27 April 2020


We were absolutely thrilled when, thanks to a tip off from our friend Gaynor, we managed to get a click and collect slot at our nearest Asda supermarket.
When our illustrious leaders recommended that we should all order our shopping on the internet and have it delivered the whole world and his grandmother fired up their laptops and all the delivery or click and collect slots disappeared in nanoseconds. 
We have periodically logged on at the recommended time of day, which seems to be anything from just after midnight until just before midnight.  We have been out of pot luck every time until finally, finally, a slot came up with Asda for ten days' hence.  We cracked open another bottle of fizz to celebrate.
The appointed day was yesterday morning.  I spent longer in the shower than normal and took more trouble than for a long time on deciding what to wear.  Oh the joy of a day out!
Off we went, excitement mounting, to a place eight miles away that I haven't been for decades, which is where our nearest Asda is. 
It was a good experience.  The young people dealing with the click and collect collections were fabulously cheerful, polite and helpful and all the groceries were excellent.  Even the substitutions.  Well done Asda.  Above all, there was an unexpected bonus.  See first picture.
We had run out of our favourite coffee and were very much looking forward to a fresh supply of two bags and - woo hoo - they both came in these really smart caddies.  Très chic!  My first thought, typically, was "one for here, one for there" and I planned to set one of the caddies aside for when, who knows when, we can return to France.
Which brings me to my next point.
The "when can we return to France?" is the one thought that stops me in my tracks, on and off, throughout every day.  I had started to become aimless, achieving very little most days, barely managing to complete the everyday tasks.  While all around us there are people achieving all kinds of things.  Tapestries, paintings, redecorating, rebuilding the house and restoring old vehicles.  
The other unexpected bonus is in the second picture.  A Christmas gift packed away and out of sight but rediscovered when searching for the coffee grinder.  (Because we had accidentally bought a bag of coffee beans instead of ground coffee on the previous shop.)  (Shop blindness.)
We didn't find the grinder but we found the chocolates.
So, if you get through this without murdering your spouse or dying of chocolate poisoning, that's all that we need to do.  Oh, and stay away from everyone else. 


  1. Oooo... nice caddies! Which reminds me that I need to start another packet of Taylor's Italian.... and I think the Lazy Sunday needs a top up. On-line shopping isn't too hot here, either.... Pauline tried to find a slot.... nada... and precious little on the virtual "shelves" either....
    we've managed to get some flour [2x5kilos - Gampagne and Spelt] thanks to Susan knowing this guy who knows this local mill.... I do love her ability to network!!
    Coffee grinder isn't over here??? Is it?
    Keep well both.... regards to Nick, Daisy and Hugo!!

    1. Tim, we have come to the conclusion that both of the coffee grinders we own are in France!

  2. I've achieved virtually nothing during the lockdown and struggle to get through daily household tasks -- especially the ones I don't like such as the cleaning, but even sometimes the ones I do like, such as cooking. I should have gardened and spring cleaned my way through the lockdown at the very least. But I have done neither.

    1. Susan, I think not achieving much is probably the norm, if my conversations with friends and family are anything to go by.
      If only we could have a sense of there being an end to the madness - not just the virus but the unbelievable ineptitude of our leaders to steer us safely through the crisis.
      A friend with NHS connections tells me that the virus is raging through the care homes because patients recovering from it were sent there from hospital to convalesce, with no testing to see if they were still infected and able to pass it on.
      Heartbreaking. All we can do is look after ourselves.

  3. Sorry Jean we have been cracking on... won't upset you with a long list but we have achieved alot and kept sane... We have managed to get C and C at Kendal Asda and Sainsburys. They are both good but not to keen on some of the subs especially when its not Gluten Free!!! Sur la Vie. Keep well and safe, C

    1. Colin, well done! Getting a lot done is the norm for you two I think.

    2. Hi Jean, Elizabeth here! I wish it wasn't the norm but for me, keeping busy from morning till night is the only way I can cope with stress. If my home is ever spotless, it's because I'm going through a bad patch of depression/anxiety. If it looks "lived in" that's a sign that, for now, I'm out of the woods! If I stop, I have time to think and that way madness lies. I love the line in the article you referenced: "Each of us should have in mind only one goal: to arrive on the other side in one piece." We've all to do it in the way which befits us best, and not stress about what that way might be! Keep safe and enjoy the chocolates!!

    3. Elizabeth, it's the opposite for me. I hate mess but am much less able to deal with it when I'm stressed.
      As you say, avoiding thinking about it too much is the key.