Covid-19 Diaries – April 27th

Blog. To begin with, here is my vocal tribute to Captain Tom Moore. This is so I never forget that once there was a 99-year-old bloke (soon to be 100) living quietly in Bedfordshire, who achieved global fame, via tottering around a bit in his garden.  What a shining example of the power of this digital age.  Captain Tom hales from Yorkshire (my home county, hurray) and talks a bit like my Dad, which led me to research Captain Tom’s history, revealing that he was born and brought up in Keighley.  As of now, Captain Tom has raised over £29 million for the NHS. I contributed to his ‘just giving’ page a couple of days ago and also to the Beeb’s Big Night In, being I’ve done absolutely diddly squat in the battle to overcome The Virus.

I’ve used David Bowie’s Space Oddity.  The karaoke track I used is not the best or the most tuneful. The volume is far too loud, and I couldn’t remember how to lower the volume (I now remember but can’t be bothered to re-record.) My voice isn’t suited to the song and the song also ends abruptly ‘cos the track goes on and on at the end, so I had to put a stop to it.  Using earphones will make the whole thing sound a little better. But enough excuses.  I call it:

Planet Earth to Captain Tom


(I adjusted the volume, none too successfully)


Yesterday, Tom Nook gave me 50 panels of fencing in Animal Crossing. The joy and gratitude I felt at receiving this gift was wildly disproportionate to the circumstances, i.e. the fencing is not real and neither is Tom Nook.  But the fencing meant that I’ve been able to cordon off my little house from its surroundings, giving both a sense of security and satisfying a need for ‘order,’ something I find equally appealing in real life.  I’ve also been buying clothes from a vendor in the Plaza (where my jaw dropped at the number of bells I had to hand over – would I ever spend over a thousand quid on clothes in real life?  No, is the answer to that) and my cartoon self now looks much more like my real self, in that she’s wearing the kind of comfortable, elasticated trousers I favour, together with a sort of long smock top.  I used to put my alter ego to bed (I now have a simple bed as opposed to a camping cot) in her clothes but, ridiculously, last night, I changed her clothes and shoes for a t-shirt and underpants, figuring these were more like pyjamas.  I also forked out on an eye mask a couple of days ago, just so I could put her to bed during the day and the daylight wouldn’t keep her awake!!  I’m pretty sure I scored points for this mad behaviour as a nook miles thing flashed up on the screen. I think I’m getting used to how the game works now, whereas before I was blindly rushing around my island (called My Haven, as I see it as a retreat from grotty real life) in a clueless fashion.  Yesterday also saw the arrival of the new Resident Services building, replacing the tent that preceded it. I opted for the opening ceremony, as I’ve done for all new buildings, just so I can take a photo when all the animals cheer and the party poppers go off.  I’ve no idea where I can view these photos, so it’s a waste of time my bothering really.

I also paid a visit to Harv’s (or Harvey’s) Island, where some hippy, zoned out dog (I think it’s a dog) pestered me to take photographs in his studio. Feeling a strong aversion to entering the studio alone with a very strange dog, I eventually gave in, after trying to find a way out of his garden and failing, which set several uncomfortable alarm bells going off in my ‘real’ head.  Had Animal Crossing suddenly got weirded-out and very scary, like a Stephen King novel?  The transcendental dog gave me a tour of the studio and loads of instructions on how to take photographs of myself and my friends, none of which I understood or was even vaguely capable of ‘taking in.’  This is becoming a more common occurrence in island life and I’m beginning to yearn for the simple days, when all I did was a bit of light weeding and lived in a tent.

Speaking of King. I downloaded The Institute on to son no.2’s Kindle.  I would normally never use a device to read, much preferring the size and weight of a book and the feel of the paper.  Due to my burgeoning OCD and wholly new fear of GERMS, I decided that receiving King’s book via the magical internet ether was much the safest thing to do.  I’m not far into the book but already a brutal double murder has taken place – should I be reading my favourite author at such a real-life scary time?  I really wanted to re-read I am Legend, which is so relevant to these surreal times, but can’t find my ancient copy anywhere.

Another online Tesco shop arrived, which meant laboriously washing every item again, including all the veg, which was something I never did pre-The Virus.  Although am well aware I should have.  My equally burgeoning agoraphobia now means that setting foot outside the front door, to put ‘stuff’ in the wheelie bin, feels very dangerous indeed, particularly if anyone walks past the gate.  Can human hosts spread The Virus just by breathing in your vicinity?  I’m in awe of the number of people who go outside for their daily exercise – I’ve not left the house in over 5 weeks.  This is mainly due to the husband’s risk status.  A couple of days ago he received a shielding letter, weeks after the government announced the particularly vulnerable would get one.  Never has his AS seemed so dangerous.

The husband has to have a routine AS blood test next week. That means attending the local surgery and being closely manhandled by a nurse. He plans on wearing a mask, a pair of ski goggles belonging to son no.3, a hat and disposable gloves, in the hopes of warding off The Virus.  The husband has never much cared for his outward appearance, which is proving a bonus in these Covid times when you have to go out of the house looking like a twat.  This hasn’t stopped me, however, from purchasing a hairdressing kit via Amazon. I’ve already had a go at cutting my own grey locks but the husband is adamant that he’s growing his hair long. The husband’s hair doesn’t grow long; it grows straight up and then out to the sides, resulting in an unusual white man’s afro. It’s not a good look.


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