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Another day dawned with crappy weather but one that was enjoyable anyway as we were stepping off the lockdown treadmill – and it felt quite anarchic! How easily we’re pleased in these strange times!

Our often mundane and routine weekly schedule was being interrupted because we’d some extra shopping to do for Dawn’s parents, which meant – wo hoo! – we had a legimate excuse for a trip out in the car! The mission (which we’d chosen to accept) was to shop for a humoungous amount of meat from the excellent Bolster Moor farm shop which is high above Slaithwaite in the Colne Valley. John and Norah had sent us over their shopping list so we knew exactly what we were shopping for – which would restock their freezer for quite some time.

The trip over was a bit of a doddle as it’s cross-country on back roads. Although there seemed to be more people out and about recently traffic seemed to have died down again which was reassuring as the edges of lockdown have felt like they’re starting to fray. The Farm Shop was certainly taking social distancing seriously. No couples were allowed – only individuals, so Dawn went in and I stayed in the car and filled my time by blogging via my phone. Neither Dee nor I are big red meat eaters, but we do occaisionally indulge so Dawn picked up a selection for us which included minced beef, minced pork, chicken livers and bacon. Another bonus was being able to buy some flour, which is as rare as hen’s teeth nowadays. Bolster Moor have been buying it in industrial quantities and then putting it in smaller bags for resale. Apparently, packaging issues are one of the main reasons for shortages, not the inability of mills to supply the raw material. Folk are running out of packaging, not flour! Dee’s final purchase was one of the shops award winning Pork Pies for us to share as a treat. Admittedly, around this neck of the woods it’s almost impossible to find a pork pie that doesn’t carry the sobriquet ‘award winning’ – but with Bolster Moor’s the title’s well deserved!

Mercy mission done we drove over to John and Norah’s to deliver the goods, along with some other bits we’d picked up for them as part of our shopping trips. I feel for John and Norah, we get to do their shopping but they’re completely cut off from a lot of their normal life. Both of them are active and have a wide circle of friends with (until Covid-19 happened) a busy social calendar – all of which has had to come to an end for now and be put on hold until who knows when.

I’d packed my camera in the car on the off-chance there could be a picture opportunity in the offing but the weather conspired against us, so as we drove across the Colne valley and the railway from Manchester to Leeds a band of rain seemed to take delight in frustrating me by blocking off the views which would have been gorgeous a week earlier as we came back cross country via Slaithwaite – or ‘Slawit’ as some insist on saying – i’ve no idea on the correct way to pronounce it as even the local can’t agree on that one! I sometimes wonder if it’s a class thing in the same way that some people insist the word ‘bath’ has an R in it.

Back at home we dodged the rain and settled back into a routine. Dawn got busy in the kitchen sorting out our supplies whilst I retreated into the office to catch up on some work and process some more old railway pictures that were next in the queue whilst respondng to emails and trying to keep on top of information about the big, wide (lockdowned) world. Tomorrow we have another day where we sally forth – this time to shop for ourselves and visit a fishmongers that Dawn’s folks frequent but we’ve never visited…