s. Sadly it’s taken until I’m in my 50s to be able to afford some and now obviously I’m too old to look ‘cool’ in them but it was good to actually see where I was going for once.

In fact I manage three bike rides this week. Two on my best bike and one on old unfaithful as rain beckons but doesn’t arrive. May 2018 was the last time I did three in a week but over four days. Sept 2017 was the last time I did three in a row. I just hope no one notices me asleep under my desk.

Which has nothing to do with, thanks to our not-quite-freedom status, the long boozy lunch I have with an ex-colleague who I haven’t seen since before the pandemic. We meet at the Brunswick where we revisit the legendary steak and ale stew. His retirement, a few months before the first lockdown, has obviously been a little different to how he intended.

L’s boss has also been in the pub and has possibly overdone it, so he's gives L the rest of the day off to ‘go home, lie in the sun and read a book’. Dogs permitting.

I’m even more exhausted after Friday’s 6k in 39:17 which we manage before some very prolonged rain sets in and probably washes away Summer.

Friday is also England v Scotland at the Euros which is a rather uninspiring 0-0 draw.

The weekend’s Sunday run stretches out to 14k in about 1:41 which used to be a good time for 14 miles...

In the evening we make a disappointing visit to Broadway Cinema who no longer have real ale or a specials board. What with that and hardly any films coming out at the moment there doesn’t seem to be much incentive to visit at the moment. We have a better time next door in Brewdog.

 (Sunday 20th June)

Sunday 13 June 2021

Something Fishy

Everyone is coming together to ensure that L’s parents’ cat can get her fix of Age 11+ Fishy Cat Food of which there currently appears to be a nationwide shortage. So I am feeling incredibly guilty because I cleared Sainsbury’s shelves of the two remaining packs meaning that all other elderly felines in the area will not be getting their fishy fix tonight.

A Conservative MP gets in trouble after his 11-month old puppy ‘Pebble’ causes a stampede of 200 deer in Richmond Park. It’s funny but we know his pain.

The dreaded word ‘tennis’, as in playing it, gets mentioned but I’m in the clear because the Tennis Centre have tournaments on until at least the end of June. So it’s not going to happen for a while yet. Phew.

L and her author friend visit John Carroll Leisure Centre bearing chocolatey gifts with the centre slated for closure at the end of June. Meanwhile the protests to keep it open continue.

Daughter comes over to walk the dogs on Thursday and stays for tea, lured in by the offer of L’s legendary cottage pie. It's been ages since she's been to our place for obvious reasons.

While the car goes in for a Health Check and passes, unlike me.

Friday is our crack of dawn run, complete this week with a new best pace of 6:28 per km for 5k. Hardly earth shattering, as I was doing 4:00s not that long ago. While on Sunday we vary our route again having discovered a (not so) secret tunnel that leads from North Sherwood Street into the Arboretum. Again my watch reports a new best pace this time for 10k as we complete 13k in all.

England win their opening game of the Euros beating Croatia 1-0. I celebrate by cutting the grass at my parents and also in the Borlase later.

(Sunday 13th June)

Sunday 6 June 2021

Afternoon Tea

Monday is a Bank Holiday which L and I celebrate with Afternoon Tea at Colwick Hall Hotel which was birthday present she received from her sister.

We go straight from that to the King's Meadow Vaccination Centre so that I can get my second dose of mind control serum (as L refers to it). This time I don’t seem to develop any aftereffects.

L is getting into the swing of the new ‘freedoms’ and on Tuesday goes out for a girls’ night out to a real live restaurant. I’m out as well, but sadly just with the dogs at dog training.

They really should be doing Indian, in honour of the new Indian Variant but they’re doing French. I'm sure there'll be one of those along soon.

With the Euros approaching, I draw North Macedonia in the Office Sweepstakes which means I have basically donated a £1 to someone else’s beer money.

As the weather is so nice I cycle into work on Wednesday and Thursday on my best bike but discover that thanks to my dodgy knee I have a problem dismounting on this bike when I get to work. The pedal clips are so much stiffer on it and therefore I had a knee related issue twisting out of them.

Taking of injuries, L develops a bad ankle from wearing real shoes to our Afternoon Tea on Monday. I can sympathise as I’ve still got blisters from putting on real shoes for my meeting last week. Thankfully everyone has brough their own working at home dress code into our office and there is no requirement at the moment to turn up smart every day at work.

On Thursday I have a Committee Meeting which is still online but then there is more than six of us. I’m not sure that there’s any need for these to go back to real meetings anyway at least not frequently.

The Friday run goes under seven minute km pace for the first time. My watch say 6:40. I’m not sure how that happened. L then goes for her second jab.

On Saturday we go to Derby Theatre to see a Derby Book Festival event which features Jon Sopel, the BBC America correspondent talking about his book ‘UnPresidented: Politics, Pandemics and the Race That Trumped All Others’. It’s all about Donald Trump and it's a fascinating evening.  

The Sunday run is pushed out to 12k and then I hobble off to watch some tennis at the Nottingham Open. Andy Murray had announced he was going to be there but, like me, his injuries had other ideas. The weather also has other ideas and most of the day is rained off.

I abort, go to visit my parents and then go again later when I do finally catch some tennis.

 (Sunday 6th June)