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Tuesday 4 August 2020

An End to Lockdown? Sentence a Day July 2020

Cattle return to Epping Forest in the summer
For the last few months my Sentence a Day entries have been a journal of lock down life in the UK. I'm in a more fortunate position than many, working full-time from home in a tech industry job and having just a retired husband and cat at home. It's been a worry not being able to see my mother, 250 miles away, but this month we finally met up for the first time since early December.

Weds July 1
Did a forest walk 3.5 miles. Attended a free Perfect Posture webinar offered by John Lewis & Partners and featuring former Olympic champion Daley Thompson. Today we should have been going to the Greek island of Skiathos, but UK flights to Greece don't start until 15 July and our holiday was cancelled.  I saw online that the first international plane to arrive was from Serbia and it was hosed down, as is the tradition.

Thurs 2 July
Did the food shopping.  Mystery shortages: rubber gloves (still), Lea & Perrins Worcester sauce and peshwari naans. Finished at 8pm. Thank goodness for a day off tomorrow.

Fri 3 July
Having a day off - this is called a care day which was kindly awarded to everyone at my company to take before the end of July.  Bright start, got windy. Went for walk with J, golf club and Yates Meadow, 4 miles.  Then did Mrs Hinch's  Freshen Up Friday. I did have to log in for a Zoom call between 5 and 6 for work, but a small thing to gripe about.

Sat 4 July
More of an easing of lockdown from today.  Hairdressers, pubs and restaurants are now open, with social distancing and other measures. We didn't partake. Did some shopping in Epping. Granddaughter Rosie, 16 months,  came round. Started to watch the 2019 comedy film Plus One., but it was awful so stopped after 30 mins.

Sun 5 July
Sunny but v windy. Did a home workout.  Weeded and watered the rose bed after applying their fertilizer. Should get lovely second flush. Watched film A Walk in the Woods with Robert Redford and Nick Nolte, about two older chaps walking the Appalachian trail.  I enjoyed it, seven out of 10.

Mon 6 July
Did an early walk, urban and boring. Surprise delivery from my boss, gin sampler and sweet treats ready for a virtual team planning meeting next week. Had a busy day but feeling less stressed. Containers outside the front door are looking colourful.
Colourful geraniums and begonias, London, July 2020
Tues 7 July
Workout at home. My procrastination habit bit me on the bottom. Forgot to prepare quarterly report and has to be presented tomorrow. Pressure. Published SAD June. Notified that the Elton John concert I booked in 2019, for Nov 2020, has been moved to Nov 2021.

Weds 8 July
Lots meetings today inc a 4 hour planning meeting so no chance for walk. Weather still bad.

Thurs 9 July
Weather still dismal.  Went to Waitrose. No mystery shortages for a change. Fairly busy. J did a cycle ride with his brother.

Friday 10 July
Fairly quiet day, had a lot to do but was unfortunately in procrastination mode. Watched film film Military Wives. 6 out of 10.

Sat 11 July
Went M&S Epping.  They gave me a free hessian bag. Intended to go for walk but decided to sow forget me nots which led to 2 hours of weeding and getting rid of ivy. Had a delivery of Huel (drinks that are very popular with the younger set at work....).
Sun 12 July
Sunny day. Did early blog shoot in garden, then went for walk 4.5 miles Yates meadow. Saw cattle on trail path (top picture) and was a bit nervous at walking around them, but they took no notice. Roast chicken.

Mon 13 July
Sunny. By 9.15 had done a workout, wiped the kitchen, cleaned up fox poo in the porch and hoovered. Then settled down to work. Last day before a week's holiday. Ordered Sunday Times beauty box.

Tues 14 July
On holiday! Had hair done by Jodie in her home - haven't seen her for 18 months. Soon felt like old times being on M25 - congestion- and saw the deer!

Weds 15 July
Long drive to Plymouth to stay with Mum.  Stopped at Leigh Delamere services for lunch. Quiet, with social distancing being observed.  Arrived at her house around 3pm.

Thurs 16 July
Did a walk of my old haunts  (I grew up in Plymouth) - see it here. Then took mum to an electrical store to get a new oven, followed by a trip to our habitual haunt, Otter garden centre. We didn't buy any plants. Lunch was ok. Plenty of room for social distancing, lots of sanitizers.
Lunch for two at Otter Garden Centre near Plymouth
Fri 17 July
Mum had back pain so wasn't up to the trip we'd planned. Did a walk, weeded, set up her new tablet.
Sat 18 July
Left at 9 15. Home by 3pm. An M4 closure made my heart sink and fortunately thge diversion was quite short. Had an online shopping delivery. Started 2 new series on Netflix, Norsemen and Cursed.  Read what I thought about them here.

Sun 19 July
Cloudy. Did a lot of housework. Roast chicken. Been a bad week exercise-wise. Only 2 short walks. Will do better this coming week.

Mon 20 July
Urban walk 3.5 miles. My Power Plate gym is reopening on August 3 and their new booking system is now working. It was so  good to book some classes. Back at work. Eased in gently

Tues 21 July
Didn't feel great when I woke - very tired - but 2 paracetamol and a bath put me right. Quiet day finished work at 6 30.

Weds 22 July 
Short walk 4.4 miles. Thrilled to jump to 67th in the Hibs 100. Was ranked 402 back in 2017 when I relaunched blog.

Thurs 23 July 
Did food shopping early. An early buy for autumn, a technical wind stopper jacket from Montane, was delivered. This will help me carry on walking during winter. The roses are now in their second flush.  Below: Queen of Sweden.
Pale pink rose Queen of Sweden
Fri 24 July 
Did favourite forest walk, Yates meadow and a forest loop. Squeezed in a blog shoot when the sun went in. Published Friday favourites. From today we have to wear face coverings in England when we go into shops.  They have been mandatory on public transport for several weeks. We have several ready, in plastic bags.  My nice cotton patterned coverings from Baukjen and J has grotty old paper ones - you see them discarded in the streets.
Cotton face covering in plastic bag
Sat 25 July 
Overcast and drizzly.  Did some weeding and gathered seeds from the nigella (love in the mist).  I will sow these and they'll make sturdy little plants which will flower early in spring.
Sunday 26 July
Fine day on the whole. Urban walk 4.5 miles. 2 nice things happened. I dropped off some colourful kids' masks at a neighbours.  They sent round some flowers and a card to thank me, which was v kind. I later shared my Jane Fallon book review on Twitter and she replied "Lovely. Thank you" and kindly retweeted it.

Monday 27 July 
Miserable weather.  Cold and grey. Did workout at home.

Tues 28 July 
Pin and yellow plants and view of Connaught Water in Epping Forest
Overcast.  Did walk around Connaught Water, local man-made lake in Epping Forest.

Weds 29 July 
Booked to go to the Titian exhibition at the National Gallery on 15 Aug. Ordered my spring bulbs for autumn planting. Narcissus tulips camassias for 1st time and anemones.

Thurs 30 July 
Quick walk, Kings Head circular before lunch after early start. Booked a week in the Lake District with J in September. Trying to start new food regime which means having Huel for lunch (added blueberries).
Fri 31 July 
Hot day got to 35 degrees (95 F). 95). Did 5 mile walk, crossed Yates Meadow twice (v steep) as need hill practice for Lakes. Set up new VR headset. First thing I watched was a guided tour of Anne Fran's house. Amazing.

Sharing this post with #Linkup on the Edge at Shelbee on the Edge, Anna at Muttonstyle and #AnythingGoes at My Random Musings

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