, ,

I’m beginning to understand what life in a monastery must be like…

It’s the routine. It’s not that I mind routine. Well, some of the time, it’s the fact that right now there’s no opportunity to deviate from it. It’s not like you can leave work early and drift into your local on the off-chance of meeting someone for a chat and a laugh. You can’t make impromptu decisions to go out for a meal or see a show or go into town or even have a weekend away by the seaside or somewhere.

Yes, I know we’re doing it for everyone’s good – and I fully support it, just let me let off some steam as it’s almost certain we’re in for another 3 weeks at least of this.

At least the weather’s great. It would be a lot harder if we were cooped up inside as the rain hammered on the windows. Being able to sit out in the garden’s such a blessing. As I’ve mentioned before, my heart goes out to people who’re living in places where they can’t do that – as I have in the past.

Apart from thinking about these things my day was quite productive. Both Dawn and I kept ourselves busy and I managed to get a lot done. By evening time the pair of us had reached saturation point with staring at computer screens so we got out for a stroll in the sunshine. It was a lovely way to reconnect with the real world outside cyberspace where things had been pretty busy for me as our new high-speed railway (HS2) had been given “notice to proceed”. This was the final Governmental green light, so the project moves on from site clearances and utilities diversion to mobilising the main Civil Engineering contractors who will actually build the line. It means the Dept of Transport has now signed off the four major civil engineering contracts worth a total of £12bn. A dozen firms involved can now start work immediately with site preparation works and (crucially) placing key subcontracts which gives the construction industry some certainty (and a guaranteed workflow) in these uncertain times. Needless to say, those opposed to HS2 had an attack of the vapours at the news, but there’s not a damned thing they can do about it other than moan. I’m blogging about all that separately so you don’t need to worry! 

Back at the grindstone I managed some decluttering as well as everything else. It’s amazing some of the stuff you amass in a lifetime. Stuff that you don’t want to part with for sentimental reasons and the happy memories that it triggers, but when do you ever actually look at it, especially when its 33 years old and several lifetimes away – as well as stuffed in a folder in a cupboard?

Festival eye 1987

Still, I might just digitise it before it gets binned, purely for the sake of posterity! There’s a few more like this too. They’re an interesting look back at a very different age but that has a resonance with some of the stuff I’ve been talking about regarding HS2 in another blog. 

With another 3 weeks of lockdown to go and with an eye on the future afterwards, I think I’m going to be keeping the council’s recycling team busy. Thankfully, despite the lockdown Calderdale are still collecting stuff. They’re yet more unsung heroes, the people you take for granted but who you can’t do without. Sadly, Calderdale has closed its main recycling centres out of concern for the staff, which I can understand, but it has led to many more incidents of fly-tipping, like this one on the promenade I noticed the other day.


To be honest, we get a lot of that in our local woods even when the recycling centre IS open. There’s a lot of lazy sods around here…

Despite the odd moonlight fly-tipper, the promenade has become a lovely place to walk and enjoy the views over the valley. The Constabulary have stepped up their presence as they know it’s a place where you’re likely to find a few Covidiots who can’t resist congregating. Now the Covidiots are getting the message and staying away. How everyone will cope with a few more weeks of this is an interesting question, but in general (ignoring the few idiots) the reactions have been good. My main concern is for local businesses and how they pick up the pieces afterwards as there’s some very mixed messages coming from the Government, but no change there…

Right now, all I can do is hunker down. I’ve articles to write, pictures to scan and decades of memorabilia to rationalise. Bored I ain’t…