Posts Tagged ‘Covid-19’

The words just keep on moving.

August 14, 2020

IMG_0856French Sardines

French sardines and my birthday cards

There has been a spell between the last time I wrote down some words in a certain order. The times just keep on going and for every intention to get back to write, something came between the intention and the words. The birthday was a main event but reaching 80 has now passed and it feels the same. I keep a keen alert on moments of forgetfulness or lack of instant recall on names.  Many people of my age I noticed now are doing crosswords and even cryptograms to remain sharp and alert. In my Bradman Cricket café group called Stumps, we help each other out onto remaining alert by recalling movies we might have watched with details of actors’ names, or special events that were shared in times gone by.

We all nod in pleasurable contentment we still know the details of war battles or the Queen’s birthday, the capital of former Rhodesia or what it means to have fallen down a ha ha. When I go through my garden I try remember the names of the different plants that were put in, and at times I do struggle with the instant re-call, but when I let it go, through the sheer magic of my brain, the name will suddenly pop up. So, all is good and still in order.

However, a serious slip-up came to the fore this morning. My usual wake up routine, (as if this is of any importance to you, my dearest and most faithful followers), is to go downstairs and ignite the heating systems, before hopping back into bed to wait for the comfort of a warm and pre-heated wave of air to greet my face. This usually takes about half an hour which is spend, while still in-situ under the blankets, by checking any dire messages or the latest Covid-19 fatalities on my iPhone. It’s not exactly reassuring knowing that those of advanced years are by and large most likely to be locked within the latest fatalities.

So, to keep this short and reverting to the slip-up. As I finally got up, had a shower and got dressed, I noticed after carefully ambling downstairs, that I had left the milk outside the fridge. Can you believe this? I might have told you that instead of sipping Shiraz I now have taken to drinking warm milk with honey. I take one in the morning and one before going to bed. I hope it is not a sign of slipping. Perhaps giving up the Shiraz was not such a good thing. Mind you, I buy the top label of milk named A2, and is twice as expensive as normal milk. It is the best milk money can buy but of course it is not Shiraz. I don’t get a buzz out of this top-milk no matter how much honey is in it. (12%)

Was it a mistake and should I go back to Shiraz?

Is Spam going to make a come-back? Just look at my delicious Spam sandwich

July 26, 2020

IMG_0832

Meat factories and churches together with aged-care homes are now producing many clusters of Covid-19. At the beginning of the virus in March or so there was an outbreak of shoppers converging on rolls of toilet paper at supermarkets. It even came to fights over toilet paper. Scuffles broke out, and security guards were called in to stem toilet paper riots and they quickly restored order. Guns in holsters have an amazing calming effect amongst law abiding shoppers. It is with glee that I read that no one was allowed to return hoarded toilet paper, not even a single roll. Some formed gangs that would go around buying up as much toilet paper as possible. They were hoping to corner the market and make a killing.  There must be many a home bulging to the rafters with toilet paper!

While I still don’t understand the love of toilet paper during a crisis, unless some are privy to using it to fill or firm up stews or a pasta sauce, I was busy stocking up some food. I bought noodles, rice and flour reckoning they could keep me in reasonable health during a prolonged lock-down. However I also was delighted still to remember in my increasingly misty mind-storage bin our past relationship with the much revered corned Salted Pork and hAM cans. I believe that the word of that product SPAM came from that abbreviation of mix of food.

The history of that product is legendary. Even Nikita Khrushchev declared that his soldiers would never haven gotten though the war without SPAM. It was a good source of food. The air-raids above Holland towards the end of WW2 by the British delivered tons of that delicious Spam, hence the name ‘Spam raids.’ I can still see my dad running  on a field towards the dropped food cans. He did not score Spam but instead a large tin of very hard but nutritious biscuits that one soaked in warm water, Gee, what a treat they were too. I still shudder when I see modern kids throwing half their food and drinks away.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spam_(food)

While I did not end up buying Spam and instead chose the Corned beef variety it still has that gelatinous feel and look about it. A kind of fond war memory, seeing it saved thousands of people from starvation. The little key on the side is still there and what happy memories well up while turning that little key to unlock and deliver that lovely mushy characteristic odorous meaty mixture from its steel container.

So, today, being a very rainy Sunday and with the news endlessly about the Virus I thought up a nice Spam sandwich. I embellished the corned mushy mixture after slowly, ever so slowly turning the key to get the full entertainment out of this long revered and longed for food by adding some rocket, lettuce, onion, and tomato to it. I then topped in with some Havarti cheese.

What a beautiful sandwich it turned out to be. It made this gloomy Sunday turn into a feast to behold.

Come, join me and try it out.

Going Solar And Male Prowess.

June 23, 2020

67 Regent Street, Mittagong, NSW 2575

The third one up is my place.

Hello Gerard Oosterman,Your Electricity Distributor, Endeavour has approved your installation.We can now send your solar install request to your installer.An installer will be in touch soon to work out a time and date that suits you.

Speak soon,

Origin Solar

The above I just copied and pasted from a letter I received 5 seconds ago. There you go!

For many years, Helvi and I used to ponder about installing solar panels. It first cropped up on our farm well over 20 years ago when solar panels first started to make their appearance. We had lots of roofs but somehow the costs were not as they are now and we were advised to wait for them to come down. Of course, now with Government rebates and the cost of panels a fraction of what they were it doesn’t make sense not to do it.  The quality of the panels have also improved. Even so, one has to be careful, we were told there are a lot of shonky operators out there trying to sell you a donkey for a horse.

I remember getting very annoyed with endless phone calls trying to lure you into getting solar panels. I ended up with a perfect solution by telling them we had no roof. You could hear their astonishment being told we lived in a house with no roofs! Another ploy I used was reading them a children’s story in Dutch. They soon hung up and it amused Helvi and I for a while. Such memories I tend to stick to. Laughter and a smile is good medicine and lately I haven’t been happier than right now. I made friends and I meet her, and others almost daily. In seems odd that during this Covid-19 pandemic, people seem to be keen in meeting each other and perhaps also make the time available to talk and give smiles.

Distances are still required and most seem to adhere to that. I haven’t as much as shaken hands with her, or others, let alone try and get intimate. Couples must be busting to get to each other, but… distance please…, eat a carrot instead. At my age, my masculinity is waning ( if you relate masculinity with sexual prowess)  and I have yet to consider asking the doctor for any help in the form of Viagra or other stimulants.

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Years ago, that wasn’t an issue with me, but now with  getting older, some still seem to want to stick to what once was. I now avoid coffee, tea and other stimulants after 8pm as my sleep does need careful planning, and I do appreciate that more than a possible feeble rump about, under the doona.

In any case, lets stick to the solar panels for generating electricity. I was told that it takes about three to four years to regain the initial costs of the installation. That is a pretty good return and it would be foolish not to do it. I also bit the sour apple and bought the place next to mine as well. I am not sure but will probably rent it. A bit of a capitalist, and that, at the fag-end of my life!  Where did I go wrong, daddy? Of course with two places now, I also double my joy in gardening efforts in both places, and that balances the capitalist and the botanist (kasvitieteilijä in Finnish) nicely.

I am so excited.