On a Wednesday I go into town and have lunch with a bunch of people who are as old and wrinkly as me. Edith says it’s good for me to mix with people of my own age. What she really means is it gets me out of the way for a few hours…bless her she doesn’t have to lie about it. You get to a certain age and you get a bit set in your ways, not me of course, but all the other oldies I meet (and if you believe that Tess you will believe anything!)
Any way, yesterday I went to the community hall as usual only to find Moira, a dippy creature at the best of times, sitting there in a paper facemask. Not a real one, a home made one, cobbled together from a bit of drawing paper and a couple of elastic bands. She said she was making sure she didn’t get ‘Eee bow lar’. That’s how she said it…eee bow lar. Silly old fool, I always said she was a couple of sandwiches short of a picnic. The nurse assistant person that brought her in from St Leonards Nursing Home, which is known locally as Gods waiting room, seemed to think this was perfectly normal. She is obviously related to Moria because it would be too coincidental to have two people that stupid in one place if they weren’t related.
“I think Moira has a point Maudy” she shouted. Why do so many people think that deafness is automatic in old age? I pointed out that my legs aren’t so good, but my ears are fine and that my name is Maud, not Maudy, but she can call me Mrs Spear. I get a bit irritated when people I don’t know assume they can call me by my given name, especially when they add a ‘y’ to it.
Well silly me, I asked the nurse why she thought Moira had the right idea. Next time I have a stupid thought like that, please, someone shoot me.
We spent the next half an hour listening to this woman, who was thicker than treacle, tell us about how “the nasty little germies get everywhere” and how they wait for an opportunity and then….”POUNCE” on unsuspecting people. I swear if I could have moved fast enough I would have throttled her. Bloody fool.
Eventually, I couldn’t take anymore and I told her I thought she was talking a complete load of crap. This caused a gasp and a very hurt look. “Well Maudy, how rude” She muttered. I tell you true, I was not half as rude as I wanted to be.
I asked her if it was the germs that made the gentleman from Africa get on a plane and fly to America. Did the ‘germies’ make him do it or did he just decide his chance of surviving the disease was better there? It’s people who have brains, not germs, or even germies for that matter.
This is the difference between living at home surrounded by intelligent people who talk to each other, and going to St Leonards and getting fed pureed apricots and watching childrens TV.
We are at the planning stage at home. We are very rural, and could stay isolated for a considerable amount of time if need be. None of the family and extended family work more than five miles from home, the children all go to local schools.
The wood supply for the winter has been increased and the food supply is increasing daily. As there are just the two of us in the house there are two good sized spare bedrooms that are being used as walk in larders.
Some of the younger ones think we are a little mad. They don’t remember the bitingly cold winters that saw us cut off for weeks on end. They don’t remember the war, when everything was in short supply, they have no idea what it’s like to make do without utilities on a long term basis. They don’t remember flu outbreaks that killed thousands, the thick city smogs that killed thousands more. They don’t remember being told that nuclear war was likely. There’s so much they have no clue about, but I remember and some of my children remember some of these things. Between us that’s enough knowledge to make a start in preparing for the worst that life can bring to us.
Thinking about it, it’s mostly just increasing what we have, we have always been a belt and braces type of family.
None of us knows what the future holds, but as people have brains and germs don’t, we can only hope that scientists can outwit the virus. We are relatively confident that if Ebola does makes it’s way across the channel from Spain, or arrive by plane (as the government seems to be doing nothing to avoid that right now), we have the ability to withdraw and wait it out.
For the sake of the young ones I hope we are right.
I’ll speak to you soon Tess.
Stay safe, regards