Without ever intending to do so, I appear to have joined that happy league known as LTL. As in, Ladies That Lunch. This has come about over the last few weeks, since the introduction of my weekly “me-time”
when the Lovely Kay comes to keep Mr B company for a blissful couple of hours while I do my own thing.
Doing my own thing, it turns out, consists of weekly meet-ups
- with a different friend each week - at an eaterie of my companion’s choice. What fun! Plus my tuna and cucumber sandwich and skinny latte must surely be helping out the economy, albeit in a small but wholly delicious way.
Today I was meeting my friend Sue, who shares with me the leadership of the Singing for Pleasure Choir. Our singing having been sadly curtailed since the middle of March, we haven’t actually
met up since the initial Lockdown. We have had lots of phone conversations, of course, but it isn’t the same as meeting face-mask to face-mask. Sue has chosen the Palm Court Pavilion as our lunch venue, having checked it out previously with her fella
and judged it COVID Secure. I am more than delighted to meet there - and doubly excited to be able to check in using the QR code on my NHS COVID app. Little things please little minds, do I hear you say?
First thing this morning, I had checked out my horoscope via Alexa and somebody called Sally Morgan. Apparently I would be encountering a number of obstacles in my way over the course of the day but, with a minimum of determination,
I should be able to overcome them all. I have to admit that I am a bit of a cynic, where horoscopes are concerned - but I have to report that my short car journey into town was beset by problems. Firstly I was held up behind an ambulance parked in the middle
of the road outside a parade of shops - none of the cars coming in the opposite direction seemed inclined to stop to let me through. Then, just a few hundred yards further on, the whole road had been closed by the police, following an accident and all the
traffic (including Yours Truly) was diverted along the sea-front. Arriving ten minutes late, the car park was full - Sue was waiting for me, looking concerned. Was this all arranged by Sally Morgan, in conjunction with Alexa, to prove a point? Will I risk
checking my horoscope tomorrow?
I finally parked in Waitrose car park, justifying my stay by purchasing two trays of winter flowering pansies - and trotted along
to the restaurant, congratulating myself on overcoming all the obstacles placed in my way. It was, nevertheless, a relief to greet my friend, settle myself at the table she had thoughtfully pre-booked and order my lunch.
Back home, the Lovely Kay had made Mr B his lunch, put on a second wash, hung the laundry from the first wash on the drier, and washed the floors. Kay does like to keep busy. Her eyes had lit up with
excitement when I suggested that she might like to reorganise the food cupboard - she would absolutely love to do that, she said. She meant it too.
On my return
she had identified all the packets, bottles and jars which were past their “best before” date and stacked them on one of the kitchen surfaces. Oh dear, oh dear! Among them, any number of bottles of cough mixture, testament to my self-help approach
to illness. Indeed, were I to compile a spreadsheet (heaven forbid) listing the “best before” dates in each bottle, it would be possible to chart our household incidence of the Common Cold. Which would be of interest to absolutely nobody, ever.
Even worse, I kid you not, there were at least a dozen out of date packets of various kinds of breakfast cereal. In my defence I must point out that Mr B does like variety
as far as his breakfast is concerned. Not for him a favourite cereal - it is all about choice (largely influenced by TV advertising.) However, even while I am defending myself, I come across an unopened packet of out of date Oats So Simple porridge; it seems
I, too, must shoulder some of the blame.
Mr B and I are clearly Cereal Offenders.